“Braaq” was once again the buzz word at Hartleys quarterly Fine Sale on March 27th. As winter and snow stuck stubbornly like a limpet to what was laughingly named “the Spring Sale”, six examples of Brian Shields work took £62,000 or over a fifth of the sale total of £282,000.
The works, in a style somewhat reminiscent of L.S. Lowry but with more quirkiness and often a more obvious link to specific parts of the North, were entered by three different owners and claimed six of the eight best prices in the sale.
entitled “The First of Many”, a typical snowbound View of a
The only other
painting to compete with these was another
Another section which created a huge amount of pre-sale interest, without obviously the same financial result, was the annual weapons and sporting section finding buyers for 91% of the lots on offer. Of the four figure prices achieved, the best, and also the biggest surprise was the £6000 achieved for a handsome 19th century Indian Shamshir or curved sword, beautifully decorated but in need of repair, and which nevertheless represented twelve times its presale top estimate.
Other prices in
this section, were £1150 for a
A very eye
catching Japanese early
The start of the sale was devoted to ceramics, and the room immediately showed that buyers meant business as the first five lots comprising a total of eleven items of Royal Copenhagen mid 20th century Flora Danica dessert ware from an Ilkley estate produced £1690 between them. Indeed bids on the book showed that further pressure from the room on these lots would have been comfortably outgunned.
afterwards, a finely painted
The silver and
plate section was underscored by a fascinating collection of decorative items
entered by an owner from the
Also in the silver section was an Arts and Crafts goblet by Omar Ramsden dated 1927, 4 ½” high and weighing 5 ¾ozs which realised £1250, and a Charles II trefid spoon stamped for Marmaduke Best, York 1678, later engraved with a monogram, which doubled its estimate at £2,700.
A large selection of jewellery was offered, and as usual a reasonable quantity found buyers, right across the price spectrum. A diamond cluster ring featuring three baguettes and totalling 3cts in weight reached £2700, a diamond and sapphire three stone ring found £2500, a rare George III 22ct gold and enamel mourning ring with York hallmark sold for £1250, and a pale sapphire and diamond cluster ring (diamond total 2.66cts) £1750.
A pair of triple loop diamond drop earrings sold for £1600, and the best jewellery price on the day, a solitaire diamond ring with brilliant cut stone of 2.26cts within baguette shoulders found £4600. Another solitaire diamond ring of 2.2cts also sold well at £3900.
The fine art section, inevitably an amalgam of different commodities and skills, usually waits for a surprise or two. This occasion did not disappoint with the first lot a set of three George III bronze wool weights, each to weigh 7lbs, and discovered in a box of oddments waiting under the table of a January general sale producing huge interest and a five times upper estimate price of £3800.
The other main interest in this section centred around a small collection of Chinese damask and embroidered items of clothing, and a view of the names on the telephone bid list more than hinted at where the main source of the prices would be. In the event, two items stood out, a yellow silk damask skirt embroidered with butterflies and moths within flowers, together with a woven and embroidered silk robe reached £2,100, and a Chinese symbol robe in blue Kossu silk woven with dragons and cranes in flight which found £4400.
The final section devoted to clocks and furniture, whilst only providing a few four figure prices, still managed encouragingly to clear 90% of the stock offered. A table polyphon playing 19 ¾” discs found £1500, a Victorian mahogany library table reached £1350 as did an extending mahogany dining table with drop leaves, 9ft long in total and provided with the maker’s (A D Narramore) original watercolour drawings of the item.
The most attractive furniture lot was a delightful early 20th century pair of satinwood and floral marquetry gueridons of two tier circular form which in retrospect well deserved its final price of £2,400.
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