Julia’s Spring Antiques & Fine Art Auction Results

. July 3, 2008

James D. Julia recently held their spring antiques and fine art auction, receiving high marks on many of the first-rate objects. In recent months there has been concern about the impact of the economy and rising fuel prices on the collectibles market. This auction clearly reaffirms that the market continues to be strong and vibrant. The one-day auction consisted of over 350 works of art, and 350 pieces of early furniture, nautical pieces, and all sorts of regional Americana, hitting a final tally of just over $1.1 Million.

A session devoted to a sturdy offering of American and European paintings was highlighted by a spectacular oil on canvas by Daniel Ridgeway Knight depicting a beautiful young maiden in her rose garden. An interesting point is that the maiden is the very subject of a different work titled At the Well by Knight that Julia’s sold in 2005. Fresh from a New England home, this work changed hands at $172,500 against expectations of $75,000 to $125,000.

Renowned painter of hunting and sporting scenes Edmund Osthaus was represented by an outstanding oil on canvas of dogs retrieving a game bird among an autumn landscape. In untouched original condition it came to the block with a $20,000 to $40,000 estimate and fetched a solid $51,750. Known for an entirely different genre, Norman Rockwell, whose sketch for The Pharmacist depicting a balding druggist carefully measuring became the cover illustration for the Saturday Evening Post in 1939. It hit $12,650 against an estimate of $10,000 to $15,000.

A wide variety of schools known for portrayals of coastal life were popular among buyers. William Glackens whose works are no stranger to Julia’s included a colorful pastel scene showing several figures enjoying the summertime shoreline. It neared mid-estimate, selling for $17,250. And a large oil on canvas work attributed to William Moore Davis depicting men in a fishing boat on a choppy sea reeled in $9,775, against a $9,000 to $12,000 estimate.

There were even a few bargains to be had for the perceptive and quick of paddle. Works included those of the Hudson River and Rockport-Gloucester schools such as contemporary Rockport-Gloucester artist Thomas Nicholas. His large oil on canvas wharf scene titled Gloucester Afternoon captured the essence of coastal New England. It was a great trade for one astute bidder at $20,700 on a $25,000 to $35,000 estimate. The French’s take on coastal illustrations came with Theodore Rousseau’s oil on canvas scene of two sailboats navigating along a rocky beach. It sold at the upper end of its $20,000 to $30,000 estimate for $28,750.

Back on land, masterful mountainous scenes saw active bidding. An outstanding landscape by Herman Herzog showing the Wellhorn and Wetterhorn peaks and a valley farm in the foreground exceeded expectations of $10,000 to $15,000 to sell for $21,850. And a panoramic landscape of the Adirondacks by Henry Boese brought $11,500, above its $8,000 to $10,000 presale estimate.

Other American artists included great works by Guy Wiggins whose snowy cityscapes show a little slice of New York City. Assorted pedestrians and various vehicles make it through another chilling storm, making us happy our most recent seemingly endless winter is finally behind us. One such scene titled Central Park sold for $22,425 within its estimate of $20,000 to $30,000. And a pair of still life’s of fruit and flowers attributed to Severin Roesen sold for $12,650 and $12,075, each within their $10,000 to $15,000 estimates.

Also worthy of mention is a tall oil on canvas nude by Belgian artist Emile Baes showing the subject pictured back to, peering out a window that overlooks lush greenery, which sold for $6,612 against a $4,500 to $6,500 estimate. And one of the sleepers in the sale was a mountainside village scene attributed to French artist Andrew Lhote that surpassed expectations of $1,000 to $2,000 to finish up at $4,887.

The auction opened with a fabulous array of folk art, Oriental porcelain and rugs, a mix of American and English furniture, and accessories galore. It was the rare and unusual that seemed to receive the most attention. A fantastic continental Rococo revival carved core étagère imbued with carved dragons and a bird of paradise supported by a winged female creature with goat legs more than tripled its expectations of $4,500 to $5,000 to sell for $16,100.

Other unique finds included an Arts & Crafts style American carved oak figural wall clock by the Michigan Chair Company depicting three minstrels. Having descended through the family of Old Mr. Boston distillery, it found a new home when it sold above its $1,500 to $2,500 estimate for $3,680. A fine life-size marble statue from the late 19th Century of a robed female with flowing garments so realistically carved, one would swear they were actual fabric. From a fine home in Belfast, Maine, it went out at $5,750 versus expectations of $3,000 to $5,000.

Other items of interest included a framed collection of 45 American military uniform buttons including early New England infantry and cavalry buttons as well as rare voluntary militia buttons. This outstanding grouping sold for $9,200, ignoring its $2,000 to $3,000 estimate. Synonymous with wealth and sophistication, a fine Louis Vuitton travel trunk with its trademark brown and gold pattern decoration sold for $4,600 within expectations of $2,000 to $6,000. A violin from 1630 and marked by the maker sold for $8,337, several octaves above its $1,000 to $2,000 estimate. And a blue decorated salt glazed 3-gallon stoneware jug (estimate $800 to $1,200) saw much competition, finally selling for $3,450.

For underneath it all, Julia’s offered a sizeable selection of Oriental rugs. A 19th-century serape carpet from northwest Persia with a blue black indigo medallion among pale turquoise lotus blossoms and stylized leaves sold for $8,050 against a $1,50 to $3,000 estimate. Its mate, a Heriz Oriental carpet with ivory spandrels, vinery, and latticework border surpassed expectations of $1,000 to $2,000 to bring $4,600. An unbelievable Mahajaran Sarouk palace carpet, circa 1910, with rich wine red field filled with intricate vinery and floral decoration throughout its massive 25 feet length was the bargain of the day. It went out at $22,425 against a $30,000 to $40,000 estimate.

Julia’s upcoming auctions include their toy, doll, and coin-op auction as well as a rare lamp and glass auction each taking place in June. Their next antiques and fine art auction is their annual extravangaza at the Samoset Resort, Maine, August 26 to 28. Julia’s important firearms and military memorabilia auction will take place in October, offering approximately $10 million in rare antique firearms including an important recent discovery of a historical Colt martial Walker pistol, the finest known to exist. Julia’s is currently accepting consignments for these and other upcoming auctions. For more information, contact their offices at (207) 453-7125. James D. Julia, Inc., Post Office Box 830, Department PR, Fairfield, Maine 04937. E-mail: info@jamesdjulia.com.

Category: Antiques News

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