NEW YORK – 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. All prices include the buyer’s premium.
The original cape worn by actor Christopher Reeve in the movie Superman (Warner Bros., 1978) sold for $193,750 at an Icons & Idols: Hollywood Auction held December 16 by Julien’s Auctions in Los Angeles. Also, two paintings by Frank Sinatra, one from 1965 and one from 1953, both signed, brought $75,000 and $21,250; Dan Aykroyd’s “Raymond Stantz” jumpsuit from Ghostbusters II realized $32,000; and an Alcatraz model used in Escape from Alcatraz made $25,600.
A one-of-a-kind Patek Philippe men’s wristwatch sold for $31 million at an Only Watch auction held November 9 by Christie’s in Geneva, Switzerland. It was the most ever paid for a watch at auction, shattering the previous record set in 2017 for a Rolex Daytona once owned by Paul Newman that realized $17.7 million. The steel Patek Philippe Grandmaster Chime Ref. 6300A-010 watch boasted front and back dials. Part of the sale price will go toward research on muscular dystrophy.
A pair of Sturtevant Hamblin (American, 1817-1884) folk art portraits of a brother and sister from a Bath, Maine family (one shown) sold for $64,350 at an Americana Auction held Nov. 15-16 by Jeffrey S. Evans & Associates in Mt. Crawford, Va. Also, a Stirewalt family paint-decorated box finished at $38,025; a Plains Native American beaded pipe bag went for $23,400; a Myers silver sauceboat made $16,380; and a railroad presentation cut-glass compote hit $9,360.
A Caille Bros. 5-cent ‘Black Cat’ musical upright cabinet slot machine, very rare and in fine working order, sold for $96,000 at a Coin-Op & Advertising Auction held Nov. 20-21 by Morphy Auctions in Denver, Pa. Also, an oversize (47 inches tall) Coca-Cola leaded-glass display bottle, made in the 1920s by Metropolitan Art Glass Co. (N.Y.) gaveled for $84,000; and a Multiphone Operating Company 5-cent multiple-cylinder phonograph, made in 1905, brought $66,000.
A 1907 leather Canadian motorcycle license plate sold for $10,620 at an Advertising & Historic Objects Auction held December 7 by Miller & Miller Auctions, Ltd., in New Hamburg, Ontario, Canada. Also, a Canadian Orange Crush tin litho sign from the 1930s made $5,959; a 1937 Canada Cycle & Motor Company “Flyte” bicycle sped off for $3,600; and an 1898 French advertising poster for Cleveland Cycles, with artwork by Jean Pal de Paleologue, rose to $3,835.
A copy of Reform School Girl from Avon Realistic Comics (1951), graded CGC 3.0, sold for $3,438 at a Winter Comic & Toy Auction held December 14 by Bruneau & Co. Auctioneers in Cranston, R.I. Also, a copy of Marvel Comics’ Incredible Hulk #181 (Nov. 1974), featuring the first full appearance of Wolverine, graded CGC 6.5, rose to $3,375; and a Star Wars 1977 Kenner back A Luke Skywalker figure, graded CAS 80, made $1,875.
A 4.51 troy ounce Alaska Gold Rush gold nugget from the Atlin mining district, located just east of Skagway in Yukon, Alaska, sold for $10,845 at a Holiday Treasures Auction held Dec. 5-9 by Holabird Western Americana Collections in Reno, Nev. Also, an oil-on-board painting of panhandlers on mules signed by Texas artist William Forrest Martin made $8,540; and a 1909 poster for “Pawnee Bill’s Great Far East combined with Buffalo Bill’s Wild West” show hit $4,375.
An untitled gouache and watercolor on Canson paper by Alexander Calder (American, 1898-1976) sold for $81,250 at a 20th Century Art & Design Auction held November 19 by John Moran Auctioneers in Monrovia, Calif. Also, a 1979 oil on canvas by Julian Stanczak (Polish/American, 1928-2017), titled Accompanying Warm, changed hands for $50,000; and a French Jean Puiforcat sterling silver flatware service in the Cannes pattern found a new owner for $81,125.
A Chippendale mahogany reverse serpentine bureau, made in America circa 1760-1780, sold for $291,000 at a series of week-long auctions held in November by Skinner, Inc. in Boston. Also, a fragment from an 18th-century statue of King George III finished at $207,000; a “Canal Hotel” tavern sign (Port Jervis, N.Y., circa 1826) fetched $171,000; a pair of Dublin Castle pistols and a horseman’s saber brought $116,500; and Daniel Barns’s Siege of Boston powder horn made $24,600.
