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Information about Art, Antiques and Auctions in Ireland and around the world
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  • MITCHELSTOWN CONNECTION AT CHRISTIE’S NEW YORK ONLINE SALE

    January 15th, 2021

    This portrait by Hugh Douglas Hamilton (1739-1808) of Robert King, 2nd Earl of Kingston and Caroline, nee Fitzgerald, Countess of Kingston is at Christie’s online right now. It is lot 81 of an online auction of Old Master and British Drawings including property from the Cornelia Bessie Estate at Christie’s, New York until January 28.

    The Earl of Kingston is a title in the Peerage of Ireland. Robert, 2nd Earl of Kingston (1753-1799), was the M.P. for County Cork. He and his wife Caroline (1754-1823) hired the author and educational philosopher Mary Wollstonecraft (1759-1797) as governess to their daughters at Mitchelstown Castle – she had a particular influence on Margaret, their eldest daughter, who became a well-known writer and political activist. Wollstonecraft, now regarded as a founding feminist philosopher, died 11 days after giving birth to her second daughter, the writer Mary Shelley, author of Frankenstein. The painting is estimated at $12,000-18,000.

    TIMED ONLINE AUCTION BY DOLAN’S

    January 14th, 2021

    The catalogue for Dolan’s first timed online art auction is now online. There is art by John Shinnors, Maggie Morrisson, Harry Kernoff, Mark O’Neill, Charles Harper and others together with antique and collectibles, rugs and books. The auction runs until January 25.

    Mark O’Neill – Marshmallow

    BRIAN MAGUIRE SOLO SHOW IN CHICAGO

    January 13th, 2021

    A solo exhibition by renowned Irish artist Brian Maguire opens today at the Rhona Hoffman Gallery in Chicago. War Changes its Address and Other Border Stories runs until February 13. Since the 1970’s Brian Maguire has approached painting as an act of solidarity. He operates a truly engaged practice, compelled by the raw realities of humanity’s violence against itself, and the potential for justice. Significant bodies of work over the last four decades includes the Irish Prison Paintings (1988-90), Favela Vila Prudente and Casa da Cultura for the São Paulo Biennial (1998), Femicide/Juarez (2009-12), and more recently the Aleppo Paintings (2017).

    Over the past 40 years Rhona Hoffman Gallery has built an outstanding reputation with a diverse programme which champions socio-politically engaged artists, both emerging and established. Rhona Hoffman Gallery has been celebrated for the representation and exhibition of marginalised voices and subjects in the art world.

    Brian Maguire. Aleppo 4, 2017

    HIBERNIAN ANTIQUE FAIR VIRTUAL EVENT ON JANUARY 16-17

    January 12th, 2021

    FROM jewellery to artwork there promises to be a diverse selection on offer at the virtual art fair which Hibernian Antique Fairs will run on January 16-17. A link to access the fair will be made available on the Hibernian Antiques Fairs facebook page on January 16. Dealers taking part will show photographs of what is on offer plus contact and delivery details. Among those taking part are Treasures Irish Art of Athlone. They will show a number of works by the self taught London born Irish painter Ken Moroney (1949-2018). He specialised in Impressionist painting and romantic Edwardian style subjects.

    Ken Moroney oil on board 7 x 9 inches ‘Beach Study, Biarritz’ 

    THE HIGHEST VALUE MASTERS WEEK IN SOTHEBY’S HISTORY

    January 11th, 2021

    Here is a video on the highest value Masters Week in Sotheby’s history from January 22-30 in New York. It is comprised of seven sales of paintings, drawings, and sculpture including important works spanning across four centuries and two distinct, impressive single owner collections formed by Dr. John O’Brien and Hester Diamond. 

    TIMED JAMES ADAM ONLINE AUCTION

    January 10th, 2021

    The James Adam timed online sale of contents from the Wellington Road, Dublin home of former restaurateur Peter White, who is downsizing, draws to a conclusion on January 11.  Louis le Brocquy’s Red Roses For Me, a 1946 watercolour inspired by O’Casey’s play about a Dublin Protestant family against the background of the 1913 Lockout, is the top lot of 284. It comes with an estimate of €8,000-€12,000. There are no less than 31 works  landscapes and cityscapes by the Dublin born Italian Irish painter Niccolo Caracciolo RHA, who died in a car crash near Siena in 1989. The sale offers a selection of  furniture, silver, china, glassware, Persian rugs and household effects. 

