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    Sunday, December 3rd, 2023
    Daniel O’Connell’s gun case

    Daniel O’Connell’s leather gun case is one of the more unusual lots at Marshs sale in Cork on December 9.  The case, stamped with his name and Derrynane Abbey, is estimated at €1,000-€1,500.  There is a similar estimate on a rare 19th century watercolour, The Strand at Tivoli, Cork by John E Bosanquet. Antique furniture on offer includes a Georgian four door breakfront bookcase, a four piece ivory inlaid bedroom suite, a set of Cork dining chairs, a Georgian inlaid chest and a French walnut ormolu mounted vitrine.  The online only sale will be on view from December 6.

     “The Strand at Tivoli Cork” attributed to John E. Bosanquet


    Saturday, December 2nd, 2023
    A pair of 18th century or earlier marble busts of Julius Caesar and Cleopatra

    A collection of 17th and 18th century marble busts are among part contents from Drumleck House, Howth – home of notable collectors John and Gertrude Hunt – at the Dublin and Provincial sale by Sheppards in Durrow next  Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. (December 5, 6 and 7).  The Hunts lived at Drumleck for over 30 years from the 1950’s. Most of their collection was donated to the State and is now at the Hunt Museum in Limerick. Weathered outdoor busts of Julius Caesar wearing laurel leaves and Cleopatra with an asp from the garden at Drumleck are among the highlights.  They are estimated at €2,000-€3,000.

    The garden was decorated with ornaments and statuary from demolished properties of the Anglo-Irish Ascendency including a statue of Neptune from Ballinagarde House in Co. Limerick. This now lost statue was acquired by a member of the Croker family on his Grand Tour. John Hunt liked to claim it came from the workshop of Bernini in Rome. The statue has never been identified and informed collectors are still on the look out for the lost Bernini.

    Sir William Orpen – Portrait of Mrs. Wertheimer (nee Trautz)

    A Regency library table from the Merrion Square home of Sybil Connolly (€1,500-€2,500) and a collection of Regency furniture from the Ardsallagh Estate in Co. Tipperary are features of the auction.So is a re-discovered portrait of a lady identified as Jessica Wertheimer painted in 1904 by by William Orpen.  Charles Wertheimer was Orpen’s leading patron and a portrait of him by Orpen was exhibited at the Royal Academy in 1904.  Portraits of Wertheimer and his one time companion Sarah Hammond by John Everett Millais are in the Musee d’Orsay.  The Orpen at Sheppards, from the Macroom collection of Dr. Kevin Moynihan, is estimated at €30,000-€50,000.

    An extremely rare 1st Period Belleek Carnation, one of only two known.

    Among the lots of architectural salvage are the original double entrance doors to Bewley’s Cafe on Grafton St. in Dublin.  This iconic cafe, extensively modified in the 1990’s, had originally been built to designs by Millar & Symes in 1927 with an extravagant Egyptian Revival facade.  The doors are estimated at €3,000-€5,000. A rare Belleek carnation (€500-€800) is a collectors item too.  It is believed to be one of only two in existence.  The other is at the National Museum in Dublin. The sale features Meissen parrots, silver pheasants, Irish sculpture and art, 17th and 18th century Dutch art and furniture from the 18th to the 20th century including a large mid-century Italian cabinet by Smania.  More than 1,200 lots will come under the hammer.  Viewing gets underway today in Durrow.


    Friday, December 1st, 2023
    An Irish George III statuary marble, Siena, Spanish brocatelle and inlaid marble chimney piece, circa 1780, attributed to George and Hill Darley

    Based on new research this magnificent Irish chimney piece at Sotheby’s Albany private collection sale in London on December 6 can be attributed to George and Hill Darley. There is a shallow breakfront mantel and the moulded underside is carved with a bead-and-reel moulding and inlaid dentil detailing. The central tablet is carved with a classical vase with birds-head handles issuing berried-leaf swags tied to the corners with ribbons, flanked by inlaid panels with ribbon-tied bell-flower swage and rosettes with leaf and bead-and-reel carved mouldings.

