1500 VENETIAN DEEP BLUE
Here is a bowl of deep blue glass, dramatically decorated . The analyses of style and of chemistry show that it was made in Venice around 1500, and that its enamel decoration was not reworked later. King Henry VIII of England owned some glasses of similar description.
It is a piece 16.5 cm high, foot included, and 20.8 cm in diameter. The foot is plain, but the cup itself shaped as an inverted bell is decorated with sphinxes and cherubs. A gilt band includes a Latin inscription, which says very wisely that in times of abundance we have a lot of friends.
Its provenance is impeccable. Named as the Field Cup from its owner in the middle of the nineteenth century, it stayed afterwards in the Rothschild family until 2000.
All these qualities allow the bowl to expect £ 180 K at Bonhams in London on June 3.
Kangxi and Qianlong Snuff Bottles
2008 SOLD 420 K$ including premium
A small snuff bottle can achieve a high price if its workmanship is exquisite and precious, but especially if it bears the mark of an emperor or of an imperial workshop. The archives of Christie's show thirty snuff bottles beyond 200 K $.
At the top, an example of the Meriem collection climbed to 825 K$ costs included on March 19, 2008 in New York, tripling its low estimate. 4.2 cm high, it bore the mark of Qianlong and had the originality to represent on both faces a portrait of a European lady.
Smaller (3.7 cm), another model of comparable description of the collection J & J widely doubled its low estimate to be sold 670 K$ including fees on March 30, 2005.
For Chinese subjects, an enamel snuff bottle of Meriem collection, earliest, with the mark of Kangxi, slightly larger (6.7 cm), was sold 650 K$ costs included on September 19, 2007.
Big collections feed big sales. Part V of the J & J collection is presented in New York on September 17. Among the 88 lots of this sale, the press release from Christie's draws our attention to a rose enameled glass double gourd made in the Qianlong imperial workshops in Beijing (4.7 cm, 350 K$, lot 87) and to a snuff bottle decorated with a woman and a child and bearing the mark of Qianlong (4.1 cm, 220 K$, lot 86).
POST SALE COMMENT
The most important piece, which was that miniature double gourd at lot 87, was very well sold, 420 K$ costs included.
But the lot 86, sold 180 K$ costs included, remained far below its estimate.
There was no surprise, these two lots being widely the first two in the price hierarchy of the sale.
1766 AN ENGLISH HERALDIC GOBLET
The enameled glass is an exquisite art. The mastering of this technique in the eighteenth century enabled to produce luxurious glasswares that competed successfully with engraved glass.
The specimen for sale on November 30 in London by Bonhams is signed by one of the best glassmakers, William Beilby, whose workshop was in Newcastle, and whose main specialty was the heraldic decoration. 30 cm high, this goblet is considered as the largest known specimen made by this master craftsman.
It is estimated £ 100K and illustrated in the release shared by AuctionPublicity.
This goblet is decorated with the coat of arms of William V of Orange. The estimated date for its creation, 1766, meets exactly the end of the regency and the beginning of the personal reign of this young Stadtholder of the Dutch Republic.
1771 FREIGHTED FOR THE INDIES
2009 SOLD 26.4 K£ INCLUDING PREMIUM
So beautiful great ships were traveling between Holland and the East Indies. Companies chartered for this purpose were powerful. In Amsterdam in 1771, one of the oldest shipping companies, the Vereenigde Oostindische Compagnie (VOC) (established as early as 1602) launched on the seas a new ship named Holland.
The day after tomorrow, on December 16th in London, Bonhams is selling a beautifully engraved glass goblet, 23 cm high, estimated 8 K £. The line is very sharp. It shows an opulent three-masted sailing ship with the entries VOC and HOLLAND, the latter being written in front of the boat. We see this detail very clearly on the photo shared by UK Auction Info.
Everything seems to concur that this glass image shows the boat of 1771. The style is compared to the work of a man named Jacob Sang, a craftsman of that time. But the real ship has disappeared, leaving no image, and the glass came without any other indication than its own engraving. The auction house provides these informations but does not conclude.
