News-Antique.com - Sep 02,2016 - MONROVIA, CA - Moran’s New Studio Auction format has proven a decided success with buyers; the second Studio Auction of 2016, held on Saturday, July 30th, fared well for works estimated across all price points. No one genre was the clear favorite among buyers, with bidders paying equal attention to early California, Western, Modern and Contemporary abstract and figural works. Overall, buyers responded to quality, with wonderful examples by higher tier as well as lesser-known artists performing quite well throughout the evening,
The top lot for the evening was truly a dark horse highlight; an indistinctly signed 19th century Russian School nocturnal depicting a beach scene in a coastal fishing village was assigned a very conservative $500 to $700 estimate. Thanks to multiple online bidders and a number of buyers vying for the painting via telephone, the painting flew to an astounding $33,600 selling price (including Moran’s 20% house buyer’s premium).
Works by listed 20th century California artists did particularly well; “Colorful Expanse”, a blooming desert landscape by Palm Springs, CA artist Paul Grimm (1891-1974) earned a price squarely within estimate, bringing $2700 (estimate: $2000 to $3000). Shortly thereafter, “4th Lake and Mt. Temple Crag” by Robert Clunie (1895-1984 Bishop, CA) (expected to bring $1500 to $2500) was brought to the block and earned $5400, thanks to multiple telephone bidders. Arthur Hill Gilbert’s (1894-1970 Stockton, CA) aptly titled painting, “Oaks”, was certainly a crowd favorite. While small in size, the work appealed to those with an affinity for quintessential Southern California landscapes, bringing $2700 at the block (estimate: $800 to $1200).
Other American art highlights included Peter Hayward’s (1905-1993) sunny oil on canvas depiction of a Mountainous Hawaiian beachscape with figures. The charming work was expected to bring $400 to $600, but surprised everyone in attendance when it sold for an astounding $3900 thanks to competing online bidders. A trio of works by Los Angeles-based contemporary figural painter Wade Reynolds (1929-2011) all performed quite well at Moran’s Studio Auction. One of Reynolds’s most highly anticipated works depicts a young man in a Los Angeles apartment interior before an open window. The untitled piece was brought to the block with a $1000 to $1500 estimate, which was handily outstripped after competition between two auction attendees; the successful buyer took the painting home for $6000. Attendee buyers were also excited by another contemporary work by Santa Barbara artist Jon Francis (b. 1940) – “Last Bus Out”, depicting a Greyhound bus stop awash with golden late afternoon light, realized $1560 at the block (estimate: $600 to $900).
Western and Native American-genre works found sound footing with Moran’s buyers. Westport, CT Western genre artist John Marchand (1875-1921)was represented in the Studio Auction catalogue by a diminutive scene of a cowboy shooting wolves over a ridge in order to protect his herd of cattle. Marchand’s painting brought $3300, well over the $700 to $900 estimate. Later in the sale, an untitled Southwestern Impressionist landscape by Taos, NM artist Joseph Henry Sharp (1859-1953) was offered with