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  • Archive for March, 2022

    THE LARGEST WHITE DIAMOND EVER AT AUCTION

    Friday, March 25th, 2022
    Rahul Kadakia, Christie’s International Head of Jewellery, with The Rock. UPDATE: THIS MADE CHF21,681,000 / $21,894,082 / €20,722,133

    The Rock, the largest white diamond ever to appear at auction, will come up at Christie’s in Geneva on May 11. Mined and polished in South Africa over two decades ago the 228.31 carat pear-shaped diamond is estimated at $20-30 million. Graded by the Gemmological Institute of America as G colour, VS1 clarity, The Rock is accompanied by a letter from the GIA stating that it is the largest existing D-Z colour pear-shaped diamond ever graded by the laboratory. The previous auction record for the largest white diamond was a 163.41 carat gem, which sold at Christie’s Geneva in November 2017 for US$ 33,701,000.

    Rahul Kadakia, Christie’s International Head of Jewellery said: “The Rock will join the very best of legendary gemstones which have passed through Christie’s global salerooms since 1766. The market for diamonds is particularly vibrant and we are confident that this sensational gemstone will capture the attention of collectors across the globe this Spring season.”

    VIEWING NOW UNDERWAY IN DUBLIN

    Friday, March 25th, 2022
    Daniel O’Neill (1920-1974) – Girl with a flower UPDATE: THIS MADE 38,000 AT HAMMER

    Girl with a Flower by Daniel O’Neill is lot 26 at the James Adam evening sale of Important Irish Art in Dublin on March 30. It is estimated at 20,000-30,000. Viewing for this sale gets underway today and continues every day until March 30. The auction offers a comprehensive selection of 156 lots and the catalogue is online.

    AFFORDABLE ART AT WHYTE’S SPRING ONLINE SALE

    Thursday, March 24th, 2022
    MARKEY ROBINSON (1918-1999) – WATCHING THE FISHING BOATS UPDATE: THIS MADE 1,250 AT HAMMER

    Watching the fishing boats by Markey Robinson comes up as lot 12 art Whyte’s Spring online art auction which runs to the evening of March 28. It is estimated at 800-1,000. The auction is online only but viewing is now underway at Whyte’s on Molesworth St. in Dublin. The sale of 273 lots offers a selection by well known artists at affordable prices and is designed to encourage first time buyers as well as more seasoned collectors.

    DRAMATIC OIL OF SYBIL HEAD THE TOP LOT AT FONSIE MEALY

    Wednesday, March 23rd, 2022
    Captain Richard Brydges Beechey , RHA (1808-1895 – Sybil Head, Near the Blaskets and Dingle, West of Ireland 1884

    THIS dramatic oil on board of Sybil Head in Co. Kerry by Richard Brydges Beechey made a hammer price of 56,000 at Fonsie Mealy’s sale of Irish and International Art today. It had been estimated at 30,000-50,000. One of Beechey’s finest marine paintings, Sybil Head depicts three currachs braving rough seas beneath jagged rocks at the north west tip of the Dingle Peninsula. To the left, a sailing vessel, perhaps a naval brig, bears down on the currachs, while to the right a hooker approaches from Ferriter’s Cove. Cormorants take flight and seagulls land on the rough seas. A floating tree trunk lies in the path of the brig; Beechey used details such as these to introduce a sense of danger to his paintings. To the right, a mountain, one of the ‘Three Sisters’, is silhouetted against the stormy sky.  He joined the Royal Navy at the age of 14 and art formed part of his training. He rose to the rank of Admiral and became one of Ireland’smost accomplished marine painters. This work is from the Joe McGrath Collection of Cabinteely House, Dublin.

    Among other hammer prices a pencil portrait of a young woman by Augustus John made 5,000; a portrait of Iseult Gonne by Maud Gonne made 12,000; a watercolour Connemara landscape by Paul Henry made 17,000: a landscape by William Ashford made 15,000; a portrait of the artist’s wife Grace Knewstub by Willam Orpen made 16,000; a portrait of James Hugh Smith Barry by Orpen made 19,000: Soleil en Foret by Roderic O’Conor made 40,000; Aran Folk by Maurice MacGonigal made 17,000 and Sunshine and Shadow by Dorothea Sharpe made 11,000.

