Art News & Views

Auction Reports

What happened and what's forthcoming

Post Auctions


Jackie O's Pearls make over the odds at Bonhams
August 15

A triple strand simulated pearl necklace once owned by America's First Lady Jackie Kennedy Onassis has sold for £30,000, as one of the highlights of Bonhams new and innovative Pioneers of Popular Culture sale at the inaugural Vintage at Goodwood Festival. The auction realised a remarkable £346,710 in total, with 97% sold by value.

The sale, which celebrates all that is cool and iconic from the period 19401990, also featured two other pieces of jewellery owned by Jackie Kennedy Onassis, which she wore in the 1960s: a pair of simulated pearl and diamond ear clips, which fetched £15,600 and a simulated pearl necklace, which made £6,000.

Top prices were also paid for two Jaguar cars: a 1962 Jaguar E-type Series 1 was the top selling lot of the day selling for £60,000 and a 1961 Jaguar Mk2 made £25,200. A further highlight, after a fierce and lengthy bidding war, was a c. 1948 Curtis Wright Travel Trailer which beat it's pre-sale estimate £5,000 - £10,000 to sell for £13,800. A rare ape costume from "2001: A Space Odyssey", 1968 sold for an impressive £18,000.

The sale was the culmination of the first Vintage at Goodwood Festival, a three day event celebrating all that is best about British popular culture in music, fashion, art, design and film. It is the brainchild of fashion designers Wayne and Gerardine Hemmingway in conjunction with Lord March.

Scottish Sale makes £1,800,000
August 17– 20

This year's Bonhams Annual Scottish sale made over £1,800,000, the highest since it moved into its new premises on Queen's Street Edinburgh in 2008 and the second highest in the sale's 11 year history.

Among the highlights were George Leslie Hunter's 'Still Life' which was sold for £144,000 and Anne Redpath's 'Still Life with Michaelmas Daises' which made £134,000 against a pre sale estimate of £30,000  50,000. Christmas gifts from Queen Victoria to her favourite servant John Brown also sold for well over their estimates. A silver mounted claret jug made £14,300 (est. £4,000-6,000) and an engraved teapot went for £9,000 (est. £5,000  7,000).

The Managing Director of Bonhams Scotland, Miranda Grant, said, "This is a fantastic result. We are the only international auction house committed to selling Scottish art in Scotland and I think our faith in the robustness of the Scottish market is paying off. Since moving to Queen Street we have worked hard to keep the showrooms busy throughout the year by increasing the number of sales and inviting other organisations to use the space to stage exhibitions and other events.

Forthcoming Auctions


Picasso editions on sale
September 22

Bonhams will hold their first ever Picasso Editions Sale featuring ceramics, prints and jewellery by the most celebrated artist of the 20th century, in Knightsbridge on Wednesday 22nd September. Picasso items have previously been sold in other Bonhams sales, but this will be the first auction to be devoted purely to the work of the artist.

As well as ceramics, there is already a special early consignment of two of the nineteen silver plates designed by Picasso  including one titled 'Dormeur', his first experiment in silver. Picasso began designing silver plates in the mid 1950s, following a meeting with the silversmith François Hugo. Having given him the platter 'Dormeur' as a model, Picasso was said to have been so pleased with the result that he immediately asked Hugo to create another four like it.

From an edition of just twenty each, both 'Dormeur' and 'Joueur de flute et Cavalier' are excellent examples of the playful and iconic motifs to be found in Picasso's editions. They are estimated at £10,000-15,000 each.


Rossellini's private Husain collection comes under hammer
September 16

Sotheby's sale of South Asian Art this fall features an important selection of modern Indian paintings, accompanied by an exciting offering of contemporary Indian art and an eclectic group of Indian miniatures. In celebration of M.F. Husain's 95th birthday this year, a group of highly significant works by the artist highlighted by "Cinq Sens" (1958) originally from the private collection of noted Italian film director Roberto Rossellini, with whom Husain shared a deep friendship will be presented. The auction will also feature signature works by masters such as S.H. Raza, Tyeb Mehta, F.N. Souza, Jagdish Swaminathan, Akbar Padamsee and Jehangir Sabavala. Contemporary highlights include works by leading artists such as Ravinder Reddy, Subodh Gupta, Bharti Kher, Jitish Kallat and Thukral and Tagra. The centerpiece of the wide-ranging group of Indian miniatures from Rajasthani and Pahari schools is the Gita Govinda illustration from the famous Tehri Garhwal album of this series.

Art from liquidated firms
September 25

Sotheby's has been appointed by Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. (LBHI) and Alvarez & Marsal, LLC, the professional services firm overseeing LBHI's restructuring, to sell selected works from the distinguished Neuberger Berman and Lehman Brothers Corporate Art Collections. After Lehman's acquisition in 2003 of Neuberger Berman, Lehman expanded its commitment to collecting fine art and embraced the enlightened vision of Roy Neuberger, who made contemporary art an integral part of the workplace for decades.

A single-owner sale of more than 400 works, which is estimated to bring more than $10 million, has been scheduled in New York. Among the works to be auctioned are examples of early works by many of the leading artists of the late 20th century Damien Hirst, Gerhard Richter, Felix Gonzalez-Torres, Richard Prince, John Currin and Takashi Murakami, as well as examples by artists whose work has become more internationally acclaimed over the last decade - Neo Rauch, Julie Mehretu, Liu Ye and Do Ho Suh.



South Asian Splendor
September 14

This sale pays tribute to South Asia's diverse history and geography, as reflected in its artwork. From Indian folk paintings and highly original Tibetan lama portraits to rare Gandharan silver and Himalayan bronze sculptures. What makes this collection particularly important is its representation of the confluence of styles unique to the Gandharan region. Also fearturing in this auction are rare Indian Folk Art with a decent collection of Kalighat Pats.

