Gallery Report: Rungius painting scales heights at Abell Auction

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 include the buyer’s premium.

Rungius oil painting, $372,000, Abell Auction

An oil on canvas painting by Carl Clemens Moritz Rungius (1869-1959), titled Alarmed (Big Horn Rocky Mountain Sheep), sold for $372,000 at a Fine Art & Antiques auction held June 14 by Abell Auction in Commerce, Calif. Also, an 18K gold, platinum and fancy natural gray-blue and pink diamond ring realized $300,000; Bob Kuhn’s (1920-2007) painting of a wading elephant titled Aquacade made $114,000; and Bob Kuhn’s Cool, Cool Sand, circa 1987, reached $102,000.

Chinese porcelain plaque, $96,250, Bruneau & Co.

A Chinese Republic Period porcelain and enamel famille rose plaque with calligraphy, painted by Wang Qi (1884-1937), sold for $96,250 in an online-only Antiques & Fine Art auction held July 23 by Bruneau & Co. Auctioneers in Cranston, R.I., Also, a small Impressionist etching by James Abbott McNeill Whistler (Mass./U.K./France, 1834-1903), of sailing vessels at sea, brought $7,500; and Peter Max’s (Germany, N.Y., b. 1937) iconic Liberty Head image, artist signed, hit $5,625.

Nicolai Fechin still life, $262,500, Andrew Jones

A still life oil on canvas painting by Russian artist Nicolai Fechin (1881-1955), titled Still life with flowers and fruit (circa 1925), sold for $262,500 at a Design for the Home & Garden auction held July 26 by Andrew Jones Auctions in Los Angeles. Also, a large, possibly ancient, Roman carved marble bust of a barbarian raised on an iron stand, 26¼ inches tall, hit $50,000; and a late 19th century Italian micro mosaic table executed by Cesare Roccheggiani, 24 inches in diameter, made $45,000.

Frontier porcelain sign, $5,375, Holabird Western Americana

A late 1950s Frontier Gasoline “Rarin’-to-Go” single-sided porcelain gas station sign, 6 feet in diameter, sold for $5,375 at a two-session, seven-day Summer 2020 Extravaganza Auction held June 25-28 and July 10-12 by Holabird Western Americana Collections in Reno, Nev. Also, an Antique Apparatus brand reproduction jukebox of a 1940s Wurlitzer Model 1015, geared to play 45 rpm records, brought $2,875; and a label-under-glass “Rye Whiskey” clear glass bottle made $1,250.

Seeburg Orchestrion, $83,025, Morphy Auctions

A J. P. Seeburg Style H Orchestrion with a medley of musical instruments to include a piano, flute and violin pipes, circa early 20th century, sold for $83,025 at a Coin-Op & Antique Advertising Auction held June 20-21 by Morphy Auctions in Denver, Pa. Also, a Mills “Twin Chicago” double upright slot machine accepting nickels and quarters, all original, hammered for $79,950; and a Victor Novelty Works musical 25-cent upright slot machine made in 1960 also went for $79,950.

Gold inlaid Colt 1911 gun, $51,600, Milestone Auctions

An unfired, gold-inlaid Colt 1911 .45 ACP-caliber gun, factory engraved by William H. Gough (active 1912-1940), sold for $51,600 at a Premier Antique & Modern Firearms Auction held June 27 by Milestone Auctions in Willoughby, Ohio. Also, a World War I U.S. Marine Corps Colt 1911 pistol, .45 ACP caliber, hit the mark for $22,200; a .44-.40-caliber Colt Lightning SRC, made in 1891, earned $19,800; and a Colt Official Police Revolver, .38 Special, made in 1930, hit $15,000.

