Information about Art, Antiques and Auctions in Ireland and around the world
  • About Des
  • Contact
  • Archive for May, 2019


    Friday, May 31st, 2019

    Leger and Picasso will highlight Christie’s Impressionist and Modern Art evening sale in London on June 18. Fernand Léger’s Femme dans un fauteuil (1913) and Picasso’s Homme et femme (1968) offer radical visions of the female form as the artists pushed the boundaries of representation during the 20th century.

    Fernand Léger (1881-1955) Femme dans un fauteuil CHRISTIE’S IMAGES LTD. 2019

    The Landscape of a Mind: A Private Collector’s Surreal Vision, a group of 13 Dada and Surrealist work, will include paintings by Yves Tanguy and René Magritte and a drawing by Salvador Dalí.

    Pablo Picasso (1881-1973) Homme et femme nus CHRISTIE’S IMAGES LTD. 2019 UPDATE: THIS WAS THE TOP LOT AND SOLD FOR £12,464,250.

    Henri Matisse’s Le collier d’ambre (1937) is another highlight. An odalisque painting, it is amongst the most rigorously designed and strikingly orchestrated compositions Matisse painted after the First World War. Henri Laurens’s Homme à la pipe (1919) and Otto Dix’s Soldat mit Tabakspfeife (1918) are both presented to the market for the first time since the early 1960s when they were separately acquired for private collections. The sale consists of 34 works, many of which have been in private collections for many years.


    Tuesday, May 28th, 2019

    THERE was another million euro plus sale of Irish art at Whyte’s in Dublin on May 27. The auction grossed 1.1 million and 70% of lots offered were sold. The top price of 100,000 on the hammer was achieved for Paul Henry’s Western Landscape, a typical later work.

    Western Landscape by Paul Henry made 100,000 at hammer

    Sir John Lavery’s Mary in Black made a hammer price of 75,000; Jack Yeats’ A Quay Workers Home made 68,000 and William Leech’sStill Life with Flowers in a Vase made 60,000. Works that exceeded expectations included Nevill Johnson Nurses, 1953, (21,000 ); Liam O’Neill The Cornfield, 1995, (6,000); Arthur Maderson Canal Du Midi, Near Castelnaudary, France (9,000) and Ciarán Clear Winter Night, Connemara Coast (6,800).


    Monday, May 27th, 2019

     La Tauromachie (Bullfighting) by Germaine Richier (1902-1959) from the collection of the singer Charles Aznavour who died in 2018 comes up at Christie’s in Paris on June 4. This emblematic work conceived by the artist in 1953 is from an edition of 11. Other versions of her work are in prestigious collections like the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art in Denmark, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation, New York and the  Musée Royal d’Art Moderne in Brussels.  The bronze sculpture with gold patina was acquired by Aznavour from his friend the singer Fred Mella. The piece, which is estimated at 1.5-2.5 million euro, currently holds the world auction record of 3,086,400 euro for a work by the French sculptor. It is one of two works of art from the Aznavour collection in the sale. The other is a sculpture by César (1921-1998) titled Plaque Tesconi. Named after the Tesconi foundry it is estimated at 60,000-80,000. UPDATE: THE CESAR SOLD FOR 72,000.

    La Tauromachie (Bullfighting) by Germaine Richier UPDATE: THIS SOLD FOR 2.1 MILLION EUROS


    Sunday, May 26th, 2019

    AN online auction of affordable Irish art by Morgan O’Driscoll runs to the evening of Tuesday, May 28. There catalogue, which is online, shows 402 lots. Here is a sample.

    WILLIAM CROZIER (1930-2011)West Cork Landscape (62/125) 300-400 UPDATE: THIS MADE 700 AT HAMMER
    ARTHUR K. MADERSON (B.1942) (2,500-3,500) UPDATE: THIS MADE 5,400 AT HAMMER


    Saturday, May 25th, 2019

    Among the real rarities at Inside Out, Sheppards auction of garden sculpture, architectural ornaments and French art at Glantelwe Gardens, Durrow on May 28 is an original cast iron Irish Posts and Telegraphs post box. Originally in Cork city centre it was donated to a charity auction years ago following demolition work.  Lot 67 is estimated at 6,000-9,000.

    The Irish Posts & Telegraphs pillar box UPDATE: THE PILLAR BOX WAS UNSOLD

    From cast iron furniture and garden benches to classical urns and terracotta plaques this sale offers much in the way of choice. The selection of antique garden pieces includes bird baths, animal figures, bollards, stone troughs, sculpture, fountain heads, arches, cast iron gates, sundials and gothic arches. With 600 lots of garden furniture and 100 lots from a private collection of French art there is a huge variety here to choose from.  The catalogue is online.


