Weathervanes have always been at the pinnacle of aspirations for collectors of American folk art.
The special place of weathervanes in
American collecting culture was established beyond all doubt in
2006 when an example formed as a lifesize Indian chief smashed
all records by selling at $5.2m (£2.9m).
But it is still possible to enter the market
at a very much lower leveland auctioneers
Skinner had some choice examples a recent sale at their
Marlborough, Massachusetts rooms.
They included this 20in (51cm) high
copper butterfly vane from the private collection of dealers Cheryl
and Paul Scott which reached $35,000 (£23,650). The unusual late
19th century vane, attributed to J. W. Fiske and originally found
on a north shore Massachusetts estate, was one of several in the
separately-catalogued Scott collection offered on August 11-12.
The top bid was for a 2ft (61cm) high zinc
and copper 'Index' walking horse weathervane, made c.1860 by the
Massachusets firm of J. Howard & Co, at $37,500 (£25,340).
The Scott collection also produced four more
antique horse vanes at prices between $2450 and $8000, and an eagle
vane at $1300 (£880).
Skinner's mixed-owner session included a
range of animal vanes in the low thousands and a mid-20th century
zinc, copper and iron aeroplane took $1200 (£810).
The buyer's premium was 18.5/10%.