    The work of Darley brothers George and Hill, stonecutters and furniture designers in late-eighteenth century Dublin, can still be seen on the west front of Trinity College. They also had worked on several other notable late-eighteenth century commissions, including the poet William Ashford’s house Sandymount in County Dublin, and the residence of the Italian ambassador at Lucan House. A rare collection of their fine watercolour designs for chimneypieces is held at the Royal Irish Academy. The estimate for this chimneypiece is £120,000-£180,000.


    Friday, December 1st, 2023

    There are seven known surviving deer antler chairs in China. The Palace Museum in the Forbidden City holds five, each uniquely designed. The deer antlers used in crafting these chairs were sourced from deer captured during royal hunting activities in the Qing Dynasty. The creation of thrones from deer antlers serves as a profound homage to Chinese equestrian roots, preserving the essence of Manchu heritage. Emperor Qianlong expressed his reverence for these chairs in a poem, stating, ‘Dare not sit upon it, ever in awe and admiration.’

    The armchair pictured here comes up at Adams sale of Fine Asian Art on December 16 with an estimate of €85,000-€95,000. Dr. Wei Wang, newly appointed head of Adams Asian Art Department, explained that while this armchair is a late copy, it remains a rare item in the market. She holds a PhD in semiology from Panthéon-Assas Paris II University, and has demonstrated a passion for Asian Art throughout her academic and professional journey.

    The upcoming Asian art sale at Adam’s bears Chinese title meaning ‘Ji Guang’s feathers.’ This metaphorical expression signifies precious relics or cultural artifacts that have endured, likened to the feathers of the mythical beast Ji Guang from ancient Chinese mythology. There are 456 lots across four sections, originating from China, the Himalayas, Vietnam, and Japan organised into several categories, including ceramics, jade and stones, accessories, bronzes, and paintings.


    Tuesday, November 28th, 2023

    This imposing entrance sculpture of a Great Dane on a plinth – one of a pair – is lot 261 at Sheppards Dublin and Provincial sale in Durrow on December 5, 6 and 7. They are modelled on the hunting hound of Lord Kingsale, John de Courcy, who was born in 1717 at Old Head Castle, Kinsale in Co. Cork. The pair is estimated at €10,000-€15,000. The auction of 1,189 lots includes contents from Drumleck House, Howth, Co. Dublin, Ardsallagh House, Co. Tipperary and other important clients. The catalogue is online.


    Monday, November 27th, 2023
    Customised Ralph Lauren bar cabinet

    This Ralph Lauren duke bar cabinet customised for a super yacht in the South of France is the top lot at Victor Mee’s winter decorative interiors sale on December 30. The 1930’s inspired piece styled in rosewood with polished stainless steel trim has features that include a removable stainless steel tray on top and a flat silver liner. The second of three drawers has a flip down front with black mirror surface and there are storage shelves on the end doors. The estimate is €4,000-€8,000. There are 632 lots in the auction including an 18 branch Waterford Crystal chandelier, a watercolour of a Connemara cottage by Percy French, a walnut chest of drawers with brass mounts and a burr walnut four door secretaire.


    Sunday, November 26th, 2023
    A pair of mirrored wall brackets with ho ho birds. UPDATE: THESE MADE 2,800 AT HAMMER

    A c1930 Louis Vuitton double wardrobe steamer trunk is, at €5,000-€7,000, the most expensively estimated lot at the James Adam At Home online only sale which ends from 11 am on November 27. On offer is a selection of 467 lots of silver, antique furniture, mirrors, rugs, desks, lighting, porcelain and art including a selection of botanical artwork by Wendy Walsh (1915-2014). Among a selection of provincial pieces by various makers is a c1830 three piece silver tea service with the mark of Kean Mahony, Cork is estimated at €1,500-€2,000. A Victorian brass club fender has an estimate of €1,200-€1,800, as has a pair of French Vernis Martin display cabinets and a Victorian writing desk by Maple and Co. is estimated at €2,000-€3,000.  The estimate on a pair of giltwood and gesso wall brackets with Ho Ho birds is €500-€700 and there is an estimate of just €100-€200 on a 19th century inlaid walnut and marquetry tilt top chess table.  The catalogue is online.


