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News and Opinion

Recently conferred 'sleeper' status on work by British artist confirmed by sale price at Menzies Melbourne auction

By Peter James Smith on 11 August 2017 // Exclusive to the AASD
'July Flowers and Wood Warblers' exploded like fireworks in the evening sky at Menzies winter auction in Melbourne on 10 August, as the 1929 flower and bird painting (lot 12) by British artist Cedric Morris netted more than $280,000 (including buyer’s premium) on a high estimate of only $12,000. That is more than 20 times the estimate! The Menzies’ sale brought solid and accomplished results, with a 75% clearance rate on the night.

A good gourd smashes a pile of records at Art + Object

By John Perry in Auckland on 11 August 2017 // Exclusive to the AASD

When lot 93 was offered for sale by experienced auctioneer Ben Plumbly at the Art + Object sale of Important Photographs & Contemporary Art in Auckland on 11 August, you could sense the excitement when the bidding opened at the upper estimate of $15,000 and quickly doubled.

But it didn't stop there: bidding continued to $45,000, then to $60,000 finally ending at $62,000.

All the action was over a rare and excellent example of Theo Schoon's unique gourd growing and carving. The gourd carved in the early 1960's and entitled Incised Gourd with Kowhaiwhai Motif (lot 93) was decorated with a beautiful restrained Maori inspired design. The gourd had been in the collection of Jim Allen a highly regarded sculptor and art educator on both sides of the Tasman Sea since the mid 1960's.

A different perspective draws some good results for Bowerbank Ninow

By John Perry in Auckland on 11 August 2017 // Exclusive to the AASD

Auckland's newest auction house / gallery or should that be gallery / auction house Bowerbank Ninow held their 6th. auction in Auckland on 9 August 2017 which introduced a couple of innovations for which they should be congratulated.

Firstly, they limited the number of lots to 100, which I think is just about the right number for a specialty auction.

And secondly, the sale was focussed on drawings, or perhaps if you want to split hairs, works on paper as four of the lots were prints, graphics or multiples.

The two Johnnies Steele the show at the International Art Centre.

By John Perry in Auckland on 9 August 2017 // Exclusive to the AASD

The second of four sales in a week of high powered auctions was the International Art Centre's Important and Rare sale held in Auckland on 8 August, and it got off to a good start with the first few lots selling well.

A rare and spectacular small bronze sculpture by Paul Beadle (1917 - 1992) of Elam Art School fame, and formerly Professor of Fine Arts at the University of Auckland, entitled Rooms To Let (lot 6) sold for more than double its upper estimate at a whopping $31,000.

Typical of Beadle's lost wax sculptures that were inspired by the figurative Ashanti gold weights from West Africa, of which he held a large collection, Rooms to Let established a record price at auction for the professor.

Despite a damp evening, Mossgreen-Webb's does well in the first of the winter series of auctions in Auckland

By John Perry in Auckland on 8 August 2017 // Exclusive to the AASD

All four of Auckland's major art auction houses have a sale scheduled this week in a clockwork-coordinated series from Monday to Thursday, .

How do they do it without treading on each other's toes, I wonder?

A year after buying the tattered remains of the Webb's auction empire, Mossgreen have certainly turned around the fortunes of what was once New Zealand's most prestigious auction house, with a number of very successful sales over the last 12 months.

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Forthcoming Auctions

Mr John King's Station, 1861
Johann Joseph Eugen Von Guerard, Mr John King's Station, 1861, 40 x 84 cm, to be offered by Deutscher and Hackett Sydney 30/08/2017, Lot No. 10, Est: $800,000-1,200,000

Completed Auctions

Breakneck Gorge, Hepburn Springs 1864
Johann Joseph Eugen Von Guerard, Breakneck Gorge, Hepburn Springs 1864, 53.0 x 98.7 cm, sold by Sotheby's Sydney 03/05/2017, Lot No. 41, Price: A$1,952,000