Women artists, grand piano pace Ripley Auctions’ results

Women artists

Colorful, untitled abstract still life oil painting by Mercedes Carles Matter (American, 1913-2001), painted in 1962. Sold for $65,624. Ripley Auctions image

INDIANAPOLIS – Original oil paintings by Lois Dodd (American, b. 1927), Mercedes Carles Matter (American, 1913-2001) and Gillian Ayres (UK, 1930-2018) sold for a combined $150,000, and a beautiful Bosendorfer grand piano played a sweet tune for $53,125 in an auction held Jan. 16 by Ripley Auctions. Absentee and Internet live bidding was available through LiveAuctioneers.

The Estate Art & Antiques auction was headlined by items from the estate of the legendary British conductor and composer Raymond Leppard (1927-2019), a Grammy-winning recording artist and scholarly revivalist of 16th and 17th century Baroque operas. Also offered were fine items pulled from prominent estates and collections in the Indianapolis area – 325 lots in all.

In addition to the Raymond Leppard items, the auction catalog was packed with Italian and American studio glass, musical instruments, modern paintings, sculptures and decorative accessories. Around 20 people attended the auction in person, in the Ripley Auctions gallery, while hundreds of others bid online.

Andrea Hastings, Ripley Auctions’ vice president and head of inventory, said, “Recently we’ve achieved auction record prices for some of New York’s postmodern female artists who I’m happy to see are getting due recognition.” She was referring to the paintings by Dodd and Matter, whose paintings were the auction’s two top earners. The Gillian Ayres work was the third top lot.

The large, 66-by-48-inch painting by Lois Dodd was untitled (Can’t See the End Table for the Trees) and depicts just that: a Victorian end table among a grove of trees. It had a Fischbach, N.Y., gallery label verso and sold for a robust $71,875. Dodd is primarily a painter of New England landscapes.

Women artists

Large, 66-by-48-inch oil on canvas painting by Lois Dodd (American, b. 1927). Sold for $71,875. Ripley Auctions image

The colorful, untitled still life by Mercedes Carles Matter was painted in 1962 and acquired directly from the artist by the consignor, a private collector in Indianapolis. The 43-by-49½-inch work (image area, less frame) climbed to $65,624. Matter is best known as a painter of abstract still lifes. She lived in East Hampton, N.Y., and founded the Studio School in 1964.

The equally colorful Angel Heart, painted in 1992 and signed by Gillian Ayres, measured 48 inches by 36 inches (image area, less frame) and knocked down for $12,500. Ayres was one of the most significant abstract painters to emerge in London during the postwar period. She was a disciple and vanguard of the Tachisme style, a distinct, nongeometric abstract style.

Women artists

Vibrant oil on canvas abstract painting by Gillian Ayres, ‘Angel Heart,’ done in 1992 and signed by the artist. Sold for $12,500. Ripley Auctions image

The Bosendorfer grand piano (model 225, serial #37277), featured a black ebony finish and included an upholstered Standard Kimball black bench. It wasn’t available for gallery viewing and shipped directly from the residence of the consigner to the buyer. Bosendorfer is one of the oldest fine piano makers. The company was founded in 1828 in Austria by Ignaz Bosendorfer.

Women artists

Bosendorfer grand piano (model 225, serial #37277. Sold for $53,125. Ripley Auctions image

Following are additional highlights from the auction, which overall grossed $350,000. All prices quoted include a 25 percent buyer’s premium.

Most of the lots in the auction were from the estate of Raymond Leppard, who notably served as the music conductor for the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra from 1987-2001. His collection included a library of over 100 books, featuring orchestral, choral and operatic scores, historical reference material and music theory volumes, many dating from the 17th through the 19th century.

Highlights included works by Bach, Rossini, Mozart, Handel, Schubert, Wagner, Tartini, Elgar, Stamitz, Burney, Britten and Stanley. The top lot was Dardanus. Prologue. Le Theatre represente les Jardins de l’Amour a Cytherea, on y voit ce Dieu sur un Threne de fleurs, Venus esl a ses cotez, Les Graces (1744). It sold for $3,500. Other lots included:

– Charles Villiers Stanford’s handwritten and scored Irish Rhapsody No 4, The Fisherman of Loch Neagh and What He Saw, with composer’s notes, signed on the title and final page, Nov. 10, 1913 ($3,250).

– Leppard’s personal score of Claudio Monteverdi Il Ritorno D’Ulisse in Patrinia in two volumes and two acts, with Leppard’s personal notes, Faber Music Ltd, London, rebound in 1979 ($1,625).

– Benjamin Britten signed musical score for Overture The Building of the House, with the composer’s handwritten notes, including: “Written in the opening of The Maltings concert hall. Snape. June 2nd, 1967” ($1,375).

Also from the Leppard estate, a Tobia Scarpa for Venini green Battuto art glass vase (Murano, Italy), 9 inches tall, went for $1,875; while an original illustration plate of the formal procession for the coronation of James II, from Francis Sanford’s History of the Coronation of James II and of Queen Mary (T. Newcomb: London, 1687), framed and inscribed, brought $1,000.

Women artists

Gorgeous Tobia Scarpa for Venini green Battuto art glass vase, Murano, Italy, 9in high. Sold for $1,875. Ripley Auctions image

Decorative arts from local estates and collections included a Roseville art pottery Futura line ‘Bomb’ vase with a stepped neck, flambe and gloss green vase, that hit $1,125; a rare and large Frankart Art Deco figural arching nude smoking stand with original jadeite glass tray, marked on the base, realized $1,062; and a John Prip for Reed & Barton sterling silver partial flatware service in the “Dimension’ pattern,” 41.801 troy ounces, made $1,250.

Women artists

Roseville art pottery Futura line ‘Bomb’ vase with a stepped neck, flambe and gloss green vase. Sold for $1,125. Ripley Auctions image

For more information contact Ripley Auctions a 317-251-5635 or sales@ripleyauctions.com.


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