W. PALM BEACH, Fla. – The leaves may be showing off their rich autumn hues in New England and other parts of the country, but in sunny South Florida, fall means palm trees, mild temperatures and the much-anticipated season opener at Palm Beach Modern Auctions (PBMA). The company’s fully curated Sept. 24 Modern Art, Design & Decorative Arts sale is brimming with exceptional paintings and furniture by the most desired 20th-century and contemporary artists, with special additions that include a connoisseur’s collection of fountain pens and a luxurious 1988 Rolls-Royce Silver Spirit Mulsanne. Absentee and Internet live bidding will be available through LiveAuctioneers.com.
The 461-lot auction opens with an extensive offering of modern furniture, highlighted by a 20-lot collection of coveted Jacques Adnet (French, 1901-1984) designs. PBMA co-owner and auctioneer Rico Baca explained: “Beginning in the late 1940s, Jacques Adnet worked with the renowned French firm Hermes, designing ultra-chic leather-covered furniture. He developed a signature style that continued through the 1950s. Today there are many, many collectors of Jacques Adnet furniture, and on those rare occasions that we’re asked to sell a collection of it, it’s very exciting for us because we know how our customers will respond.”
Adnet highlights include Lot 75, a pair of saddle-stitched leather, brass and hide lounge chairs; and Lot 85, a double-door cabinet (shown below) of ash, enameled steel and leather. Each of the lots is cataloged with a $10,000-$15,000 estimate.
Also noteworthy in the furniture section are Lot 101, a rare Philip and Kelvin Laverne (American) dining table, est. $20,000-$30,000; and Lot 144, a Fernand Dresse (Belgian, 1916-1993) coffee table with turquoise wave motif, $9,000-$12,000, shown below.
The demand for pedigreed, fresh-to-the-market modern and contemporary art will be well satisfied on Sept. 24, starting with two large original paintings by Jules Olitski (American, 1922-2007). Lot 127 (shown below), an artist-signed 72 by 60-inch acrylic on canvas created in 1982, is titled LOST TRIBE. With provenance from the Andre Emmerich Gallery in New York, it is expected to make $30,000-$40,000. Immediately following at Lot 128 is Olitski’s 55 by 110-inch painting from 1978 titled VENUSIAN EXTASE-4. With New York gallery labels on verso, the moody work is entered with a $40,000-$50,000 estimate.
Lot 164, a vibrant and surreal 1989 Larry Rivers (American, 1923-2002) oil-on-canvas featuring people with tropical birds and foliage, is mounted to sculpted foamcore to render a three-dimensional effect. The signed 82 by 72-inch work is estimated at $15,000-$20,000.
Four rare, signed Joan Miro (Spanish, 1893-1983) lithographs from a single collection will be offered. Lot 131 (shown at top of page), an aquatint and carborundum etching on wove paper titled Les Deux Amix, was published by Galerie Maeght in 1969. The bold and colorful 27.75 by 40-inch work will open at $15,000 and has a pre-sale estimate of $20,000-$25,000.
A ceramic plaque by Fernand Leger (French, 1881-1955) is from a circa-1950s edition of 250 and titled Les Acrobates. Sized 19.5 by 17.5 inches, it is initialed and stamped, and is estimated at $15,000-$20,000. Its line of provenance includes the artist, and Wolfgang Roth & Partners Fine Art, Miami.
An arresting 46-inch-tall Somnambient sculpture by Harry Bertoia (American, 1915-1978) is comprised of 36 beryllium copper and brass rods and displays an attractive patina. Lot 125 will convey to the new owner with a certificate of authenticity from Val Bertoia, Bertoia Studio. Estimate: $40,000-$60,000.
Another sculptural gem is Lot 124, an Albert Paley (American, b. 1944-) steel and slate pedestal created in 1988. The thought-provoking design stands 55.5 inches tall and has a Paley Studios Ltd imprint. The auction estimate is $20,000-$30,000.
It wouldn’t be a Palm Beach Modern event with a representation of Andy Warhol (American, 1928-1987). Among the Warhols in the Sept. 24 auction is Lot 161, a signed silkscreen titled Electric Chair, 216 from an edition of 250. Printed in Switzerland in 1972 and with a line of provenance that includes The Andy Warhol Foundation, the 35 by 47-inch work is expected to make $8,000-$12,000.
A collection of fine European and American writing instruments includes beautiful pens manufactured by Mont Blanc and Cross, as well as a Michael Perchin Faberge fountain pen. Cataloged as Lot 244, it carries a Faberge imprint and additionally is marked 18K and 925. Number 688 from an edition of 1,000, it retains its original box and accessories, as well as a Faberge Certificate of Authenticity. Estimate: $1,000-$1,500.
Adding the crowning touch to the sale is that most essential of Palm Beach motor vehicles, a Rolls-Royce. Lot 156 is a 1988 black Rolls Silver Spirit Mulsanne with red leather interior, air, automatic windows, Pandora-ready radio/CD player, and an odometer reading of 85,044 miles. The four-door beauty has been kept and driven primarily in Florida and comes to auction with a pre-sale estimate of $20,000-$30,000.
Palm Beach Modern’s Sept. 24, 2016 auction will begin at 12 noon Eastern Time. Bid absentee or live via the Internet through LiveAuctioneers.com. For additional information, call 561-586-5500 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.