OVER $1.6 MILLION EARNED AT CLARS SEPTEMBER Oakland, CA – Clars Auction Gallery’s Premium Fine Antiques and Estate Sale was anticipated to be the largest sale in the firm’s 36 year history. Earning over $1.6 million dollars, their September 8 a
News-Antique.com - Oct 15,2007 - OVER $1.6 MILLION EARNED AT CLARS SEPTEMBER
PREMIUM FINE ANTIQUES AND ESTATE SALE
Oakland, CA – Clars Auction Gallery’s Premium Fine Antiques and Estate Sale was anticipated to be the largest sale in the firm’s 36 year history. Earning over $1.6 million dollars, their September 8 and 9, 2007 auction did just that. The two-day sale was an amazing assemblage of fine art, antiques, special collections and special individual offerings from around the world. The Internet came on exceptionally strong for this sale accounting for $250,000 in direct sales and bid up many more. 1400 people signed up on the internet to bid from 33 different countries.
One of the most anticipated offerings in the September sale was a Bosendorfer Grand Piano which had been owned by famed composer and conductor Johann Strauss II — the King of the Waltz. The piano was given as a gift to Strauss by Ludwig Bosendorfer in 1896 and it was the piano upon which Strauss composed and played in his Vienna home until his death in 1899. The piano was kept by his wife Adelle Strauss until the threat of the Nazi invasion at which time she arranged for it to be hidden in an Austrian warehouse. After the War, the piano went on display at the Historical Museum of the City of Vienna where it remained until the Museum finally found Strauss’ heirs who currently reside in the San Francisco Bay Area. The Museum offered the family $12,000 for the piano. Feeling that a bit modest, the family decided to have the piano crated and air freighted back to the United States for inclusion in Clars September sale. After two months of customs arrangements, the piano finally arrived in Oakland in time for it to be offered to the world on Sunday, September 9th .
The piano came up for bid, and, in an almost serendipitous event, the winning bid was had by a gallery in New York which, as it turned out, was bidding on behalf of the Historical Museum of the City of Vienna. The Museum bought the piano back for $52,650. So, after a whirlwind tour of California, Johann Strauss’ piano is on its way back home to Vienna, where it will once again take center stage on display.
While Johann Strauss II’s piano might have been the most intriguing lot in the two-day sale, it did not detract from the very successful results on the fine art and antiques which were offered.
Throughout the course of the two days, Clars brought to the block fine art from both renowned European and American artists. One highly anticipated offering was an Art Deco bronze and ivory sculpture “The Snake Charmer” by Professor Otto Poertzel (German 1876-1963). Estimated to bring $16,000 on the high side, the sculpture exceeded all expectations selling for $31,625.
Also coming from Germany was a framed wax-stick and watercolor by Hermann Max Pechstein (1881-1955) entitled “Waterfront Landscape with Horses.” Signed and dated 1922, this work brought $31,625