Lot 286. Kamelot Auctions image.

Mid-century design made presence felt at Kamelot sale Feb. 22

Lot 286. Kamelot Auctions image.

Lot 286. Kamelot Auctions image.

PHILADELHIA – Kamelot Auctions’ annual Mid-Century and Design sale was held on Saturday, Feb. 22, in Philadelphia, attracting a large bidding contingent that included designers, craftsmen, and private collectors. The sale offered a range of property including furniture, lighting, and sculpture from the Art Nouveau, Arts & Crafts, Art Deco, Modernist and Contemporary movements.

LiveAuctioneers.com facilitated Internet live bidding.

Interest in mid-century modern remains high across the board, particularly for iconic designs. The auction featured a selection of classic Gio Ponti-style designs, including a pair of commodes, each having six parchment front drawers supported on tapering bronze legs, which sold for $7,400 (lot 311). Similarly was lot 253, a mid-century modern parchment-covered dresser, circa 1960, sold for $1,680 against an estimate of $500-$700. Other stunners included an Ico Parisi-style mahogany desk having three floating drawers, circa 1960, which sold for $2,040 (lot 295); a Karl Springer-style chrome octagonal-form mirror, which brought $2,400 (lot 286); and a pair of labeled Knoll Eero Saarinen tulip tables having composite white top supported on metal base, circa 1960, which brought $1,320 (lot 458). Lot 296, a James Mont-style credenza having Asian inspired fretwork painted doors raised on a Greek key platform base, circa 1960, earned $2,280. Likewise, lot 295A, a James Mont-style painted wood and glass dining table, circa 1970, earned $1,920. Grossing over $14,000, a set of four mid-century modern Italian club chairs proved to be one of the auction’s top (lots 288 and 208), along with lot 94, a cerused oak sideboard, circa 1950, which  grossed over $7,000.

The top lot of the day was a pair of Art Deco-style macassar demilune one-drawer console tables in the manner of Ruhlmann resting on tapered legs. The pair of tables far exceeded their estimate of $2,000-$3,000 and earned a final $10,200 (lot 221). Bidders responded with enthusiasm to the sale’s selection of Art Deco, and the category brought successful results across the board. Lot 207, a pair of ebonized Art Deco-style console tables having inset mirrored top supported on U-form base raised on silver trimmed plinth earned a whopping $4,560. Among other prized Art Deco pieces was a French sideboard having two diamond parquetry decorated doors that earned $3,120, a matched set of four macassar tapered pedestals that earned $1,560 (lot 204) and a good and unusual pair of carved Art Deco club chairs, circa 1930, that earned $1,800 (lot 199).

Lighting was another category that brought rewarding results. Leading the selection and with keen presale interest was a rare collection of 20 matching Murano glass shell-form sconces having gold fleck scroll decoration, circa 1970, (Lots 402, 403, 404, 405). The sconces brought a total of over $10,000. Lot 269, a substantial pair of George Kovacs mid-century modern Lucite table lamps earned $1,680, well above the projected estimate of $300-$500. Other highlights included a pair of bronze Jansen palm tree table lamps, circa 1950, which brought $1,920 (lot 166); a similar pair of Baques brass faux bamboo standing floor lamps, circa 1960, which brought $1,920 (lot 179); and a pair of stylish parchment covered floor lamps with bronze plated decoration, which brought $2,640 (lot 355).

Kamelot’s next sale will be the annual garden and architectural antiques auction to be held Saturday, April 12. For more information call 215-438-6990.

Click here to view the fully illustrated catalog for this sale, complete with prices realized.


ADDITIONAL LOTS OF NOTE


Lot 286. Kamelot Auctions image.

Lot 286. Kamelot Auctions image.

The top lot of the day was a pair of Art Deco-style one-drawer console tables in the manner of Ruhlmann. Estimated at $2,000-$3,000, the pair achieved $10,200. Kamelot Auctions image.

The top lot of the day was a pair of Art Deco-style one-drawer console tables in the manner of Ruhlmann. Estimated at $2,000-$3,000, the pair achieved $10,200. Kamelot Auctions image.

Lot 207.  Kamelot Auctions image.

Lot 207. Kamelot Auctions image.

Lot 278. Kamelot Auctions image.