U.S. Grant slot machine, $2,640, Potter & Potter

A Mills figural Ulysses S. Grant 5-cent slot machine, 72 inches tall, sold for $2,640 at an Eclectible Collectible Auction held June 20 by Potter & Potter Auctions in Chicago. Also, a jazz, blues, ragtime and African American sheet music collection changed hands for $3,600; an O.D. Jennings Club Chief 5-cent slot machine finished at $2,400; a Fender Precision bass guitar played a sweet tune for $2,280; and a group of 35 Fantastic Four comics hammered for $2,280.

1823/2 Capped Bust quarter, $102,000, Stacks Bowers

An 1823/2 Capped Bust U.S. quarter (PCGS Browning-1 in EF-45) sold for $102,000 in an online auction held in June by Stacks Bowers, based in Santa Ana, Calif. Also, an 1862 Indian cent graded (PCGS MS-68) realized $50,400; a proof 1869 two-cent piece (PCGS Proof 67 RD), fetched $43,200; an 1801 Capped Bust Right eagle gold coin (PCGS EF-45) was bid to $42,000; and an 1883 Liberty Head eagle gold coin graded NGC Proof-64 Ultra Cameo changed hands for $43,200.

Enrique Alferez sculpture, $112,800, Neal Auction

A bronze sculpture by Enrique Alferez (Louisiana, 1901-1999), titled Vietnam, sold for $112,800 at a Summer Estates Auction held June 12-14 by Neal Auction in New Orleans. Also, a six-panel artwork by Louisiana artist Hunt Slonem (b. 1951) titled Cockatoo Chinensis, realized $78,000; a 1975 oil on canvas by Ida Kohlmeyer (New Orleans, 1912-1997) titled Cluster Series, made $50,000; and a 1986 screenprint titled Teddy Roosevelt by Andy Warhol brought $33,500.

Amish crazy quilt, $3,125, John Moran

A double-sided Amish contained/pierced bar quilt rose to $3,125 at a Blanket Statements auction held June 30 by John Moran Auctioneers in Monrovia, Calif. Also, an Amish contained bars quilt knocked down for $2,812; an Amish double wedding ring/Chinese coins quilt gaveled for $1,375; an Amish tumbling blocks quilt finished at $1,250; an Amish Star of the East quilt found a new owner for $1,187; and a double-sided jewel-toned patchwork quilt changed hands for $1,250.

Gordon Parks photo, $25,625, Doyle

A large-format photograph by Gordon Parks (1912-2006), titled American Gothic (Ella Watson), taken in 1942, sold for $25,626 in a Photographs Auction held June 29 by Doyle in New York City. Also, Parks’ photo Emerging Man, Harlem (1952) also hit $25,625; Helmut Newton’s (1920-2004) iconic diptych, Sie Kommen, Paris, Dressed and Naked (1981) realized $33,750; and William A. Garnett’s (1916-2006) Train Crossing the Desert Near Kelso (1974) rose to $8,125.

David Thimgan painting, $10,000, Eldred’s

A marine painting by David Thimgan (Calif., 1955-2003), titled Long Day’s Journey, Balclutha, 1889, sold for $10,000 at an American Paintings Auction held May 21 by Eldred’s in East Dennis, Mass. Also, a portrait of the schooner Thomas E. Lannon in Gloucester Harbor by Donald Allen Mosher (1945-2014) knocked down for $8,750; two views of Gloucester by Jeff Weaver brought $6,600; and a still life of brass and ceramic vessels by Robert Douglas Hunter (1928-2014) made $6,875.

Majolica pineapple tea set, $12,100, Strawser Auction

A George Jones majolica pineapple tea set with 17-inch tray, tea kettle, cream, sugar and flour and cups and saucers sold for $12,100 at a four-day auction held May 20-23 by Strawser Auction Group in Wolcottville, Ind. Also, a watercolor silhouette portrait of a young man, circa 1830, realized $6,500; a 1969 Pablo Picasso “Face” pitcher for Madoura, 12 inches tall, changed hands for $5,300; and a majolica 35-inch-tall pedestal, circa 1875, attributed to T.C. Brown, rose to $9,350.

