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 report:
Fernando Amorsolo portrait, $424,800, Michaan’s Auctions
An oil on board portrait painting by the renowned Filipino artist Fernando Cueto Amorsolo (1892-1972), titled Portrait of a Woman and depicting one of his daughters traditionally dressed and seated on a stoop, sold for $424,800 at an auction held June 13 by Michaan’s Auctions in Alameda, Calif. It was a new U.S. auction record for the artist. The painting’s provenance was a factor driving up the price; it was once featured at an exclusive U.S. exhibition of his work at the St. Francis Hotel in San Francisco. The price includes the buyer’s premium.
Marklin toy ocean liner, $271,400, Bertoia Auctions
An early 1900s Marklin toy ocean liner, Amerika, made in Germany, all original and in excellent condition, 38 inches long, sold for $271,400 at a Spring Toy Auction held May 20-21 by Bertoia Auctions in Vineland, N.J. Also, a Martin Roller Skater, made in France in the early 1900s of hand-painted tin and wearing a cloth costume, went for $16,520; a papier-mache and composition nodding-head Santa on a wheeled platform, with a cloth robe and wicker basket on the back, brought $16,520; and a CK prewar Japanese race car with original box hit $11,800. Prices include the buyer’s premium.
Military utility truck, $14,950, Rock Island Auction Co.
An AM General Corp. Model AM151A2 4×4 U.S. military utility truck sold for $14,950 at a Regional Firearms Auction held June 24-26 by Rock Island Auction Co. in Rock Island, Ill. Also, an engraved Winchester 1866 rifle, one of 12 of the iconic lever guns in the sale, cracked $10,925; a U.S. Cavalry Colt single-action Army revolver, originally shipped in 1890, hit the mark for $7,475; and a DMW 1917 dated Model 1914 artillery Luger, plus its accessories, finished at $5,750. Prices include a 15 percent buyer’s premium.
1889 specimen Chinese dollar, $150,000, Heritage Auctions
An elegantly preserved 1889 Chinese Kwangtung Empire specimen pattern dollar coin, graded SP64+ Brown PCGS, sold for $150,000 at a World & Ancient Coins and Currency Signature Auction held June 22-24 in Hong Kong, China by Dallas-based Heritage Auctions. Also, a 1979 People’s Republic “Year of the Child” proof Piefort set, containing a 35 Yuan silver coin and a 450 Yuan gold coin, realized $43,400; and a 1907 high relief Double Eagle Chinese coin, MC66 NGC, went for $59,750. Prices include a 19.5 percent buyer’s premium.
Peter Paul Rubens painting, $58.2 million, Christie’s
A painting by Peter Paul Rubens titled Lot and His Daughters, sold for $58.2 million during Classic Week, a series of sales held the week of July 4-8 by Christie’s in London. It was the most ever paid for an Old Master painting at a Christie’s auction. Also, Pieter Brueghel’s The Four Seasons: Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter changed hands for $8.38 million; a pair of panoramas of The Grand Canal of Venice by Botello brought $4.61 million; and Jacob van Ruisdael’s View of Harlem rose to $1.99 million. Prices include the buyer’s premium.
Pair of Rubens oils, $317,716, Sotheby’s
A pair of oil on canvas laid down on panel paintings from the Peter Paul Rubens workshop, titled Putti holding aloft draperies, sold for $317,716 at an Old Masters Day Sale held July 7 by Sotheby’s in London. Also, an oil on oak panel portrait of two sisters by the Circle of Robert Peake the Elder, probably depicting Anne of Denmark and her sister Elizabeth, changed hands for $239,908; and an oval oil on canvas by Jean-Baptiste Greuze, of a young girl holding an orange, went to a determined bidder for $177,662. Prices include the buyer’s premium.
