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  • Archive for March, 2019

    TEFAF BRINGS COLLECTORS IN DROVES

    Monday, March 18th, 2019

    TEFAF Maastricht 2019 held two preview days for its 32nd edition, before opening to the public last Saturday. Sales were strong and buying continued over the opening weekend across all sections of the Fair. First time exhibitor Fergus McCaffrey said, “We were delighted by the response to Barry X Ball’s solo presentation on our stand at TEFAF Maastricht. The level of interest has been incredible! As a result, at this stage, there are two major commissions being discussed and we expect to confirm 3 or 4 other sales in the next few days.” TEFAF Maastricht continues until Sunday 24th March, at the MECC.

    The Fair opened with to great optimism when the centrepiece of Dickenson Femme nue couchée by Pierre-Auguste Renoir (1841-1919) sold to a private collector within the first minutes. The large oil-on-canvas, portraying Renoir’s favourite model Gabrielle, commanded the front of the Dickinson stand and attracted much attention from visitors. An 18th-century Doll’s House, known as Anna Maria Tripp’s House, which has remained in the same family for many generations was on the market for the first time and was sold by John Endlich Antiquairs to a Foundation which will lend it to a Dutch museum on a long term loan

    TEFAF Maastricht continues until Sunday March 24.

    John Endlich Antiquair
    A view of the 2019 Fair

    LORD EDWARD’S LETTER AT BONHAMS

    Sunday, March 17th, 2019

    A letter from Lord Edward FitzGerald to his sister Lucy dated December 31, 1796, reporting that a fleet from the First French Republic had left the coast comes up at Bonhams sale of Fine Books and Manuscripts in London on March 27.  The fleet had left Brest that November with 15,000 soldiers, aiming to land at Bantry Bay and assist the planned rising of the United Irishmen under the command of FitzGerald.Atrocious weather prevented a French landing and the fleet limped back to port in January.  The letter is guarded as the family avoided overt political commentary for their own protection. It is estimated at 700-900. A first edition of Edward Morgan’s journal of the movement of the French Fleet in Bantry Bay, inscribed to Lord Bantry, is estimated at 2,300-3,500.

    LORD EDWARD’S LETTER
    Edward Morgan’s account of the French Fleet movements in Bantry Bay inscribed to Lord Bantry

    ART, ANTIQUES AND BOOKS AT LYNES AND LYNES

    Sunday, March 17th, 2019

    Oil paintings and antique furniture from a Georgian residence in Kinsale will form the bulk of lots at the Lynes and Lynes auction in Carrigtwohill, Co. Cork next Saturday (March 23).  The executors sale of contents from DeCourcey House at Scilly  will feature books of Cork interest including Somerville and Ross first editions and two lots from the White Star liner RMS Celtic which ran aground in Cork Harbour in 1928. Lot 100 is a large 17th century portrait in the manner of Sir Anthony van Dyck (10,000-15,000).  There is a battle scene in the manner of Paul de Vos (Flemish 1595-1678) (1,500-3,000) and an oval military portrait. An Irish 19th century rent table  in the style of Williams and Gibton is estimated at ,500-2,000.  Other furniture includes an Irish early 19th century gothic style bookcase (600-1,000), a set of 12 Cork 11-bar dining chairs (3,000-4,000) and an arched gilt 19th century overmantle mirror with twin side columns (2,000-3,000). Books include Adventures Amidst The Equatorial Forests and Rivers of South America and In the West Indies And the Wilds of Florida by Villiers Stuart of Dromana on the River Blackwater. Sketches in India taken at Hyderabad and Secunderabad by Captan Allan N. Scott comes with 101 photographs and Geology Familiarly Illustrated by CMW from 1859 contains 31 hand coloured lithograph scenes. Two ships chairs on metal bases from the RMS Celtic are estimated at 200-300 and a ships library table is estimated at 200-300. A cased model of a Stena Line ferry is estimated at 1,500-2,000.  The silver on offer includes a George III fox head stirrup cup, London 1802 (2,000-3,000). Among the books is a long run of Capuchin annuals including the year 1966.

