Archive for June, 2011

Phillips de Pury & Company – Editions

June 9th, 2011 by

May 20, 2011 New York – Phillips de Pury & Company is pleased to announce highlights from the June Modern and Contemporary Editions sale offering 251 lots. The viewing will take place at the downtown Chelsea location at 450 West 15th Street whilst the auction will be held at the uptown galleries at 450 Park Avenue.

Rago Arts and Auction Center – Modern Design Auction

June 8th, 2011 by


Beauty and craftsmanship are the watchwords in Morphy’s June 25 General Antiques & Pottery auction

June 8th, 2011 by

Circa-1795 Eli Terry tall case clock is first of its type to be offered for sale in a century


Circa-1795 Eli Terry tall case clock, one of only three whose movement and case were both crafted by Terry himself, est. $20,000-$30,000. Morphy Auctions image.

DENVER, Pa. – Just as there are comfort foods, there are also comfort objects – decorative antiques whose beauty and superior craftsmanship render them icons of stability in an era of plastic and impersonal mass production. Early American clocks, artist-decorated pottery and hand-filigreed antique jewelry are comfort objects, and all may be found in abundance at Morphy’s June 25 General Antiques auction.


The 500-lot auction includes more than 40 tall case and mantel clocks, with the star lot being a circa-1795 Eli Terry production. “Eli Terry (Connecticut, 1772-1852) was the father of American clock making,” said Morphy Auctions’ owner, Dan Morphy. “The tall-case clock in our sale is extraordinary because it is the third of only three such clocks for which Eli Terry made both the movement and the case. The other two clocks are in museums. The one consigned to our sale is the only one of its type to be offered for public sale in more than a century.” In 2010, one of the other two Eli Terry clocks was appraised for a museum on PBS Television’s Antiques Roadshow and was valued at $25,000, minimum.


The 93-inch-tall Eli Terry clock in Morphy’s upcoming sale features a handsome mahogany case with excellent original finial and possibly original finish. It has a wooden movement with calendar, sweep-second hands and original tin can weights, and is in overall excellent condition. Accompanied by extensive written and photographic documentation, this recently discovered clock is expected to make $25,000-$60,000 at auction.


The clock section also includes a rare, primitive-style Flemish tall case clock, est. $4,000-$6,000; and an American Chippendale cherrywood tall case clock, est. $4,000-$8,000. A collection of desirable skeleton clocks joins the larger timekeepers, with highlights being a 2-train example with cable-driven fusee, est. $1,200-$1,800; a miniature “great wheel,” est. $600-$1,200; and a French miniature “post” clock, est. $900-$1,500.


The overwhelming success of Morphy’s Feb. 26 Fine Jewelry sale led to the consignment of 100 luxe pieces from two separate collections. A chic 14K white gold ring with a 3-carat center diamond is estimated at $15,000-$25,000; while a filigreed 18K gold, diamond and sapphire ring weighs in with a $10,000-$15,000 estimate. Also featuring very fine filigree work, a ladies’ hand-made 18K cast-gold coin holder could realize $4,000-$6,000.


More than 200 lots of pottery will be auctioned, including a single-owner 20-piece collection of George Ohr designs consigned by friends of the Ohr family. A 3¾-inch bowl with crimped edges, a 3-inch dark metallic bowl and an unglazed bowl finished in bright colors are among the top lots. Each is signed and carries a presale estimate of $600-$1,200.


Rookwood iris-glaze vase, 1902, decorated by A.R. Valentien, full signature, 15 inches tall, est. $17,000-$22,000. Morphy Auctions image.

An exceptional 15-inch iris-glaze Rookwood vase with a depiction of geese in flight leads the Rookwood category. A masterwork hand painted in 1902 by Rookwood’s renowned art director A.R. Valentien, the vase bears Valentien’s full signature and could finish in the $17,000-$22,000 range. Other notable Rookwood lots include a 13½-inch Sara Sax avian and floral design executed in 1916, est. $6,000-$7,000; and an 11-inch scenic vellum vase by Ed Diers, $2,000-$2,500.


Several other premier potteries are represented in the sale. A Teco Arts & Crafts green matte glaze vase stands 12 inches tall and is estimated at $2,200-$2,500. An 11-inch Grueby bulbous vase could reach $1,500-$2,000; as could a 28-inch Roseville Bonita jardinière and pedestal. A coveted Newcomb College Pottery 11-inch bud vase in blue tones is stamped “AFS” for student artist Anna Frances Simpson, and is assigned a presale estimate of $6,000-$8,000.


A stunning 10½-inch art glass vase with silver overlay, possibly of Austrian origin, is entered in the sale with a $6,000-$9,000 estimate. Another glass highlight is the set of six signed Tiffany Studios gold-colored tumblers, $1,000-$1,500.


