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  • Archive for November, 2018

    A GREAT COLLECTION OF IRISH ART AT SOTHEBY’S IN LONDON

    Saturday, November 17th, 2018
    The Brian P. Burns collection of Irish art  comes under the hammer at Sotheby’s in London on November 21.  Internationally promoted this sale of 100 lots spans Irish artists from the 18th century to the present day and includes works by Yeats, O’Conor, Lavery, Orpen, Osborne, Leech, Nathaniel Hone, James Brenan and Rowan Gillespie.
    Now aged over 80 Sotheby’s describe the collection he formed over a lifetime as one of the greatest collections of Irish art in private hands.  He has generously loaned his collection to exhibitions in America and Ireland and created new audiences for and awareness of Irish art.  Here is a selection from the sale:

    (See post on antiquesandartireland.com for August 22, 2018)

    Walter Frederick Osborne, At the Breakfast Table

    Roderic O’Conor, Seascape, Orange and Red Rocks

    ROWAN GILLESPIE – THE SETTLERS

    St. Patrick’s Hall, Dublin Castle by F.J. Davis

    THE WORLD’S MOST EXPENSIVE LIVING ARTIST

    Friday, November 16th, 2018

    David Hockney – Portrait of the artist (Pool with two figures)

    David Hockney has become the world’s most expensive living artist.   His Portrait of an Artist (Pool with Two Figures)  sold at Christie’s in New York last night for$90,312,500. It had been estimated at up to $80 million.  After the bidding passed the $70 million mark there was a ten minute bidding battle between two rival bidders on the telephone.

    The previous living artist record was held by Jeff Koons whose stainless steel  Balloon Dog (Orange) sold for $58 million in 2013.

    The Post-War and Contemporary Art Evening Sale sale attracted buyers from 33 countries across five continents and totalled $357,622,500.

    There were five new auction records for Hockey, Sam Gilliam (Lady Day  II made $2.1 million), Pierre Soulages (Peinture 186 x 143 cm, 23 december 1959 made $10.6 million), Robert Colescott (Cultural Exchange made$912,500)  and a record for a work on paper by Philip Guston (Windown $3.1 million).

    RICHTER LEADS SOTHEBY’S CONTEMPORARY ART EVENING SALE

    Thursday, November 15th, 2018

    Gerhard Richter – Abstraktes Bild

    Gerhard Richter’s monumental Abstraktes Bild from 1987 led Sotheby’s Contemporary Art evening sale in New York last night. It made $32 million in an auction which totalled $362.2 million.  This was up 17% on November 2017.  With 97% of lots sold it was Sotheby’s fourth consecutive art evening auction in New York with a sell through rate of over 95%.  Sales from the collection of David Teiger have now crossed $100 million and more auctions from his collection will be held in 2019.

    Grégoire Billaut, Head of Sotheby’s Contemporary Art Department in New York, said: “Tonight’s results were among the best we have ever achieved, and reinforced the strong and consistent market we have experienced throughout the fall. From a record Contemporary Curated sale in September to our best online sale to-date and a 100%-sold Day Auction in Hong Kong, the market continues to grow across price levels. We saw a depth of bidding throughout the sale from buyers around the globe, and achieved great records for some very deserving names. Our goal is always to deliver for our consignors, and we did just that with an exceptional sell-through rate.”

    David Hockney Montcalm Interior with 2 Dogs sold for $12.7 million

    Jean-Michel Basquiat Untitled (Pollo Frito) sold for $25.7 million

    MARIE ANTOINETTE PEARL MAKES AUCTION HISTORY

    Wednesday, November 14th, 2018

    The magic of Queen Marie-Antoinette held say at Sotheby’s in Geneva when a pearl and diamond pendant that belonged to ill-fated French Queen was been sold for $36 million over an estimate of around $2 million.  This is a world record for a pearl.  The pendant was part of a collection of jewellery sold by Italy’s Bourbon-Parma house.

    Other lots included a natural pearl and diamond necklace, a pair of pearl and diamond earrings, and a monogram ring with a lock of her hair.  The queen smuggled her jewellery to her family in Austria before an ill fated attempt to flee the French Revolution.  She was guillotined aged 37  in 1793.

    The previous record for the most expensive pearl was a necklace once owned by Elizabeth Taylor which was sold for $11.8 million at Christie’s in 2011.