POST SALE COMMENT
It was really a beautiful piece of great sharpness. This glass was sold at £ 22 K hammer price, 26.4 K £ including premium.
1825-1830 ELEGANT GLASSWARE FROM BACCARAT
2010 SOLD 50 K$ INCLUDING PREMIUM
The glassworks of Baccarat is recreated in 1816 by a French industrialist who was taking advantage of the fall of the Empire to come back to his country. By 1823 his company, where he also installed a crystal oven, received royal orders. The success of Baccarat is lasting for almost two centuries.
The highlight of the sale of a collection at Christie's in New York on April 21 is a pair of cut glass vases by Baccarat. Dated between 1825 and 1830, they are precious surviving witnesses of the beginnings of Baccarat in the luxury industry.
These vases are finely inlaid with gold leaf. The enameled bouquets include roses, tulips, pansies, convolvulus. 35 cm high, they are baluster shaped, looking like the vases of Sèvres porcelain from the same period. They belonged to the collection of Paul Jokelson, who was a great professional of glass.
For once, I tell you the full range of estimates (and not just the low estimate): $ 100K to $ 200K. Such an open price confirms that it is a masterpiece, for which experts have trouble making a reliable prediction.
POST SALE COMMENT
The market did not follow the enthusiasm of the auction house, but this lot has still been sold: $ 50K including premium.
1845 HEROIC DESIGN FOR A BOHEMIAN GLASS
Alexander the Great was the most celebrated ancient hero in the nineteenth century. We were just discussing him on a drawing by David, and here he is again on a glass of Bohemia.
It is a great goblet with cover, for a total height of 57 cm. It is signed by August Böhm, and dated 1845. A similar piece dated 1840 was used to cast plaster to encourage imitation by other glassmakers.
Its decoration shows a tangle of horses and warriors. Based on a work by Charles Le Brun, it is the victory of Alexander against the Persians in Granicus.
This masterpiece of Bohemia, a country rightly renowned for its beautiful glass, is estimated £ 250 K, at Sotheby's in London on July 7.
1879 Souvenir from Rome
2011 SOLD 380 K$ including premium
In all touristic locations, souvenir shops await the visitors. The pieces made of glass beads find there an undeniable commercial outlet.
In their most complex application, glass beads have replaced the traditional mosaics. The advantage is that thecubes (tesserae) can be produced in an infinite variety of colors. Then they are assembled with great patience onrigid structures.
In Rome, the Roccheggiani workshop manufactured remarkably detailed micro-mosaics of large format of the monumental groups, complemented by a nice animation. Thus the view of St. Peter's Square, 100 x 180 cm, dated1879 and signed, was sold £ 480K including premium at Christie's on April 29, 2010.
On December 9, 2010, Christie's sold £ 337K including premium a panoramic view of the Forum, 81 x 161 cm, from the same year and also signed by Roccheggiani.
Another copy made obviously from the same drawing of the Forum is for sale on January 30 by Myers in St.Petersburg, Florida. Neither dated nor signed, but complete and without rework, it is conservatively estimated $ 100K. It is illustrated in the catalog shared by the auction web provider LiveAuctioneers.
The decomposition of large images in very small pieces (playing the role of pixels) is a technical feat. The opaqueand non-reflective glass thus competed with oil painting, but it is likely that the production cost and the weight were prohibitive. This amazing technology did not become a major art.
POST SALE COMMENT
The result, $ 330K before fees, is close to the price obtained earlier by Christie's. For this unusual object, the lack of signature had no influence.
1900 BLACK MEN OF GALLE, WHO ARE YOU ?
2009 SOLD 180 K€ INCLUDING PREMIUM
The title of the vase is "les Hommes Noirs" (black men). Gallé had a symbolist mind, and we should not seek human forms on this vase. As against, the color is very dark, with floral items going up in glowing colors.
The subject is neither Africans nor the coal miners, so-called "black faces". The glass is bearing an inscription from a poem by Béranger: "Hommes Noirs, d'où sortez-vous ? Nous sortons de dessous terre" (Black Men, where are you coming from? We are emerging from below ground." Béranger, the most important French song writer of the nineteenth century, had been a social activist. As Gallé. And an artist who became famous without relying on high society. As Gallé. Black men are the shadows of the libel, on the occasion of the Exposition Universelle de Paris 1900, during which Gallé wants to loud his voice in favor of Dreyfus.
