“Everything did very well, across the board and, currently, for 2013, we are up 23 percent over 2012,” said Redge Martin, president of Clars.
LiveAuctioneers.com provided Internet live bidding.
All categories of fine art sold extremely well with numerous bidders from around the globe participating. Out of the many spectacular American, European and Chinese paintings, prints, and sculpture that were offered, the highest selling painting of the sale was The Proposal by Eugène de Blaas (Austrian, 1843-1932) which faired exceptionally well selling for $166,600. Rick Unruh, vice president and director of fine art at Clars, commented, “We were quite pleased with the outcome of the De Blaas painting selling 40 percent better than the most recent auction results for the artist held in New York two weeks ago.”
Among the other European highlights were a charming oil on canvas titled Kittens Playing with a Pocket Watch (1898) by Charles H. van den Eycken (Belgian, 1859-1923), which fetched $23,800, and two vibrantly beautiful paintings by Emilio Grau Sala (Spanish, 1911-1975) that sold for $17,850 and $11,900. An impressive color etching and aquatint by Joan Miro (Spanish, 1893-1983) titled La Femme Arborescente sold for $11,900, which was the highlight of the numerous modern and contemporary prints that were offered. Rounding out the top performing European lots was a lovely oil on paper by Jean Jansem (French, 1920-2013) titled Village au Matin, which made $9,520.
American art was equally as successful. A large and important portrait titled The Black Kimono, by William Merritt Chase (1849-1916) topped the list, fetching $47,600. Close behind the Chase painting was Joseph Rusling Meeker’s (1827-1889) stoically beautiful painting titled Near the Atachafalaya, selling for $38,675. Sculpture by Elizabeth Catlett (1915-2012), African American Lady, soared past its $5,000 to $7,000 estimate settling at $11,900, while Frederick William MacMonnies’ (1863-1937) bronze Venus and Adonis, 1895 sold for $14,280.
California artists held their own with equally impressive results such as James Weeks’ (1922-1998) grand acrylic on canvas titled Bocce Ball #1, selling for $17,850, followed by a classic painting by Thomas Hill (1829-1908) titled Yosemite, fetching $15,470. Passing Clouds, an oil on board by Percy Gray (1869-1952) flew past its $6,000-8,000 estimate to reach $10,710. Lastly, a rare set of 18 photographs, Pageant of History in Northern California, by Ansel Adams (1902-1984), made $16,660.
Contemporary Chinese art found global attention with two watercolors by Chen Chi (Chinese/American, 1939-2005) selling for $20,230 and $14,280, ending up well past their $3,000-$5,000 estimates. A lovely painting by Shang Ding (Chinese, b. 1954) titled, Contemplation, also surprised the crowd by fetching $10,700.
The furniture and decorative arts department “performed very well with strong prices realized from the start to the conclusion of the sale,” commented Deric Tores, vice president and director of decorative arts and furnishings. Two important special collections were offered, the first being a collection of French cameo glass that realized over $50,000. The second was a collection of Native American textiles, basketry, pottery and 19th century totem poles. This collection sold very strong, realizing $60,000 overall.
In the individual lots offered, topping this category and soaring past estimate was a monumental 19th century Royal Vienna urn, executed in hand-painted porcelain with a reserve depicting the portrait of Unschuld (Innocence). Measuring 24 inches high by 16 inches wide by 6 inches deep, it sold for $19,040, a new gallery record for Royal Vienna. A Meissen figural group brought an impressive $10,755.
Lighting was particularly strong. The top lamp, a Tiffany Studios example deaccessioned from the Honolulu Museum of Art, brought $14,340. A rare Tiffany Studios Mermaid lamp base sold for $15,535 against its high estimate of $5,000.
Also from the Honolulu Museum was an important circa 1760 Chippendale slant-front desk. Expected to achieve a high of $6,000, this historic piece went for over three times that amount, selling for $19,040.
A fabulously finned 1959 Cadillac Coupe De Ville with only 38,000 original miles on the odometer cruised to $32,725.
Two exquisite pieces of jewelry placed in the top 15 lots of the sale. A fancy brownish-yellow diamond and near colorless diamond ring sold for $28,560. Just a few lots later, an 18K yellow gold ring centered with a bezel set oval jadeite cabachon earned an impressive $19,040.
Taking the no. 3 spot in the sale overall was a Chinese hardwood side table. Coming from the Honolulu museum, this table was Qing dynasty (17th/18th century) and reputed to be huanghuali and achieved $41,650.
Also contributing the highly successful November sale was a Chinese daye zitan hardwood table en suite that brought $28,560.
For further information about Clars’ November Fine Art and Antiques Sale call 510-428-0100 or email: email@example.com.
ADDITIONAL LOTS OF NOTE