    MORE THAN 700 LOTS AT FONSIE MEALY’S MILFORD SALE

    Wednesday, November 14th, 2018

    THE first ever contents sale of Milford House, home to the Alexander family since the early 1800’s, will be held on November 20 by Fonsie Mealy Auctioneers. More than 700 lots will come under the hammer.  The family settled in Carlow in the 1780’s and the main source of income was milling.  A number of them followed careers in the British Army and there are artefacts passed down through generations and objects acquired through travel to exotic lands..  There is taxidermy including a Russian wild boar and collectibles include an early 19th century Maori Tiki Hei whale bone pendant and a Japanese silver and bronze Okimono, Meji Period, modelled as a Manchuria Crane. The auction will offer family silver, portraits and Irish furniture. Viewing is on the premises from November 18 and the auction will be held at The Talbot Hotel, Carlow.  The catalogue is online.  Here is a small selection:

    Aniello Ascione, 17th Century Italian School `one of a pair of Still Life Paintings

    IRISH CHIPPENDALE PERIOD BREAKFRONT BOOKCASE

    Highly Important Historical Zulu Artefact Engraving: “The Capture of Cetshwayo – Arrival of The King at Sir Garent Wolselys Camp, Ulundi

    MOUNTED RUSSIAN WILD BOAR, ON CARVED SHIELD SHAPED MOUNT.

    RECORDS FOR HOPPER, DE KOONING AT CHRISTIE’S, NEW YORK

    Wednesday, November 14th, 2018

    Willem de Kooning’s Woman as Landscape (1954-55)

    There were new world records for Edward Hopper, Willem de Kooning and eleven others at Christie’s in New York last night.  An American Place, the Barney A. Ebsworth Collection evening sale brought in $317.8 million. There were 42 lots in the auction. Hopper’s Chop Suey sold for $91,875,000 to become the most expensive work of pre-war American art.

    Willen de Kooning’s Woman as Landscape (1954-55) made $68.9 million, Jackson Pollock’s Composition with Red Strokes sold for $55.4 million.

    The Ebsworth collection was begun in 1972, the year he founded the Royal Cruise Line. Initially focussed on American Modernists Ebsworth then turned to acquiring the best works by Abstract Expressionists.

    The blue-chip nature of the works that Ebsworth assembled resulted in eleven auction records and two records by medium for a veritable who’s who of American art across the last 100 years. New auction marks were set for  Arshile Gorky, Patrick Henry Bruce, Francis Criss, Joseph Stella, Suzy Frelinghuysen, Charles Green Shaw, Alexander Calder (for a standing sculpture), David Smith (by medium), George Tooker, John Marin, Leon Polk Smith, Gaston La Chaise and Otterness.

    (See video post on Hopper’s Chop Suey on antiquesandartireland.com for November 10, 2018)

    Franz Kline – Painting (1954) ($4.5 million)

    Jackson Pollock – Composition with Red Strokes

    PINK LEGACY MADE $50.3 MILLION IN GENEVA

    Wednesday, November 14th, 2018

    The Pink Legacy

    THE Pink Legacy made $50,375,00 at Christie’s in Geneva last night.   The largest and finest fancy vivid pink diamond ever offered at auction by Christie’s weighs just under 19 carats.  The rectangular-cut gem was the top lot at Christie’s Magnificent Jewels auction at the Four Seasons Hotel des Bergues in Geneva. From the Oppenheimer Family it had been estimated at US $30-50 million.  The auction achieved $110,214,250.

    (See post on antiquesandartireland.com for September  25,  2018)

    STAN LEE COLLECTION AT JULIEN’S THIS WEEKEND

    Tuesday, November 13th, 2018

    A collection of nearly 20 lots from the universe of Stan Lee, the American writer and former president of Marvel Comics who has just died at the age of 95, comes up at Julien’s Auctions sale of Icons and Idols: Hollywood on November 16 and 17.  Lee created The Fantastic Four for Marvel Comics in 1961 and went on to create titles including Spider-Man and The Incredible Hulk.

