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With its glossy 600-lot catalogue, the sale of jewellery, watches and modern art, organised by the Paris-based auction house Massol (20.33% buyer’s premium) at the congress
centre opposite Deauville casino on August 16/17, certainly attempted to qualify for that Augier ephithet. Held over two evening sessions, the sale was topped by a 1970 Picasso Indian ink drawing, right, of a Femme dans un Fauteuil, 12 x 9in (31 x 23cm), at €70,000 (£48,300) – well short of the anticipated €100,000-120,000.

Marquet was again one of the main
attractions, but his foggy view of Canteleu – Brouillard (c.1927), 13 x 16in (33 x 41cm), sold short of low-estimate for €60,000 (£41,000). Works by Renoir, Vlaminck, Gustave Loiseau and Raoul Dufy, all expected to clear €100,000, went unsold.

The sale also included 89 works – mostly watercolours, some oils – by Pierre Gaillardot, an artist who worked locally and died last year aged 92. These found ready takers in the €200-800 (£140-550) range. Deauville Auction had offered 28 Gaillardot watercolours back on July 13, again selling over 80 per cent of them, and achieving €1500 (£1030) for his view of boats moored in Le Port de Deauville, 22in x 2ft 4in (57 x 70cm).