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Weekly Auctions of Exceptional Items
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Lambertville, NJ, United States
DoneSun, Oct 22, 2017 2:30 PM GMT

Curiouser & Curiouser

Included in the sale will be two recently rediscovered Woodbridge figures. The carvings were uncovered on the site of what is now the Woodbridge Center Mall in Woodbridge, New Jersey where once lay a series of clay pits and caves mined by the brick industry. During the demolition of a shack on the grounds workmen found over 100 small wooden figures resembling African idols. Ranging in size from 3” to 9”, they are armless, nude and anatomically correct, with individually carved faces and varying body shapes balanced on two proportional feet. Our Woodbridge figures comes from a private collector who lives near the clay pits where the Woodbridge figures were found. This quintessential pair, one male and one female, are in excellent condition and stand approximately 7” high. Other highlights include art spanning geography, centuries and styles, from 18th c. Venetian paintings of Gobbos to contemporary works; seldom available, vintage prints by Morton Bartlett as well as an original drawing; and artist mannequins from palm size to life-size – the largest familiar to many from the window display of Ann Morris in Manhattan. Coveted by collectors, decorators and designers for decades, this remarkable life-sized artist figure has never before been offered for sale. Curator Marion Harris finds appeal in the unexpected, the mundane and the miraculous. She is probably best known for discovering the work of the iconic Morton Bartlett (1909-1992) in 1993 and placing him in museum collections. She assisted in sourcing material for artist-curator Ydessa Hendeles for her 2015 installation “From Her Wooden Sleep,” and the book of the same name. Harris advised on the exhibition “Silent Partners: Artist and Mannequin from Function to Fetish,” which opened at the University of Cambridge’s Fitzwilliam Museum in October 2014.