The primitive charm of stoneware is on display with a collection of more than 30 chicken feeders. Each of the blue or yellow stone feeders is attractively decorated, many adorned with cheerful images of hens or chicks.


Other decorative-art standouts include a 37-inch-tall Ming Dynasty polychrome-painted Buddha, $2,000-$4,000; and a magnificently carved ivory Asian urn, 24 inches tall with teak base. The urn is from a long-held single-owner collection that also includes two 11-inch ivory tusks carved with images of men and women at work. The tusks – likely Chinese artworks – are offered as a single lot with a presale estimate of $3,000-$5,000.


From a British collector comes an array of more than 30 biscuit and sweets tins, including several sought-after forms. A 1915 Robertson Bros. (Canada) bas-relief golf bag tin that once held chocolates is decorated with images of a man and woman golfer in vintage attire. It is estimated at $1,200-$1,500. Biscuit tin highlights include a 1913 Huntley & Palmers “King Wenceslas,” $1,000-$1,500; a Crawford’s “Fairy Tree” with Mabel Lucie Attwell design, $600-$900; and Huntley & Palmer’s “Plates” and “Shell” tins, each estimated at $600-$800.


All items in the June 25, 2011 auction are currently on display and available to preview at Morphy’s gallery. All forms of bidding will be available, including live at the gallery, phone, absentee, and live via the Internet through Morphy Live or For further information on any lot in the sale, call 717-335-3435 or email View the fully illustrated catalog and all other auction information online

Sotheby’s – Important 20th Century Design

June 8th, 2011 by

On June 15th Sotheby’s 20th Century Design department is delighted to offer an exciting collection of both American and European masterworks in the Important 20th Century Design auction. This auction includes the final chapter in an Important Private Midwestern collection, featuring a superb dining table by Emile Jacques Ruhlmann formerly in the collection of Andy Warhol. In addition to this extraordinary table, the collection contains a remarkable “Ananas et Grenades” Plafonnier by René Lalique and other significant Art Deco works designed by Ruhlmann, Chareau and Brandt. Alongside this private collection, Sotheby’s is presenting further French Art Deco masterworks, including an extraordinary set of eight “Cannelée” dining chairs executed by Ruhlmann in dramatic ébène de macassar displaying the exceptional talent of this ébèniste.

From the workshop of Tiffany Studios, on offer is an outstanding collection, featuring a magnificent “Hanging Head Dragonfly” floor lamp on an extremely rare favrile glass ball base and an important “Oriental Poppy” floor lamp. Other highlights in the auction include rare animalier works by Paul Jouve and Rembrandt Bugatti, American Modern lighting, a private collection of designs by Serge Mouille and a zoomorphic bar designed by François-Xavier Lalanne.

Gotham Cigar Museum Collection expected to light up Morphy’s June 18 Antique Advertising auction

June 8th, 2011 by

Topsy Smoking Tobacco 2-sheet poster, circa 1890s-1900, 63 x 47 inches, est. $20,000-$30,000. Morphy Auctions image.

DENVER, Pa. – A superb collection of early tobacciana will be smoking its way across the auction block on June 18 as Morphy Auctions presents a 900-lot Antique Advertising sale featuring the specialty collection of the Gotham Cigar Museum of Tampa, Florida.


“It’s amazing how many different types of cigar-related items are sought after by collectors. This premier collection traces to the early days of the cigar industry in America and includes everything from cigar boxes to hand-painted cases to beautiful die-cuts and figural advertising pieces,” said Dan Morphy, owner of Morphy Auctions.


In the 1990s, the owner of the featured collection became interested in the history of “clear” Havana cigars – those that were rolled in the United States in pre-embargo days (before 1963) using Cuban tobacco. “At one time, there were ten of thousands of factories, all over the country,” the collector said. “I began collecting remnants from days gone by and became interested in the actual history of clear Havana cigars, cigar boxes, cigar art and advertising.”


The selection of cigar boxes to be auctioned includes not only rare and beautifully lithographed boxes, but also cigar containers that were artistically “recycled.” Some were skillfully notched and carved into decorative, sometimes practical articles – what collectors call “tramp art.” Other cigar boxes served as painters’ canvases, like the unique pedestal-style tramp art box with a baseball-theme interior image. It may be the only extant example. Another prized piece is a cigar box whose lid was skillfully painted with an attractive early American wooded landscape scene.


Framed die-cut Class A Cigars advertising sign, circa 1890s, 16 x 13 inches framed, est. $200-$500. Morphy Auctions image.

