Mark Oliver of Bonhams was pleased to see this cold-painted bronze and ivory figure by Demetre Chiparus (1886-1947) take £145,000 on June 17. It was consigned from a Canadian collection.
Semiramis, a 2ft 2in (67cm) dancer dressed as the Queen of Babylon, belongs to the group of large Ballet Russes-inspired creations made during the late 1920s, which are regarded as the cream of the Romanian sculptor's oeuvre. However Deco figures such as this have been under a cloud since the US brought in ivory legislation.
Indeed, this very piece had failed to sell in Bonhams' sale last November, priced at £100,000-150,000.
Chief among the bidders at Bonhams' London sale were Russians and new collectors emerging from South America.
The winning bid for Semiramis, well above the revised £60,000-80,000 estimate, was made by a buyer based in a 'financial centre outside the EU'.
The buyer's premium was 25/20/12%.