ATLANTA – At the start of each month, ACN columnist Ken Hall gathers top auction highlights from around the United States and beyond. Here’s what made headlines since last month’s Gallery Report (prices include the buyer’s premium unless stated otherwise):
Cased pair of ‘Hummingbird’ guns, $135,000, Morphy Auctions
A pair of 1924 Westley Richards .410-gauge SXS Best Droplock miniature “Hummingbird” guns sold for $135,300 at a firearms sale held April 24-25 by Morphy Auctions in Denver, Pa. Also, a Hotchkiss revolving cannon no. 1198, used in the Spanish-American War, rang out at $132,000; a Springfield Trumpeteer .45-.55 caliber trapdoor carbine hit the mark at $98,400; and an early Moravian flintlock rifle, attributed to Andres Albrecht (Pennsylvania, 1718-1802), brought $78,000.
Grateful Dead concert poster, $56,400, Psychedelic Art Exchange
A rare 1966 Grateful Dead “Skeleton and Roses” concert poster, graded CGC 9.8, sold for a world record price of $56,400 in an auction held May 16 by Psychedelic Art Exchange of Baltimore, Md., and Park City, Utah. Also, a Jimi Hendrix Fillmore East AOR 2.90 concert poster, CGC 8.5, realized $7,800; a Grateful Dead Carousel Ballroom concert poster, CGC 9.8, brought $3,300; and a Bo Diddley Avalon Ballroom concert poster changed hands for $3,900.
Hunt Slonem painting, $15,000, Bruneau & Co.
A bright and colorful neo-expressionist painting by Hunt Slonem (American, b. 1951), titled Butterfly’s, sold for $15,000 at a Spring Fine Art & Antiques Auction held May 4 by Bruneau & Co. Auctioneers in Cranston, R.I. Also, a postmodern figurative female sculpture by Alabama artist Dan Corbin (b. 1947), coasted to $2,375; a pair of 14K yellow gold, ruby and diamond earrings by Orianne Collins realized $2,250; and a bronze chess set by Giuseppe Vasari made $1,875.
Le Pho oil painting, $100,000, Shannon’s
An oil on canvas painting by Le Pho (French/Vietnamese, 1907-2001), titled Le The (Tea Time), signed, sold for $100,000 at a semiannual Fine Art Auction held May 2 by Shannon’s Fine Art Auctioneers in Milford, Conn. Also, a mixed media work by Christo Coetze (South African, 1929-2001), titled Celestial Bicycle Number III (1961), fetched $75,000; and an oil on canvas by Alexander Harrison (American, 1853-1930), artist signed, titled Misty Morning, went for $68,750.
Antique Egyptology books, $200,000, Andrew Jones
A rare and complete second edition set of Egyptology books titled Description de l’Egypte, C.L.F. Panckoucke (1820-1830), including foldout maps, elephant folios and an atlas folio, sold for $200,000 at a Design for the Home & Garden Auction held May 18-19 by Andrew Jones Auctions in Los Angeles. Also, a linocut by Pablo Picasso titled Pique III (1959) gaveled for $45,000; and a silvered and gilt bronze sculpture by Joseph Csaky (1888-1971) went for $45,000.
Wire gold specimen, $11,250, Holabird Western Americana
A wire gold specimen from the Ibex Mine in Leadville, Colo., uncovered by a metal detector within the last 20 years, sold for $11,250 at a Holabird Western Americana Collections action held May 16-20 by in Reno, Nev. Also, a gold nugget necklace with 24 small nuggets (1.11 troy ounces) and one large nugget (1.91 troy ounces), set with a .5 carat round cut diamond brought $9,375; and a giant onion skin marble with mica, circa 1860s-1880s, realized $1,475.
Chinese Imperial robe, $21,600 Potter & Potter
A colorful, floor-length early 20th century Chinese Imperial robe, used as a costume garment in magic shows, sold for $21,600 at a Magic Auction held April 27 by Potter & Potter in Chicago. Also, a 1911 letterpress poster advertising a matinee performance of Challenged or Houdini Upside Down at the Southampton Hippodrome, inscribed and signed by Houdini, went for $18,000; and a first edition presentation copy of Harry Kellar’s book A Magician’s Tour rose to $16,800.
