1. Iranian view – £3200
This 54 x 39cm watercolour, probably depicting the New Julfa quarter of Isfahan, is by the Armenian-Iranian painter Sumbat Kiureghian (1913-99). It is signed and dated 1973 by which time Sumbat was enjoying near celebrity status at home and abroad.
The British watercolourist William Russell Flint called him “brother in brush”.
In-keeping with an artist who painted across the Middle East and Europe (and lived in the US in his later years), Sumbat’s work is now scattered across the world.
This watercolour, offered by Ewbank’s in Surrey on September 13 with a modest guide of £200-300, sold via thesaleroom.com for £3200.
2. Ormolu chandelier – £15,000
An internet bidder tendered the winning £15,000 to secure an ormolu 10-branch chandelier at Cheffins in Cambridge on September 11-12. Although Régence (early 18th century French) in style, it was probably made a century later c.1820 by the London brass founders Johnston Brooks & Co.
It is thought to be the matching pair to another supplied in 1823 to Burghley House, near Stamford.
Drilled for electricity under the drip trays, it was nonetheless complete and retained the original gold leaf on all the matted and chased areas. It also came with provenance: it was among the 200-plus lots in the sale from the Grade I-listed Mawley Hall. The Shropshire country mansion, one of Britain’s finest privately-owned country houses, was built on family lands in the 1730s for industrialist Sir Edward Blount and has changed hands only twice since – in 1962 and most recently in September 2018 when the guide price was set at £10m.
The estimate on this 3ft 9in (1.15m) diameter chandelier was £6000-10,000.
3. Upholstered tub chair – £2000
Very much to current fashion are the early 20th century upholstered chairs and sofas by Howard & Sons of Berner Street, London.
This tub chair, offered for sale at Clarke’s Auctions in Shaftesbury, Dorset on September 14, is marked to a back leg and stamped to all four casters.
Despite the need for recovering, it took £2000 (estimate £100-200) from an buyer using thesaleroom.com.
4. Rural East Anglian scene – £10,200
Harry Becker (1865-1928) is not well-known outside of East Anglia but he is much admired both for a skilled grasp of Impressionism and his choice of subject matter.
Born in Colchester in 1865 of German parents, he gained an artist’s education in Paris, at the Antwerp Royal Academy (Van Gogh had been there the year before) and at the Bushey School of Art under Hubert von Herkomer. Much of his work is in the tradition of ‘peasant painting’.
During the 13 years he lived in Suffolk from 1912, Becker made numerous records of working the land in the years before mechanisation. This quite typical 36cm x 43cm oil on canvas board of a farmhand cutting grasses with a scythe is unsigned but is inscribed Harry Becker to verso.
The auctioneers noted that this particular brand of artist board (with a Clifford Milburn label) was used by Becker on other oils. Estimated at £300-500 by David Duggleby of Scarborough on September 13, it did rather better taking £10,200.
5. Patriotic longcase – £6200
The great appeal of an otherwise typical early 19th century longcase offered for sale on September 12 by Malvern auctioneer Philip Serrell was its painted dial. Instead of the usual array of floral sprays or rural vignettes was a patriotic display of shipping and allegorical figures celebrating British sea power.
To the spandrels are representations of the colonies in four continents while to the arch Britannia holds a portrait of the recently-departed Horatio Nelson. An attractive item to any collector of Nelson memorabilia, it took £6200 (estimate £300-500).