No bitter taste for Paolozzi brewers
A study for Eduardo Paolozzi’s classic Tottenham Court Road Underground Station mosaic has gone to the artist’s home city, after being bought at auction by the family owners of the Edinburgh Beer Factory.
The Dunsmores paid £19,000 (plus 25% buyer’s premium) for the 3ft 7in (1.1m) wide oil on paper study offered at Lyon & Turnbull on August 17.
The Edinburgh Beer Factory counts Paolozzi Lager among its brews.
Einstein’s words on appeasement
A letter written by Albert Einstein to a friend condemning UK prime minister Neville Chamberlain and predicting Adolf Hitler’s expansion in Europe has sold in the US for $31,250 (£24,200).
The two-page letter was offered in a timed sale at Nate D Sanders. It reads: “I do not have any hope left for the future of Europe.”
It was written in 1938 and posted 10 days after Chamberlain signed the Munich Agreement, effectively ceding the Sudetenland in Czechoslovakia to Hitler.
Rogue bidder returns to regions
Regional auctioneers are being warned that a man who left a trail of unpaid bills a decade ago is again bidding at auction.
Mark Wilson of Berryhill, Mansfield, is well-known to many salerooms. In July 2007 Nottingham Insolvency Court found him guilty of unfit conduct for incurring liabilities, including thousands of pounds owed to at least 14 regional auctioneers as a result of failing to honour bids.
Last month Wilson attempted to leave commission bids at sales including the August 26 auction at Dawson’s in Maidenhead.
Owner Aubrey Dawson told ATG he had been happy to accept Wilson’s bid if accompanied by a warranty, but the bidder failed to respond when asked to provide a deposit equivalent to the low estimate.
The most clicked-on stories for week August 24-30 on antiquestradegazette.com
1 Christie’s increases buyer’s premium
2 London coin company snaps up Roman hoard found in Lincolnshire
3 Tribal clubs strike it hot at Elgin auction house
4 Queen Victoria’s coronet to remain in UK after V&A Museum acquisition
5 Rare Northern Song dynasty Ru Guanyao brush washer to star at Sotheby’s sale
1stdibs changes commission fees
The US-based online art and antiques marketplace 1stdibs has made significant changes to its commission structure. 1stdibs will now charge 15% on the first $10,000 of an order and 5% on the value of an order above $10,000 – plus a fee of 3% on the entire transaction.
The previous commission rates had been 10% on sales up to $5000, 7% on the amount from $5000-50,000, and 4% on any amount over $50,000. plus the 3% processing fee.
1stdibs noted that the site is “investing heavily in all areas of the business”, citing “an increased focus on ultra high net worth individuals which recently helped us achieve our first $1m dollar day and soon thereafter our first $2m dollar day”.
New look to Frieze Week at Christie’s
Christie’s is to add an evening sale of design and photography – plus a new category sale titled Up Close – to its London autumn calendar.
The Frieze Week sale titled Masterpieces of Design and Photography will combine items such as a Julia Margaret Cameron albumen print with a side cabinet by Gerrit Rietveld and price points from £10,000 to over £1m.
The auction house, now with just King Street as its London base, looks to mimic rival Sotheby’s with the Up Close sale on October 3, offering “masterpieces on a small scale”. Sotheby’s themed sale in June – Actual Size – featuring palm-sized works across the art historical spectrum, was among the rostrum successes of the summer series.
Christie’s focus on October as a key selling month follows the firm’s decision to drop June contemporary sales.
Grosvenor’s Guy Malet remembered
A mini-retrospective of the modern British artist Guy Malet (1900-73) opens this week at the Ditchling Museum of Art + Craft.
It is part of a larger show, New Truth to Materials: Wood (September 9-January 1, 2018), and showcases Malet’s wood engravings, some of which are available for purchase.
The little-known artist often depicted the local Sussex landscape.
Malet, who studied at the Grosvenor School, is one of a group of inter-war British printmakers whose works have been attracting growing interest around the market.
7 The number of days it took Christie’s to respond in kind to Sotheby’s announcement of a change in buyer’s premium thresholds.