    Saturday, May 25th, 2019

    The artist L.S. Lowry, one of Britain’s favourite painters, loved to visit Ireland. Proud of his Irish roots he made pictures dated 1956, 1964, 1969 and 1970 with scenes in Dublin, Skerries, Drogheda and Belfast. In fact this was the only country he travelled to outside Britain.

    Drogheda 1970 by L.S. Lowry UPDATE: THIS WAS UNSOLD

    Drogheda 1970 complete with a few small matchstick figures by Lowry comes up at Whyte’s sale of Important Irish Art at the RDS on May 27.  Made with coloured inks on paper and measuring just 12″ x 16″ it is estimated at 15,000-20,000.The top works in the sale of 205 lots are by Jack Butler Yeats and Paul Henry.  The Quay Workers Home by Yeats is estimated at 60,000-80,000, Henry’s Western Landscape has an estimate of 100,000-150,000. Following a very successful million euro plus sale in March, with 90% of lots sold and many works selling ahead of estimate, Whyte’s are optimistic about this upcoming auction. The catalogue is online and viewing is underway at the RDS.

    The Quay Workers Home, a 1927 work by Jack B. Yeats UPDATE: THIS MADE 68,000 AT HAMMER


    Monday, May 20th, 2019

    An Irish painting by the American artist Rockwell Kent comes up at Sotheby’s American Art sale in New York on May 21. Craigbeefin dates to 1926-27 and is estimated at $70,000-100,000. In a catalogue note Sotheby’s say that the paintings Rockwell Kent created while in Ireland can be categorised in two groups: one, the detailed landscape and human infused compositions such as Annie Mc Ginley (private collection) and Dan Ward’s Stack (The State Hermitage Museum, Saint Petersburg, Russia); and two, the stark, modelled landscapes that focus more on abstract form–such as in the work of Arthur Dove and Georgia O’Keeffe–that are more a human reflection on the essence of the world around us. Craigbeefin represents the latter. It was exhibited in New York at Wildenstein & Company’s Important Exhibition of Paintings of Ireland and Elsewhere by Rockwell Kent (Paintings by Rockwell Kent), April-May 1927, and at the ACA Galleries in New York in 1989.

    Craigbeefin by Rockwell Kent (1882-1971)


    Sunday, May 19th, 2019

    Bishop Willie Walsh of Killaloe is generally considered by liberals in Ireland to be one of the good guys. An arresting portrait of the catholic bishop who retired in 2010 by Brian Maguire, one of Ireland’s leading expressionist artists, comes up at Morgan O’Driscoll’s current online sale of Irish art which runs to May 20. It seems an appropriate pairing. Maguire’s long career has seen him reach fearlessly into the plight of people in uncomfortable places many of us might chose to not go – suicidal prisoners in Irish jails, children of the favelas in South America, refugees at risk of drowning in the Mediterranean and displaced Syrians and Sudanese are all on his list of subjects.

    Brian Maguire’s Portrait of Bishop Willie Walsh UPDATE: THIS WAS UNSOLD

    The Maguire portrait is lot 80 and estimated at 1,500-2,000. Meantime it might be of interest to not that the remains of the fishing vessel Barca Nostra, in which up to 900 migrants died when it sank in the Mediterranean in 2015, is displayed at the 58th Venice Art Biennale which runs to next November 24. 


    Saturday, May 18th, 2019

    This painting by George Mounsey Wheatley Atkinson – Naval Ships off Roches Point – show two frigates of the Royal Navy with a date that appears to read 1855.  The former curator of the Crawford Gallery Peter Murray reckons it to be one of the most significant works by the Cork artist.  Atkinson was born in Cove, later Queenstown and now Cobh,  around 1806 and spent his early life at sea as a ships carpenter. He became government surveyor of shipping and emigrants at Queenstown, where he was known as Captain Atkinson. He was a self taught artist whose works show a thorough knowledge of the sea. His three sons and one daughter all later became painters. Atkinson first showed at the Cork Art Union in 1841 and exhibited in the Royal Hibernian Academy from 1842.  The work will be displayed at the Gorry Gallery, Molesworth St., Dublin as part of an exhibition of 17th-21st century Irish art which runs from May 23 until June 8.


    Friday, May 17th, 2019

    THE current online auction of Irish art by Morgan O’Driscoll runs to the evening of May 20. There are 242 lots and the catalogue is online. Here is a sample:

    PETER CURLING (B.1955) – Over the last UPDATE: THIS MADE 3,600 AT HAMMER
    Mark O’Neill (b1963) – Interior with lilac (2002) UPDATE: THIS MADE 5,400