1860 Lincoln parade flag, $31,625, Hake’s Americana
An 1860 parade flag declaring “For President Abraham Lincoln, For Vice President Hannibal Hamlin” sold for $31,625 at Auction #218, an online auction that ended July 14 by Hake’s Americana & Collectibles Auction. Also, a “Free Gene Debs” floating head portrait button, circa 1918-1920, rose to $11,511; a Cartoon Adventures complete Buck Rogers strip card subset of 24 cards, #425-448, in NM-NM+ condition, realized $13,775; and a cardboard “Desi’s Conga Drum” from TV’s I Love Lucy hit $6,957. Prices include a 15 percent buyer’s premium.
William McCloskey oil, $216,000, Clars Auction
A rare oil on canvas painting by American trompe l’oeil artist William McCloskey (1859-1941), titled Wrapped Lemons on a Tabletop (1888), sold for $216,000 at an auction held July 16-17 by Clars Auction Gallery in Oakland, Calif. Also, a bronze figural creation by Canadian sculptor Sorel Ertog (1933-2014), titled The Couple, topped out at $27,830; an art glass group by Dale Chihuly (American, b. 1941), brought $11,495; and a Chinese Ge-type censer blew past its $1,500 estimate to hammer for $8,400. Prices include a 19 percent buyer’s premium.
Lab model for Sputnik, $269,000, Bonhams
The full-scale lab model of the Sputnik capsule that started the Space Race sold for $269,000 at a Space History Sale held July 20 by Bonhams in New York City. Also, an Apollo 11 emblem, signed by astronauts Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins rocketed to $110,000; a group of 15 gold-colored plaster casts of NASA astronauts’ hands, cast in 1967, reached $155,000; and a Russian-made flown space-suit worn by American astronaut Don Pettit in 2003 hit $62,500. Prices include a 20 percent buyer’s premium.
George Nakashima cabinet, $30,500, Schwenke Auctioneers
A George Nakashima (American, 1905-1990) triple sliding door cabinet, circa 1973, with an American black walnut slab-form top, sold for $30,500 at an Americana & Fine Estates Auction held June 26 by Schwenke Auctioneers in Woodbury, Conn. Also, a New York Federal carved mahogany octagonal ladies’ worktable, made circa 1800-1810, attributed to Duncan Phyfe (New York) made $24,000; and an oil on canvas board painting by Emile Gruppe (American, 1896-1978), titled Seagulls (1975), went for $7,320. Prices include a 20 percent buyer’s premium.
Olympic gold medal, $55,831, RR Auction
A gold medal from the 2012 Summer Olympics in London sold for $55,831 in an online auction held July 14-21 by RR Auction, based in Boston. Also, an Innsbruck 1976 Winter Olympics torch hit $22,826; a London 1908 Summer Olympics gold medal changed hands for $19,232; a Tokyo 1964 Summer Olympics torch and original box holder brought $15,784; and an Atlanta 1996 Summer Olympics set of gold, silver and bronze medals made $11,026. Prices include the buyer’s premium.
Poster by Cassandre, $36,000, Poster Auction International
A masterful poster by Cassandre of Atlantique du Sud sold for $36,000 at an auction held May 15 by Poster Auction International in New York City. Also, Toulouse-Lautrec’s 1899 Jane Avril with Remarque was the sale’s top lot, bringing $120,000; an automotive design poster by D’Yien titled La Lorraine Tous Adoptent rose to $8,400; Paul Colin’s never-before-seen Hal Toulouse-Lautrec realized $26,400; and a pair of posters for Miller Brothers, 101 Ranch, Real Wild West & Great Far East each made $14,400. Prices include a 20 percent buyer’s premium.
Altar crucifix drawing, $63,750, Jackson’s International
A preparatory drawing for an altar crucifix, attributed to Etienne Delaune, sold to a Paris phone bidder for $63,750 at a estates auction held May 24-25 by Jackson’s International in Cedar Falls, Iowa. Also, a seashore rendering by Hendrik Willem Mesdog went to a bidder from the Netherlands for $100,000; a 10-inch by 12-inch Russian icon of St. Alexei that was gifted in 1914 to the czarevitch brought $50,000; and a 1929 $5 Indian gold half-eagle U.S. coin went for $21,250. Prices include the buyer’s premium.
