The last 12 months have been packed with highlights, and it has been a difficult task to narrow the list down. What is clear, is the continued and growing popularity of Contemporary Art and design. Here we share the best-selling Art, Antiques & Interiors of the past year.
Dawsons work closely with our clients to ensure that we achieve the best possible outcome for them whether they be buying or selling – we want them to be delighted. To this aim, over the past year, our in-house marketing team has worked tirelessly to market beautiful Art & Interiors to a huge global audience and ensuring we achieve the best prices for our clients.
In May, we were thrilled to sell a pastel on paper contemporary artwork by Joan Mitchell. Purchased from a private collector in the USA, a copy receipt dated the pastel to approximately 1975. Bidding across the world was strong, and the artwork eventually sold for £125,000 – much to the delight of our customer.
In November, Dawsons were privileged to offer up for sale art and antiques that had been privately curated by the late Dame Barbara Mary Quant and her husband, Alexander Plunket Greene. Among the wonderful collection were several works of art by Elisabeth Frink, who Mary Quant and her husband greatly admired – and with whom they would later become friends.
In June, we offered up for sale a fine and rare Atmos Clock by Christopher Nigel Lawrence. This design was one of five designs specially commissioned by Jaeger LeCoultre. From a private collection, this rare silver cased clock certainly drew a great deal of interest from suitors across the land and it eventually sold for £13,000.
This watercolour and bodycolour painting by John Piper (1903 - 1992), garnered keen interest from many of our collectors and sold for a tantalising £13,000 in April.
We kicked off the year with a spectacular oil on copper from a private collection which was part of a deceased North London estate. Our experts quickly identified the artwork as belonging to the circle of Angelica Kauffman (1741-1807). Kauffman made a reputation for herself by the time she reached her teens, a skilled portraitist, landscape and decoration painter, going on to become one of two female painters among the founding members of the Royal Academy in London in 1768. After some furious bidding, this work achieved £67,000 much to the delight of our client and the team.
In November, a matched pair of Chinese “Dragon and Phoenix” porcelain woucai bowls. Privately collected, our client was keen to take them to market and attain the best possible price. The bowls certainly generated a huge amount of interest, both internationally and in the UK.
The hammer eventually fell with the price at an impressive £30,000.
In September, our team was thrilled to offer this large Japanese, Tokyo school mixed metal and patinated bronze Okimono of a falcon. Part of a deceased estate, the gilt metal and dark horn inset eyes on a gnarled tree peony trunk over an exposed root base made for a fascinating piece. Finally going under the hammer for £6,500.
Another January highlight was this fine Louis XVI style marble top mahogany gueridon table, in the manner of Henry Dasson. Gueridon tables are a small pedestal table or stand, originally designed to hold a candelabrum in the late 17thcentury in Italy and France. There was keen interest in this gorgeous little work of art, and it went on to sell for £23,000.
Our client’s late wife collected table boxes throughout her life, attending auctions and antique fairs – she found them charming. Dawsons included this large copper table box with hammered finish from the collection in the June sale. Made by Fleetwood Charles Varley (1863-1942) for The Guild of Handicrafts (?), it featured an enamel panel decorated with a cascading upland river landscape. The artist and enameller Fleetwood Varley (British 1863-1942) was a friend of C.R. Ashbee and worked at the Guild of Handicraft at Chipping Camden and is known to have collaborated with Ashbee on some of his works. His work for Haselers was most often sold through Liberty & Co. in London. There was keen interest and the box finally sold for £3,000.
Collecting postal stamps has been a long-standing hobby amongst many enthusiasts, this presentation album included many 19th century Italian states postal history examples and went on to sell for a fantastic £10,000.
Our June sale featured this original signed letter by Oscar Wilde, part of a collection belonging to the Estate of Mr Peter Farley (a theatrical costume designer), it had been in his family for many years. Oscar Wilde was an author, playwright, and poet, popular in late Victorian England. His acclaimed works include 'The Picture of Dorian Gray' and 'The Importance of Being Earnest'. Renowned for his smart wit, ostentatious style and infamous imprisonment for homosexuality, the letter was written to a journalist who worked at Pall Mall Gazette and featured a discussion about the use of inverted commas. This fabulous piece of history sold for £16,000.
In May, we offered this large collection of handwritten letters, photographs and ephemera originally belonging to Sophia Duleep Singh. Princess Sophia Duleep Singh was a suffragette, Red Cross nurse, and critic of British rule in India. There was keen interest in this lot, selling for £10,000.
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