Information about Art, Antiques and Auctions in Ireland and around the world
  • About Des
  • Contact
  • Archive for January, 2021


    Saturday, January 30th, 2021

    Oriental objects, antique furniture, jewellery, vintage fashion, wine and art including a triptych portrait of Vicky Phelan will feature at Sheppards three day online sale next Wednesday, Thursday and Friday (February 3, 4 and 5).  The Phelan portrait by Tullamore based artist Vincent Devine will be auctioned for the charity Heroes Aid which supports frontline Covid-19 workers.More than 1,300 lots will come under the hammer including a Chenghua (1447-1487) blue and white bowl (€20,000-€30,000), a 19th century bone barleycorn chess set (€400-€600), an oil on canvas of Cleopatra after Guido Reni in a carved gilded Florentine frame (€4,000-€6,000), garden furniture including cast iron seats, some Cork glass and a 19th century pine kitchen table.  The catalogue for Belmont House and other important clients is online at

    UPDATE: THE portrait of Vicky Phelan sold for 46,500 at hammer, the bone barleycorn chess set made 700 and the painting after Guido Reni made 2,800.

    Chinese Ming blue and white bowl (€20,000-€30,000). UODATE: THIS MADE 18,000 AT HAMMER


    Thursday, January 28th, 2021

    Moments ago Botticelli’s Portrait of a young man holding a roundel sold for $92,184,000 at Sotheby’s in New York sale of Master Paintings and Sculpture. It shattered the previous record for a Botticelli by nine times and was the highest price ever paid for an Old Master at Sotheby’s. It was last purchased at auction for $1.3 million in 1982.

    The Botticelli now stands alongside Francis Bacon’s Inspired by the Oresteia of Aeschylus as the second work to have surpassed $80m at auction since Sotheby’s pioneered the new live-streamed auction format some seven months ago.  The sale today is among the auctions which attracted the highest number of participants ever seen in a Sotheby’s live-streamed auction. Some 66% of bidders registered online. This echoes the pattern of 2020, which also saw many new buyers enter the field.

    The Botticelli becomes the second most expensive Old Master ever sold at auction. In 2017 Leonardo’s Salvador Mundi mde $450 million at Christie’s and is the most expensive Old Master ever sold at auction. 


    Thursday, January 28th, 2021

    This c1720 pair of Italian (Trapani) gilt copper and copper mounted pricket sticks sold for $243,750 at Christie’s sale of the collection of Mr. and Mrs. John H Gutfreund in New York. They had been estimated at $60,000-100,000. Trapani, in Sicily was a famous centre of coral-work production between the 16th and the 18th centuries. Famously expensive and collected or exchanged as diplomatic gifts between European nobility, coral-work form Trapani generally combines a gilt-copper ground with enamel embellishments and was fashioned into a variety of religious and secular items. The two day sale of the Gutfreund collection totalled $6.2 million.


    Thursday, January 28th, 2021

    Belmont House and other important clients is the title of a three day online sale by Sheppards of Durrow on February 3, 4 and 5. The auction will feature a large range of antique furniture, art, jewellery and collectibles among more than 1300 lots. The catalogue is online.

    some of the lots from Belmont House


    Wednesday, January 27th, 2021

    This William IV burr walnut and ebony inlaid card table sold for a hammer price of 800 at Victor Mee’s January decorative interiors sale yesterday. The auction of 1,140 lots continues today and can be followed on



    Wednesday, January 27th, 2021

    THE Winter Show in New York and all its programmes are free and open to the public online. Visitors can peruse 5,000 years of art, antiques, and design presented by 60 internationally renowned dealers. Search the fair’s viewing rooms, virtual gallery spaces, gallery talks and listen in on panel discussions featuring leaders in the art and design worlds.  It runs until January 31.

    Illustrated below is a printed and painted faience dish designed by Félix Bracquemond (1833-1914) for Eugène Rousseau (1827-90) and manufactured by Creil et Montereau. It is being shown at H. Blairman and Sons Ltd.

    PART OF A 53-Piece ‘Service Rousseau’ – Paris 1866-75 AT H. BLAIRMAN


    Wednesday, January 27th, 2021

    Seas, Sherkin is the title of this 2020 work by Majella O’Neill Collins at Morgan O’Driscoll’s online sale of affordable Irish art which runs until February 1. The artist lives on Sherkin Island in west Cork and this oil on canvas, which is lot 12, is estimated at 1,200-1,800. The catalogue with bidding options is online.

