1. Country House picture
Today (October 3) Dreweatts in Newbury conducts a sale titled The Collection formerly from Flaxley Abbey: An Oliver Messel Commission.
Oliver Messel (1904-78) redesigned Flaxley Abbey, a monastery turned manor house, in the 1960s over a period of 12 years for the industrialist Frederick Baden Watkins.
In addition to pieces that he specially designed or sourced for the house, Messel used works from his own private collection (selling to his client pieces he had inherited on the death of his mother in 1960).
This Anglo-Dutch English School painting of an unidentified country house dating from c.1740 was among them. It had hung in the drawing room of Messel’s family home, Homstead Manor, before it was incorporated into Flaxley Abbey. It is estimated to fetch £7000-10,000.
2. Three Graces centrepiece
This Victorian porcelain table centrepiece fashioned as the Three Graces is by the Copeland factory. Measuring 18in (45cm) high, it expected to sell for £400-600 at Amersham Auction Rooms in Buckinghamshire on October 6.
3. French street art kit
A trademark work by French street art star Invader (b.1969) forms part of the sale of Modern & Contemporary Prints and Multiples at Chiswick Auctions on October 5. One of the artist’s Invasion Kits from 2007, it comprises sufficient ceramic tiles to create his famous space invader motif. It is from a limited edition numbered 25/50.
Invader has been placing his work in unexpected corners of the globe for more than two decades. There are now more than 4000 similar mosaics affixed to buildings and structures in 79 cities in 20 countries
Kits like this were issued backed with sticky plastic so that buyers could also be part of the ‘invasion’ and tag their own neighbourhoods. However, fortunately for the vendor of this piece, which was bought from the Lazarides Gallery in London in 2007, it remained in its original packaging.
4. Sawbridgeworth Penny
Coin dealer Patrick Deane first became interested in 17th and 18th century trade tokens in 1970 when working at Spink and Son. He sold his first collection of around 1250 pieces in 1984.
Twenty years or so elapsed before the collection was re-started when Deane was given the opportunity to acquire pieces from the celebrated Victorian collection of Francis Cokayne. Now numbering around 2500 items, it will be sold in two or three parts by Baldwin’s in London – the first tranche on October 5.
Deane had been fortunate to buy this Sawbridgeworth Penny, struck by grocer and tea merchant Robert Orchard in 1801, from the Baldwin Basement Collection for half what he was expecting to pay.
This piece, made using a broken die with Orchard’s portrait on the obverse and a view of the Hertfordshire town to the reverse, is one of just five in existence. One holds the record price for any tradesman’s token sold at auction. A Sawbridgeworth Penny sold for £145 at Glendinings in 1923 while a similar example in the Noble collection auctioned in Melbourne in July 1988 sold for a remarkable Aus$60,000.
The token in the Deane collection, which survives essentially as struck, is available with an opening bid of £5000.
5. Opus Anglicanum panels
This set of three Opus Anglicanum orphrey panels with applique and couched work on a gilt diapered ground are similar to others in museum collections dated to the 15th or 16th century.
They have a guide of £1500-2000 at the Woolley & Wallis Furniture and Works of Art sale in Salisbury on October 6.
Orphrey panels such as these were traditionally applied to ecclesiastical vestments, such as chasubles or copes, or to altar frontal cloths. They were made using silk and precious metal threads often commissioned by the patron of the churches in which they would be seen and are usually either English or Italian. The term ‘Opus Anglicanum’ was first adopted in the 13th century to classify works of this nature.
6. Jockey watercolour
This watercolour by Snaffles (Charlie Johnson Payne 1884-1967) depicts amateur jockey Bobby Vivian being unseated as he rides in the Grand Military Gold Cup in 1923.
A member of the Lifeguards regiment, Captain Vivian (1898-1984) rode 32 winners under National Hunt rules from 1921-32. He took part in the Grand Military Gold Cup at Sandown Park in 1923 (a race restricted to serving military amateur riders) but fell at a fence. He remounted and completed the course.
The painting, which is signed and dated 1923, has been handed down by Captain Vivian’s family through the generations. It comes for sale at Greenslade Taylor Hunt’s biannual Westcountry Sporting Sale in Taunton on October 6.