Magnificent Erté collection forms centerpiece of Nov. 19 Auctions at Showplace sale

Erte "Peace" Patinated Bronze Sculpture

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NEW YORK — Dissolving estates has long been a primary function of auction houses. The late collector’s beloved items are brought to market to become additions to other collections, and the cycle repeats endlessly. Auctions at Showplace has several New York-area estates represented in its Sunday, November 19 280-lot sale, with one collector’s focus on Erté forming a centerpiece to the event. The catalog is now available for bidding at LiveAuctioneers.

Born Roman Petrovich Tyrtov (later, Romain de Tirtoff) to a distinguished Russian family in St. Petersburg, Erté (1892-1990) moved at early age to Paris to make his reputation as an artist, adopting his public name from the French pronunciation of his initials (R – T). He would enjoy a wildly successful and varied career, designing for motion pictures, creating popular magazine covers, and perhaps most successfully, scupture and works of art, as this sale contains.

The Auctions at Showplace estate consignment includes 11 lots, drawn primarily from the final years of Erté’s life, which apparently saw high output from his firm. A gilt-bronze menorah from 1987 is titled Tree of Life, and is marked with standard Erté identification, along with the Conker foundry mark. It is estimated at $1,500-$2,500.

In the final years of his life, Erté designed Trois Femmes, a patinated bronze table bowl depicting three views of a classic Art Deco-period woman. Described as a proof, the work was cast in 1990, measures 9 by 11in and carries an estimate of $800-$1,200.

The sale also includes four Erté bronze sculptures, perhaps the most iconic grouping in the event. Designed and cast in 1984, Peace depicts a mythic female breaking a sword while a dove flies overhead. Like the other three sculptures, it is estimated at $1,500-$2,500.
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Erté ‘Tree of Life’ gilt-bronze menorah, estimated at $1,500-$2,500 at Auctions at Showplace.
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Erté ‘Trois Femmes’ bronze bowl, artist’s proof, estimated at $800-$1,200 at Auctions at Showplace.
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Erté ‘Peace’ patinated bronze sculpture, estimated at $1,500-$2,500 at Auctions at Showplace.
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Erté ‘Angel’ gilt-bronze candlesticks, estimated at $800-$1,200 at Auctions at Showplace.
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Erté ‘She Loves Me’ silvered bronze vase, estimated at $600-$800 at Auctions at Showplace.
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Sam Gilliam abstract work topped offerings at Neue’s Modern sale

Sam Gilliam, ‘Pantheon #5,’ $67,650
Sam Gilliam, ‘Pantheon #5,’ $67,650
Sam Gilliam, ‘Pantheon #5,’ $67,650

BEACHWOOD, Ohio – An abstract work by African American artist Sam Gilliam (b. 1933-) sold for $67,650 in an online-only May Modern auction held May 28 by Neue Auctions.

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Erte, master of Art Deco design’s many disciplines

Two Erte screenprints from the 1983 Love and Passion suite, ‘The Marriage Dance’ (pictured) and ‘Kiss of Fire,’ sold together for $9,000 plus the buyer’s premium in June 2017 at Heritage Auctions. Image courtesy of Heritage Auctions and LiveAuctioneers.
Two Erte screenprints from the 1983 Love and Passion suite, ‘The Marriage Dance’ (pictured) and ‘Kiss of Fire,’ sold together for $9,000 plus the buyer’s premium in June 2017 at Heritage Auctions. Image courtesy of Heritage Auctions and LiveAuctioneers.
Two Erte screenprints from the 1983 Love and Passion suite, ‘The Marriage Dance’ (pictured) and ‘Kiss of Fire,’ sold together for $9,000 plus the buyer’s premium in June 2017 at Heritage Auctions. Image courtesy of Heritage Auctions and LiveAuctioneers.

NEW YORK — The Russian-born French artist and designer Romain de Tirtoff (1892-1990) could have followed tradition and entered the navy, as generations of men in his family had done. Instead, he was drawn to the creative arts. As a youngster, he began designing clothes for his mother, aided by her dressmaker. As an adult, he took on the moniker of Erte so he could pursue his dreams without sullying his surname. The pseudonym comprises his initials with a French pronunciation (Air-Tay).

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John Moran tempts traditional collectors Sept. 28

Romain (Erte) De Tirtoff, ‘Hera and Zeus,’ 1989, est. $3,000-$5,000
Romain (Erte) De Tirtoff, ‘Hera and Zeus,’ 1989, est. $3,000-$5,000
Romain (Erte) De Tirtoff, ‘Hera and Zeus,’ 1989, est. $3,000-$5,000

MONROVIA, Calif. – John Moran Auctioneers’ Traditional Collector sale will take place on September 28 starting at noon Pacific time, and the 239 lots offered will not disappoint. A unique statement piece awaits every taste, ranging from Continental porcelain, Tiffany Favrile glass, to a sizeable collection of timepieces. There will also be a diverse selection of Caucasian and Persian textiles, Erte bronzes, and French furniture ready to enliven any interior. In addition, we are pleased to present pieces from the Blake Byrne collection and the estate of Paul Leon of Beverly Hills, California. Absentee and Internet live bidding will be available through LiveAuctioneers.

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