Such was the case when Welsh auctioneers Rogers Jones were approached by the great great-granddaughter of Nina Fagnani, a French-American artist and socialite in New York. The daughter of Guiseppe Fagnani, himself an artist, she exhibited her first work at the Paris Salon in 1880 and at the Royal Academy in London in 1892.
On September 15, Rogers Jones will offer 29 lots of pictures, jewellery and silver including one portrait miniature by her and another of her.
The latter was painted by Spanish painter Raimundo de Madrazo y Garreta (1841- 1920), a portrait specialist who had a cluster of wealthy patrons from both sides of the Atlantic. The 11 x 23in (28 x 58cm) oil on canvas is signed and inscribed A Mme Fagnani - Souvenir Affectueux and is estimated at £1500-2500.
One novelty from the consignment on offer is an unusual Etienne Denamur doll chocolate box from c.1860 (above). Modelled with the doll part protruding from the waist out of the top of the box which is in the form of a large hollow boot, the inside of the waist printed with the logo of Boissier, a Parisian chocolatier still operating today.
It is estimated at £400-700.
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