By John Perry in Auckland, on 18-Apr-2016

After a long 640 km drive overnight and into the following day I arrived in Wellington just in time to take a front row seat at the Dunbar Sloane Auction of the New Zealand Post Art Collection.

Eighteen mostly large format and big ticket items were being deaccessioned by a long established and powerful (but in decline) Government Department whose impressive headquarters was just a stone throw from the New Zealand capital city's only auction house, Dunbar Sloane, which was established in 1919.

Day 1 of the Dunbar Sloane Auction of New Zealand & International Fine Art on 14 April in Wellington included 18 mostly large format works being deaccessioned by New Zealand Post. Included was a large format crystal clear Steve Harris painting of a unique Maori Ratana Church situated on the outskirts of the central North Island ski town of Ohakune. Bidding commenced at the low estimate of $6,000 and quickly rose to the hammer price of $24,000, well above the top pre-sale estimate of $10,000.

Pre sale estimates for works in the New Zealand Post Art Collection ranged from $2000 to $30,000 at the lower end.

One of these lots was a painting of a unique Maori Ratana Church situated on the outskirts of the central North Island ski town of Ohakune.

The pre-sale estimate of this large format crystal clear Steve Harris painting was $6,000 and that is where the bidding started, quickly rising to sell at $24,000, well above the top pre-sale estimate of $10,000.

Another large format work which exceeded the top end estimate was Gretchen Albrecht's Nomadic Geometrics (Rosy Space with Blue & Gold) (Lot 15 ) which sold for $33,000 exceeding the top presale estimate by $7,000

Some of the other large format ''corporate foyer'' works were not as easy to find homes for. John Pule's large unstretched Nuiean Tapa cloth inspired painting Ka Fai Mahaaho (Lot 16 ) of 1996 was passed in at only $18,000 against a pre-sale estimate of $30,000--$40,000

It was works from other vendors that made the sale a success with a small oval Charles F Goldie oil painting of Ena Te Papatahi (Lot 24 ) selling to a telephone bidder for a top sale price of $305,000, well above the high estimate of $240,000.

This was preceeded by a well resolved semi cubistic oil on board painting, Titirangi (Lot 23 ) by Colin McCahon from 1956 which sold for a very respectable $118,000 against a presale estimate of $100,000-$120,000

 

All prices shown are in $NZ.

Sale Referenced: New Zealand & International Fine Art -Day 1, Dunbar Sloane, Wellington, 14/04/2016

About The Author

John Perry is known locally as a collector / consultant / curator/ educator and artist and is a former director of the Rotorua Museum of Art and History. For the last 20 years has worked as an antique dealer specializing in ''man made and natural curiosities'' from an old art deco cinema on the outskirts of Auckland. Over the last 16 years he has developed a multi million dollar collection of 19th and 20th century artworks for the Rotorua Energy Charitable Trust. He recently donated 120 artworks from his collection in various media to the East Southland Art Gallery in Gore. A committed ''art o holic'' he continues to develop collections of New Zealand and International fine art / folk art / ceramics and photography for future usage in a private/public ARTMUSEEUM of NEWSEELAND, not to be confused with Te Papa Museum of New Zealand.

.