Review our strange vase. Baluster, with a very round body and a short cylindrical neck, it has not the familiar shape or happy colors of usual Gallé vases. It is also co-signed by Victor Prouvé. 39 cm high, in a sector where large size helps reaching high prices, it is estimated 60 K €, in the estate sale of Gallé's grandson, organized by Ader in Paris (Drouot) on March 20.
Really important Gallé vases fetch much higher prices. The verdict of the auction will establish what we really have to think about this one.
POST SALE COMMENT
The result, 147 K € excluding fees, is close to that of large vases more typical of the shapes and subjects of Gallé. In the same price range, a chalice vase sold 182 K € inclusive by Millon at Drouot on 4 April 2008.
AMENDING THE DESCRIPTION
I did not see human forms in his vase. In fact, its dark shades made it difficult to analyze through the photos. La Gazette de l'Hôtel Drouot, more precisely, said in its issue of today that "the decor mixes snakes, dark human figures and a clawed monster."
I understand better the value and price of this vase when I know that the image is consistent with the text.
1900-1902 Gold Fish in New York
The boss was also passionate about his water garden in Long Island and about the Asian arts. He enjoyed trying to acclimatize goldfish in the aquarium and in his pond.
Tiffany recommends to his collaborators the creation of an art directly inspired by the nature. The elegant and varied positions of his goldfish swimming amidst aquatic plants are however very reminiscent to the Jiajing jars of the Ming dynasty.
The Exposition Universelle of Paris in 1900 is a consecration for Tiffany and his favrile. A stained glass window named Fish at play has been exhibited therein.
On May 23 in New York, Sotheby's sells a table lamp titled Fish and waves, lot 214 estimated $ 1M. It is decorated with nine goldfish on the lampshade and three fish rising in the wave on the bronze base. This shade 38 cm in diameter shaped as a flattened spheric aquarium is highly rare in the production of Tiffany.
The lamp is marked with the monogram of the Tiffany Glass and Decorating Company, a trade name that was made obsolete in 1902 when the company became Tiffany Studios.
The base from a Japanese inspiration was still listed in the catalog in 1906, undoubtedly associated with a cheaper globe in blown glass. The lamp that comes at auction can be considered as a unique piece perfectly illustrating the ambition of Louis Comfort Tiffany to be considered as an art creator.
1902 TIFFANY BACK FROM JAPAN
This is the story of the co-operation between an acknowledged expert and an avid collector. Specialist of decorative arts at Christie's, Alastair Duncan met Takeo Horiuchi in 1992 and helped him to assemble one of the finest collections in the world of glass from Tiffany Studios.
The following is almost pathetic. The fragility of the pieces of his collection made the collector anxious. As early as 1994, he had created a museum in Nagoya. The city is threatened by earthquakes, and he transferred the museumto Matsue, in the south of Honshu island, naming it the Louis C. Tiffany Garden Museum.
The disaster of 2011 showed that this localization is not better, and Horiuchi decided to sell the whole to a consortium led by the auctioneer Allen Michaan. An auction is organized by Michaan's in Alameda CA onNovember 17.
The top lot of the sale is a table lamp with grapes, estimated $ 900K. It is based on the same concept as thewisteria lamp of 1901, with a bronze trunk and a wide bell shaped shade. The stylish grape lamps also feature an irregular edge of the lampshade.
Another copy, very similar in shape but with other colors, was sold for $ 1.2 million including premium bySotheby's on 16 December 2010. This lamp is 68 cm high with 46 cm shade diameter. Sotheby's dates it circa1902.
1906-1933 THE RAREST TIFFANY LAMPS
2012 BOTH UNSOLD
The dispersal at auction of the collection of the Louis C. Tiffany Garden Museum, which was in Matsue, Japan, has already been discussed in this group when I introduced one of the finest production models made by Tiffany Studios, the lamp with grapes. The sale is organized by Michaan's on November 17 in Alameda, CA.
