Lockdales of Ipswich are probably best known as coin and militaria specialists but, having moved premises earlier this year, they have also offered some stand-out items in their fine art and antiques sales in 2012.
None more so than the three prize Grosvenor
School prints at their latest such sale on June 13-14.
Offered separately, the two linocuts by
Cyril Power (1872-1951) and one by his artistic partner Sybil
Andrews (1898-1992) had come in on a valuation day and were all
given 'there-to-be-sold' estimates of £2000-3000.
First up was Andrews'
Steeplechasing, which drew serious interest and took
£19,000. This was immediately topped after an even greater
competition emerged for Power's Tube Station,which was
finally knocked down at £54,000 to an internet bidder. The sum was
the highest for a Grosvenor School print ever sold at an auction
However, it was then sensationally eclipsed
by Power's even rarer Speed Trial, which sold at £96,000
to a private collector in the room and set an auction record for
any Grosvenor School print.
The previous high was the £94,000 seen for
Ethel Spowers' (1890-1947) The Gust of Wind sold at
Bonhams in April.
Power was fascinated by the movement and
vitality of the modern age and his Speed Trial linocut
from c.1932 was derived from Malcolm Campbell's Bluebird machine
which broke the land speed record by reaching 246mph in 1931.
While Power made as many as 16 experimental
proofs for this print (a couple of which have emerged over the last
decade), examples of the final edition of 60 have hardly ever
appeared at auction and so it appears that the signed copy,
numbered 18/60, at Lockdales represented an opportunity
for some of the biggest players in the market to fill a gap in
The buyer's premium was 15%