Webb Ching Lung vase, $28,080, Jeffrey S. Evans
A Thomas Webb Chin Lung / Applied Pads art glass vase sold for $28,080 at a Fine & Decorative Arts Auction held April 26-27 by Jeffrey S. Evans & Associates in Mount Crawford, Va. Also, an antique Caucasian scatter rug made $17,550; an eight-piece Kirk sterling tea and coffee service with matching tray served up $12,870; a French Louis XVI Niderviller porcelain annular clock made $12,870; and a Stickley Bros. Arts & Crafts Mission Oak china cabinet hit $8,775.
John Dawson mergansers, $230,100, Guyette & Deeter
A pair of mergansers by John Dawson sold for $230,100 at the 34th annual Spring Decoy & Sporting Art Auction held April 25-26 by Guyette & Deeter Inc. (based in St. Michaels, Md.) at the Pheasant Run Resort in St. Charles, Ill. Also, one of only two gulls known by Harry V. Shourds soared to $212,400; a “look down” swan by John Williams finished at $194,700; a rare feeding robin snipe by Obediah Verity brought $112,100; and a preening greater yellowlegs from Virginia made $55,460.
Bob Dylan lyrics, $69,515, RR Auction
Bob Dylan’s handwritten lyrics for the classic folk-rock song The Times They Are-a-Changin’ sold for $69,515 in an online auction that concluded May 8 at RR Auction in Boston. Also, Steve McQueen’s annotated script for The Thomas Crown Affair went for $34,370; an astronaut archive of photos, negatives and transparencies from the Golden Age of NASA brought $16,667; and an assortment of 19 original negatives of President John F. Kennedy rose to $9,492.
Diego Rivera lithograph, $45,000, Swann Galleries
A lithograph from 1932 by Diego Rivera, titled Zapata, sold for $45,000 at a sale of Old Master Through Modern Prints held May 2 by Swann Galleries in New York City. Also, an etching from 1788 by George Stubbs, titled Two Tygers (or, A Tiger and a Sleeping Leopard) gaveled for $45,000; an Albrecht Durer engraving before 1500 titled The Sea Monster finished at $37,500; and an aquatint and etching by Pablo Picasso titled Garcon et Dormeuse a la Chandelle (1934) hit $35,000.
Beatles ‘butcher’ album, $234,400, Julien’s Auctions
John Lennon’s personally owned and signed Yesterday and Today ‘butcher’ album prototype from 1966 sold for $234,400 at a Music Icons: The Beatles in Liverpool auction held May 9 by Julien’s Auctions in Liverpool, England. Also, an interior door to John Lennon and Ringo Starr’s Tittenhurst Park home went for $7,500; and a baseball signed by all four Beatles at Candlestick Park in San Francisco at their last live concert brought $75,000.
Jackie Robinson jersey, $576,000, Goldin Auctions
Jackie Robinson’s Brooklyn Dodgers home jersey from 1951 sold for $576,000 at a Spring Auction held online by Goldin Auctions, based in Runnemede, N.J. Also, Barry Bonds’ last career home run baseball no. 762 was a hit for $282,900; a rare 1910 Ty Cobb E98 baseball card brought $270,600; Lou Gehrig’s 1925 New York Yankees player contract, signed, fetched $271,710; and Ted Williams’ 1959 game-used complete home uniform, including pants, gaveled for $94,710.
Claude Monet painting, $110.7 million, Sotheby’s
An 1890 painting by the French painter Claude Monet, titled Meules, from the artist’s Haystacks series, sold for $110.7 million at a sale of Impressionist & Modern Art held May 14th by Sotheby’s in New York City. It was a new world auction record for a work by Monet. Also, seven paintings by Pablo Picasso included Femme au chien ($54.9 million) and Mousquetaire a la pipe ($20.8 million); while Gustave Caillebotte’s La Rue Halevy, vue du sixieme etage (1878) brought $13.9 million.