Lot 278. Kamelot Auctions image.

Lot 288. Kamelot Auctions image.

Lot 288. Kamelot Auctions image.

Lot 311. Kamelot Auctions image.

Lot 311. Kamelot Auctions image.

Lot 401. Kamelot Auctions image.

Lot 401. Kamelot Auctions image.

Lovely French gilt bronze bracket clock with hand-painted floral and antlered stag decoration. Ahlers & Ogletree image.

Ahlers & Ogletree compose eclectic 1,400-lot sale March 15-16

Lovely French gilt bronze bracket clock with hand-painted floral and antlered stag decoration. Ahlers & Ogletree image.

Lovely French gilt bronze bracket clock with hand-painted floral and antlered stag decoration. Ahlers & Ogletree image.

ATLANTA – A two-day auction featuring an impressive single-owner collection of mid-century modern, plus wonderful Asian antiques, fine art from names such as Louis Icart and Andy Warhol, many pieces of highly collectible Frankart and even a woolly mammoth tusk will be held March 15-16 by Ahlers & Ogletree.

LiveAuctioneers.com will facilitate Internet live bidding.

The March 15 session will focus primarily on mid-century modern, highlighted by the lifetime personal collection of Walter Glenn. Pieces will include chairs designed for Herman Miller by Charles and Ray Eames and a signed, oval glass-top cocktail table with steel brass and frame by Tommy Anton Parzinger (1903-1981). The March 16 session will feature traditional antiques.

The woolly mammoth ivory tusk, just recently consigned, is a 6-foot-long complete example from Siberia that is expected to realize $15,000-$20,000. Other items in the sale will include a large collection of vintage toy robots; a fine selection of vintage chrome and bronze automotive hood ornaments and car mascots; French, English and American furniture items; and Chinese and other Asian porcelains, including vases, teapots and ginger jars.

“To say this auction will be eclectic would be an understatement,” said Robert Ahlers of Ahlers & Ogletree. “We’ve got a well rounded mix of quality merchandise – 1,400 lots that will appeal to collectors, interior designers and just about anybody with a discerning eye. It’s a cliché when you hear it said there’s something for everybody, but in this auction that really is the case.”

Frankart is the name given to the Art Deco-inspired creations of Arthur Frankenburg, after whom the New York City-based firm was named. It thrived in the 1920s and ’30s, mass-producing white lead composition pieces. The sale will feature many Frankart items, including lamps and lights, ashtrays, cigarette holders, smoke stands, bookends and beautiful bronze urns.

Charles Eames (1907-1978) and his wife Bernice (Ray) Eames (1912-1988) were major forces in mid-century modern furniture and architecture, and they also left a stamp in the fields of industrial and graphic design, fine art and film. In the 1950s the couple pioneered advances in fiberglass and plastic resin chairs and wire mesh chairs they designed for furniture manufacturer Herman Miller.

The auction will feature several examples by the Eameses, such as a molded plywood lounge chair; a pale yellow molded fiberglass shell armchair with textured surfaces, raised on a metal base; and a blue molded plastic reinforced fiberglass rocking chair with wooden rocker slats on a metal base. Eames chairs make a powerful design statement and are highly collectible.

A set of 10 silkscreen prints on white paper after the pop art icon Andy Warhol (American, 1928-1987), each one depicting legendary actress Marilyn Monroe and based on publicity stills taken by the photographer Gene Kornman for the 1953 film Niagara, are expected to bring about $1,000 each. The unsigned prints, from 1970, show different color combinations of the actress and are black stamped en verso “Published by Sunday B. Morning,” who worked with Warhol.

A 1917 drypoint etching by the prolific Art Deco artist Louis Icart (French, 1888-1950), titled Le Voix du Cannon (Voice of the Cannon), will also come up for bid. The pencil-signed etching (#7 of 10), 16 inches by 23 inches (framed, 34 inches by 41 inches), depicts an emotive French woman being shot from a cannon during World War I. Icart was known for his patriotic etchings during the war years, and this particular etching, Le Voix du Cannon, is one of his rare images.