    Wednesday, November 22nd, 2023
    Irish George II mahogany silver table

    This Irish George II silver table comes up as lot 65 at Sotheby’s in London on December 6. The rectangular top with has a raised moulded edge, the shaped apron is centred by a carved scallop shell and the gently curved legs terminate in paw feet. The estimate is £4,000-£6,000. It is part of the Albany: An Important Private Collection sale of items housed within the famous Albany on Piccadilly, the neo classical masterpiece originally built in 1770 by Sir William Chambers. The auction consists of furniture from the 17th to the early 19th centuries.


    Saturday, November 18th, 2023
    Edwin Mercer will display this Victorian lady’s vanity box at the Limerick fair this weekend.

    In the run up to Christmas the antique and art season is beginning to really hot up. Limerick racecourse is the venue for the National Antiques, Art and Vintage fair today and tomorrow. Outstanding Irish art will come under the hammer at de Veres in Dublin next Tuesday and Sotheby’s expects around €2 million worth of Irish art to change hands at evening and day sales in London on Tuesday and Wednesday.
    The calendar for the next few weeks is brimful of interest and offers a huge array of choice to eager collectors across all price levels and genres. Limerick Racecourse has proven to be an ideal venue for Hibernian Antique Fairs.  There is easy access and lots of space for antique shops, art galleries and vintage dealers.  An across the board selection this weekend includes a Victorian vanity box complete with travel accessories, bottles and even hat pins. Along with a covetable selection of antique furniture including a c1790 Irish double sided library table with hairy paw feet and Irish art there are selections of clocks and watches, militaria, jewellery, porcelain and silver.

    Rugby Sculpture (2007) by Barry Flanagan at de Veres. UPDATE: THIS MADE 40,000

    Art by Paul Henry, Walter Osborne, Gerard Dillon, Tony O’Malley, Norah McGuinness, William Scott, John Shinnors and Barry Flanagan will feature strongly at de Veres on Tuesday evening.  Bidding on this timed online sale which draws to a close from 6 pm on November 21 is already open.  It is on view at Kildare St. in Dublin for the next four days.

    Bathers, Naylor’s Cove, Bray by Harry Kernoff at Sotheby’s in London. UPDATE: THIS WAS UNSOLD

    The evening and day sales at Sotheby’s in London on November 21 and 22 are part of British and Irish art week, a series of events celebrating the art of Ireland and Britain from the 19th to the 21st centuries.  A total of 54 lots of Irish art will feature with the evening sale headed by two works from Sir John Lavery and two by Jack B Yeats.  The Lavery’s have emerged from the collection of the artists family.  Another evening highlight is a significant early carving by F.E. McWilliam titled Woodhenge.  The estimate for the piece is €229,220-€343,830. Meantime Bonhams first sale on the island of Ireland is now open for bidding online.  The Irish Sale: Vision and Voice will offer art by Paul Henry, Donald Teskey, Sir William Orpen, Maeve McCarthy, Margaret Clarke, Frank McKelvey, Wiliam Leech and Jack B Yeats along with an annotated typescript of Finnegans Wake by James Joyce and  handwritten lyrics of Your Song Saved My Life by Bono.  The auction will be on view at the City Assembly House in Dublin from November 24-28, when the sale will be held.

    Woodhenge by F.E. McWilliam at Sotheby’s. UPDATE: THIS WAS UNSOLD


    Saturday, November 18th, 2023
    An oak carved pulpit UPDATE: THIS MADE 2,100 AT HAMMER

    A 19th century neo Gothic pulpit is among the more unusual items at Victor Mee’s three day sale next week.  On offer are contents from the Medusa antique and salvage yard in Belgium, a hub for collectors since 1984.  There are arch fanlights, carved wooden statues, African granary doors, gothic windows, fireplaces, chandeliers, door surrounds, outdoor lamps, gates and railings, gargoyles, bronze sculptures, garden furniture and all sorts of everything among the 1,500 lots. The pulpit, by Charles Buisine-Rigot, comes up as lot 355 and is estimated at €1,800-€2,800.  Among a variety of unusual items is a driftwood bar counter, Great Dane statues, an oak and brass ticket booth, a 20th century haberdashery cupboard,  iron deck cannons, a distillery pump and an early 19th century apartment post box cabinet with tendoors. The sale, in association with Derrys of Armagh, will be on view at Derrys at Annaghmore, Co. Armagh on November 19.  The catalogue is online.

    One of a pair of Great Dane statues. UPDATE: THESE MADE 1,200 AT HAMMER