Expressions of fine artistry are also seen in the collection’s mid-19th-century hand-painted and lacquered papier-mache cigar cases. Considered connoisseur’s pieces, these cases were expensive, high-end productions with pullout sleeves to house the cigars.


The collection also features many glass items, including advertising change trays and paperweights with a crossover gambling theme. “Each paperweight contains five dice and could be used as game,” the collector explained. “You’d shake it and whoever got the best ‘hand’ – a straight or three of a kind, four of a kind, etc. – was the winner.”


A variety of exquisite advertising die-cuts is included in the collection. One such piece, promoting Class A Cigars, depicts a girl dressed in an early “sailorette” uniform, waving goodbye with a hankie. Another eye-catcher is the large 4ft-tall by 3ft-wide hand-painted and signed 1874 advertisement for Commodore Ritz Cigars that features the image of a dapper gentleman with prominent moustache and hair parted in the middle.


A select grouping of countertop chalkware cigar store figures featuring busts of nymphs and Indians also will be offered. Three large, highly detailed – and very heavy – bas-relief tobacco-advertising pieces were cast in plaster and framed for wall display. These huge advertising pieces dating to around 1860-1870 measure 4ft by 5ft and were fabricated for the oldest Cuban cigarette maker, La Honradez. “They were offered to me by a collector in Argentina. It’s possible that they are the only surviving examples of their type,” said the collector. The collection also includes approximately a dozen pre-embargo Cuban cigar humidors, many of them carved from rare native Cuban woods.


The auction also includes a number of non-cigar-related tobacciana lots. One of the highlights is a Topsy Tobacco 2-sheet poster with a stunning image of the “Topsy Girl” – known to collectors from the famous Topsy blinking-eye figural clock. The poster is expected to make $20,000-$30,000.


Life-size Indian chief cigar store display model, zinc, late 19th century, marked W. Demuth & Company, 501 Broadway, New York; 91 inches tall, one of very few known. Est. $20,000-$30,000. Morphy Auctions image.

Two cigar store Indians will be offered. One of them is made of zinc, marked W. DeMuth & Company, and depicts a brave with a hunting bow on his back. The other is a carved-wood maiden attributed to Yeager. Each is estimated at $20,000-$30,000.


An exceptional array of hunting and fishing pieces marks the launch of Morphy’s new Sporting Antiques department headed by Jeff Sloyer. Among the key lots are a 1907 Bristol Steel Rods calendar with the image of a man and woman fishing from a canoe (est. $2,000-$4,000), a 1920 South Bend Lures tri-fold window display in its original box ($2,000-$4,000), and an especially nice 1925 Winchester Arms sign featuring hunting dogs ($2,500-$5,000).


More than 300 lots of soda pop items will be auctioned, with a strong emphasis on Coca-Cola antiques. An early 20th-century trolley car sign could make $6,000-$10,000; while a 1903 tip tray in near-mint condition is estimated at $3,000-$5,000. The extensive selection of early “pretty ladies” calendars includes examples from 1904 ($2,500-$5,000), 1907 ($4,000-$7,000) and 1913 ($6,000-$9,000). The most elusive entry is the 1919 calendar estimated at $8,000-$12,000.


Antique occupational shaving mugs have been a hot ticket in Morphy’s past few sales. “It seems we’ve drawn a large number of additional buyers into the shaving mug market,” Morphy observed. “The new crossover interest is coming from toy, automobilia and folk art collectors.” In the June 18 sale, 100 lots of the coveted mugs will be presented. Dan Morphy’s top-lot picks for the category include a boxer in the ring ($2,500-$3,000), touring auto with chauffeur ($1,500-$2,000) and gardener or florist ($1,500-$2,000).


All forms of bidding will be available for Morphy’s June 18, 2011 Antique Advertising auction, including live at the gallery, phone, absentee, and live via the Internet through Morphy Live or The auction will commence at 9 a.m. Eastern time, one hour earlier than the usual start time for Morphy sales.


For additional information on any lot in the sale, call 717-335-3435 or email View the fully illustrated catalog and all other auction information online

Rago-Arts and Auction Center

June 3rd, 2011 by

20th Century Design Catalogues Now Online

Sotheby’s- Old Master Paintings

June 3rd, 2011 by

The June 9th sale of Old Master Paintings in New York includes a variety of offerings spanning a wide range of collecting interests. Among the highlights is a beautiful canvas by Giovanni Paolo Panini from the Estate of Jan Mitchell, owner of the legendary New York restaurant, Lüchow’s. Depicting a capriccio of Roman monuments, including the Colosseum and Arch of Constantine, it is a fine example of the kind of painting avidly collected by the 18th century Grand Tourists to commemorate their trips to Rome. The sale also features a number of beautiful floral still lifes, notably a group from the collection of Steve and Linda Horn which includes outstanding examples by Jan van Os and Jacobus Linthorst. British paintings are also well represented, with fine examples of portraiture by Reynolds, Romney, Lawrence, Raeburn, and Cotes, among others, and a mythological scene of the Birth of Venus by Benjamin West. Other highlights include a large and impressive canvas by Hubert Robert from his Roman period depicting the Pyramid of Cestius and an early still of fruit by Luis Meléndez, the greatest Spanish still life painter of the 18th century.


