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 (all prices quoted include the buyer’s premium unless stated otherwise):
Russian gold snuffbox, $18,750, John Moran Auctioneers
A Russian enameled 18K yellow gold snuffbox sold for $18,750 at a Traditional Collector auction held Feb. 20 by John Moran Auctioneers in Monrovia, Calif. Also, a Buccellati .800 silver bird-form centerpiece basket also brought $18,750; a group of eight Chinese carved jade items realized $19,200; an oil on canvas by Antoine Blanchard (French, 1910-1988), titled Et le Café de la Paix, rose to $6,600; and a Louis XV-style armoire by Linke made $10,000.
Painting by Birger Sandzén, $160,000, Woody Auction
An original oil painting by the Swedish-born American painter Birger Sandzén (1871-1946), titled Cedars and Rocks, sold for $160,000 at an auction held Feb. 24 by Woody Auction at the firm’s new showroom facility in Douglass, Kan. Also, a figural table lamp with a signed Galle French cameo art glass shade sold for $17,000; and a Wooton American Renaissance Revival two-hinge, standard grade patent desk, walnut with burl walnut, circa 1874, brought $12,000. Prices quoted are hammer.
Roger Medearis landscape, $81,250, Doyle’s
An oil and egg tempera on Masonite landscape painting by the American Regionalist painter Roger Medearis, titled Loading Fodder (1947-48), sold for $81,250 at a Fine Paintings Auction held March 13 by Doyle’s in New York City. Also, a 1957 view of Poitiers by the Modernist painter Janice Biala brought $23,750 (a new world auction record of the artist); and a 1988 seaside view by the French artist Roger Muhl, titled Bretagne, Le Finistere, changed hands for $22,500.
‘Detective Comics #29,’ $53,675, Weiss Auctions
A copy of Detective Comics #29 (July 1939), bought by the consignor at a tag sale for $20, sold for $53,675 at an auction held Feb. 14-15 by Weiss Auctions in Lynbrook, N.Y. Also, a copy of DC Comics Showcase #4 (Oct. 1956), the origin and first appearance of The Flash, commanded $50,850; a nearly complete set of U.S. Caramel Presidents cards from 1932 brought $23,100; and a large photograph of Babe Ruth, 16½ inches by 20 inches, signed by Ruth, went for $18,080.
Massive Chinese scroll, $72,500, Bruneau & Co.
A gigantic 19th century Chinese archaic poem scroll painting – 24 feet wide by 29 inches tall – sold for $72,500 at an Antiques, Fine Art & Asian Arts Auction held March 3 by Bruneau & Co. Auctioneers in Cranston, R.I. Also, an Austro-Hungarian silver and ivory secessionist tea set with a tray, teapot and sugar bowl, realized $5,000; a Chinese 19th century rosewood mother of pearl inlaid marble bench brought $5,625; and a pair of palace-size French Sevres-style urns made $3,750.
Pair of fauteuils a la reine, $225,000, Nye & Company
A pair of French 18th century Louis XV giltwood fauteuils a la reine armchairs, circa 1755-1760, sold for $225,000 at an Estate Treasures Auction held March 14-15 by Nye & Company Auctioneers in Bloomfield, N.J. Also, two etchings of the same 17-year-old girl by Gerald Leslie Brockhurst (British, 1890-1978), brought $15,000 and $3,400; a ceramic head pitcher and plate by Pablo Picasso for Madura hit $4,400; and a Russian icon, Christ the Pantocrator, realized $5,300.
Copy of Detective Comics #27, $569,275, Hake’s Americana
A copy of Detective Comics #27 (May 1939), featuring the first appearance of Batman (then known as “The Bat-Man”), graded CGC 5.0, sold for $569,275 in an auction held March 13-15 by Hake’s Americana, based in York, Pa. Also, a copy of Action Comics #27 (Dec. 1938), just the second-ever cover appearance of Superman, graded CGC 4.0, finished at $124,025; and late 1970s Star Wars action figures for Boba Fett and Darth Vader made $86,380 and $64,900, respectively.