A mid-century modern wood and copper sculpture by Karl Hagenauer (Austrian, 1898-1956), 8 inches tall, will also be sold to the highest bidder. The figure, made of stained walnut wood on an undulated copper metal band, depicts a female nude with curling hair and eyes closed, in a relaxed state with one arm and one knee bent. The sculpture carries Hagenauer’s mark. Also sold will be a charming unsigned American impressionist oil on canvas painting.

One of the rare and unusual offerings in the sale is a 25th anniversary souvenir publication from 1929 for the Wiener Werkstatte, the production company of visual artists in Vienna founded in 1903 for the purpose of bringing together architects, artists and designers. The book was produced despite the group’s financial woes at the time and is visually striking, with a cover displaying a figural decoration made from hand-embossed papier-mache.

Expected star lots of the furniture category include an early 19th century French two-drawer drop-front secretary with scrolled bracket medallion decoration; and a marble-top mahogany sideboard with carved figural and scrolled foliate decoration. Tops among clocks is a gorgeous French gilt bronze bracket clock with hand-painted floral and antlered stag decoration.

Also selling will be a gilt metal chandelier with leaved motif, with quartz rose dangling medallions and cascading cut and faceted crystal prisms; a pair of large patinated bronze urns with a dragon motif on the neck; two monumental gilt and painted floor pedestals with scroll and foliate decoration; a pair of large blackamoor figural pedestals; and other decorative accessories.

Start times will be 11 a.m. Eastern both days.

For details phone Ahlers & Ogletree at 404-869-2478 or e-mail info@aandoauctions.com.

View the fully illustrated catalog and register to bid absentee or live via the Internet as the sale is taking place by logging on to www.LiveAuctioneers.com.


ADDITIONAL LOTS OF NOTE


Lovely French gilt bronze bracket clock with hand-painted floral and antlered stag decoration. Ahlers & Ogletree image.

Lovely French gilt bronze bracket clock with hand-painted floral and antlered stag decoration. Ahlers & Ogletree image.

Impressive gilt metal chandelier with leaved motif with cut and faceted crystal prisms. Ahlers & Ogletree image.

Impressive gilt metal chandelier with leaved motif with cut and faceted crystal prisms. Ahlers & Ogletree image.

Charming American impressionist figural oil on canvas figural painting, unsigned. Ahlers & Ogletree image.

Charming American impressionist figural oil on canvas figural painting, unsigned. Ahlers & Ogletree image.

A fine collection of Art Deco Frankart lamps, figures and smoke stands will be auctioned. Ahlers & Ogletree image.

A fine collection of Art Deco Frankart lamps, figures and smoke stands will be auctioned. Ahlers & Ogletree image.

Set of 10 Sunday B. Morning silkscreen prints on paper after Andy Warhol. Ahlers & Ogletree image.

Set of 10 Sunday B. Morning silkscreen prints on paper after Andy Warhol. Ahlers & Ogletree image.

Beautiful marble-top mahogany sideboard with carved figural and scrolled foliate decoration. Ahlers & Ogletree image.

Beautiful marble-top mahogany sideboard with carved figural and scrolled foliate decoration. Ahlers & Ogletree image.

Tommi Anton Parzinger (1903-1981) mid-century modern oval glass-top cocktail table, signed. Ahlers & Ogletree image.

Tommi Anton Parzinger (1903-1981) mid-century modern oval glass-top cocktail table, signed. Ahlers & Ogletree image.

Gallery Report: March 2014

NEW ORLEANS –

Cut crystal gasoliers, $17,080, Crescent City

A pair of cut crystal gasoliers made circa 1900, possibly by Baccarat and now electrified, sold for $17,080 at an auction Feb. 15-16 by Crescent City Auction Gallery in New Orleans. Also, an early 20th century oil on canvas painting signed by Alexander J. Drysdale (1870-1934) titled Moss Draped Oak and Cypress soared to $12,200; an oil on board by Clementine Hunter (1887-1988) titled Watermelon Picnic brought $7,930; and a Russian Imperial porcelain plate with a scalloped gilt rim made $3,172. Prices include an 18.5 percent buyer’s premium.

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An 1852 US gold dollar coin designed by John B. Longacre. Image courtesy of Lost Dutchman Rare Coins.

Couple stumbles upon $10M in rare gold coins

An 1852 US gold dollar coin designed by John B. Longacre. Image courtesy of Lost Dutchman Rare Coins.

