Fine Art by Otto Pilny, Zhang Daquin, Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres, Inness, Ward, and Osthaus headl Sarah Cunningham’s first auction as the newly-installed Fine Art Specialist and Gallery Director of Selkirk Auctioneers & Appraisers is an apt reflection of her passion and focus. Cunningham arrived i
News-Antique.com - May 09,2016 - Among the notable items is a fresh-to-market painting, held in a family collection for over 50 years: Evening Prayers, a 1909 oil on canvas by Otto Pilny (1866-1936). A fine example by the artist and a prime representation of the Western World’s immense interest and fascination with Middle Eastern culture during the 19th Century, the large-format Orientalist work depicts four figures engaging in prayer in the desert sunset and is expected to sell between $70,000 - $90,000.
A second featured painting in the auction is Lotus Amongst Leaves and Floral, by one of the most well-known and significant Chinese artists of the twentieth century, Zhang Daqian (1899-1982). The work emerges after a lengthy stint in a family collection located nearby the artist’s Carmel, California studio.Lotus Amongst Leaves and Floral couples two works framed vertically, including an ink and brushstroke grayscale depiction of lotus and a colored brush-work floral, and is estimated at $40,000 - $60,000. Recent sales of Zhang’s work include record-setting prices for two works during Sotheby’s April auction in Hong Kong.
The auction includes many more fine paintings and prints including a 19th Century portrait by of a gentleman by Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres (French, 1780-1876), signed, inscribed and dated “Jean Ingres/Rom: 1816”, also bearing a faint embossed mark and the initials “T.C.,” which may the initials of the sitter (Est. $30,000 to $50,000). Worth a mention is a landscape by favored American artist, George Inness. The oil on board was featured as the frontispiece of S.G. Benjamin’s Our American Artists (published in 1881) and includes a label with detailed provenance (Est. $9,000 - $12,000). American art enthusiasts will be pleased with the charming genre scene by Edgar Ward (1839-1915), showing cobblers in a workshop (Est. $3,000 - $5,000) and a classic Edmund Henry Osthaus (1858-1928) watercolor of hunting dogs (Est. $9,000 - $12,000).
The first lot of the auction kicks off an interesting selection of Chinese art and decorative objects. The delicate, finely carved lotus form white jade bowl with deep sides and a flared rim is estimated at $8,500 - $9,500. A large, pale celadon jade vase with lid is carved in low relief with scrolling patterns and flanked by reticulated elephant head loop handles (Est. $12,000 - $14,000). Rounding out the jade highlights is a 19th Century Qing Dynasty moon flask carved from a beautiful pale celadon jade and bearing an image of a Qilin surrounded by clouds (Est. $5,000 - $7,000). Other jade items include carved pendants and archer’s rings. A collection of snuff bottles holds many fine agate examples, as well carved forms in pudding stone and Peking glass. Roof tiles, bronze Buddha, wood carvings, porcelain and furniture should appeal to the ever-enthusiastic Chinese marketplace.
A model M Steinway grand piano segues the auction from Chinese to Decorative Arts with an estimate of $5,000 - $7,000, and is followed by an ever-escalating selection of prints, paintings, and bronzes, with a variety of furniture and decorative objects coming behind. A monumental Pennsylvania Masonic initiation chair is