    Seas, Sherkin (2020) by Majella O’Neill Collins. UPDATE: THIS MADE 1,500 AT HAMMER


    Tuesday, January 26th, 2021

    The Sitting Room by Norman Teeling is lot 42 at de Veres online auction of 120 lots of art to suit all budgets which continues until February 2. It is estimated at 300-500. de Veres say that this sale is ideal for buyers wishing to begin an art collection. The catalogue is online.

    Norman Teeling – The Sitting Room. UPDATE: THIS SOLD FOR 650 AT HAMMER


    Tuesday, January 26th, 2021

    Jean Etienne Liotard’s pastel portrait of Philibert Cramer is a highlight of Christie’s online sale of Old Master and British drawings including property from the Cornelia Bessie Estate in New York.  Philibert and his brother Gabriel were the principal publishers of Voltaire and responsible for the first editions of major works such as the novel Candide.  This portrait is estimated at $400,000-$600,000. The sale runs to January 28.

    Jean Etienne Liotard – Philibert Cramer. UPDATE: THIS SOLD FOR $810,000


    Monday, January 25th, 2021

    The family collection of Patricia Mountbatten, whose father, son and mother in law were murdered by the IRA, will come up at Sotheby’s in London on March 24.  The 2nd Countess Mountbatten of Burma was one of seven people aboard Shadow V when it was blown up by the Provisional IRA off Cliffoney, Co. Sligo in August 1979.The party comprised Lord Mountbatten, Lord John Brabourne (Patricia’s husband), their 14 year old twins Timothy and Nicholas, Lord Brabourne’s mother Lady Doreen Brabourne and 15 year old Paul Maxwell from Fermanagh, a friend of the family.  Mountbatten, Nicholas Brabourne and Maxwell were killed immediately. Lady Brabourne died the next day and the others survived serious injuries. In a press release Sotheby’s say that Lady Mountbatten, who died in 2017, dealt with her tragedies with extraordinary courage and grace. More than 350 lots from Newhouse, the Brabourne’s 18th century home, will come under the hammer at Sotheby’s on March 24 with estimates ranging from £80 to £100,000. The sale unveils tales of an important family through the art and objects they lived with. Born in 1924 Patricia Mountbatten was great-great-granddaughter of Queen Victoria, great niece of Russia’s last Tsarina, first cousin to Prince Philip and the daughter of Britain’s last Viceroy of India.  She had an unconventional upbringing, from weekend parties with King Edward VIII and Wallis Simpson at her parents’ estate in Hampshire to evacuation on the eve of the Blitz to stay with Mrs. Cornelius Vanderbilt III in her palatial Fifth Avenue apartment in New York. In 1943 Patricia entered the Women’s Royal Navy Service and met John Knatchbull, 7th Lord Brabourne (1924-2005). They married in 1946. As a Captain in the armed forces, Brabourne had worked for Patricia’s father in India, and later became an Academy-Award nominated film producer, behind titles such as A Passage to India and Agatha Christie adaptations Death on the Nile and Murder on the Orient Express
    When Patricia inherited her father’s peerages, the pair became one of the very few married couples in England each of whom held a peerage in his or her own right and the custodians of two great inheritances. John’s included Mersham le Hatch, an elegant house by Robert Adam in the Kent countryside, where the Knatchbull family had settled in the 15th century. Furnished by the great Thomas Chippendale in the 1770s, it held within it objects with extraordinarily diverse provenances, including the explorer and botanist Sir Joseph Banks who travelled to Australia on Cook’s first expedition, Jane Austen’s beloved niece Fanny and the Marquesses of Sligo. Patricia inherited precious objects associated with her parents from their Art Deco penthouse on Park Lane – with treasures from Edwina’s maternal grandfather, the great Edwardian financier Sir Ernest Cassel – and their time in India.
    Among the lots to be offered is an Anglo-Indian inlaid bureau on stand supplied by Thomas Chippendale to Sir Edward Knatchbull in 1767.  It is estimated at £40,000-£60,000.  The stand was made by Chippendale for the sum of £4 to house the Indian inlaid miniature bureau. The sale of 350 lots will offer jewellery, furniture, paintings, sculpture, books, silver, ceramics and objets d’art.

    UPDATE: Over 1,400 participants from 55 countries drove the sale total to £5,620,798, over three times the pre-sale estimate with 98% of lots sold.