An 1852 US gold dollar coin designed by John B. Longacre. Image courtesy of Lost Dutchman Rare Coins.

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A Northern California couple out walking their dog on their property stumbled across a modern-day bonanza: $10 million in rare, mint-condition gold coins buried in the shadow of an old tree.

Nearly all of the 1,427 coins, dating from 1847 to 1894, are in uncirculated, mint condition, said David Hall, co-founder of Professional Coin Grading Service of Santa Ana, which recently authenticated them. Although the face value of the gold pieces only adds up to more than $28,000, some of them are so rare that coin experts say they could fetch nearly $1 million apiece.

“I don’t like to say once-in-a-lifetime for anything, but you don’t get an opportunity to handle this kind of material, a treasure like this, ever,” said veteran numismatist Don Kagin, who is representing the finders. “It’s like they found the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.”

Kagin, whose family has been in the rare-coin business for 81 years, would say little about the couple other than that they are husband and wife, are middle-aged and have lived for several years on the rural property in California’s Gold Country, where the coins were found. They have no idea who put them there, he said.

The pair are choosing to remain anonymous, Kagin said, in part to avoid a renewed gold rush to their property by modern-day prospectors armed with metal detectors.

They also don’t want to be treated any differently, said David McCarthy, chief numismatist for Kagin Inc. of Tiburon.

“Their concern was this would change the way everyone else would look at them, and they’re pretty happy with the lifestyle they have today,” he said.

They plan to put most of the coins up for sale through Amazon while holding onto a few keepsakes. They’ll use the money to pay off bills and quietly donate to local charities, Kagin said.

Before they sell them, they are loaning some to the American Numismatic Association for its National Money Show, which opens Thursday in Atlanta.

What makes their find particularly valuable, McCarthy said, is that almost all of the coins are in near-perfect condition. That means that whoever put them into the ground likely socked them away as soon as they were put into circulation.

Because paper money was illegal in California until the 1870s, he added, it’s extremely rare to find any coins from before that of such high quality.

“It wasn’t really until the 1880s that you start seeing coins struck in California that were kept in real high grades of preservation,” he said.

The coins, in $5, $10 and $20 denominations, were stored more or less in chronological order in six cans, McCarthy said, with the 1840s and 1850s pieces going into one can until it was filed, then new coins going into the next one and the next one after that. The dates and the method indicated that whoever put them there was using the ground as their personal bank and that they weren’t swooped up all at once in a robbery.

Although most of the coins were minted in San Francisco, one $5 gold piece came from as far away as Georgia.

Kagin and McCarthy would say little about the couple’s property or its ownership history, other than it’s located in Gold Country, a sprawling, picturesque and still lightly populated section of north-central California that stretches along the western slope of the Sierra Nevada.

The discovery of gold at Sutter’s Mill, about 50 miles northeast of Sacramento, set off the California Gold Rush of 1848.

The coins had been buried by a path the couple had walked for years. On the day they found them last spring, the woman had bent over to examine an old rusty can that erosion had caused to pop slightly out of the ground.

“Don’t be above bending over to check on a rusty can,” Kagin said she told him.

They were located on a section of the property the couple nicknamed Saddle Ridge, and Kagin is calling the find the Saddle Ridge Hoard. He believes it could be the largest such discovery in U.S. history.

One of the largest previous finds of gold coins was $1 million worth uncovered by construction workers in Jackson, Tenn., in 1985. More than 400,000 silver dollars were found in the home of a Reno, Nev., man who died in 1974 and were later sold intact for $7.3 million.

Gold coins and ingots said to be worth as much as $130 million were recovered in the 1980s from the wreck of the SS Central America. But historians knew roughly where that gold was because the ship went down off the coast of North Carolina during a hurricane in 1857.

#   #   #


ADDITIONAL IMAGE OF NOTE


An 1852 US gold dollar coin designed by John B. Longacre. Image courtesy of Lost Dutchman Rare Coins.

An 1852 US gold dollar coin designed by John B. Longacre. Image courtesy of Lost Dutchman Rare Coins.

Mark Moran

Mark Moran heads March 3 antique appraisal fundraising event

Mark Moran

Mark Moran

HINCKLEY, Ill. – Mark Moran, author of more than 25 books on antiques and collectibles, will offer 40 appraisals as a fundraiser at 6 p.m. Monday, March 3, at the Hinckley community building, 120 Maple St.