    NEW WORLD AUCTION RECORD FOR LAVERY AT CHRISTIE’S

    Wednesday, March 23rd, 2022
    Sir John Lavery – The Croquet Party 

    There was a new world record for Sir John Lavery at Christie’s Modern British and Irish Art evening sale in London last night. The Croquet Party, which was making its auction debut, sold for £2,922,000. The auction achieved £25.5 million and attracted registered bidders from 14 countries across three continents. According to Christie’s this demonstrates continued growth in the international collector base for the category.

    Bridget Riley’s Gala from the curving colour series was the top lot. It made £4,362,000, a new world auction record for the artist. No less than 60% of lots sold above the top estimate.

    (See post on antiquesandartireland.com for March 8, 2022)

    WILL THIS BE THE MOST EXPENSIVE 20TH CENTURY ARTWORK EVER?

    Tuesday, March 22nd, 2022
    ANDY WARHOL (1928-1987) – Shot Sage Blue Marilyn. UPDATE: THIS MADE $195 MILLION TO BECOME THE MOST EXPENSIVE 20TH CENTURY ARTWORK EVER SOLD AT AUCTION

    Poised to be the most expensive 20th century artwork ever at auction Shot Sage Blue Marilyn by Andy Warhol wilL lead Christie’s marquee week sales in New York in May. The estimate is in the region of $200 million. Shot Sage Blue Marilyn is a definitive work. Warhol first began creating silkscreens of Marilyn Monroe following her death in August 1962. He would create reproductions of her visage multiple times in bright colours, often with the features somewhat askew. In 1964, he developed a more refined and time-intensive screen printing technique, antithetical to the mass production he was best known for, and created a limited number of portraits of the Hollywood legend. This technique was so difficult that he never returned to it again. The artwork has been exhibited widely at leading institutions including the Guggenheim Museum in New York, Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris, Tate Modern in London, Centro de Arte Reina Sofía in Madrid, Royal Academy of Arts in London, Museum Ludwig in Cologne, Neue Nationalgalerie in Berlin, Chicago Museum of Contemporary Art, the Netherland’s, Stedelijk van Abbemuseum, Fondation Beyeler, Riehen and the Pasadena Art Museum.

    Shot Sage Blue Marilyn is from the Thomas and Doris Ammann Foundation Zurich. All proceeds will benefit the foundation which is dedicated to improving the lives of children the world over by establishing support systems centred on providing healthcare and educational programs. This single painting will constitute the highest grossing philanthropic auction since The Collection of Peggy and David Rockefeller in 2018.

    IRELAND THIS YEAR – THE PAUL HENRY VERSION

    Monday, March 21st, 2022
    PAUL HENRY – “Connemara Landscape with Cottages and Mountains  c. 1923-4”   watercolour on paper. UPDATE: THIS MADE 17,000 AT HAMMER

    THIS west of Ireland landscape by Paul Henry comes up as lot 85 at Fonsie Mealy’s auction of Important Irish and International Art on March 23. It is believed to be a preparatory sketch for a more finished studio version, documented by S. B. Kennedy and listed in his catalogue raisonné (Cat. 602). The finished version was in its turn translated into an advertisement poster for the London Midland & Scottish Railway. Published in 1925, the caption on the poster read ‘Connemara by Paul Henry “Ireland This Year” ’.  By the early 1930’s, along with another image by Henry, it was among the top-selling posters issued by the LMS Railway.  The watercolour is estimated at 6,000-8,000. Among the artists represented in the sale are George Russell AE, Sir William Orpen, Wm. Sadler, Paul Henry, Percy French, Maurice Canning Wilkes, Maurice Mac Gonigal, Dorothea Sharp, Daniel O’Neill, Augustus John, Harry Clarke, William Ashford, Roderic O Connor, Maud Gonne, Frank McKelvey, Frederick William Burton and the Yeats family. There are 236 lots in total in the sale.

