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Weekly Auctions of Exceptional Items
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Arlington, VA, United States
DoneWed, Oct 8, 2003 9:00 PM GMT

Fall Auction

Smith and Benjamin Auctioneers and Appraisers proudly announce this modest collection of historical memorabilia, antique furniture and paintings, vintage carpets, Asian porcelain, and contemporary sculpture. This auction opens with a collection of rare books, dating to the 18th and 19th centuries. The paintings and works on paper offered here are pieces from all over the world, including Hungary, Scotland, the Americas, and Japan.

Presented next is a collection of courvoisier bottles, designed by the French/Russian artist Erte, known for his work in art and fashion during the late 19th and 20th centuries. These numbered bottles are sealed and come with their original boxes.

Our Sarouk rugs date to the early 1920’s, when the western market was re-opened after World War One. Originally brought into the western markets in the 1880’s, these rugs became well-established focal points of American and European households. Sarouk rugs of this time are known for their thick pile woven on a dyed cotton foundation.

The centerpiece of this auction is a collection of large-scale bronze and wood sculptures by the famed Argentinean sculptor Naum Knop. Born from Jewish parents who fled Russia in the early 19th century, he began his work repairing furniture in his father’s carpentry shop at the age of 10. At the age of 16, Naum enrolled in the Escuela Nacional de Bellas Artes in Argentina, where he remained under the tutelage of famed Argentinean artists Alfredo Bigatti and Alberto Lagos. At the age of 22, he graduated from school as a National Professor of Art. Wishing to be involved in the revolution that was occurring at this time, he traveled to the United States where he won a fellowship to the Art Institute of Los Angeles, and his work was quickly exhibited across the country. Because of the continued precarious political situation in Argentina, there is a concerted effort to save Knop’s artistry before it disappears into obscurity.

Also featured here is a Japanese Curio Cabinet dating to the Showa Period (1926-1989). The Star of David inlaid into the top trim combines with the traditional oriental decoration to give this piece a distinctly original feel.

The aesthetic movement dining room table and set of 14 chairs are reputed to be from the famed “O Street Mansion,” located at 2020 O Street, Washington DC, built originally in 1892. This set is attributed to August Grass, the craftsman who created the interior decoration of the mansion.