Gallery Report: February 2013

A Masudaya Machine battery-operated toy robot sold for $45,000 at a Premier Auction held Dec. 6-8 by Morphy Auctions in Denver, Pa. Also, a one-of-a-kind show display, custom-made by Reinhold Studio for Oilzum to use at the 1933-34 Chicago World’s Fair, climbed to $38,000; a boxed Asakusa painted-tin and plastic Thunder Robot marched off for $10,200; a Mail Pouch Tobacco tin cutout flange display coasted to $9,600; and a J. & E. Stevens Pelican mechanical bank (rabbit variation) made $7,800. Prices include a 20 percent buyer’s premium.


Jade mounted knife, $114,000, Cowan’s


A Qianlong jade mounted knife, finely carved with dragon figures, sold for $114,000 at an Asian Art Auction held Jan. 18 by Cowan’s Auctions in Cincinnati. Also, a very fine 18th century Chinese white jade double gourd snuff bottle realized $54,000; a well polished Chinese white jade melon form snuff bottle, carved with figures of butterflies and foliage, fetched $36,000; a Chinese jadeite lidded vase changed hands for $28,800; and an 18th century Chinese ivory pomegranate carving hit $12,000. Prices include a 15 percent buyer’s premium.


Marklin toy biplane, $20,700, White’s Auctions


A rare, circa-1910 German Marklin tin and celluloid toy bipane with two passengers soared to $20,700 at an auction held Dec. 9 by White’s Auctions in Middleboro, Mass. It was a record-setting price for the toy. Also, a German Lehman tin windup Halloh motorcycle toy in excellent condition, with original box and instructions in German and English, went for $5,635; a German Hessmobile tin litho toy, circa 1915, breezed to $2,243; and a Marklin zeppelin with instructions changed hands for $5,175. Prices include a 15 percent buyer’s premium.


Album of 720 mug shots, $36,000, Swann Auction


A San Francisco police department album containing 720 mug shots sold for $36,000 at a Fine Photographs & Photobooks Auction held Dec. 11 by Swann Auction Galleries in New York. Also, a group of 11 circus panoramas by Edward J. Kelty, of Ringling Brothers Barnum & Bailey and others (silver prints, 1933-1938) made $14,400; a pair of Japanese albums with 74 hand-colored albumen prints, circa 1880, went for $5,040; and The Strand, a posthumous printing of Wall Street, N.Y.,1915, hit $31,200. Prices include a 20 percent buyer’s premium.


German model 104 doll, $212,800, Theriault’s


A rare German model 104 doll from the K*R art character reform series of 1910 sold for $212,800 at a Marquis Doll Auction held Jan. 12 in Newport Beach, Calif., by Theriault’s, based in Annapolis, Md. Also, an Emile Jumeau character model 203 doll of a wide-beamed smiling child, from the firm’s art character series, soared to $75,000; and the mischievous urchins Kammer and Rinehardt, marketed as Max and Moritz, representing the Katzenjammer comic strip kids of the early 20th century, made $50,000. Prices include a 12 percent buyer’s premium.


Imperial ceremonial saber, $1.42 million, Altair Auctions


An imperial jade-hilted ceremonial saber and scabbard from the Qianlong period sold for $1.42 million at a sale of Asian Art & Antiques held Dec. 15-16 by Altair Auctions in Norwood, Mass. Also, a Qing period gilt-bronze jardinière topped out at $354,000; a silk-embroidered, brass-studded ceremonial armor brought $40,120; a gilt-bronze seated Buddha from the Ming period made $53,100; a large Chinese imperial blue and white basin hit $31,860; and a Chinese carved lapis lazuli figure rose to $41,300. Prices include an 18 percent buyer’s premium.


Colonial powder horn, $8,740, E.S. Eldridge


A Fort Ticonderoga powder horn from American Colonist and soldier Timothy Woodin sold for $8,740 at an auction held Dec. 8 by E.S. Eldridge in Willimantic, Conn. The horn had been in the Woodin family for years, following the soldier’s return home. It remained in the family for generations prior to its consignment. Also, photos and wings from F.W. Caldwell, from his time spent as a World War I fighter pilot, soared to $978; a tea set from the same family realized $2,070; and a flatware set fetched $2,990. All prices include a buyer’s premium.


Collection of Chinese stamps, $126,000, Gordon S. Converse


A collection of Chinese People’s Republic of China stamps, spanning multiple generations, sold for $126,000 in an Internet-only Chinese and Asian Sale held Dec. 29 by Gordon S. Converse & Co., based in Wayne, Pa. Also, one lot of four Chinese currency bills fetched $20,400; a fine Chinese silk and metallic rug realized $13,200; a large Chinese Qing Dynasty Imperial green jade central seal with 18 smaller seals in a zitan box brought $14,400; and a pair of finely carved Chinese Zitan chairs went for $10,200. Prices include a 20 percent buyer’s premium.