Shiy De-Jinn watercolor, $30,000, Clarke Auction
A bold watercolor painting of a temple and busy street scene by Shiy De-Jinn (Xi Dejin, China, 1923-1981), sold for $30,000 at an auction held May 5 by Clarke Auction Gallery in Larchmont, N.Y. Also, an oil on canvas depiction of a Western chase scene by William Herbert Dunton (1878-1936) realized $22,500; an oil on canvas titled Troutville and signed by “Boudin” fetched $13,750; and a porcelain plaque signed Wang Qi from the Republic Period, China, rose to $11,250.
Francis Picabia drawing, $81,250, John Moran
A superb composition drawing done in 1924 by Francis Picabia (French, 1879-1953) sold for $81,250 at a 20th Century Art & Design Auction held May 5 by John Moran Auctioneers in Monrovia, Calif. Also, a 1969 clay painting by Doyle Lane (Los Angeles, 1925-2002) realized $53,125; Reliquary (1995) by Richard Bunkall (American, 1953-1999) brought $37,500; and a vase produced in 1951 by Gertrude Natzler (1908-1971) and Otto Natzler (1908-2007) finished at $31,250.
Maxfield Parrish art, $143,750, Doyle
A festive painting by the American illustrator Maxfield Parrish (1870-1966), used as the cover for the 1922 Christmas issue of Life magazine, sold for $143,750 at an Impressionist & Modern Art Auction held May 14 by Doyle in New York City. Also, a painting of the Bay of Douarnenez by Henry Moret (French, 1856-1913), fetched $93,750; and a circa 1918 painting titled Feste by the Italian Futurist artist Giulio (Julius) Evola (1898-1974) changed hands for $87,500.
Sam Francis painting, $157,500, Hindman LLC
An untitled acrylic on paper painting from 1977 by Sam Francis (American, 1923-1994) sold for $157,500 at a Postwar and Contemporary Art auction held May 22 by Hindman, LLC in Chicago. Also, an oil on board by Gertrude Abercrombie (American, 1909-1977), titled Coming Home (1947) went for $93,750; an acrylic on canvas by Ray Yoshida (American, 1930-2009), titled Amputated Species (1974) reached $57,960; and an oil on canvas by Miyoko Ito brought $27,500.
Paul Sawyier oil on board, $55,350, Clars Auction
An oil on board painting by Kentucky artist Paul Sawyier (1865-1917), titled Promenade Prospect Park, Brooklyn, sold for $55,350 at a Fine Art, Photography and Prints auction held May 19 by Clars Auction Gallery in Oakland, Calif. Also, a newly discovered collection of over 100 photographic proofs by Ansel Adams went for more than $150,000; and an early lithograph by M.C. Escher (Dutch, 1898-1972), titled Atrani, Coast of Amalfi (1931) went for $55,350.
Ty Cobb 1915 baseball card, $504,000, Heritage Auctions
Ty Cobb’s 1915 Cracker Jack baseball card, one of just three to earn a PSA Mint 9 rating, sold for $504,000 at a Sports Card Catalog Auction held April 18-19 by Heritage Auctions in Dallas. Also, a Babe Ruth 1932 Caramel card in Mint 9 condition was a hit for $432,000; Honus Wagner’s 1902-11 W600 (street clothes) card made $264,000; Joe DiMaggio’s 1941 Play Ball no. 71 card, PSA Mint 9, brought $216,000; and a 1932 U.S. Caramel Bobby Jones no. 3 card rose to $78,000.
1857-S double eagle gold coin, $282,00, Legend Rare Coins
The famed “Supernova” 1857-S U.S. $20 double-eagle gold coin from the wreck of the S.S. Central America, graded MS67, brought $282,000 at the 32nd Regency Auction held May 15-16 by Legend Rare Coin Auctions at the PCGS Members Only Show in New Orleans. Also, a near mint state 1795 U.S. “silver plug” silver dollar, graded AU55, breezed to $129,250; and an 1893-CC U.S. silver dollar coin, graded MS65, changed hands for $152,750.