Two masterpieces of Tiffany are also available. These table lamps have in common a great difficulty of executionand the highest rarity.
For each of both lamps, the classical trunk bronze foot is replaced by a frame enclosing a glass baluster box wherein the light is positioned.
The cobweb lamp (also named spiderweb lamp) was designed before 1901 for combustion fuel. The copy for sale,77 cm high, is the electrified version described in the 1906 Tiffany catalog. The baluster base is beautifully decorated with wildflowers. The auction catalog indicates that this copy is the best among seven known. The estimate is not published.
Collected during the inventory that followed the death of Tiffany in 1933, the other lamp has never appeared in the catalog of the brand and its date of manufacture is probably not identifiable. 72 cm high, this unique specimen isnow known as the zinnia lamp because of the decoration of the shade. It is estimated $ 1M.
Here is an image of the cobweb lamp, shared by Michaan's on Ow.ly.
1910 LIGHT AND FIRE
2011 SOLD 170 K$ BEFORE FEES
Tiffany lamps of the early twentieth century with floral decoration marked the undisputed climax of glass lamps.The models that followed, however, do not lack merit.
Made circa 1910, the salamander lamp is also composed of a glass shade over a gilt bronze foot, with stylized and fanciful motifs.
The fantastic animals run in a frieze around the lampshade with vivid colors of fire, red and yellow, also mixed withblue. The sculpture of the base is a strange pattern of bird skeletons.
A copy measuring 67 cm high and 46 cm in shade diameter is estimated $ 250K, for sale on May 14 by Ivey Selkirk in Saint Louis MO. The illustrated catalog page is shared by the bidding provider LiveAuctioneers.
POST SALE COMMENT
The result before fees is available on LiveAuctioneers : $ 170K.
1913 lost wax on glass by lalique
1998 sold for $ 410k including premium by Christie's
I narrated it as follows in 2012 :
During his long career, Lalique mastered the full range of glass art, from luxury to mass production.
In 1911 he wanted to develop his luxury products in large size, hitherto disadvantaged by high rates of breakage. He began to improve the technique of cire perdue (lost wax) which he was already applying for several years in small bottles.
The first tests were satisfactory. Lalique hired the engineer Maurice Bergelin and entrusted to him the development of this complex process requiring a control of the thermal properties of materials at different stages of heating and cooling.
Executed by Bergelin under the guidance of Lalique in 1913, the 'Roses' vase is an achievement of this pioneering period. Less common than the similar technique for bronze, the verre à cire perdue reproduces its ephemeral wax mould with a great quality of sculpture in the bulk while also allowing the application of a patina.
Each cire perdue glass artwork was unique. Another Roses vase by Lalique is known. The location of a third specimen has been lost.
1915 Magnolia by Tiffany
2010 SOLD 660 K$ including premium
I noted to our archives on December 8, 2009 a Peony lamp sold $ 1.54 million including premium by Christie's from an estimate of $ 600K.
Going a little further back in time, I checked my article on the sale made by Sotheby's on June 14, 2008: an Apple Blossom lamp had reached the unexpected price of 930 K $ including fees on an estimate of $ 250K.
In the same sale at Sotheby's, a floor lamp 2 meters high with a Magnolia shade reference 1599 being offered at $ 700 K was the highest estimate of the sale, but had not found a buyer.
Estimated $ 500K, another Magnolia floor lamp to sell at Cottone in Geneseo NY on March 27 is virtually identical, with a shade of the same reference and a very similar base (reference 375, against 376 for Sotheby's copy).
Sotheby's catalog was dating this piece to circa 1915.
POST SALE COMMENT
Attracted by the star lot of the sale, a portrait of George Washington by Gilbert Stuart, the local press has been more rapid than the auction house to publish the result on the web.
The painting was sold 925 K $ excl, $ 1.06 million including premium.
The lamp has been sold 575 K$ before fees, 660 K$ including premium.
