Auctions

News and previews of art and antiques sold at auctions throughout the UK and overseas, from multi-million-pound blockbusters to affordable collectables.


‘The Bay of Naples’ by Ivan Aivazovsky

Aivazovsky posts highest price for a painting sold online during the lockdown

04 June 2020

The latest sale of Russian art at Sotheby’s posted the highest individual price for a painting sold at an auction so far during the worldwide lockdown. However the online sale’s overall total was 46% down on the equivalent live auction held last year.

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Collection from Portobello Road market trader comes to Berkshire auction

03 June 2020

The house contents of Portobello Road market stalwart Joan Dunk (1930-2019) is to be sold in Newbury next week.

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Mary Queen of Scots' prayer book comes to auction in London

02 June 2020

A prayer book that once belonged to Mary, Queen of Scots (1542-87) will be offered at auction during Christie’s Classic Week of sales.

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An Arts and Crafts lamp, an Ercol bench and a Roman bronze foot are among the five lots to watch at auction this week

01 June 2020

With estimates from £200-20,000 here are five previews of upcoming items this week.

Roman bronze arm

Roman bronze arm leads Daniel Katz sale at Sotheby’s

01 June 2020

A Roman bronze from the 1st century AD drew fervent competition and led Sotheby’s sale of works from the collection of London dealer Daniel Katz.

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Contrasting examples of the Viennese style in Dallas sale

01 June 2020

An elaborate late-19th century engraved rock crystal, parcel-gilt, gemset and enamelled silver figural centrepiece made c.1880 by the Viennese firm of Hermann Ratzersdorfer was the catalogue cover lot of the Heritage (25 /20/12.5% buyer’s premium) silver and vertu auction in Dallas.

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Phone bidders battle for white jade pendant plaques in Sydney

01 June 2020

The first sale held by Bonhams Australia (22% buyer’s premium) behind closed doors in Sydney was devoted to Asian art,

British and Irish book auctions: June 2-20, 2020

01 June 2020

Our regular listing of British and Irish book auctions (online only at present because of the Covid-19 alert).

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Doing the bidding maths remotely

01 June 2020

Rare work on absolute geometry among highlights of mammoth German ‘lockdown’ sale

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Faces from Cecil Beaton’s book of the beautiful people

01 June 2020

Turning heads at Bonhams Knightsbridge’s sale of Modern British art was a group of 22 pen and ink drawings by Cecil Beaton (1904-80) which formed part of the photographer’s 'The Book of Beauty' published in 1930.

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One hundred vintage sewing machines offered at Canadian auction

01 June 2020

One of the key features of an online only sale held by Miller & Miller Auctions (18% buyer’s premium) in New Hamburg, Ontario, was a collection of around 100 vintage sewing machines assembled by Karl Koenig.

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Louis Wain’s Cubist cats bring strong overseas interest at New Zealand auction

01 June 2020

Louis Wain (1860-1939) is famed as an artist for his humorous anthropomorphic paintings of cats – typically producing several hundred drawings a year. However, perhaps his most progressive work was the series of ceramic designs in which the cats were rendered in distinctive Cubist form.

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Happy returns for John Minton bankside scene

01 June 2020

Work on paper outperforms more traditional works at Bonhams Knightsbridge lockdown sale of Modern British art

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Far Eastern works from Earls of Crawford and Balcarres lift auction North of the Border

01 June 2020

Scotland’s key role in the 18th and 19th century China trade has a legacy. Some of the nation’s country houses remain the repository of important Far Eastern works of art.

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Qing porcelain made for Islamic market and collection of European traveller shine at Chiswick sale

01 June 2020

It was not just the great and good of 18th century Europe and North America who commissioned the Thirteen Factories at Canton to embellish Chinese porcelain blanks with family armorials or subjects copied from prints.

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Personal items that belonged to Marie-Antoinette lead auction at Versailles

01 June 2020

Personal items that belonged to Marie-Antoinette were the highlights of Osenat’s (20.83/18% buyer’s premium) themed sale titled Royalty at Versailles.

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Gown from the wardrobe of Madame Lombard Bedaux turns heads at Essex auction

01 June 2020

This couture gown, sold for £360 at Sworders (25% buyer’s premium), was once owned by the woman who hosted the wedding of Wallis Simpson and the Duke of Windsor.

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Bid Barometer: issue 2445

01 June 2020

ATG’s selection of auction lots bought by internet bidders on thesaleroom.com from the period May 21-27, 2020. This includes both the highest prices over estimate and the top prices paid online.

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Pick of the week: Dinky cars made up of parts in South Africa add up to £6500 result

01 June 2020

South Africa leaving the Commonwealth in 1961 had serious consequences for British exporters – particularly when withdrawal was followed by imposition of an import tax on luxury goods.

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Auction previews: issue 2445

01 June 2020

Sixteen upcoming lots from auctions taking place around the UK.

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