The Hinckley Historical Society in conjunction with the Hinckley Public Library will sponsor this fundraising antique appraisal.

Moran, who has been an appraiser for more than 20 years, evaluate and give information on items brought in by participants. Register for one of the slots at the Hinckley Public Library, 100 Maple St. The fee is $15 per item. Refreshments will be available for a small donation. Learn more about Moran at www.mark-moran.blogspot.com

Excluded items: No weapons, including swords and knives (though folding knives with advertising are accepted), coins and paper money, Beanie Babies, fine jewelry, including precious gems.

Contact Historical Society president, George Hubert at 815-286-9075 or the Hinckley Public Library at 815-286-3220 with questions.


ADDITIONAL IMAGE OF NOTE


Mark Moran

Mark Moran

Gateway of No Return, a massive monument to the area's bleak history as a slave trading hub. Image by rgrilo. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license.

Former slave trade town seeks to become African art hub

Gateway of No Return, a massive monument to the area's bleak history as a slave trading hub. Image by rgrilo. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license.

Gateway of No Return, a massive monument to the area’s bleak history as a slave trading hub. Image by rgrilo. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license.

OUIDAH, Benin (AFP) – Until last year, the few tourists who visited the small west African town of Ouidah were likely headed to the Gateway of No Return, a massive monument to the area’s bleak history as a slave trading hub.

But the town may soon become known for an attraction of an entirely different sort: the first sub-Saharan Africa museum dedicated exclusively to contemporary African art.

The Zinsou Museum, installed in an ornate 100-year-old villa, has attracted 13,000 visitors since its launch in November – an impressive tally for an out-of-the-way town in the sparsely visited nation of Benin.

The reputation – and monetary value – of contemporary African art has steadily risen in recent years. Curators and collectors from North America and Europe frequently fly in to artistic hubs like Lagos, Nigeria seeking new talent and new work by established names.

But for Marie-Celine Zinsou, who spearheaded the creation of the museum, better recognition for African artists abroad was not enough.

While on a trip to Benin with a French based children’s charity in 2005 she wanted to take a group of youths to an art museum.

“I found that there wasn’t any structure to show (the children) work from their own continent,” she told AFP.

Zinsou, the grandniece of one of Benin’s first presidents, secured an investment from her father Lionel, a businessmen with duel French and Benin nationality who previously worked for France’s Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius.

The Zinsou foundation opened in 2005 at a building in Benin’s largest city of Cotonou, where access was free to view both African and foreign art. The foundation attracted 4 million visitors in eight years, mostly students under the age of 15.

As it became more established, the Zinsou Foundation began acquiring a diverse collection of contemporary African art, with the goal of opening a permanent museum.

The Villa Ajavon, an expansive cream-colored home built in 1922 by a Togolese trader, drew Zinsou to Ouidah, a town of 60,000 people some 25 miles from Cotonou.

“When we found out this sublime building was available, we jumped at the chance,” said Zinsou.

“Its style is very symbolic, very specific to this region,” she said.

The slave trade monument in Ouidah is a massive archway with two long lines of naked, chained men in bas-relief along the top, to suggest the group is being marched into the Atlantic Ocean.

Hundreds of thousands of Africans were believed to have been condemned to slavery from the beach below the archway.

The Villa Ajavon in a sense defies that history, having been built by the descendants of slaves who returned from the Brazilian city of Bahia in a style influenced by both Brazilian and African architecture, said Zinsou.

The villa falls along a quiet dirt road lined with run-down bungalows and is just a few hundred yards from the Temple of Pythons, a major center of voodoo worship which retains powerful influence in Benin.

While the villa needed to be renovated to host a museum, Zinsou said the priority was to preserve its original structure.

Air-conditioning in main hall was therefore forbidden so as to not disfigure the exterior, so those who wants to see the museum’s collection must be prepared to sweat.

Air circulates through sunlight corridors where the works of leading African artists are on display, including: Ethiopia’s Mickael Bethe-Selassie, Frederic Bruly-Bouabre of Ivory Coast and Cheri Samba of the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Like in Cotonou, the entrance in Ouidah is free and the visitors are typically very young.