Southeby’s- Contemporary Art Auctions, Including The Duerckheim Collection

June 3rd, 2011 by

June 29, 2011

The Contemporary Art Evening Auction on 29 June in London will present a selection of works of major significance, including 34 lots from The Duerckheim Collection, the most important private collection of post-war German Art ever to be offered for public sale. The Duerckheim Collection includes early and formative masterpieces by Georg Baselitz, Gerhard Richter, Sigmar Polke, Blinky Palermo and several others, which document their exhilarating advancements of the 1960s. The appearance of paintings of this quality, art historical significance and freshness to market is exceptionally rare and represents a very special auction moment.

June 30th, 2011

The Contemporary Art Day sale held in London on 30 June includes classical pieces from the notable movements of the Post War period, along with paintings and sculptures by the leading names of the contemporary art world. The morning session is highlighted by twenty five works from The Duerckheim Collection, a remarkable grouping of masterpieces from the 1960s and early 1970s by pioneering German artists, including Gerhard Richter, Sigmar Polke and Georg Baselitz. The ensemble is a resounding testament to the vision and expertise of its collector, Graf Duerckheim, and stands today as an in depth archive of German art from the post war period. The day sale selection comprises important works by Jörg Immendorf, Imi Knoebel, Markus Lüpertz and A.R. Penck among others. Other post war highlights include a beautiful example from Fontana’s famous ‘tagli’ series, Concetto Spaziale, Attese a rare ‘Hero’ work on paper from 1967 by Georg Baselitz, as well as works by the master of Pop, Andy Warhol, minimalist artist Dan Flavin, and a vibrant work on paper by Jean-Michel Basquiat.

Sotheby’s-Impressionist & Modern Art Sales

June 2nd, 2011 by

June 22nd, 2011

The impressionist & Modern Art Evening sale this June will feature a rare and important cityscape by Egon Schiele, Häuser mit bunter Wäsche (Vorstadt II), painted in 1914. One of the artist’s most significant oils ever to come to the market, this composition is inspired by the Medieval town of Krumau, and is being sold by the Leopold Museum in Vienna, which is home to one of the world’s most significant collections of works by Schiele and Klimt. Among other highlights are the bronze Trois hommes qui marchent II, an iconic sculpture by Alberto Giacometti cast during the artist’s lifetime, and Picasso’s impressive oil Couple, le baiser from 1969, a bold and colourful painting characteristic of Picasso’s late style. The auction will also present a strong group of Surrealist works, including an oil and two exceptional gouaches by Magritte, as well as works by artists such as Toulouse-Lautrec, Signac, Rodin, Miró, Lempicka and Van Dongen.

June 23rd. 2011

Highlights from this season’s Impressionist and Modern Art Day Sale include Alberto Giacometti’s Figurine of 1947, a remarkable work from a pivotal year in the artist’s extraordinary development. This is complemented by other masterpieces of modernism: a fantastically bold Miró, two Leger oils, and a magnificent Chagall, whose celebrated dreamscape is here located in the charming hill town of Saint-Paul de Vence. Two very different artists, Dalí and Pechstein, are united by their equally glamorous and imposing portraits of women. Sotheby’s is honoured to be including property from two important private European collections: the first a fascinating group of Post-Cubist works, featuring key works by Lhote, Marcoussis, Valmier and Herbin; the second made up of eleven wonderfully varied and experimental works on paper by Joan Miró, which are a testament to the artist’s appetite for innovation, and the owner’s subsequent appreciation for it. The strong German and Austrian section includes a vibrant 1906 landscape by Jawlensky, a monumental Pechstein bathers scene, and a beautifully nuanced seascape by Klee. Other highlights include a rare Cézanne landscape, an Arp relief, and two sublime depictions of Venice, by de Chirico and Marquet.

Dan Ripley’s Antiques Helper – Sirois Family Racing Memorabilia

June 2nd, 2011 by

Antique Helper Auctions is pleased to announce a charity auction to benefit Riley Hospital for Children on Friday, June 3. The Sirois Family Racing Memorabilia Auction to benefit Riley Hospital for Children will showcase racing memorabilia from the personal collections of Jigger Sirois and his father, Frenchy Sirois.