By John Perry in Auckland, on 08-Aug-2016

Simon Bowerbank and Charles Ninow left the long established auction house Webb's at a low point under the management regime of Mowbrays Collectables in 2015, and with some serious financial backing started up a contemporary art gallery / auction house. Based on a new business model for New Zealand, they hold a small number of carefully curated auctions per year along with a gallery programme that features a ''hard core'' series of late 20th and 21st century Australasian artists.

A key point of difference in their business model is that they are the first and, so far, only auction house in New Zealand that pays living artists a resale royalty payment of 2.5 %.

Their first two auction sales No1. Contemporary Paintings and Photography and No 2. Contemporary Photography produced some rather mixed results as they have struggled to ''find their feet'' in an increasingly competitive and relatively small marketplace on this side of the Tasman.

Unlike other auction houses, their auction sales are only numerically titled, so auction No 3. featured their standard mix of carefully curated contemporary art & photography. As with all their previous sales their auctions usually always number less than 80 works, so time at the auction face is usually short and sweet

Sale No 3 was no exception but it did however produce some very interesting results in comparison to the previous two sales

Firstly their through rate was higher and the total sales on the night was the best yet. Top price was Grahame Sydney's Dog Champs at Charlie's Bar, (Lot 33 ) with a wide spread in the estimate of $80,000-140,000, and which sold for $90,868 inc. premium. Other notable results included Richard Killeen's Untitled, (Lot 14 ) estimated at $5,000 - $7,000 and which achieved $8,207 inc. premium, while Kia Ora (Lot 22 ) by Heather Straka sold for $19,639 inc. premium, within the estimate of $15,000- $20,000.

Shortly after the auction Bowerbank & Ninow published their auction sale results on line with a clear and easy to understand  image plus text reference including buyers premium for all to digest. Of the 62 lots on offer, 50 lots were sold.

Both directors were very pleased with the result and are now calling for entries for Auction No 4 scheduled for December.

Sale Referenced: Auction No. 3, Bowerbank Ninow, Auckland, 03/08/2016

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.

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