BOULDER, Colo. – Fascinating cultures from all corners of the world will come to life on Sept. 14 in Artemis Gallery’s Ancient & Ethnographic Variety Auction, with absentee and Internet live bidding available through LiveAuctioneers.com.
The 334-lot auction caters to all collector tastes and budgets, with an array of wonderful classical antiquities from Egypt, Greece, Italy and the Near East. Additionally, there are select Asian art offerings from China, Japan, Thailand and India; as well as Russian icons and Pre-Columbian, Spanish colonial, Native-American and tribal artworks. To add even more variety, there are fossils and several pieces of beautiful ancient and tribal jewelry. As is the case with items in all of Artemis Gallery’s sales, each and every object entered in the Sept. 14 auction event has been expertly vetted by co-owners Bob and Teresa Dodge. Known the world over for their knowledge of antiquities and ancient art, the Dodges back their merchandise with an ironclad guarantee of authenticity.
A very fine Etruscan mold-cast terracotta votive head of a woman (shown below) was modeled with nicely delineated lips and pupils, a gracefully arched brow line and aquiline nose, all framed by long, wavy tresses of hair beneath a corona. “Votive heads of this type were placed in temples as forms of requests or offerings to thank the gods,” Teresa Dodge explained. “Sculptors used molds and stamps to create images of women and men, and on particularly fine examples, such as this head, the artist refined the features and details of the face and hair with a pointed tool prior to firing them in kilns.” Estimate: $2,000-$3,000
While many extraordinary pieces of Roman jewelry have graced Artemis Gallery’s past sales, the Sept. 14 event includes something collectors may never have seen before: a long strand of chain links that probably were used as a form of currency. Each of the 12 links is a long loop of bronze wire that was crushed in the center to render the shape of an elongated figure eight, Rare and historically significant, the circa 2nd-4th century CE necklace carries an $800-$1,200 estimate.
From Gandhara, northwest Pakistan, a circa 4th to 5th century CE stuccoed gray schist Buddha head (shown at top of page) is exquisitely modeled with partly closed almost-shape eyes, an elegantly arched browline and pursed lips. Its elongated earlobes reflect the indulgent real-life practice of princes who wore luxurious, heavy earrings that stretched the lobes over time. Standing 15.25 inches high on an included custom stand, the top-knotted Buddha head is expected to make $6,000-$9,000.
Symbolic of the mysterious and endlessly fascinating society of Ancient Egypt, Lot 7 is a circa 4th-5th century CE Coptic textile child’s tunic (shown above) that is featured in a book written by Eric Gubel and published by Pandora in 1995. “The Coptics were the descendants of the Ancient Egyptians, and their culture coincided with the fall of the Roman Empire. Coptic artisans created masterpieces of textile art that were exported throughout the Roman and Byzantine Empires,” Teresa Dodge noted. The child’s tunic is decorated in shades of russet, cream and dark earth tones, with diamond-shape appliques, concentric red circles and striations. Ready to be displayed in its glass-faced floating wood frame, the tunic is estimated at $3,500-$4,500.
Shown below, a museum-quality Japanese Edo (circa 1603-1868 CE) bronze samurai kabuto (helmet) vessel is richly adorned with cloisonné in abstract floral and geometric motifs. The form itself is quite impressive, with a high dome-form, removable lid decorated with a kanamono crest with rising wing-like elements flanking a chrysanthemum, symbolic of the Japanese monarchy. A luxurious armament of this type would have reflected not only a samurai warrior’s elite status, but also their appreciation for the arts. Formerly in the William Scollard collection, Los Angeles, it is estimated at $8,000-$12,000.
Among the Russian icons to be auctioned is a rare 19th-century artwork depicting an emaciated Mary of Egypt, an extreme ascetic and hermit, standing near the river Jordan. Flanked by an archangel protector, she wears the nimbus of sainthood. Surrounding the main image are other panels depicting the Holy Land, Jesus Christ, John the Baptist, and other Biblical figures. Estimate: $3,500-$5,000
Geological specimens comprise an area of growing interest to Artemis Gallery’s many regular buyers. One of several remarkable examples to be offered on Sept. 14 is Lot 47E, which contains a druzy geode cluster in “cathedral” form with vibrant citrine crystals. Found in Brazil, this sale highlight, shown below, is perhaps 500 million years old. As with all other items in the auction, it is legal to buy/sell under terms of the US cultural patrimony statute and will be accompanied by an Artemis Gallery Certificate of Authenticity. Estimate: $3,000-$4,500
The sale begins at 10 a.m. Eastern Time and will be conducted simultaneously through LiveAuctioneers.com. For additional information about any item in the auction, call Teresa Dodge at 720-502-5289 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Online: www.artemisgallery.com.