Glass stemware collection, $68,750, Leslie Hindman Auctioneers
A 20th century collection of glass stemware sold for $68,750 at auctions held Feb. 22 and 27 by Leslie Hindman Auctioneers in Chicago, Ill. Also, two paintings by Stephen Scott Young, titled Cat on the Island and Chatting, went for $35,000 and $30,000 respectively; a painting of John the Baptist from the Florentine School realized $27,500; a collection of Italian ceramic fruit and cabbage ware brought $17,500; and a pair of custom ebonized bookcases rose to $5,250.
Tiffany Studios Venetian lamp, $102,850, Clars Auction Gallery
A Tiffany Studios Venetian desk lamp, circa 1910, lit up the room for $102,850 at an auction held Feb. 24-25 by Clars Auction Gallery in Oakland, Calif. Also, a painting by the Modernist artist Walt Kuhn (American, 1877-1949), titled Red Haired Acrobat (1944), commanded $60,500; a circa 1615-1624 oil painting from the Circle of Domenico Feti (Italian, 1589-1624), titled St. Jerome, fetched $57,475; and a watercolor painting by Paul Sawyier (American, 1865-1917) went for $54,450.
Set of 3 Georges Dorival posters, $11,000, Swann Auction Galleries
A set of three posters from 1928 by Georges Dorival, titled Vers le Mont Blanc, sold for $11,000 at a Vintage Posters Auction held March 1 by Swann Auction Galleries in New York City. Also, Alphonse Mucha’s set of four decorative panels from 1896 titled The Seasons went for $45,000; and Paul Colin’s complete portfolio with 22 plates from 1927 titled Le Tumulte Noir fetched $21,250.
Fernando Botero painting, $150,750, James D. Julia
A painting by Fernando Botero, titled A Lawyer (1998), depicting a portly, pensive-looking man carrying a book, sold for $150,750 at a Fine Art, Asian & Antiques Auction held Feb. 8-9 by James D. Julia Inc., in Fairfield, Maine. Also, Morris Graves’ painting War Maddened Bird Following St. Elmo’s Fire knocked down for $81,675; a Confederate battle flag hammered for $70,180; a Charleston, S.C., map horn brought $78,650; and a Tiffany presentation snuff box realized $48,400.
Levasseur bibliotheque-basse, $224,200, Leland Little Auctions
An ormolu-mounted, marble-top inlaid bibliotheque-basse (French cupboard fitted with bookshelves), built circa 1820 by Pierre Levasseur or his son Pierre-Francois, sold for $224,200 during Spring Auction Week held by Leland Little Auctions in Hillsborough, N.C. Also, an acrylic on canvas painting by Maud Gatewood, titled Farm Pond, Snow Ending, made $37,760; a restored 1957 Chevrolet Bel Air Nomad sped off for $43,700; and a Georgian display case went for $17,100.
Asian two-drawer chest, $9,145, Copake Auction
An Asian inlaid and brass mounted two-door chest with a multi-drawer interior sold for $9,145 at an unreserved estate sale held Feb. 17 by Copake Auction in Copake, N.Y. Also, a pair of Wedgwood Jasperware candlesticks, each one 13½ inches tall, realized $3,540; a copper in verdigris patina leaping stag weather vane, 27 inches in height, fetched $3,304; and a Jules Cheret French poster on cardboard, 52 inches by 37 inches in the frame, changed hands for $2,478.
Elmer Crowell plover decoy, $156,000, Copley Fine Art Auctions
A turned-head plover decoy by the renowned carver A. Elmer Crowell (1862-1952), sold for $156,000 at a Winter Sale held Feb. 16 by Copley Fine Art Auctions in Charleston, S.C., during the Southeastern Wildlife Exposition weeklong event. Also, a running yellowlegs by Crowell fetched $72,000; a Canada goose by Capt. Charles C. Osgood (1820-1866) went for $72,000; and a standing black duck by Ira D. Hudson (1873-1949) gaveled for $96,000.
Chinese beds and tables, $141,600, Abell Auction
A pair of Chinese hardwood lohan beds with matching hardwood Kang table sold for $141,600 at an auction held Feb. 11 by Abell Auction Co. in Los Angeles, Calif. Also, an 18K gold and diamond engagement ring achieved $212,400; an oil on canvas painting from around 1904, signed by Walter Launt Palmer and titled Oaks in Winter, realized $41,300; and a Raymond Yard diamond, platinum and chrysoberyl brooch topped out at $67,850.