NEW YORK – Decorative arts objects represent the pinnacle of luxury. There’s something inherently decadent about buying something that serves no purpose except to sit there in a corner or on a shelf and look pretty. That’s it, that’s it’s job – to look pretty, and to make you happy.
On September 1, starting at 7 pm Eastern time, Jasper52 will hold an 141-lot sale of Exquisite Decorative Arts. Absentee and Internet live bidding will be available through LiveAuctioneers. What follows are three highlights from the auction.
Even in the realm of decorative arts, Faberge eggs represent their own strange, alluring little niche. The original target audience was extremely privileged and particular, and yet, once knowledge of the eggs spread, the world embraced them in all their absurd opulence. On offer in the September 1 sale is a 21st-century replica Faberge egg, estimated at $250-$300. It stands 6in tall, is fashioned from nephrite, crystals, enamel, and an alloy of non-ferrous metals, and boasts miniature portraits of all five of the children of Tsar Nicholas II and Alexandra Fedorovna, as well as a miniature replica of the Alexander Palace at Tsarskoe Selo.
Another strong piece is a 19th-century Carrara marble sculpture of the bearded, curly-haired head of the Roman Emperor Caracalla, his face assuming a fierce and somewhat dismissive expression. The statue is mounted on a red marble base and carries an estimate of $3,000-$3,500.
Rounding out the top lots is a circa 1918 two-piece bronze sculpture, Hunter With Bow Chasing Two Deer, by the Belgian artist Michel Decoux. The dynamic pair of pieces, both mounted on black marble plinths, depicts a pair of leaping deer and a hunter reaching back to his quiver for an arrow. The piece is marked “France” as well as “Ovington New York,” a likely reference to the Ovington brothers of Brooklyn, New York, who sold Decoux’s work in the United States. The bronze is estimated at $9,000-$11,000.
View top auction results on LiveAuctioneers here: https://www.liveauctioneers.com/pages/recent-auction-sales/