    Rowan Gillespie Recumbent Nude, bronze on an oval base (€3,000-€5,000). UPDATE: THIS MADE 4,800 AT HAMMER

    IRISH MUSEUM OF SILVER IN WATERFORD

    January 9th, 2021

    A new Irish Museum of Silver is up and running in Waterford, ready to welcome visitors at the end of lockdown.  It is housed in the beautiful eighteenth-century Deanery building in Cathedral Square, in the heart of Waterford’s Viking Triangle. Exhibits trace the importance of silver in Ireland from the 9th-20th century.  Among many rare items on show is a Viking gold and silver Kite brooch –  discovered just a few hundred yards from the museum –  which is considered to be the finest piece of 12th century secular metalwork in Ireland.

    A 12th century Viking gold and silver kite brooch at the new Irish Museum of Silver in Waterford.

    INTERNATIONAL FAIRS AVAILABLE TO ALL ONLINE

    January 9th, 2021

    It isn’t great but it isn’t all bad either.  Pandemic closures are horrible but there is much to explore online.  If, for instance, you thought you might never get to visit the Mayfair Antiques Fair in London or the New York Winter Show, you were wrong.  In 2021 they are available at the touch of a button on your computer.This is part of an ongoing shift online.  All the data so far available from 2020 strongly suggests that large numbers of people who might never go to an auction viewing are buying online.  At Christie’s, for instance, preliminary figures suggest that 36% of all buyers last year were new to the auction house.   This experience is repeated everywhere else as the pandemic delivers new customers.Another statistic from Christie’s showed that 32% of all new online buyers were millennials (23 to 38 years old). In case you are wondering they are the ones who come after Generation X and before Generation Z.  So the pandemic is leading large numbers of buyers straight to auction, spawning a new generation of young collectors and opening up specialist fairs to people everywhere. Anything positive in the midst of this lockdown is to be warmly welcomed and this bit of positivity is likely to have a long term impact.

    A Chinese export reverse painted mirror in a Chippendale frame at the Mayfair Antiques Fair.


    The Mayfair Antiques Fair usually takes place at the London Marriott Hotel in Grosvenor Square.  This year it is in a new online guise. It opened on Thursday and continues today and tomorrow at www.mayfairfair.com There are 43 stands with a diverse mix of art and antiques dealers, mainly members of the British Antique Dealers Association or LAPADA, The Association of Art and Antique Dealers.There is much to choose from including a monumental first period Emile Galle vase enamelled with exotic flowers, a Chinese export reverse painted mirror plate in a Chippendale period frame, a pair of George III tea caddies made in London by William Frisbee in 1793, fine jewellery, art, antique furniture and collectibles.In New York the new virtual Winter Show runs from January 22-31 with preview access from January 19. It will bring together 60 leading international dealers with fine and decorative arts from ancient times to the present day.  Visitors can taken in visual presentations and view close ups.  All objects on view are vetted for authenticity, date and condition.There are leading dealers from New York, London, Paris, Amsterdam, Philadelphia, Chicago, Zurich and a variety of other locations. Among them are Ronald Phillips from London, Aronson, Amsterdam, A La Vielle Russie, New York, Apter-Fredericks, London, Elle Shusan, Philadelphia, Hirschl and Adler Galleries, New York and Les Enluminures of Chicago.

    Masterworks of Modern Japanese porcelain will be displayed by Joan B. Mirviss Ltd. in New York

    IRISH ELK ANTLERS AT SOTHEBY’S ROYAL AND NOBLE SALE

    January 8th, 2021

    A prehistoric pair of fossilised Irish Elk antlers come up as Lot 1 at Sotheby’s Royal and Noble sale online until January 14. They are estimated at £25,000-£40,000. The Irish Elk or giant deer is thought to have originally colonised Siberia before migrating westwards in response to a deteriorating climate. The species became extinct 11,000 years ago. The largest concentration of its remains have been found in Irish bogland and many featured in Irish bnaqueting halls. UPDATE: THESE SOLD FOR £44,100

    RARELY SEEN DIVINE COMEDY DRAWINGS ON VIRTUAL DISPLAY

    January 8th, 2021

    A virtual exhibition of rarely-seen drawings inspired by Dante’s The Divine Comedy has been launched by the Uffizi Gallery in Florence. It marks the 700th anniversary of the death in 1321 of Dante Alighieri. The 88 illustrations on view were completed between 1586 and 1588 by Renaissance artist Federico Zuccari.

    The Divine Comedy by Dante, known as the father of the Italian language, is an epic first-person odyssey through heaven, hell, and purgatory considered one of the most important literary works of all time. The exhibition can be found by googling Uffizi Gallery Dante.

    Federico Zuccari, Inferno, Canti XXVI-XXVIII.