    Consigned months ago by an anonymous collector are numerous original comic books signed and written by Stan Lee including a copy of Amazing Fantasy #15 (Marvel Comics Group, August 1962) featuring the first appearance of Marvel’s most famous character, Spider-Man and Spider-Man’s origin ($30,000-50,000); a custom bound one-of-a-kind hardcover book that includes the first 10 issues of The Amazing Spider-Man, Strange Tales Annual #2, and Amazing Fantasy #15 (Marvel Comics Group, 1962-1964) believed to have been previously owned by Michael H. Price, writer and friend of Stan Lee ($20,000-$30,000); a Stan Lee written and signed copy of The Amazing Spider-Man #1 (Marvel Comics Group, March 1963) retelling of Spider-Man’s origin (originally published in Amazing Fantasy #15) and also featured the first appearance of J. Jonah Jameson and the Chameleon as well as the first cross-over with the Fantastic Four ($2,000-$4,000) and a Lee signed copy of The Amazing Spider-Man #42 that features the first full appearance of Mary Jane Watson ($800-$1,200); a signed copy of Rise of The Black Panther Variant Edition #1 (Marvel Comics Group, March 2018) signed with black marker on the top cover by Stan Lee written by Ta-Nehisi Coates ($2,000-$3,000); a Stan Lee signed copy of Star Wars #97 (Marvel Comics Group, July 1985) story by Jo Duffy and artwork by Cynthia Martin ($800-$1,200) as well as a custom fiberglass life size mannequin of Spider Man designed to hang from the ceiling ($1,000-$2,000), sketches and more.

    The sale is at The Standard Oil Building in Beverly Hills and live online.  All photos courtesy Julien’s Auctions.

    A NEW WORLD RECORD FOR MAGRITTE AT SOTHEBY’S

    Tuesday, November 13th, 2018

    Rene Magritte – Le Principe du Plaisir (The Pleasure Principle)

    There was a new work record for Rene Magritte at Sotheby’s Impressionist and Modern Art sale in New York last night.  The record breaking portrait of his patron Edward James – a surrealist masterpiece called Le Principe du Plaisir (The Pleasure Principle) – made $26.8 million after a seven way bidding battle.  The auction brought in a total of $315.4 million.

    Egon Schiele’s 1913 Townscape Dämmernde Stadt (Die Kleine Stadt II) made $24.6 million, Oskar Kokoschka’s portrait ofJoseph De Montesquiou-Fezensac made $20.4 million (five time the artist’s previous record) and Ludwig Kirchner’s Psychologically Gripping Das Soldatenbad (Artillerymen) made $22 Million. A private collection of Fauve, Expressionist and Modern works totalled $111 million led by three Kandinsky paintings which each sold for over $20 million.

    August Uribe, Head of Sotheby’s Impressionist & Modern Art Department in New York, commented“Tonight we witnessed a healthy and intelligent market responding with enthusiasm to a sale unlike any we have assembled in recent memory.  The offering was characterised by originality as well as rarity, bringing together the best examples remaining in private hands by artists not typically seen at auction, alongside important works by the leading Modernists. Bidding was truly global, evenly split between the US, Europe and Asia, which is a combination needed to drive a $300+ million total.”

    MID CENTURY MODERN AT JAMES ADAM IN DUBLIN

    Sunday, November 11th, 2018

    The vogue for mid 20th century designer furniture is creating new demand and James Adam will offer a good selection at their Mid Century Modern sale in Dublin on November 13 at 6 p.m.  There is lighting, tables, sideboards, cabinets and associated art from the studios of artists like Callum Innes, Hughie O’Donoghue, Albert Irvin, Sean Scully, Felim Egan, Mark Francis, Paddy Graham and Tony O’Malley. Among the most expensively estimated lots are an untitled work by Callum Innes (20,000-30,000), The Pond by Tony O’Malley (12,000-16,000), a ceiling light by Max Ingrand for Fontana Arte (10,000-15,000) and a pair of armchairs by Gio Ponti (5,000-7,000). The catalogue is online. Here is a small selection:

    A pair of c1930 Art Deco armchairs, with black laquered arms and
    ivory coloured upholstery  UPDATE: THESE MADE 1,800 AT HAMMER

    MAX INGRAND (1908 – 1969) Model 2127 ceiling light for Fontana Arte, c.1960s  UPDATE: THIS WAS UNSOLD

    CALLUM INNES (B.1962)
    UNTITLED NO.II, 2008  UPDATE: THIS SOLD FOR 20,000 AT HAMMER

    A pair of 1950’s armchairs by Gio Ponti UPDATE: THESE made 4,800