Eight-year-old Achmine Atindehou said she was on her second visit to the Zinsou Museum and had already grown very confident in her arguably peculiar tastes.

“I like the drawing Living Memory (by the British-South African artist Bruce Clarke) because it is nice. It is about death,” she said.

Museum director Claude Aktome said often children come with their school classes and then persuade their parents to bring them back.

Romuald Hazoume has exhibited his paintings, sculptures and photographs in London and New York, but became emotional when recalling his first showing in Benin, the country of his birth.


ADDITIONAL IMAGE OF NOTE


Gateway of No Return, a massive monument to the area's bleak history as a slave trading hub. Image by rgrilo. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license.

Gateway of No Return, a massive monument to the area’s bleak history as a slave trading hub. Image by rgrilo. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license.

Low's Encyclopedia 1799 map of Connecticut. Image by DigbyDalton. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.

Conn. tourism agency creating statewide antiques trail

Low's Encyclopedia 1799 map of Connecticut. Image by DigbyDalton. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.

Low’s Encyclopedia 1799 map of Connecticut. Image by DigbyDalton. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) – State tourism officials are urging antiques dealers and auction houses to participate in the new statewide Connecticut Antiques Trail website.

Qualified dealers and auction houses have until March 10 to submit information about their businesses in order to receive a free listing on the website. The site will be part of the state’s official tourism website, www.CTvisit.com .

Connecticut lawmakers last year passed legislation requiring the Department of Economic and Community Development, which oversees tourism, to develop a trail identifying where antiques are sold throughout Connecticut. Under the new law, the map must include major antiques dealers, communities with high concentrations of antiques dealers and auction houses with annual sales of more than $1 million.

To participate in the trail, antiques dealers and action houses should email Jean.Hebert@ct.gov or call 860-256-2739.

Copyright 2014 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

AP-WF-02-26-14 0809GMT


ADDITIONAL IMAGE OF NOTE


Low's Encyclopedia 1799 map of Connecticut. Image by DigbyDalton. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.

Low’s Encyclopedia 1799 map of Connecticut. Image by DigbyDalton. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.

Amphora ceramic dragon vase, 14 inches tall, blue with gold glazes, mint condition, est. $12,000-$15,000. Morphy Auctions image.

Rare Martin Bros. stoneware birds to take flight at Morphy’s, March 8

Amphora ceramic dragon vase, 14 inches tall, blue with gold glazes, mint condition, est. $12,000-$15,000. Morphy Auctions image.

Amphora ceramic dragon vase, 14 inches tall, blue with gold glazes, mint condition, est. $12,000-$15,000. Morphy Auctions image.

DENVER, Pa. – Two superb Martin Bros. stoneware birds occupy the top roost in Morphy’s Fine & Decorative Arts Auction slated for March 8. LiveAuctioneers will provide the Internet live-bidding services for the sale.

Intentionally grotesque and extremely desirable, the fully figural English birds are fashioned as tobacco jars with removable heads. One is dated 1907, while the other is dated 1908. Each is signed “R.W. Martin & Bros.”

“Martin Brothers birds have an avid following among ceramics and tobacciana collectors, both here and in the United Kingdom,” said Morphy Auctions CEO Dan Morphy. “To have one of these rare birds in our sale would be exciting enough, but to have two of them to offer to bidders is a very nice bonus.”

One of the birds stands 9¼ inches tall and is estimated at $25,000-$35,000. The other, posed as though the head is cocked to the side, is 12½ inches tall and could command $20,000-$30,000. Both are in excellent condition.

Dozens of figural humidors will follow the Martin birds. Many are formed as character heads or animals. Some will be of interest to black Americana collectors, as well.

Two outstanding collections of pottery will be auctioned. One of the collections contains fine examples of Amphora, including a 14-inch Dragon vase, $12,000-$15,000; and a Paris Expo 1900 frog vase, $4,000-$6,000. A 15¼-inch monumental Paul Dachsel-designed Blue Mushroom vase has a motif of soaring white birch trees with mushrooms circling the base.

The second collection consists primarily of Roseville and includes a number of unusual forms, from a Futura Blue Balloon vase to an array of wall pockets.

