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Michaan’s June 9 sale has posh jewelry, Asian rarities, fine art

Art Deco diamond, platinum bracelet by Raymond Yard. Estimate: $20,000-$30,000. Michaan’s Auctions image

ALAMEDA, Calif. – The San Francisco Bay Area was already home to many great fortunes and fine estates back when Los Angeles had nothing going for it but a railroad station and an army of oil derricks. Today the Bay Area is a premier American design center at the intersection of innovation, wealth and taste. Michaan’s Auctions, the full-service auction house in the heart of the region, offers an array of choice lots in the Gallery Auction on June 9. Absentee and Internet live bidding is available through LiveAuctioneers.

Jewelry has long held sway as a leading attraction at Michaan’s. In June, specialist Elise Coronado presents jewels and timepieces to tempt bidders both local and global. Gold and silver, jade and pearls, antique and modern, and the ultimate: fine diamonds set in platinum. Jewelry just doesn’t get more brilliant than the Art Deco bracelet from elite East Coast jeweler Raymond Yard (above). Set with over 20 carats of superb diamonds, the 7-inch platinum bracelet is estimated at $20,000-$30,000.

French gilt-bronze ‘Amorin’ clock. Estimate: $4,000-$5,000. Michaan’s Auctions image

Another highlight is the modernist pendant necklace crafted of gemstones, platinum and 18K gold (est. $2,000-$3,000). Centering a large cushion-cut tanzanite, the piece also features a lovely opal cabochon, a trio of diamonds, and tourmalines of three distinct hues. Summer sunshine gleams from the yellow sapphire ring centering an oval stone of more than 20 carats accented by diamonds ($2,000-$3,000).

A large translucent jadeite pendant with GIA report ($7,000-$9,000) is one of several fine old carved jade objects offered in June by Asian art specialist Harry Huang. The pendant depicts an elegant lady in a traditional landscape. A brush pot of prized huanghuali wood is another highlight, offered at $2,000-$3,000. Chinese porcelains include the underglaze blue Meiping vase ($2,000-$3,000) and several pieces of Cizhou pottery.

The Cizhou type ceramic pillow ($800-$1,000) is a classic of its genre. Cradling and cooling the head of a nobleman or scholar, it would also have decorated his quarters and kept evil spirits at bay while he slept.

Cizhou-type ware ‘Tea Dust’ glazed pillow with tiger-form support. Estimate: $800-$1,000. Michaan’s Auctions image

Paintings from artists of international renown are presented at Michaan’s every month by specialist Susan Paffrath, attracting bidders from near and far. “Our May Gallery Auction saw many sales to European buyers,” notes Paffrath, “and our June artworks are bound to interest a wide audience as well.”

The upcoming auction includes two works by Abstract Expressionist Armando Morales (1927-2011), the important Nicaraguan artist who rose to prominence in the mid-20th century. Morales’ mixed media “Composition 1966” is estimated at $12,000-$16,000.

The selection of modern art also includes works by Chagall and Diebenkorn, and a Henry Moore lithograph. California artists featured in this sale could not be more different: revered plein air landscape painter William Keith (1838-1911) and “Big Eyes” painter Margaret Keane (b. 1927), whose fascinating life journey included many years in San Francisco. Her surreal pictures of children and pets with enormous eyes made Margaret Keane an influential Pop Art figure with a cult following that continues to grow. Keane’s 1965 oil “On the Beach” ($6,000-$9,000) dates to the period when her paintings were sold as the work of her husband, Walter Keane. Margaret Keane later challenged Walter Keane to a courtroom “paint-off” that established her as the true creator. Tim Burton, a longtime collector, made a biographical film about her in 2014.

Margaret Keane (American b. 1927), ‘On the Beach,’ oil on canvas. Estimate: $4,000-$6,000. Michaan’s Auctions image

The June 9 Gallery Auction, which also includes fine furniture and decorations, will be held at Michaan’s in Alameda.

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