Kashmir sapphire ring, $237,500, Grogan & Co.

An Art Deco Kashmir sapphire ring featuring baguette and full-cut diamonds centering a cushion-cut, 4.81-carat sapphire sold for $237,500 at a Spring Auction held June 14 by Grogan & Company in Boston. Also, a 20-by-16-inch oil on canvas portrait of a beautiful young woman by John William Godward (English, 1861-1922), dated 1909, brought $109,375; and a portrait painting by Gloria Vanderbilt (American, 1924-2019), titled Gerta (1964), gaveled for $53,125.

LeBron James rookie card, $1.85 million, Goldin Auctions       

A 2003-04 UD “Exquisite Collection” #78 LeBron James signed rookie card (#14/23), graded Gem Mint 9.5/BGS 10, sold for a record $1.85 million in a Summer Premium Auction held July 18 by Goldin Auctions, based in Runnemede, N.J. Also, a 1984-85 Michael Jordan rookie season game-used and dual signed pair of Air Jordan I sneakers realized $369,000; and a 2009 Bowman Chrome Draft Prospects Mike Trout signed rookie card (#09/25) changed hands for $344,400.

Two Edmondson sculptures, $210,000, Case Antiques

A pair of sculptures by African American artist William Edmondson, titled Lady with a Book and Critter, sold for $144,000 and $66,000, respectively, at a Summer Antiques Auction held July 11-12 by Case Antiques Auction in Knoxville, Tenn. Also, a Southern Depression-era quilt by African American artist Ruth Clement Bond soared to $50,400; a 9-inch bronzed plaster sculpture by Augusta Savage, titled Gamin, achieved $28,800; and a marine painting by Charles Gregory hit $16,800.

Russian cipher machine, $22,000, RR Auction

An original Cold War-era Russian M-125 cipher machine, codenamed “Fialka,” sold for $22,000 in an online Science & Technology and Space Exploration Auction that closed July 16 by RR Auction, based in Boston. Also, Ed Gibson’s Apollo 17 flown Robbins Medal rose to $50,907; an Alan Turing handwritten and signed postcard fetched $35,000; an Apollo 15 lunar surface flown American flag achieved $35,251; and a Russian N-1 moon rocket model gaveled for $25,285.


‘2001: A Space Odyssey’ spacesuit, $370,000, Julien’s

A space suit from Stanley Kubrick’s film 2001: A Space Odyssey, with helmet, believed to have been worn by the movie’s star, Keir Dullea, as the mission pilot and scientist Dr. David Bowman, sold for $370,000 at a Hollywood: Legends & Explorers Auction held July 17-18 by Julien’s Auctions in Beverly Hills, Calif. Also, two pilot control sticks from NASA’s Apollo 11 flight to the moon were sold, one used by Neil Armstrong ($370,000) and the other Buzz Aldrin ($256,000).

Reverse glass painting, $84,000, Thomaston Place

A scarce British late 18th century reverse glass painting, after a work by Mather Brown (UK/Massachusetts, 1761-1831), with the original frame, sold for $84,000 in a virtual sale titled Summer Bounty I, held July 18-19 by Thomaston Place Auction Galleries in Thomaston, Maine. Also, two artworks by Pop Art icon Keith Haring (New York/Pennsylvania, 1958-1990) brought $42,000 and $27,000; and a full-length Roman marble statue of Asclepius, the god of medicine and health, changed hands for $23,400.

Josef Stoitzner oil painting, $21,600, Michaan’s Auctions

An oil painting by Josef Stoitzner (Austrian, 1884-1951), titled Heiligenblut auf Großglockner, Austria, sold for $21,600 at a gallery auction held July 25 by Michaan’s Auctions in Alameda, Calif. Stoitzner was a printmaker best known for his landscapes of the European countryside. His unique style of painting combined hyperbolic colors with detail work, creating dramatic areas of space within the composition. He also taught at the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna. The price includes the buyer’s premium.