    PORTRAIT OF MEXICAN ACTRESS MOVITA AT ADAMS

    Saturday, March 16th, 2019

    This charcoal and pastel portrait of Movita by Sean Keating comes up at the James Adam sale of Important Irish Art in Dublin on March 27.  Forever associated with Cobh boxer, actor and tenor Jack Doyle – the Gorgeous Gael – Maria Movita Castenada was a Mexican actress who starred in the Hollywood films  Mutiny on the Bounty (1935) and Fort Apache (1948).  Movita came to Ireland in the 1940’s as singing partner to Jack Doyle (1913-1978).  They married at Westland Row Church in Dublin and their double act drew sell out crowds when they toured this country and Britain.  Sean Keating would have known Movita and Doyle as they were fellow habitues of the Wicklow Hotel in Dublin.  The couple divorced in 1945 and Movita went on to marry Marlon Brando.  She died aged 98 in 2015.   The portrait is estimated at 1,200-1,600.

    Movita by Sean Keating

    ONLINE SALE OF IRISH ART

    Thursday, March 14th, 2019

    An online auction of affordable art by Morgan O’Driscoll runs until March 19. The catalogue is online. Here is a small selection:

    MAURICE HENDERSON Unloading the Catch, Beara (1991) (600-900)
    JOHN KINGERLEE Head (1,000-1,500)
    FRANCIS BACON (1909-1992) Pope Series signed in the plate lower right – limited edition lithograph published by D & P, 1997 edition – numbered 39 from an edition of 100 (300-500)

    CHINESE EXPORT PORCELAIN FROM TIBOR COLLECTION

    Wednesday, March 13th, 2019

    One of the most significant collections of Chinese export porcelain in the world, the Tibor Collection, will come up in a sales series at Christie’s this year.  It begins with a single owner sale on April 10 in New York and continues with top pieces in The Exceptional Sale in New York, London and Paris.  Comprising more than 500 pieces the collection – which ranges from late Ming blue and white to 18th century armorial and European subject wares – is expected to exceed $6 million.

    A RARE PAIR OF SOUP TUREENS, COVERS AND STANDS
    QIANLONG PERIOD (1736-1795) ($100,000-150,000)
    A PAIR OF HISPANIC MARKET VERTE-IMARI JARS AND COVERS
    KANGXI PERIOD (1662-1722) ($80,000-120,000)

    CHINESE WORKS OF ART AT SOTHEBY’S HONG KONG

    Wednesday, March 13th, 2019

    A themed sale dedicated to the Tianminlou Collection will highlight the Chinese Works of Art Spring Sale series at Sotheby’s in Hong Kong on April 3. Sotheby’s Asia chairman Nicholas Chow said: “We are honoured to be entrusted with a fine selection of the Hong Kong-based Tianminlou collection, which boasts one of the best private blue and white porcelain assemblages in the world. The dedicated sale consists of a carefully selected group of eighteen pieces of Ming and Qing porcelains and is the first time treasures from the collection are offered in the market.” 

    Other sales include Scholarly and Imperial works of art from a distinguished collection, predominantly from the late Ming to the Qianlong period. The Robert Younghman Collection of Chinese Jade II, Fine Imperial Porcelain from a private collection and Important Chinese Art. Here is a small selection:

    BLUE AND WHITE ‘LOTUS’ BASIN 
    MING DYNASTY, YONGLE PERIOD
    ARGE YELLOW JADE ANIMAL-SHAPED PLAQUE EASTERN ZHOU DYNASTY