Many other potteries are represented, including Rookwood, Weller, Royal Doulton, Hampshire and Teco. A special entry is a 7½-inch artist-signed Newcomb College Moon & Trees vase, which is estimated at $4,000-$5,000.

An excellent selection of fine jewelry includes many distinctive rings set with diamonds, emeralds and rubies. Also, there are several Cartier timepieces, led by a ladies 10K gold watch with a diamond border surrounding the face. Estimate: $2,500-$3,500. A gentleman’s 14K white gold Vacheron & Constantin watch is expected to make $3,000-$5,000.

A mixed grouping of Americana contains several standout lots, such as an antique 10-gallon stoneware crock from Jas. Hamilton & Co., of Greensboro, Pa. A handsome vessel decorated in a blue floral pattern, it is in “virtually untouched condition,” Morphy said. Its estimate is $6,000-$10,000.

Early firefighting equipment includes buckets, leather helmets, badges, a Boston fireman’s “speaking trumpet,” a 1794 fire mark, and several lanterns. An antique New England fire engine lamp marked “Roxy” and “Six” is in excellent condition and estimated at $7,000-$10,000.

Morphy’s March 8 Fine & Decorative Arts Auction will begin at 9 a.m. Eastern Time. Bid absentee or live via the Internet through LiveAuctioneers. For additional information on any item in the sale, call 717-335-3435 or email serena@morphyauctions.com.

Visit Morphy Auctions online at www.morphyauctions.com.

View the fully illustrated catalog and register to bid absentee or live via the Internet as the sale is taking place by logging on to www.LiveAuctioneers.com.


ADDITIONAL LOTS OF NOTE


Amphora ceramic dragon vase, 14 inches tall, blue with gold glazes, mint condition, est. $12,000-$15,000. Morphy Auctions image.

Amphora ceramic dragon vase, 14 inches tall, blue with gold glazes, mint condition, est. $12,000-$15,000. Morphy Auctions image.

Pair of R.W. Martin stoneware bird-figure tobacco jars, signed and dated. At left: 1907 bird est. $25,000-$35,000. Right: 1908 bird, est. $20,000-$30,000. Morphy Auctions image.

Pair of R.W. Martin stoneware bird-figure tobacco jars, signed and dated. At left: 1907 bird est. $25,000-$35,000. Right: 1908 bird, est. $20,000-$30,000. Morphy Auctions image.

Cartier 18K yellow gold ladies diamond watch, est. $2,500-$3,500. Morphy Auctions image.

Cartier 18K yellow gold ladies diamond watch, est. $2,500-$3,500. Morphy Auctions image.

Fire engine lamp from “Roxy #6,” New England origin, lamp has been electrified, est. $7,000-$10,000. Morphy Auctions image.

Fire engine lamp from “Roxy #6,” New England origin, lamp has been electrified, est. $7,000-$10,000. Morphy Auctions image.

Theodore Nikolai Lukits (American, 1897-1992), ‘Zaida,’ oil on canvas, 1927, signed lower right with artist’s copyright, est. $7,000-$10,000. Morphy Auctions image.

Theodore Nikolai Lukits (American, 1897-1992), ‘Zaida,’ oil on canvas, 1927, signed lower right with artist’s copyright, est. $7,000-$10,000. Morphy Auctions image.

Paul Conrad's 'Chain Reaction' sculpture in Santa Monica, Calif. Image by CbI62. It is believed that reproduction for criticism, comment, teaching and scholarship constitutes fair use and does not infringe copyright. This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License.

Santa Monica agrees to save mushroom cloud sculpture

Paul Conrad's 'Chain Reaction' sculpture in Santa Monica, Calif. Image by CbI62. It is believed that reproduction for criticism, comment, teaching and scholarship constitutes fair use and does not infringe copyright. This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License.

Paul Conrad’s ‘Chain Reaction’ sculpture in Santa Monica, Calif. Image by CbI62. It is believed that reproduction for criticism, comment, teaching and scholarship constitutes fair use and does not infringe copyright. This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License.

SANTA MONICA, Calif. (AP) – The two-year controversy that a gigantic sculpture of a nuclear mushroom cloud has set off across Santa Monica’s otherwise friendly shores has ended.

The City Council voted 6-1 Tuesday night in favor of accepting more than $100,000 in donations and restoring the aging, three-story work called Chain Reaction.