1927 ‘Metropolis’ three-sheet poster, $1.2 million, US Bankruptcy Court


A three-sheet German movie poster advertising Fritz Lang’s 1927 sci-fi classic Metropolis sold for $1.2 million at an auction held Dec. 13 at the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Los Angeles. The sale was for the bankruptcy of collector Kenneth Schacter of Valencia, Calif., who bought the poster seven years ago for $690,000. The poster was part of a group lot that also included a 1933 poster for the film King Kong, a one-sheet teaser for The Invisible Man and the original artwork for Jailhouse Rock.


Miniature tall-case clock, $31,625, Stephenson’s


A Pennsylvania walnut miniature tall-case clock, made in the early 19th century by Hy (Henry) Bower, F. (Feste) Swome, sold for $31,625 at a New Year’s Auction held Jan. 1 by Stephenson’s Auctioneers in Southampton, Pa. Also, an ivory and shibayama table screen encrusted with mother of pearl and tinted ivory, signed on one panel (Japan, 19th century), rose to $7,475; and a pair of Chinese carved ivory figural covered urns decorated with figural village scenes and foo dogs (circa 1890-1920) made $6,490. Prices include a 15 percent buyer’s premium.


Diamond necklace, $54,000, John Moran


A necklace of rose-cut diamonds, made circa 1830, sold for $54,000 at an inaugural HQ Sale held Dec. 6 by John Moran Auctioneers in Pasadena, Calif. Also, an Edwardian platinum necklace  with twin European-cut diamonds fetched $33,000; a Chinese medal denoting the Order of the Double Dragon went to an online bidder for $9,600; a dragon-form 18K gold and jadeite piece by the Meiji-era firm Arthur & Bond (Yokahama) realized $5,700; and a Victorian turquoise and diamond bangle made $2,700. Prices include a 20 percent buyer’s premium.


Cloisonné enameled bell, $141,600; Michaan’s


A rare and highly ornamented cloisonné-enameled bell, one of only three of its kind known to exist, sold for $141,600 at a Fine Asian Works of Art Auction held Dec. 11 by Michaan’s Auctions in Alameda, Calif. Also, a tripod covered censer of the Qianlong mark and period rose to $61,950; a 17th century rhinoceros horn magnolia-form libation cup brought $59,000; a 15th century Lin Liang hanging scroll titled Eagles on Pine Tree coasted to $38,350; and a circular cloisonné enameled box and cover hit $38,350. Prices include a 17 percent buyer’s premium.


Historic 1792 half disme, $1.41 million, Heritage Auctions


An historic 1792 half disme – the Colonial spelling for “dime” – sold for $1.41 million at the U.S. Coin Florida United Numismatists (FUN) Signature Auction held Jan. 6-14 in Orlando, Fla., by Heritage Auctions, based in Dallas. The coin was graded Specimen-67 PCGS. Also, an 1803 $1 coin, graded PR66 PCGS and one of only four known, hammered for $851,875; an 1838-O reeded edge half-dollar, graded PR64BM PCGS, rose to $734,375; and a 1792 half disme, graded MS64 PCGS, hit $528,750. Prices include a 17.5 percent buyer’s premium.


Two Emile Gruppe artworks, $21,000, Woodbury Auction


A pair of Emile Gruppe oil on canvas artworks – titled Gloucester Winter and Afternoon Light Vermont (shown) – sold for $10,800 and $10,200, respectively, at an annual Holiday Fine Estates Auction held Dec. 9 by Woodbury Auctions in Woodbury, Conn. Also, an Italian pietra dura plaque of butterflies hammered for $2,829; a small Louis Vuitton steamer trunk with an original label hit $7,380; and three bronze sculptures by Walter Matia of an eagle, a red fox and a turkey made $9,300, $4,500 and $1,501. Prices include a 20 percent buyer’s premium.


Russian St. Anne medal, $59,000, Kaminski Auctions


A Russian St. Anne medal, enamel, with the red guilloche cross and openwork panels set with 106 rose cut diamonds, sold for $59,000 at a New Year’s Auction and décor auction premiere held Dec. 29-30 by Kaminski Auctions in Beverly, Mass. Also, a Sino Tabriz palace-size Oriental rug, silk, 24 feet 8 inches by 16 feet 5 inches, realized $14,000; a platinum and diamond ring with a 3-carat round center stone brought $14,000; and an 18K yellow gold and diamond watch, 32 diamonds, garnered $12,000. Prices include a 17 percent buyer’s premium.


Pennsylvania schrank, $65,175, Pook & Pook


An architectural cherry schrank, a two-door clothes cabinet, from Lancaster County, Pa., with bold cornice overhanging a case with tombstone carved panel doors, sold for $65,175 at an auction held Jan. 12 by Pook & Pook Inc., in Downingtown, Pa. Also, a landscape painting by Fern Isabel Coppedge, titled Autumn From Music Circus Hill, Lambertville, climbed to $65,175; an oil on cardboard view of Paris by Wilhelm Thony brought $65,175; and a Pennsylvania Chippendale walnut desk and bookcase made $45,030. Prices include an 18.5 percent buyer’s premium.