NEW ORLEANS – Three oil on board figural works by prolific folk artist Clementine Hunter (1886-1988), a beautiful oil on canvas landscape rendering by New Orleans artist Richard Clague (1812-1873), and a Russian icon of the Virgin of Kazan are expected headliners in Crescent City Auction Gallery’s May 13-14 auction. Absentee and Internet bidding is available through LiveAuctioneers.
The two-day estates auction will start times at 9 a.m. Central on Saturday and 10 a.m. on Sunday.
Headlining the event will be property from the private collection of antiquarian Don Didier of New Orleans; the succession of Sidney J. Mazarat III, also of New Orleans; and numerous local and Southern estates.
Clementine Hunter was a self-taught folk artist and the granddaughter of slaves. She worked as a farm laborer and never learned to read or write, but in her 50s she began to paint and was so prolific (4,000-5,000 artworks produced), she earned the nickname “the black Grandma Moses.” Her 1980 Playing Cards (one of three paintings in the auction) comes with a photo of the artist and should fetch $3,000-$5,000.
Richard Clague was born in France and largely trained in Europe, but he settled in Louisiana and became part of the Bayou School there. He opened a studio in New Orleans in 1862 and was an influence on artists such as William Aiken Walker. His lush landscape work titled The Back of City Park, New Orleans, done circa 1870 and signed lower right, should bring $60,000-$90,000.
Of the 60 or so icons in the sale, one that stands out for its beauty and excellence in design is the Russian icon of the Virgin of Kazan, executed circa 1908-1917 and housed in a pendant .88 silver and enamel frame marked “K. Faberge.” The icon, with a scratched inventory number (68836), measures 4 1/4 inches tall by 3 inches in width. It is expected to change hands for $2,000-$3,000.
In all, just over 1,300 lots will come up for bid over the course of the two days – items that people have come to expect from Crescent City Auction Gallery’s estate sales: period furniture, original artwork by New Orleans and other regional artists, Mardi Gras memorabilia, Russian icons, sterling silver and decorative items.
There are four oil on canvas paintings in the auction by Robert Rucker (1932-2001), the New Orleans-born artist who opened his first gallery in the city’s French Quarter at age of 16. The highlight, titled Manresa Retreat House (1968), should rise to $5,000-$7,000; the other, laid on Masonite titled Steamboat on the Mississippi at New Orleans, should command $2,500-$4,500.
Oil paintings by other New Orleans artists will include Evening in the Louisiana Swamp (1909), by Alexander Drysdale (1870-1934), expected to bring $7,000-$10,000; and Patio Little Green Shutter Inn by Colette Pope Heldner (1902-1990), with an estimate of $2,000-$4,000. Both are artist signed.
Sterling silver will feature a 20th century five-piece tea and coffee service by Whiting, in the Lily pattern and weighing 96.7 troy ounces (est. $1,500-$2,500); a large 20th century .950 sterling silver tray weighing 89.3 troy ounces (est. $2,000-$3,000); and a 160-piece sterling flatware set by Gorham in the King Edward pattern and weighing 168.6 troy ounces (est. $3,000-$5,000).
Rounding out some the sale’s expected top lots is a platinum pendant with a pear-shaped 65.54-carat tanzanite atop a double-graduated concentric border of round diamonds (est. $35,000-$45,000); a 19th century Carrara marble sculpture from the School of Pietro Bazzanti (Italian, 1842-1881), titled Baby Moses in Basket, 16 inches in height (est. $8,000-$12,000); and an American Victorian carved rosewood marble-top étagère, circa 1860, 104 inches tall (est. $3,000-$5,000).
For details contact Crescent City Auction Gallery at 504-529-5057 or email@example.com.