Two years ago, fate looked grim for the hulking pop-art structure constructed of chain links big enough to secure a ship’s anchor.

City officials said some of the links were rusting, and they worried that children who liked to climb all over the sculpture in front of the Civic Center would be hurt if it fell down. The city’s Arts Commission voted to get rid of it.

Then a coalition of supporters, led by the beachfront city’s longtime, colorful peace activist, Jerry Rubin, sprang into action.

Supporters got nine former mayors to support their efforts, including one who had called the work ugly and voted against taking it in 1991.

Most important, City Manager Rod Gould said, supporters raised more than $100,000, showing that the community really did want to keep the thing.

“I’m proud that the city has appreciated the effort of the community to save this wonderful, landmark sculpture,” Rubin said after the vote.

The city’s staff recommends the council cover the rest of the repair costs, although it’s still uncertain just how much that will be.

The work, by the late Los Angeles Times political cartoonist Paul Conrad, has always been controversial.

When the city took a straw poll on whether to accept the sculpture in 1991, the vote was 730-392 against. Officials ignored the results amid allegations that Conrad critics had stuffed the ballot box.

Although regarded as a liberal, the Pulitzer Prize-winning cartoonist skewered politicians across the political spectrum and had his share of critics on all sides.

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AP-WF-02-26-14 0504GMT


ADDITIONAL IMAGE OF NOTE


Paul Conrad's 'Chain Reaction' sculpture in Santa Monica, Calif. Image by CbI62. It is believed that reproduction for criticism, comment, teaching and scholarship constitutes fair use and does not infringe copyright. This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License.

Paul Conrad’s ‘Chain Reaction’ sculpture in Santa Monica, Calif. Image by CbI62. It is believed that reproduction for criticism, comment, teaching and scholarship constitutes fair use and does not infringe copyright. This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License.

Belgian contemporary art director Jan Hoet. Image by Michiel Hendryckx. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported license.

In Memoriam: Belgian contemporary art director Jan Hoet, 77

Belgian contemporary art director Jan Hoet. Image by Michiel Hendryckx. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported license.

Belgian contemporary art director Jan Hoet. Image by Michiel Hendryckx. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported license.

BRUSSELS (AP) – Belgian contemporary art director Jan Hoet, who organized a major exhibition in private homes and curated Germany’s Documenta art fair, died Thursday. He was 77.

He died in a hospital in Ghent after a long illness, his family said.

Prime Minister Elio Di Rupo said the Belgian art world “loses a father.”

Hoet was known for his outspokenness and criticized art snobs and politicians who did not get the point of modern art. In the process, his rasping, down-to-earth style brought contemporary art within the reach of everyone, making him a beloved Belgian cultural icon.

His fame spilled beyond the border and he became curator for major exhibitions from Germany to China.

“He was invaluable,” painter Luc Tuymans said of Hoet, who bought his first work and was instrumental in making Tuymans a global name in contemporary painting.

“Jan had the charisma and the force of conviction to talk about art in understandable terms. That way he was able to draw a great many people in,” Tuymans told VRT network.

That included his 1986 breakthrough exhibit “Chambres d’Amis” (“Guest Rooms”). He cajoled 58 homeowners in Ghent, the university town west of Brussels, to open their houses and let international artist run amok there. The results ranked from the crazy to the sublime, and throngs lined up for a peek.

“He took art out of the museum and into the city, and it made him very special,” Tuymans said.

Hoet, an amateur boxer, loved to clash.

As part of the 2000 “Over the Edges” exhibition in his beloved Ghent, where he was museum curator, he let artist Jan Fabre drape columns of a university auditorium in slabs of ham. The goal? To put art at the heart of the social debate.

“He was one of the greatest,” Fabre said.

Hoet kept going with new projects even though his health declined with the years. “Death is the biggest liberation,” he said.

___

Follow Raf Casert on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/rcasert

Copyright 2014 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

AP-WF-02-27-14 1428GMT


ADDITIONAL IMAGE OF NOTE


Belgian contemporary art director Jan Hoet. Image by Michiel Hendryckx. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported license.

Belgian contemporary art director Jan Hoet. Image by Michiel Hendryckx. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported license.