March 2017 Auctions - A fitting end to
As the building of our extension nears
completion and we prepare to move from our dark and dusty
attic-like offices into a bright and shiny new space, it was great
to have a month of excellent, and in some cases record-breaking,
The 4th March General
Antiques & Collectables was our highest total yet for a general
auction, with excellent prices for brown furniture and
paintings, as well as the expected current buoyancy in the
jewellery market. The top price was an unanticipated £1350
for three 19th century 'rock crystal' rings, this was
closely followed by £1150 for a modern Duresta sofa. It was a
massive auction of 1300 lots, but the fantastic total took the
sting out of the tail of working late!
After a quick turnaround in the saleroom, we held our
Twentieth Century Design and Fine Art & Antiques auctions the
Despite generally attracting a younger crowd
who are happier to bid online, it was good to see a full saleroom
for the Twentieth Century Design auction. The sale
started well with a triple estimate £900 for a 1960s Poole Pottery
vase (below) within the first 10 lots, and continued to impress.
Top prices included £3800 for a Georg Jensen cutlery suite, a
William de Morgan glazed tile for £1150, £2600 for a Christian Dior
design necklace, £1100 for a Beatles Yellow Submarine poster, and
£1000 for a pair of Robert 'Mouseman' Thompson oak tables. Looking
at the results, it is clear that with these sales in particular big
names and stylish design are key to attracting bidders and getting
the best prices.
The top price was £4500 for our front cover
lot (right); an oil on canvas by Ruskin Spear CBE RA (1911-1990).
Due to childhood polio, Spear used a wheelchair and much of his art
captured his immediate surroundings, such as pubs, shops, or as in
this example, sheltering from the rain at the seaside. Works
by Spear hang in the Tate, the Royal Academy of Arts, and the
National Portrait Gallery.
After a few hours' respite, we
returned on Saturday for our Fine Art & Antiques
auction. The sale started with an excellent Books
& Written Ephemera section which included a collection of
18th & 19th century letters, journals and
other documents relating to the Elliot family and the baronets of
Minto. A group of the Honourable George Elliot's (1822-1901)
journals sold for an unprecedented £3200.
Thankfully the momentum continued and there
were big prices across all sections to include; a pair of rare
18th century Mennecy porcelain jars and covers with
Chinese blanc-de-chine decoration for £2200; a pair of cultured
pearl and diamond earrings by Graff for £7500; £3500 for a 1970s
Omega chronograph (below) , £3100 for a pair of Victorian coaching
lamps, £2400 for a Thomas Smythe oil on canvas, and £3700 for a
mid-18th century walnut hall table.
Unsurprisingly, with the jewellery
market being so enthusiastic at the moment, the highest price of
the day was £11,000 for a pair of Art Deco white gold and diamond
ear pendants (right).
We look forward to our imminent move (in
particular the official launch party), and hope that this month's
auctions are a sign of increasing confidence and buoyancy in the
Art & Antiques market. Entries are now invited for
several future auctions - please contact our offices to arrange a
free valuation if you have anything you are looking to