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.

Why brown is ten times better than blue

03 September 2002

THE highlight of the wide-ranging 1400-lot collectors’ sale held by Greenslade Taylor Hunt (15% buyer’s premium) at Taunton on July 20, was a Morris Minor 1000, from the Matchbox series, crucially painted in pale brown.

Barbies in aspic…

03 September 2002

Setting new standards of perfection in a condition-conscious toy marketplace at Skinner’s of Boston Massachusetts on July 20 was an unopened 1962 Mattel shipping carton containing 12 New Fashion Queen Barbies.

Train robber gets away with less

03 September 2002

NEARLY 40 years after 15 men stole 120 mail bags containing £2.6m from the Royal Mail train as it passed through the Buckinghamshire countryside, the Great Train Robbery can still arouse controversy. In 1969 the police held an auction of items found in the robbers’ hideout on behalf of the banks who lost money.

Green bags the top shot at Gleneagles

03 September 2002

This large Highland hunting landscape by John Frederick Herring Senior proved to be the highlight of Sotheby’s annual auction series held last week at the Gleneagles Hotel in Scotland, when it sold for £470,000 (plus 19.5/10% premium) to London dealer Richard Green Fine Art bidding on the phone.

Harry whaur’s yer sporran?

03 September 2002

Many sporrans are military or feral in character, but this leather wallet had graced the groin of Sir Harry Lauder, legendary laird of the music hall. Winston Churchill sounded dangerously like Samuel Johnson when he described the folk singer and comedian as “Scotland’s greatest ever ambassador”, but there is no doubt that Lauder, though dead since 1950, remains popular with tourists who swallow his sentimental vision of the old country.

Coming up in Swindon

29 August 2002

Inherently rare – in occupied France you wouldn’t want to be caught with a copy – this flimsy sheet of propaganda issued by the maquis at the height of WWII comes up for sale at Dominic Winter Book Auctions in Swindon on August 28.

A 21-head salute to Freddy Rolin

29 August 2002

AMSTERDAM: It was a full house at the Christie’s Amsterdam(23.205% buyer’s premium) salerooms on July 2, when the one-off sale of African and Oceanic Art from the Estate of the late Baron Freddy Rolin took place.

Coming up in London.....

29 August 2002

THE pocket Derringer was a popular weapon for Western movie card-sharps, proving discretion could get the better of valour, but these palm-sized precursors look more lethal to the user than the intended victim.

Bidders book in for hoteliers’ pieces

29 August 2002

THE private collection of the late Lake District hoteliers Brian Sack and Francis Coulston provided some choice pickings for collectors with a decorative bent but a limited budget at Thomson, Roddick and Medalf on 9 July.

Patchy results for summer’s sports

28 August 2002

The extraordinary prices realised for football memorabilia such as the £140,000 bid at Christie’s South Kensington for Pele’s Brazilian 1970 World Cup Final shirt reflect sporting collectors’ current obsession with the beautiful game.

Hendrix still top of the pops

28 August 2002

Unfortunate timing, rather than the quality of entries or the state of the collectors’ market, was to blame for patchy interest and selective bidding in Bonham’s (17.5/10% buyer’s premium) 582-lot Entertainment sale on July 24, according to specialist Toby Wilson.

Mixing grape and grain

28 August 2002

With tarriffs and subsidies yet again a hot political topic, it was appropriate that this wine label caused such a stir at Woolley and Wallis’ Salisbury salerooms on July 17.

Bernini traits win backing at £1.9m

27 August 2002

This muscular terracotta modellino of a moor, Il Moro, 2ft 75/8in high (80.5cm), attributed to Gian Lorenzo Bernini (1598-1680), wrested the top slot from a powerfully modelled pair of 16th century bronzes in Sotheby’s (19.5/10% buyer’s premium) 174-lot European Sculpture and Works of Art 900-1900 auction on July 9.

Hunting a £4000 buffalo

27 August 2002

The compact animal carvings of the Tomotada school are rightly thought of as the zenith of shashin netsuke, and this ivory buffalo and calf, right, by the Kyoto master (or one of his pupils) attracted strong bidding from US and London trade at Bonhams’dispersal of Branton Court.

A crack of the whip...

27 August 2002

Horseless carriages have long been the preserve of Thimbleby and Shoreland at Reading but the private collection of farm implements built up by Herefordshire corn merchant and farmer Hector Morris saw Leominster auctioneers Brightwells (15% buyer’s premium inc. vat) put a number of carriages on the market on July 20.

Value leap is par for the course

27 August 2002

Golf has always been a subject that can have a dramatic effect on the price levels of artists who normally make little impact in the salerooms. Take the case of Frank Watson Wood (1862-1953), a Berwick-on-Tweed watercolourist who specialised in landscapes and marines, the best examples of which fetch around £1500 at auction.

Dargate set for relaunch

27 August 2002

USA: Dargate Auction Galleries of Pittsburgh, USA, will conduct their first sale under new ownership on September 20-21. Owners Dan Zivcho and Paul Novascel, two Cleveland-based investors who bought the business at auction for $50,000 earlier this year upon the retirement of former owners Carol and Larry Farley, have now signed a lease on new premises.

Rare way to keep a wild boar at arms length

27 August 2002

The schwein-degen, or boar sword, is a rare beast. Good examples can elude collectors for decades, and the cobwebbed halls of schloss- dwelling aristocrats are a favourite hiding place. So there was plenty of excitement when an example broke cover at Sotheby’s sale of arms and armour in London on July 10.

Bonhams target country clients in double-barrelled bid

27 August 2002

Ever keen to come up with new auction formats that stimulate the interest of private buyers, Bonhams (17.5/10% buyer’s premium) held their first sale of sporting and ornithological pictures combined with sporting guns at Knightsbridge on August 7-8.

Golfing rarities by C.B. Clapcott

14 August 2002

IN A July 15 Golfing Memorabilia sale held by Bonhams Chester (17.5/10% buyer's premium) a scarce copy of C.B. Clapcott’s The History of Handicapping, a 10pp booklet of c.1924, secured in cream card covers by now rusty staples, was sold at a ten-times-estimate £4000, and one of 500 limited edition copies of a 1935 book by Clapcott, Rules of the Ten Oldest Golf Clubs from 1754-1848, a near fine copy in glassine wrappers, reached £1350.

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