Auctioneers

The auction process is a key part of the secondary art and antiques market.

Firms of auctioneers usually specialise in a number of fields such as jewellery, ceramics, paintings, Asian art or coins but many also hold general sales where the goods available are not defined by a particular genre and are usually lower in value.

Auctioneers often provide other services such as probate and insurance valuations.

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Pick of the week: Medieval gaming piece depicting Aesop’s Fable sells for £40,000

20 January 2020

An unusual but welcome inclusion to the latest silver and vertu sale at Lawrences of Crewkerne was a medieval walrus ivory tableman or backgammon piece.

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Artist Kit Williams' early clues on how to decipher the Masquerade

20 January 2020

The English artist, illustrator and author Christopher ‘Kit’ Williams (b.1946) is best known for the book 'Masquerade', the pictorial storybook which contained clues to the location of an 18ct gold jewelled hare buried somewhere in the British countryside. It created quite a sensation in 1979.

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Song dynasty Chinese bowl, Roman cutlery and a Victorian board game – six lots to watch at auction this week

20 January 2020

With estimates from £400-12,000 here are six previews of upcoming items.

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Black Forest clock hunted down

20 January 2020

This ‘Black Forest’ type clock on the theme of hunting is signed by Swiss master carver Johann Huggler of Brienz (1834-1912).

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Armour through the ages: three lots commanding bids in winter sales

20 January 2020

Rare and well-preserved armour from pre-history to the 17th century was well received in the pre-Christmas sales. Three examples are pictured here.

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Go for a Gatling to get bling for your bucks

20 January 2020

Any museum or collector seeking a centrepiece for their display need look no further than the Gatling gun – a pivotal invention that makes its presence felt by its sheer size and bling.

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New year temptations: a feast of Poole, Minton, Troika and Border ceramics on the menu

20 January 2020

It was during the Carter, Stabler and Adams period in the 1920s-30s that some of the most memorable Poole wares were produced. Much of this Art Deco range – red earthenwares covered in a white slip and a semi-matt-glaze before decoration in a variety of Jazz Age patterns – was based on the work of chief designer Truda Carter.

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Five examples showing how exotic Eastern blades remain a key fixture at auction

20 January 2020

Edged weapons from the East continue to feature regularly among the top lots in auctions across the world. Awareness of the rich array of culturally-significant weapons to be found in Western collections has grown as internet technology reaches a new international audience.

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Sensitive portrait of ‘quiet Ulsterman’ grabs the attention

20 January 2020

A sensitive portrait of a First World War soldier by the Irish painter William Orpen (1878-1931) was among a series of valuable lots chased by bidders at art sales in Dublin.

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Gifford takes the Grand Tour

20 January 2020

A picture of a famous Italian Grand Tour view by one of the best-regarded artists of the American Hudson River school of painting is one of the highlights of a sale at Skinner in Boston on January 24.

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Acting class – Impressive dealers' collection sold at Bonhams

20 January 2020

The impressive arms offered in London from a dealership which supplied weapons for many films were far from being just theatrical props

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Mark Twain in the frame as carte de visite emerges in Philadelphia

20 January 2020

This carte de visite picturing the author Mark Twain (Samuel L Clemens) is signed and inscribed twice.

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Sèvres flower vase offered at Bonhams Los Angeles

20 January 2020

The Homes & Interiors sale at Bonhams Los Angeles on February 3 includes this Sèvres flower vase or Cuvette à Fleurs Courteille, measuring 10¼in (26cm) wide, estimated at $4000-6000.

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Bidders show a homing instinct

20 January 2020

Private domestic demand rather than trade drives bidding at Scottish and Irish art auctions.

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Holts heads home to the rural charm of Norfolk

20 January 2020

December 10 marked a significant step in the history of specialist sporting and antique gun auction house Holts (25-20% buyer’s premium).

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Pick up a penguin picture

20 January 2020

The English artist and poster designer Alfred Thomson (1894-1979) painted this eye-catching depiction of the famous penguin pool at London Zoo.

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Stone Age weapons at the cutting edge of early technology

20 January 2020

One fascinating section of a recent Thomas Del Mar (25% buyer’s premium) sale featured Stone Age and Viking weapons and artefacts from a European private collection.

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The real Carroll looking glass

20 January 2020

The fact that Lewis Carroll (Charles Lutwidge Dodgson) regularly made use of a magnifying glass is noted by biographers and underlined by references found in his letters.

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Napoleonic family value at Doyle auction

20 January 2020

The Old Master paintings section of the sale taking place at Doyle in New York on February 5 will include this large and imposing portrait of Pauline Bonaparte, the younger sister of Napoleon.

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Victorian artist William Mitchell impresses at Mitchells’ auction

20 January 2020

A harbour view of Maryport in Cumbria by Victorian artist William Mitchell (1806-1900) topped the lots at local saleroom Mitchells (20% buyer’s premium).

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