1915 Patented Contour for Coca-Cola
2019 sold for $ 110k including premium
The contest is won in August 1915 by the Root Glass Company. Its designer Earl R. Dean had imitated the oval shape of a cocoa bean whose vertical streaks will appear embossed instead of grooved. The patent application is filed under the name of A. Samuelson on August 18 and accepted on November 16. This is the first patent granted by the Patent Office for a bottle shape.
The first prototype was not usable with a conveyor belt, requiring a modification of the diameters. Two prototypes of this second version identified by Coca-Cola as the 'classic contour bottle' have recently surfaced.
One of them, from the estate of Earl R. Dean, was accompanied by the autograph sketch made in 1915 by the inventor to show the front of the bottle with the Coca-Cola logo. The drawing of the back side, sent to Washington as an attachment to the patent application, is lost. Both lots were sold by Julien's on December 3, 2011 : for $ 240K including premium for the bottle and for $ 230K including premium for the drawing.
The other example had been kept by a Coca-Cola employee who had previously worked at Root Glass. This intermediate prototype is characterized by the Atlanta location featured on the heel. It may be earlier than the specimen that had been preserved by Dean. This bottle in mint condition is estimated $ 100K for sale by Morphy in Las Vegas on April 14, lot 2285 here linked on the LiveAuctioneers bidding platform.
A rare @CocaCola prototype bottle sold for $110,700 and was the top lot at @MorphyAuctions April 12-14 auction in Las Vegas. The modified prototype bottle was created by the Root Glass Company in 1915 https://t.co/Qi0MfkVZwQ #antiques #antique #coke #bottles #bottle #glass pic.twitter.com/KJZmsX8z64— Maine Antique Digest (@AntiqueDigest) May 29, 2019
1916 The Original Coca-Cola Bottle
2011 SOLD 240 K$ including premium
The Coca-Cola brand was introduced in 1887, then the company increased its market share rapidly. The bottle of this beverage was to become an iconic product of the United States of America, acknowledged as such by Warhol.
In 1916, a marketing idea is conducive to that success. Coca-Cola need a bottle of such original shape that the consumer can recognize it in the dark. A competition is held. The name of the winner is Earl R. Dean.
On December 3 in Beverly Hills, Julien's will auction two lots that had been kept in the family of the inventor. One is the original preparatory sketch drawing of the bottle of Coca-Cola. The other is an actual specimen of this bottle.
Dean's grandson considers that only one other copy is in existence, owned by Coca Cola. Indeed the first design, while directly inspiring the final model, had to be changed immediately. The original bulge was wider than the base, and the bottle was too unstable and difficult to put into crates for shipment.
Not talking about the estimates. 24 hours before the sale, they are already largely exceeded.
POST SALE COMMENT
Both pieces contribute equally to the birth of the myth. First offered of these two lots, the sketch got $ 190K hammer price, 228K including premium. The bottle was sold $ 200K hammer price, 240K including premium.
1924-1925 The Barovier Artists
In Murano, the Barovier family has produced Venetian glass objects since 1295. Around 1871 the brothers Giuseppe and Benvenuto Barovier managed to create pieces of blown glass including murrine. This technique is called Mosaico. Around 1914 Giuseppe began to produce pieces inspired by the endless textures of Klimt's paintings.
Leaving Salviati in 1896, the Barovier brothers created the company Vetreria Artisti Barovier. The next generation is made up of two brothers, Niccolo and Ercole, nephews of the previous ones.
On April 2 in Chicago, Wright sells a 33 cm high Mosaico vase signed by Niccolo circa 1924-1925. It is estimated $ 300K, lot 160 linked here on the LiveAuctioneers bidding platform.
Here are three results including premium from the same auction house. By Niccolo, $ 317K on January 24, 2019 for a 38 cm high Mosaico vase. By Ercole, $ 257K on May 19, 2016 for a 35 cm high Mosaico vase. For the following period, let us refer to a 24 cm high vase with murrine within a red quartz cloisonné, made by Ercole in 1930, sold for $ 317K on May 20, 2014.
<1932 Lalique Mascots
2012 SOLD 800 K$ including premium
His perfume bottles made for the top brands are soon becoming popular. His glass statuettes get an industrial application: the automobile mascot.
