Strong trade and large crowd seen at August Fine Art Sale
Historically, Brightwells have always had a good trade in August and this sale was no exception. As the biggest antique auction that Brightwells has ever held on one day, approaching 1400 lots, the catalogue attracted a large crowd of regular and new clients.
The size of the sale was partly due to the inclusion of large sections of our specialist areas, and it was the Toys, Dolls & Textiles section which provided the highest price of the day. An over estimate £6,800 was paid for Lot 337 the Gladstone House, an impressive dolls house with five bays and three storeys, while in the same section a Jumeau Bisque headed doll sold for the expected £1,800. The surprise and the highest price in the textiles section was for a fine crewelwork Bed Cover, although there were 5 telephone bidders none were successful, as the hammer finally fell to a buyer in the room, who was unknown to Brightwells, for £2,900.
The star of the show in the ceramics section was a Nantgarw Porcelain Plate, with a come and buy estimate, it was always likely to exceed expectations, but many were still quite surprised when the hammer fell at £3,100 to a local private collector. A highly decorative Mason Ironstone part dinner service also exceeded its estimate, selling for £2,050.
Always a good subject in this provincial saleroom are pictures depicting sheep, and a fine oil on canvas by William Watson titled ‘Evening on the Mountains, Loch Long, Argyllshire’ found new pastures for £3,500. Probably the most charming pictures on offer were the Ernest Howard Shepard, Otter Studies pen and ink sketches, which were inscribed ‘illustrations for Wind in the Willows’. Fiercely contested for, with bidders in the room, on the telephone and on the internet, the sketches sold for £2,200, considerably more than the 6 pounds and 6 shillings written on the back!
Although the brown furniture market is generally depressed, anything that is a little bit special will be strongly fought for. This was borne out by a 17th Century Lace Oak Chest. Although described as 17th Century many believed that two of the front panels were a little earlier. With numerous commission bids, telephone bidders and interested parties on the internet the chest eventually sold to a northern buyer for £3,400. Of the more unusual items of furniture, a highly decorative Japanese Shibayama Cabinet finely decorated with birds and flowers made an almost quadruple estimate of £1,550.
The strong demand for militaria was much in evidence, with the top two lots of medals selling for £1,700 and £1,600 respectively. The surprise of the sporting section was the £1,400 paid, for a circular oak revolving Snooker Cue Stand containing numerous cues and rest.
Entries are now being accepted for our next one day sale on the 7th October and the forthcoming two day sale on the 4th & 5th November. If you would like a free valuation either in our saleroom or your home, please contact us on 01568 611122 to make an appointment.