Clars brings rare artworks to market in May 18-19 auction  

This rare oil on board by Charlton titled ‘Santa Barbara Mission’ will be offered for $100,000-$150,000. Clars Auction Gallery image

OAKLAND, Calif. – On Sunday, May 19, Clars Auction Gallery will present numerous important works in fine art, 20th century design as well as an impressive selection of estate jewelry as part of their May Fine Art, Decorative Art, Furniture, Jewelry and Asian Art Auction. The investment-level property to be offered comes from prominent California estates, museums, private institutions and special collections. Bid absentee or live online through LiveAuctioneers.

Of all the California Impressionists from the early 20th century, E. (Euphemia) Charlton Fortune’s (American, 1885-1969) paintings are considered some of the rarest and most sought after as so few exist due to the loss of much of her early work in the San Francisco earthquake and fire of 1906. Born in Sausalito, Fortune developed a fondness for the coastal towns of Northern California such as Carmel and Monterey, which became the main subject matter for many of her paintings. Clars is offering one of these rare works, an oil on board, titled, Santa Barbara Mission, 1928 (above), with an estimate of $100,000-$150,000.

Born deaf in New York City in 1844, Harry Humphrey Moore’s (American, 1844-1926) talent was noticed early on by Thomas Eakins while a student under him in Philadelphia. So impressed, Eakins later recommended Moore study at Ecole des Beaux Arts in Paris where he became a student of Jean Leon Gerome. In 1869, after completing his studies, Moore traveled extensively in Spain, Morocco and Japan painting various people and places. Clars is offering one such work from his travels abroad, an oil on canvas titled A Persian Beauty, which measures a monumental 82 by 48 inches. This impressive work of Moore’s depicts an exotic woman in an Orientalist scene and will be offered with an estimate of $30,000-$50,000.

In 1959, 30-yeara-old Jay DeFeo (American, 1929-1989) had her first major solo show in San Francisco which received much acclaim. As a result, many of her works from this exhibit were chosen for the “Sixteen Americans” exhibit at the Whitney Museum in New York later that year and brought DeFeo worldwide attention from prestigious collectors. Clars is offering one of these rare works from 1959 titled Painting with Eggshell (below), an oil with found materials (eggshells) on canvas that is accompanied by the original exhibition title label. This colorful, early work is estimated at $40,000-$60,000.

This rare early work by Jay DeFeo (American, 1929-1989) comes to the sale with an estimate of $40,000-$60,000. Clars Auction Gallery image

Sargent Johnson’s Untitled, Bust of a Woman, circa 1938, from the Philip L. and Toby Flax Collection (San Francisco), will highlight the sculpture category of this sale. This rare work was gifted to the Flax family, the owners of Flax Art & Design, by the artist and has been held privately by the family ever since. This work will be offered with an estimate of $30,000-$50,000.

Sargent Johnson’s ‘Untitled, Bust of a Woman,’ circa 1938, will highlight the sculpture category and will be offered with an estimate of $30,000-$50,000. Clars Auction Gallery image

Rounding out Clars’ Fine Art Sale for Sunday, May 19 will be over 100 photographic proofs by Ansel Adams. This major collection of photographs is highlighted by several works created for the book, Land of Little Rain, 1950, with text by Mary Austin, which illustrates how the once bountiful Owens Valley was then drained to quench the thirst of the Los Angeles metropolitan area.

Outstanding examples of 20th century design will be presented at Clars’ May sale. There are numerous highlights including a collection from Tiffany Studios. Items to be featured include a Tiffany Studios Abalone desk set including a linen fold lamp which will be offered for $10,000-$15,000.

Also from Tiffany Studios will be a Nautilus desk lamp, originally from the collection of Sir Elton John, which is estimated at $10,000-$15,000 and a Tiffany Studios New York Leaf and Vine leaded glass table lamp. Another important item is an Emile Galle Marine wheel cut and fire polished vase estimated at $7,000-$10,000.

In sterling from Tiffany & Co. will be a six-piece Tiffany & Co. tea and coffee set, estimated at $5,000-$7000, and a pair of Tiffany & Co. Rococo style sterling silver six-light candelabra which will be offered for $15,000-$20,000.

In mid-century modern design, a large selection of investment level furniture will be offered by famous designers including Hans Wegner, Severin Hansen Jr., Poul Hundevad, Ole Wanscher and Ib Kofod-Larsen.

Moving on to American Modernism, items to be featured include several pieces by Paul Evans including a sculpted metal dining table which is expected to fetch $10,000-$15,000. By Edward Wormley for Dunbar, a Karelian burl wood executive desk is expected to bring $7,000-$9,000.

This sculpted metal dining table by Paul Evans is expected to fetch $10,000-$15,000. Clars Auction Gallery image

Important pieces from the 19th century will attract investment level collectors as well. A rare English Cary’s Regency New Terrestrial Globe, circa 1839 and a New Celestial Globe, circa 1820, carry an estimate of $10,000-$20,000. The terrestrial globe has the original compass at the base of its mahogany stand.

Fine jewelry is highlighted by a stunning 2.56 natural fancy brownish-pink diamond and 18K rose gold and platinum ring that carries an estimate of $55,000-$75,000.

This stunning 2.56 natural fancy brownish-pink diamond and 18K rose gold and platinum ring carries an estimate of $55,000-$75,000. Clars Auction Gallery image

In timepieces, the highlights include a Rolex GMT-Master “Fuchsia” stainless steel wristwatch, ref: 1675, circa 1967, estimated at $8,000-$12,000 and a rare Longines 14K yellow gold Monopusher Wrist-Chronograph, circa 1919, estimated at $6,000-$9,000.

Clars’ May 18-19 Fine Art, Decorative Art, Furniture, Jewelry and Asian Art Auction will present over 2,000 lots of exceptional property in all categories. The sales will begin promptly at 9:30 a.m. Pacific on Saturday and Sunday.

For more information, email: info@clars.com.