Rolex Oyster Perpetual, $36,500, Jones & Horan
A Rolex Oyster Perpetual Milgauss chronometer wristwatch (ref. #1019) sold for $36,500 at a clock aution held May 1 by Jones & Horan in Manchester, N.H. Also, a Lange & Sohne Langematik platinum perpetual calendar watch with moon phases went for $34,500; a Hamilton 23J hunting grade 947 pocket watch hammered for $14,500; a Heuer, Abercrombie & Fitch Seafarer chronometer fetched $18,000; and a rare Ball Howard, Order of Railway Conductors pocket watch made $7,400. Prices are hammer; there was no buyer’s premium.
Ross Moffett painting, $11,400, Bakker Auction
A painting by Ross Moffett titled Hurricane of 1938 sold for $11,400 at a Fine Arts Auction held June 4 by Bakker Auction in Provincetown, Mass. Also, Mary Hackett’s St. Augustine, View from the Plaza Hotel gaveled for $5,400; John Dowd’s Crisp knocked down at $6,600; Anne Packard’s The Lone Boat fetched $4,200; Bruce McKain’s oil painting titled Crocuses finished at $1,560; a view of a Provincetown dock by LaForce Bailey brought $1,800; and John Hare’s watercolor titled Red Trawler made $660. Prices include a 20 percent buyer’s premium.
Houdin swinger clock, $15,525, R.O. Schmitt
A rare Houdin swinger clock sold for $15,525 at a Spring Clock & Watch Sale held May 13-15 by R.O. Schmitt Fine Arts in Manchester, N.H. Also, an E. Howard & Co. #8 regulator made $12,650; a tall clock with a case attributed to R.J. Horner and retailed by G.W. Russell of Philadelphia gaveled for $13,225; a clock by Walter Durfee with three-train chiming movement fetched $9,775; a coin-op Regina Hexaphone realized $4,830; and an astronomical regulator by Gabriel (London) nearly 6 feet tall, hit $6,038. Prices include the buyer’s premium.
Chippendale armchair, $120,000, Brunk Auctions
An important Chinese Chippendale mahogany armchair, made circa 1765-1775 in Charleston, S.C., sold for $120,000 at an auction held July 8-9 by Brunk Auctions in Asheville, N.C. Also, an architectural scene by North Carolina artist Claude Howell soared to $36,000; a pair of North Carolina (or Virginia) cellarets realized $60,000; a Cartier platinum, sapphire and aquamarine brooch clip, made circa 1940s, brought $64,800; and a painting by Alfred Hutty, titled Down Church Street, Charleston, hit $90,000. Prices include the buyer’s premium.
17th century Flemish tapestry, $1,438, Direct Auction
A 17th century Flemish tapestry in blue hues sold for $1,438 at an auction held June 14 by Direct Auction Galleries in Chicago, Ill. Also, a Persian Indo Bidjar rug, 11 feet 10 inches by 15 feet 4 inches, went for $1,150; a Dunbar buffet with a sliding door panel fetched $2,703; a pair of mobe pearl and diamond earrings with 1.40 total carat weight attained $1,093; a 1906-S Liberty head $20 gold coin and a 1924 Saint-Gaudens $20 gold coin each sold for $1,495; and a Madonna and Child painting with angels rose to $1,035. Prices include the buyer’s premium.
Robert Henri portrait, $310,000, Freeman’s
A 1908 portrait painting by the Ashcan School artist Robert Henri, titled Manolita Marequis, sold for $310,000 at an American Art & Pennsylvania Impressionists Auction held June 5 by Freeman’s Auction in Philadelphia. Also, N.C. Wyeth’s After the Day’s Work (Arriving Home) changed hands for $162,500; Edward Willis Redfield’s House in Point Pleasant commanded $112,500; Fern Isabel Coppedge’s Harbor Scene finished at $81,250; and George William Sotter’s The Neighbor’s House went for $50,000. Prices include the buyer’s premium.
By Ken Hall