Excellent 80% Clearance Rate

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Autumn Fine Art Sale Report

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Excellent 80% Clearance Rate

Brightwells Autumn Fine Art two-day sale followed three days of hectic viewing, with numerous requests for condition reports, a huge amount of commission bids placed & telephone bids booked.

In total the sale registered over 600 eager buyers and continued to be an international affair, with buyers from 15 countries around the world including: USA, China, Japan, Taiwan, Vietnam & India, along with countless European countries. By the close of the second day almost 80% of the lots had found new homes, with many excellent prices achieved.

The trade in silver continues to be fairly buoyant despite the slight down turn in the base price. Decorative items are still in demand, this was confirmed when the hammer fell for a fine pair of Victorian silver four branch candelabra at a pleasing £4,300. Also of note was a Geo. V silver and blue basse taille enamel Photograph Frame which more than doubled the estimate selling for £1,180 and a pair of Geo. V silver Entrée Dishes sold for £980.

Jewellery was offered to a room full of eager potential buyers and rings were much in demand. A magnificent 2.22 carat single stone diamond ring sold for a hammer price of £12,000 and a three stone diamond ring sold above estimate at £1,450 to a young couple in the room, from the looks exchanged we suspect an important question was about to be asked!! Emeralds proved popular, a single stone ring doubled expectations at £600 and a seven stone ring made £950 against the £400-600 estimate. A fine pair of sapphire and diamond earrings were bought in the room for £2,300. Once again unusual pieces created interest, a malachite bracelet selling for £600 and a moonstone and ruby necklace going to the London trade at £1,050.

As usual international interest in the Asian Art section was strong, with multiple telephone and internet bidders playing a large role, indeed the first 10 lots of the section sold online. Fine Japanese Satsuma earthenware was fiercely competed for, £2,500 was bid for a pair of 9 inch vases by Ryozan, two by Kinkozan were bid to £1,100 and £1,400, and a pair by Chikusai went for £1,950. The standout Japanese object was a beautiful mixed metal inlaid iron panel by Katsuhira which sailed over its presale estimate to £5,800. The Chinese section included a Transitional blue and white jar for £1,350, a Transitional wucai jar for £1,600 despite damage, and £2,400 was paid for a heavily restored doucai bowl. The top Chinese lot was a rare late Ming bronze vase inlaid in gold and silver with Koranic inscriptions, locally consigned it realised £4,800.

The British and European ceramics also performed well, the top price went to a set of three mid 19th Century Spanish cold painted terracotta male figures, selling to a telephone bidder at £1,900. Again on the telephone, a 19th Century Meissen Figure Group emblematic of Europe sold at £900 and 19th Staffordshire pearlware group of Grecian and Daughter at £580.

Top price for the sale went to a 1965 work by the Indian artist B.Prabha (1933-2001) depicting two Indian Boys, which realised treble its estimate, selling at £16,000. The successful purchaser was bidding by phone from India. Trade overall in the painting section was very good, the most notable amongst the Victorian paintings was an eye-catching study of a cow’s head by Thomas Sidney Cooper RA (1803-1902) selling for £5,000. The same price was also paid for a Highland Landscape by Sidney Richard Percy (1822-1886). Of more local interest was a painting by John Napper (1916-2001) which depicted a view of Hay- on- Wye. The painting had been originally commissioned from the artist by the vendor. It sold for a treble estimate £3,200 to a private buyer.

The highlight of the books was a framed document bearing the signature of Oliver Cromwell and six others. The rare document had been consigned by a private vendor and it sold for well above top estimate at £1,600.

As we look forward to our Collectors Sale on the 22nd April 2020, we were pleased to see so many Militaria enthusiasts register for this sale. The highlight of the section was a fine quality 18th Century Flintlock Hunting Rifle, after a battle between two bidders in the room, the hammer fell at £950.

The popularity of garden ornaments continues, with many of the lots well exceeding expectation. A large pair of white painted Garden Benches sold for more than 5 times estimate at £1,600 and a pair of terracotta lidded Urns also sold at £1,600 for double their estimate.

The auction contained one of the largest furniture sections seen at Brightwells and we are pleased to report good trade with 80% of lots sold and many good results achieved. To name but a few, a Geo. Mahogany Breakfront Secretaire Bookcase sold for £2,500, which was triple its estimate, a 19th Century large giltwood and button upholstered Stool attracted great attention, a battle between three telephone bidders resulted in it flying past its estimate to sell at £1,350. A Victorian ebonized and amboyna Dressing Table sold at £1,400 on the internet and the hammer fell to a telephone bidder at £1,000 for a 19th Century Louis XV style French Cabinet.

We are now looking to next year and entries are being accepted for our next two-day sale which takes place on the 18th & 19th March 2020. If you would like a free valuation, either in our saleroom or your home, please contact us on 01568 611122 to make an appointment.