    A BUSY WEEK OF AUCTIONS IN IRELAND COMING UP

    Saturday, March 19th, 2022
    Soleil en foret (Sunlight in the forest) by Roderic O’Conor at Fonsie Mealy. UPDATE: THIS MADE 40,000 AT HAMMER

    A Regency cheval mirror with satinwood crossbanding is among the lots of interest at Matthews sale of the entire contents of Rath House in Dundalk online from Kells, Co. Meath on March 20.  The sale of 1,117 lots includes antique furniture, paintings, silver and collectibles.  There are tables, sets of chairs, chests of drawers, bookcases, Oriental porcelain, Waterford Crystal, Victorian landscapes and portraits and all sorts of collectibles among a wide variety of lots.  Viewing is now underway and the auction will be online.

    The sale is a prelude to a number of auctions next week and the week after.  Purcell Auctioneers in Birr will offer a 1908 limited edition Collected Works of W.B. Yeats (update – hammer 2,400) in verse and prose as a highlight of their sale of Irish and world interest books on March 23.  A very rare Treatise on the Art of War by Roger, Earl of Orrery from 1677 comes up too (update – this made 1,250 at hammer). Works by Richard Brydges Beechey, Roderic O’Conor and William Orpen’s portrait of  James Hugh Smith-Barry will highlight Fonsie Mealy’s sale of Irish and International Art on March 23. There are 236 lots on offer.  A 48 hour timed online auction of jewellery by O’Reilly’s of Francis St. in Dublin runs from March 23-25.

    ALL THE FUN OF THE ANTIQUE FAIR IN CORK THIS WEEKEND

    Saturday, March 19th, 2022
    Dinner plate from the Cork Mansion House service

    Contemporary Irish art, jewellery, antique furniture, vintage re-designs, silver and collectibles will rub shoulders at the Kingsley Hotel in Cork today and tomorrow.  All the fun of the fair is guaranteed to mark the return of Hibernian Antique Fairs – after several failed attempts – with their first live event in Cork in more than two years. The Cork fair has always been a draw and the hope this time is that absence has made the heart grow fonder.  Organiser Robin O’Donnell promises a full house with dealers from far and wide including some new ones.

    Regulars making a welcome return include Irish Antique Dealers Association members like James Weldon silver and jewellery, Treasures Irish Art and Courtville Antiques. Among the newcomers are Cork Antiques, Midleton, James O’Hare fine art, Pauline Shields militaria and Richard Walshe coins and banknotes.  One newcomer sure to create a stir is Agness Vintage Redesigns.  In an era when there is zilch interest in the lower end of the ordinary brown furniture market this fledgling company founded by Agness Meehan will repurpose, upcycle, transform and make beautiful old Edwardian and Victorian pieces that might otherwise be in danger of being dumped in a skip.  What’s not to like?

    Brian Hurley from Kinsale will exhibit a plate from the Cork Mansion House Service, designed by the renowned Cork based architect George Richard Pain (1793 to 1838), who was a pupil of John Nash. There will be vintage rugs at Annamoe Antiques and Eily Henry will offer a collection of vintage fashion.

    Re-purposed vintage sewing machine

    MOONLIT O’CONOR SEASCAPE TO HIGHLIGHT ADAMS AUCTION

    Friday, March 18th, 2022
    Roderic O’Conor (1860-1940) Marine, au Clair de Lune. UPDATE: THIS MADE 160,000 AT HAMMER

    This marine painting by Roderic O’Conor will highlight the James Adam sale of Important Irish Art in Dublin on March 30. It is estimated at €150,000-200,000. Another highlight is The Boat by Jack B. Yeats, a 1948 oil with an estimate of €80,000-120,000. The sale offers a rich selection of fine paintings and sculpture from some remarkable Dublin collections and includes many works that have not been seen on the art market in a very long time. There are works from the 19th, 20th and 21st centuries. The catalogue is online and in person viewing gets underway on March 25.