    REDISCOVERED MCDONALD ART AT GORRY GALLERY SHOW

    Monday, March 11th, 2019

    An exciting discovery of around 40 drawings and watercolours by Daniel Macdonald (1821-1853) will be exhibited at the Gorry Gallery in Dublin from March 28.  They give a visual insight into life and society in Cork in the early 1840’s and demonstrate his empathy for the rural people of Ireland. Daniel Macdonald’s impressive graphic skills are demonstrated in images like Blindman’s Buff, Irish Jig-house, Apple Bobbing and The Day after the Fair. According to the catalogue note by Professor Niamh O’Sullivan, author of In the Lion’s Den: Daniel MacDonald, Ireland and Empire: “His crowd scenes are replete with detail, abound with energy and scintillate with wit, and the articulation of character and narrative is compelling”.  A number of the drawings were executed on board the yacht Hebe in Cobh and date to 1843-44, just prior to his departure for London.  His 1847 painting of An Irish Peasant Family discovering the Blight in their Store, shown at the British Institution, had the distinction until recently of being the only Irish painting that directly confronted the famine.  “His paintings are without precedence, not only in the Irish and British canon, but in French art then considered the most radical of all”, Niamh O’Sullivan notes.

    Daniel Macdonald – Hedge School

    This c1900 etching of St. Paul’s Cathedral, London by Francis Walker depicts a view from the river long obliterated by development. It is part of a new exhibition celebrating the art of etching at the National Gallery of Ireland. Making their Mark celebrates the work of Irish painter-etchers and engravers. Around 50 original prints from artists as diverse as Edward Millington Synge, Estella Solomons, George Atkinson, Roderic O’Conor, Joseph Malachy Kavanagh and Percy F. Gethin are on fascinating display in a not to be missed exhibition which continues until June 30. It features the only known print by John Lavery as well as work by influential artists like Walter Sickert and James Abbot McNeill Whistler. There are scene of the construction of the Shannon Scheme at Ardnacrusha by George Atkinson and a travelling circus in Co. Clare around 1912 by Percy Gethin.

    Sunday, March 10th, 2019
    Francis S. Walker (1848-1916) St Paul’s Cathedral in Moonlight, c.1900 © The Trustees of the British MuseumPrint

    DRUE HEINZ COLLECTION AT CHRISTIE’S

    Saturday, March 9th, 2019

    The collection of Drue Heinz will be offered at Christie’s Impressionist and Modern evening and day sales in New York in May. Leading the collection is Amedeo Modigliani’s Lunia Czechowska (à la robe noire), 1919 ($12-18 million). Modigliani was infatuated with his subject, a young Polish émigré, who was married to a close friend of the artist’s dealer, Léopold Zborowski, and would ultimately go on to paint her likeness in ten known
    paintings.

    Amedeo Modigliani, Lunia Czechowska (à la robe noire)

    Henri Matisse painted Nu à la fenêtre ($7-10 million) – also known as Nu
    nacré (Pearly Nude) for the iridescent quality of its light—in his new studio during the first part of 1929 and sold the canvas to Bernheim-Jeune that September. The painting was reproduced shortly thereafter in two important monographs, one by Florent Fels and the other by Roger Fry. Pierre Bonnard’s La Terrasse ou Une terrasse à Grasse, 1912 ($6-9
    million) is a pageant of high-keyed color and luxuriant, Mediterranean
    vegetation.

    Heinz was married to H.J. (Jack) Heinz II – CEO of the H. J. Heinz Company – from 1953 until his death in 1987, and she made most of her acquisitions over the course of their three decades of marriage.

    The contents of Mrs. Heinz’s London mews house and Manhattan townhouse will be offered in London on June 4. The London mews was purchased by Mr. & Mrs. Heinz in the late 1950s and is particularly special as it has at its core one of the most charming and untouched John Fowler interiors remaining, with a second phase of development and decoration in the 1980s by Renzo Mongiardino.

    The top lot of the sale is from the London property, a massive
    George II giltwood pier mirror, circa 1750, in the manner of Vardy (£150,000 –250,000). Further highlights from London include Swimming Pool by David Hockney. Notable lots from New York include a Regency specimen marble bronzed and parcel-gilt centre table circa 1810 (£15,000-25,000) and a pair of Chinese Export black and gilt-lacquer wardrobes.