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.

P is for the Potters – Beatrix and Harry

27 July 2001

THERE WAS no competing with Harry Potter in the Sotheby’s sale of July 10, and bidding rose to £75,000 for Thomas Taylor’s original illustration for the the book that launched those wizard tales in 1997, Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, but Beatrix Potter did her bit too, as did Edmund Dulac, Kay Nielsen, W. Heath Robinson, E.H. Shepard, Lawson Wood, Ronald Searle, Dr Seuss and others.

Munnings preparatory sketch makes £62,000

27 July 2001

UK: SIR Alfred James Munnings proved as great a magnet as ever at Sotheby’s South’s Billingshurst rooms on July 18 when a watercolour sketch for one of his oil paintings fetched a hammer price of £62,000, more than double the low estimate.

The Eumaeus episode, an early draft from Joyce’s Ulysses manuscript

27 July 2001

A previously unknown and early draft of one of the key closing chapters of James Joyce’s Ulysses, the Eumaeus episode, was offered at Sotheby’s on July 10, and it was one of two committed private buyers who took the lot to £780,000, just short of the low estimate.

Cupboard from cottage goes at tentimes expectations

26 July 2001

Furniture coming fresh to the market from a cottage in Petersfield attracted the majority of interest at this 490-lot dispersal at Jacobs & Hunt on June 15.

£220,000 for unique Klinger silver cast

23 July 2001

UK: The highest and arguably most unexpected result in the 19th century section of Sotheby’s July 11 Works of Art sale came with the piece pictured here, a 3ft 7in (1.1m) high silvered statue of Galatea by Max Klinger which sold for £220,000. The subject is a characteristically symbolist work showing the sea nymph seated on a mottled grey marble throne carved with dolphins and is perhaps inspired by Gustave Doré’s painting shown at the 1880 Salon, and by Huysmann’s novel A Rebours.

Not feet, but hands of Clay

23 July 2001

A well-wrapped and padded pair of boxing gloves are essential, one would think, for victory in the ring. But arguably it was the defective nature of the left hand glove, pictured here, which gave Cassius Clay his win over Henry Cooper in 1963, after letting him off the hook.

The Hours of Albrecht of Brandenburg number £2.7million

19 July 2001

UK: This article looks at a magnificent Book of Hours illustrated for one of the wealthiest prelates and patrons of the arts in 16th century Europe, Cardinal Albrecht of Brandenburg.

Magnum force…

19 July 2001

“Everyone’s looking over their shoulder and being careful not to overstock at the moment,” says Stephen Mould of Sotheby’s (10% buyer’s premium), whose June 27-28 single-owner sale of Finest and Rarest Wines The Great Collection nonetheless took £2.4m, the fourth highest total ever achieved for a single-owner wine sale.

Sewing table makes £6400 in Tunbridgeware surprise

19 July 2001

While Lyon & Turnbull enjoyed the lion’s share of the audience for the two sales in Edinburgh at the end of June, Phillips (15/10 per cent buyer’s premium) at least had the most surprising result in the form of this Tunbridgeware sewing/writing table by Fenner and Co., estimated at £300-500.

Stool raises the bidders’ ambitions on a dull summer day

19 July 2001

THEY came, they saw, they appeared interested – but on sale day at Holloways, Banbury, the buyers, particularly the trade, were in the cautious sort of mood auctioneers across Britain have been experiencing in the quiet post-Olympia days.

Piqué perfection…

19 July 2001

UK: Christie’s Continental Furniture sale on July 4 (17.5/10% buyer's premium) included a small nine-lot section devoted to Neapolitan piqué work: tortoiseshell objects inlaid with mother-of-pearl and silver, which proved decidedly popular.

Classy and stylish – Cliff liner cruises home

19 July 2001

UK: Sleek, stylish, Art Deco abstraction is what counts most in a design for Clarice Cliff collectors and this piece, which came up for sale at Phillips (15/10% buyer’s premium) on July 5 possessed it in spades.

Leonardo da Vinci's Horse and Rider reaches £7.4 million

16 July 2001

UK: A week of exhibitions and sales of Old Master drawings reached its zenith on July 10 when this miniature silverpoint sketch by Leonardo da Vinci appeared at Christie’s King Street.

Bonhams and Phillips merge

13 July 2001

BONHAMS & BROOKS confirmed on Friday evening that they are to merge with Phillips de Pury & Luxembourg, ending a week of speculation that this move was imminent.

High-fired Ruskin is hottest seller

11 July 2001

UK: THE biannual sale of ceramics, glass, Oriental wares and decorative arts at Phillips’ Midlands operation saw keen enough trade and private bidding to produce a £138,000 sale total with a very respectable 82 per cent sold by lot.

Attractions of Wellington’s one-legged Marquess…

11 July 2001

UK: If proof were needed that it is collector’s silver that is the most desirable category of ware in today’s market one could have had no better example than the sale held by Bonhams & Brooks (15/10% buyer’s premium) last Thursday, July 5. This 261-lot auction was especially strong on vertu and collectors items swelled by a number of private collections.

£1 boot-sale bargain brooch sells at £1250

11 July 2001

Everyone dreams of coming across a real gem at a car boot sale and this was the story behind a privately entered 19th century micro-mosaic oval panel in this Wotton Auction Rooms Gloucestershire sale on June 12-13.

Supergirl, Korky and The Listener

11 July 2001

“WILL SUPERGIRL callously break the hearts of her athletic team mates by winning all the international sports events as her Linda Danvers identity?...” begins the gripping storyline of a 12pp comic strip artwork by Kurt Schaffenberger that sold for £880 in the US section of this online and postal summer comics sale at Comic Book Postal Auctions on June 12.

Supper table at £2450 heads a feast of furniture on a budget

11 July 2001

MAINTAINING their policy of high-content, budget priced sales, the Norfolk auctioneers Keys put up a bumper June offering with a 1540-lot antique sale on June 26 and 27 following a 1236-lot collectors’ sale on June 14. Occasionally there emerges a high-priced star at these antiques offerings but in the quieter days of summer the best bid came for a Georgian-style pedestal birdcage supper table, 3ft 1in (94cm) which sold at £2450.

£8000 offer settles duel by Birmingham bidders

11 July 2001

THE 1140 lots of arms and armour held offered by Birmingham specialists Weller & Dufty (15% buyer’s premium) on June 13 encompassed most forms of dealing out death and sparked enthusiasm from a range of collectors and dealers. But the pick of the day was this fine cased pair of 18-bore flintlock duelling/officers’ pistols.

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