CALDERS LEAD DECEMBER AUCTION On December 2nd, Grogan and Company, conducted their annual December auction to a standing room only crowd. The over 500 lots of Fine Art, Furniture, Decorative Works of Art, Silver, Jewelry and Orie
News-Antique.com - Dec 12,2012 - Grogan's sale began with a selection of fine art, including four works by Alexander Calder that brought the highest prices of the day and sold over the phone to the same bidder. Red, Blue and Yellow Man and Skeleton Drinking Wine, two gouaches created in 1973 by Calder, were gifts to his neighbors, William and Virginia Chess of Connecticut. The Man, inscribed "To Virginia", sold for 36,580, while the Skeleton, inscribed "to Wm Chess", sold for $35,400. A Calder hand hammered silver initial brooch brought $11,800, while a heart shaped brooch, brought $10,030. Calder, an American modernist, best known as the inventor of the mobile, was a prolific artist creating sculptures, paintings, prints and over 1,800 pieces of jewelry. The same collection also included a Molded Copper Weathervane in the form of a Grasshopper made by Cushing and White of Waltham, Massachusetts in the late 19th century. The 40 inch three dimensional Grasshopper, which was acquired by Mrs. Chess in the 1930's at an Antique shop in Boston for a small sum. The Grasshoppersold on for $6,195 to an expert on Cushing and White Weathervanes.
Other highlights included Russian artist Jaroslav Vesin's Winter Trail, an oil on canvas was bought by a European collector over the phone for $16,520 against a $5,000-10,000 presale estimate; while a 17th century portrait of Venus by Dutch Renaissance painter Gortzius Geldorp sold to a local collector over the phone for $9,400 (presale: $10,000-20,000). Phone bidders continued to enjoy success when French artist, Edouard Cortes' oil on canvas of the Boulevard de la Madeliene, sold over the phone to a bidder in the UK for $14,160 against a $10,000-15,000 estimate; while Still Life of Sweet Peas,Zinnias and Marigolds, by American pastelist Laura Coombs Hills, sold to a New York collector for $8,850. A local collector made a discovery at a small auction house in Great Britain when he acquired what was listed as an unidentified modernist gouache from the estate of a Lady in Middlesex, London. The 12 x 9 inch Geometric Composition, turned out to be the work of French artist Auguste Herbin. Created in 1951, the lot sold for $8,260 against a $10,000-15,000 presale estimate.
A 19th century American School View of Daniel Webster’s Homestead in Marshfield, Massachusetts, generated a bevy of inquiries, due to it's rare view of Webster's home before it burned to the ground on February 14, 1878. Peter Williams of Museum Services was the first to recognize the house while working on the painting, however, Barbara Carney of the Daniel Webster Estate & Heritage Center confirmed the finding and provided a detailed history of the estate from the time it was built in 1774 through Webster's occupation from 1837 through 1852 and it's burning in 1878. The 22 x 27 inch oil on canvas sold to a gentleman in the room for $3,835 against an estimate of $2,000-3,000.
"This auction we witnessed an increase in participation from private clients acquiring decorative property for their homes," stated Michael Grogan, President