American Aesthetic Movement sterling and copper pitcher brings $26,550 at Ahlers & Ogletree auction An important American Aesthetic Movement sterling and copper pitcher made by Bigelow, Kennard & Company of Boston, circa 1870s, sold for $26,550 at Ahlers & Ogletree's Oct. 17-18 auction in Atlanta.
News-Antique.com - Nov 04,2015 - ATLANTA, Ga. – An important American Aesthetic Movement sterling and copper pitcher made by Bigelow, Kennard & Company of Boston, circa 1870s, sold for $26,550 and an unusual French glass, gilt metal and enamel candy dish (or box) shaped like a “sad iron” from around 1880, went for $18,880 at an auction held October 17th and 18th by Ahlers & Ogletree in Atlanta.
The pieces were top achievers in a 1,136-lot, two-session sale of exceptional items pulled from prominent local estates and collections. Session I, on Saturday, Oct. 17, was titled Objets d'Art: Period Art Glass & Decorative Art and featured over 500 lots. Session II, the following day, was an Autumn Fine Estates Auction, with merchandise from some of Atlanta’s finest estate homes.
The American Aesthetic Movement mixed metal water pitcher was of rectangular form, with chasing and repousse decoration. The front two body planes each featured an applied dragonfly and the underside was inscribed, “George and Lucy from Clarence, Oct. 16, 1879.” It also had the Bigelow, Kennard & Company mark. The pitcher, 8 ¾ inches tall, weighed 26.6 troy ounces.
The French “sad iron” shaped glass box was even more diminutive, at just 5 ¼ inches, and was apparently unmarked. That didn’t deter bidders, however, who were drawn to the dish’s unusual appeal and visual beauty, with decorations of allegorical scenes depicting love, a heart struck with an arrow and a romantic courtyard scene with male and female figures and cupid sculpture.
By the time the last gavel fell at the end of the second day, just over $1 million in sales had been tallied (including the buyer’s premium). For those unable to attend in person, internet bidding was provided by LiveAuctioneers.com, Invaluable.com and Bidsquare.com. The three platforms combined for about 11,000 registered online bidders. Phone and absentee bidding was also brisk.
“We had more new buyers than ever before, and that was hugely encouraging,” said Robert Ahlers of Ahlers & Ogletree. “The auction had one estate that was top-heavy with fine glass pieces, and we were worried bidders might lose focus with such a vertical category. But just the opposite happened. Focus stayed strong, online and in the room, sparking fierce bidding wars.”
Following are additional highlights from the auction. All prices quoted include an 18 percent buyer’s premium.
Asian lots performed particularly well, per usual. An unmarked Chinese palatial low porcelain center bowl with parrot decorations, 24 ¾ inches in diameter and likely made in the first half of the 20th century, went for $20,060; while a Chinese blue and white floral bowl with the Xuande period mark of the Ming Dynasty (1426-1435), likely 20th century, just 3 inches tall, hit $6,490.
An 18th century Chinese Qing Dynasty (1644-1912) watercolor painting book, with eight finely painted and traditionally rendered scenes on silk and with each panel having lines of calligraphy and a red seal mark, brought $9,440; and a late 19th or early 20th century Chinese blue and white porcelain planter (or fish bowl), highly