A rare circus poster for Raymond & Company’s Menagerie for 1847 sold for $11,400 at a Circus, Sideshow & Oddities Auction held November 16 by Potter & Potter Auctions in Chicago. Also, Buffalo Bill’s first Wild West performance program made $9,600; an astrology sideshow banner for The Graysons’ How the Stars Bring Success brought $6,000; and a group of around 350 photographs of sideshow freaks and human oddities went out the door for $4,320.
A sculpture by Peter Voulkos titled Snake River sold for $250,000 at a Masterworks of American Craft auction, held November 22 by Rago/Wright in Lambertville, N.J. Also, an untitled kinetic form sculpture by Harry Bertoia finished at $150,000; a Paul Evans sculpture front cabinet achieved $125,000; a Dale Chihuly blown glass artwork titled Persian Installation rose to $87,500; and a Tiffany Studios lobster and crab box went to a determined bidder, also for $87,500.
A gem mint 1993 Derek Jeter rookie card from the Upper Deck SP Foil set sold for $168,000 in an auction held December 8 by Robert Edward Auction in Los Angeles. It was a new auction record for a Derek Jeter rookie card. Also, a game-worn Hank Aaron jersey made $138,000; a Ted Williams archive consisting of a jersey, glove and bat reached $179,400; and a 1939 first-day cover signed by 11 inaugural Hall of Fame members, postmarked Cooperstown, N.Y., rose to $105,500.
A gigantic Colt Model 1883 Gatling Gun, dated 1887 and complete with U.S. Army field carriage and limber, sold for $222,000 at an Arms & Armor Auction held December 4 by Cowan’s Auctions in Cincinnati, Ohio. Also, a Confederate first model Cofer revolver, serial No. 7, rang out at $90,000; an Ulrich engraved factory gold-plated grade 15 Marlin Model 1893 exhibition rifle hit the mark for $51,000; and a B. Collin and A. Langre Bowie knife hammered for $13,200.
A pintail drake decoy by the Ward Brothers sold for $72,000 at the 33rd annual Fall Decoy & Sporting Art Auction held Nov. 6-7 by Guyette & Deeter, Inc. (based in St. Michaels, Md.) in Easton, Md. Also, a black bellied plover by Obediah Verity went for $35,400; a pair of red breasted mergansers by Elmer Crowell brought $34,800; an oil painting by Crowell of a hunting stand fetched $30,000; and Canvasbacks Swinging the Channel, Chesapeake Bay, by George Browne, hit $22,200.
A 28-star ‘Great Star’ American flag from around 1846 commemorating Texas statehood sold for $68,750 at a sale titled A Grand Old Flag: The Stars and Stripes Collection of Dr. Peter J. Keim held November 24 by Freeman’s in Philadelphia. Also, a 41-star American flag commemorating Montana statehood, circa 1889, finished at $41,250; a late 18th/early 19th century 13-star ‘Great Star’ pattern American flag hit $33,750; and a 13-star American flag, circa 1861, earned $28,750.
A 1936 Olympic gold medal awarded to Jesse Owens, originally gifted to his Olympic teammate and lifelong friend John Terpak, Sr., sold for $615,000 in an online auction that closed December 7 by Goldin Auctions, based in Runnemede, N.J. Also, a 2003-2004 Upper Deck “Exquisite Collection” #78 LeBron James signed rookie card soared to $198,030; and Charles H. Lightoller’s RMS Titanic 2nd Officer personal pocket watch from the doomed 1912 voyage went for $173,430.
An oil on board painting of a snowy winter day in Manhattan by Guy Carleton Wiggins (American, 1883-1962), titled Avenue at the Library, sold for $58,425 at an auction held Dec. 14-15 by Clars Auction Gallery in Oakland, Calif. Also, a painting by Shakir Ali (Pakistan, 1916-1975), titled Still Life with a Yellow Mug (1958), gaveled for $61,500; and an oil painting of the canals of Venice by Franz Richard Unterberger (Austrian, 1838-1902), titled San Barnaba, Venezia, hit $58,425.
A larger-than-life pair of vintage and gilded torchiere lamps sold for $3,520 at an auction held October 23 by The Benefit Shop Foundation, Inc. in Mount Kisco, N.Y. The French Art Nouveau-style lamps came out of a home in New Canaan, Conn., where they grandly flanked the front doors in a palatial entryway. Standing 115 inches tall, the two-tiered lamps had 12 arms each, with S- and C-scroll acanthus leaf designs, carved marble bases and a Corinthian style center column.
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