South Asian Modern + Contemporary Art

September 15

On September 15th, Christie's South Asian Modern + Contemporary Art auction will include over 100 carefully selected works from leading 20th and 21st century South Asian artists and is expected to realize in excess of $10 million. This auction presents a whole spectrum of modern and contemporary and will feature celebrated Modern Masters Syed Haider Raza, Francis Newton Souza, Maqbool Fida Husain and Jagdish Swaminathan alongside the biggest names in contemporary art including Subodh Gupta, Rashid Rana, Atul Dodiya and TV Santhosh. Syed Haider Raza's magnificent La Terre, 1985, (estimate: $2,000,000-2,500,000) leads the sale. A masterpiece which belongs to a key period in the artist's career, it powerfully integrates vital elements of Raza's Indian heritage. Other magnificent highlight is Francis Newton Souza's Untitled (Large Head), 1962 (estimate: $1,200,000-1,800,000).

Maqbool Fida Husain's Untitled (Sitar Player) (estimate: $350,000-500,000). The auction also features a remarkable selection of Contemporary art like Subodh Gupta's Two Cows (estimate: $280,000-350,000).

Original paintings by America's celebrated naturalist
September 28

Twenty original paintings by the celebrated naturalist, artist, and educator Roger Tory Peterson (1908-1996) will be on sale at Christie's, New York. Peterson's best-selling field guides, beginning with his seminal 1934 book 'A Field Guide to the Birds of North America', have been a must-read for generations of ornithologists and bird-watchers alike. This selection of original paintings and works on paper, consigned directly from Peterson's art studio, represents the largest selection of works by the late artist ever to be offered to the public.

Peterson's field guides are credited with ushering in a revolution in bird-watching. At the time he undertook the production of his first book, bird-watching as an American hobby was still in its infancy. Though the quality of binoculars was improving, experts found it difficult to believe that hobbyists would ever learn to tell certain species apart by sight when in the wild. As noted by Smithsonian Institute Secretary Emeritus S. Dillon Ripley, Peterson “enabled even the most untutored person to identify birds; he showcased the unparalleled beauty of birds in his painting and photography, and by getting millions of people interested he has helped to guarantee the survival of birds.” Remarkably, Peterson did all the illustrations as well as text for his North American bird guides.

Lead highlights of the collection include Snowy Owls (estimate: $80,000- 120,000) a rare large-format painting that measures over 4 feet square. Tropical Birds (estimate: $15,000-25,000), portrays a menagerie of brilliantly-hued exotic birds of South America, Australia, South Asia and Africa arrayed along the branches of a tree. In both of these works, as well as his Flamingos in a Landscape (estimate: $15,000-25,000), Peterson strove to portray his subjects in their natural environment  a compositional approach Peterson said was influenced by Louis Agassiz Fuertes, the highly-regarded bird painter whose work Peterson studied in his youth.

Phillip's De Pury

The Latin American Sale
September 29

Surveying the beginning of the contemporary Latin American movement as well as the breadth of its influence, the Contemporary Art section features work by both established and emerging artists. Contemporary highlights include works by Mexican artists Dr. Lakra, Gabriel Kuri, and Abraham Cruzvillegas. Additional works by Fernando Botero, Claudio Bravo, Vik Muniz and Leon Ferrari will also be included in this section.

The Design section will include Pedro Friedeberg's “Hand and Foot” chair, 1960s, estimated at $12,000-18,000. Rejecting the International Style being predominantly taught in Mexico at the time, Friedeberg embraced the references to Tantric scriptures, Aztec codices, Catholicism, Hinduism and occult symbols in his designs rather than the right angles of his European contemporaries. He began making “Hand” chairs in 1961, using several combinations of hands, feet and fingers, and has extended this theme into tables, clocks and other useful and useless objects.

José Zanine Caldas' Bench, (1970) is another highlight estimated at $15,000 - 20,000.

The Editions selection features a range of works in a variety of graphic styles from the earthy materiality of the Mixograph Diamantes, 1977 by Rufino Tamayo estimated at $1,800-2,200; to the rhythmic and brightly colored screenprint by Beatriz Milhazes O Espelho (The Mirror), 2000 estimated at $9,000-12,000.

The Photographs section proudly features a wide array of works that reflect the stylistic breadth of Latin American photography. Highlights include Ernst Haas' Green Water, Mazatlan, Mexico, 1963, which appears in Haas' legendary book The Creation, based on biblical book of Genesis, and Guerrero Province, Mexico, 1963, each estimated at $5,000- 7,000. Works by Sebastiäo Salgado, Manuel Álvarez Bravo, Flor Garduño and Luis González Palma, including Lugar Sin Reposo, 1991, estimated at $7,000-9,000 round out the strong selection of classic and contemporary prints to be offered.


Autumn Auction
September 8-9

Saffronart is going to hold their annual Online Autumn Auction. The auction will be conducted for two days featuring a comprehensive collection of Indian contemporary artists like Husain, Raza, Jehangir Sabavala, Meera Mukherjee, Ram Kumar, Souza, Jogen Chowdhury and many more. This Auction is designed to present a huge range of Indian artists, which makes it not only an interesting view but also promises to set new records. The important works which will be featured in this auction are Husain's Farmer Family ($120,000 - $150,000), Raza's Terre Jaune ($150,000  $180,000), Sabavala's The Wayfarers II ($155,560 - $200,000), Souza's Untitled ($122,225 - $144,445).

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