Through the catalogs of his company, Lalique models are perfectly listed and dated. So it is well known that he created 27 mascots from 1927 to 1931. The diversity of themes (animals, allegories and even two female nudes) is also typical. They are often inspired by speed.
On March 10 in Amelia Island FL, RM Auctions sells as a single lot a complete collection of Lalique automobile mascots. Not only this collection includes the rarest piece, the fox, but also the three paperweights (including two earler pieces) that had been grouped in the same section of the catalog of 1932 due to similarity in size, for an overall figure of 30 pieces.
This exceptional collection is estimated $ 800K.
POST SALE COMMENT
The collection sold as a single lot reached $ 800K, but including premium. It is indeed a very good result.
1937 SWEDISH GLASS
2008 SOLD SEK 190K BEFORE FEES
Stockholms Auktionsverk organizes every year in August for over twenty years specialized auctions of Swedish glass. This market is dominated by items produced by the glass factory of Orrefors, but there are other masters of Swedish glass, some of them being still active.
The masterpiece of the sale in Kosta on August 3 is a vase of 1937 by Edvin Öhrström, at number 277. It is estimated SEK 200 K, and the auction house had the courtesy to also indicate this price in a currency which is more familiar: 22 K €.
20 cm high, this glass vase is decorated in Art Deco style of a maiden figure and a standing character, supplemented by designs of plants. The colors are blue, green and orange. The auction house tells us (in Swedish) that the vase is made in a technique known as Ariel developed by the artist in collaboration with one of his colleagues called Vicke Lindstrand and a renowned glass blower named Gustaf Bergkvist. Do not confuse him with his brother Knut Bergkvist described as "legendary" in the press release.
POST SALE COMMENT
At 190 K SEK before fees, this Ariel glass was very close to its estimate.
1939 THE SPIRITED AIR OF ORREFORS
2010 SOLD SEK 440K BEFORE FEES
Founded in 1898 in Småland in southern Sweden, Orrefors Glasbruk is an outstanding glass factory with a wide production from usual to luxury. Orrefors has always been close to artists, and Edvin Öhrström made his career there from 1936 to 1957.
In 1916, a highly skilled glass blower working for this company, Knut Bergkvist, has developed a technique of multilayered colors. The idea is that the color effects must come from the bulk and not from the surface of the glass.
In 1937, Öhrström, helped by the masters glassmakers of Orrefors, adds air inclusions to the multilayer of Bergkvist. The reflections and iridescence come also now from the bulk. This technique is nicely named Ariel in memory of the spirit of the air in Shakespeare.
In 1939, one of the masterpieces of Öhrström for Orrefors is an Ariel vase (Arielvas) to the chameleon, by reference to the changing colors of this strange beast which is one of the stylized figures of the piece.
This vase 23 cm high is the centerpiece of the estate sale held on September 5 by Stockholms Auktionsverk in the collector's mansion in the province of Skåne. It is estimated prudently 300K SEK.
POST SALE COMMENTGood prices, as expected, for the most interesting Ariel vases of Orrefors.
The specimen which was discussed above has been sold SEK 440K. Another vase of same author and comparable design, dated 1937, estimated SEK 200K, was sold 480K SEK.
These prices do not include fees.
1993-2005 THE PYRAMID OF LIBENSKY
Contemporary art is playing with all materials. Among them, the glass is a matter for specialists. The variety of shapes and colors lends itself particularly well to abstract art. The effects of light, varying the colors on the surface and in the bulk, bring it close to the installation art.
The contemporary glass art is not well known to the general public. In Paris, several auction houses operating at the Hôtel Drouot organize regular sales on this subject.
As in the other categories of contemporary art, the larger works await the highest prices. Estimated 50 K€ by Millon, for sale on February 1, a pyramid is 1.23m high. A small red triangle is a part by one side inside a larger hollow triangle of bright orange color.
The catalog dates it from 1993-2005, which may be understood as the years of design and of publishing. Its author is one of the pioneers and school leaders of contemporary glass, the Slovak Stanislas Libensky, who died in 2002. The work is co-signed by Jaroslava Brychtová.