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Diverse range of lots draw the bids at our November Fine Art Sale

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A two-day November Fine Art Auction at Staffordshire auction house Cuttlestones’ Penkridge sale room drew interest from far and wide, thanks to a catalogue packed with quality lots. Over 650 registered internet bidders – the highest number via this medium to date in 2017 – a strong turnout in the room and significant commission and telephone contingent saw stiff competition across a particularly diverse range of lots.

Paintings perform again

Day 1, dedicated to art and paintings, saw some 432 lots go under the hammer – with achieved prices testament to Cuttlestones’ growing reputation in this field.
It wasn’t just works of art themselves that attracted the bidders – a pair of gilt frames were the first two highlights of the section with Lot 96 – a heavily carved example featuring pierced detail to the moulding – and Lot 97, a 19th C frame with outswept carved and pierced detail, fetching £500 and £700 respectively.

Next of the highlights was Lot 141 – a 20th Century Continental school Parisian scene featuring figures in a barge before Notre Dame Cathedral. Signed indistinctly bottom left and verso, it went for £950 to a buyer in the room; shattering its estimate of £100-150. Another sleeper came in the form of Lot 142, an oil on board impressionist study of a figure – again signed indistinctly bottom left and dated 1974, the same bidder snapped it up for £1,300 against an estimate of £40-60.

Next of particular note was Lot 150, a William Sidney Cooper oil in gilt frame featuring a pastoral scene of cattle watering in a stream. It sold to a private buyer in the room for £1,900. Doubling its estimate, meanwhile, was Lot 168 – a classical interior scene of gentlemen by George Sheridan Knowles – which went for £800. Lot 180, an unframed oil on canvas of a Heavenly Gathering consigned by a long-standing vendor, then went on to achieve £650.

And the strong performances didn’t end there – Lot 213 proved that modern art can also perform well in Penkridge, when an impressionist coastal scene of Cardigan Bay by the contemporary artist David Barnes sold bang on its estimate for £300. Lot 226 stood out as it sold well despite carrying damage – a 19th Century oil by John Frederick Herring Jnr featuring horses and cattle in a farm landscape and displayed in a gilt frame – it sold to a bidder on the telephone line for £1,100.

The watercolours section also provided some strong performances – Lot 294, ‘A Corner at Nantes’ by Paul Marny, sold for £420; closely followed by Lot 307 – a lovely quality 19th C Leeds street scene by John Sowden that fetched £480; then by Lot 308 – a pastoral study of sheep ‘Near Canterbury’ by William Sidney Cooper which sold to a buyer in the room for £420.

The final painting to really stand out was Lot 348. By local Potteries artist Reg Haggar and featuring a snow scene at Barlaston, Staffs – just a few miles north of the saleroom – it sold for an impressive £300.

However, the art section wasn’t quite done yet – the final lot of the day and perhaps the most unusual lot of the sale, Lot 432 – a full size, mainly complete vintage bone skeleton from the studio of the late artist John Sargeant sold for £850.

The jewels in the crown…

Once again, the jewellery section provided some standout lots – including two amber bead necklaces. Lot 506 – a single strand of vintage graduated butterscotch amber beads carrying some damage – and Lot 507 – a similar vintage set of ‘egg yolk’ amber beads – sold for £750 and £650 respectively, both on the telephone lines.

Lot 509 was the next highlight in this section – an unmarked, rose gold-coloured memorial ring, with a diamond-set flower laid upon a dark blue enamel type dome and surrounded by seed pearls which, along with an 'initials' ring in unmarked rose gold colour metal, saw the hammer fall at £480 to an internet bidder.

Last but certainly not least in this section was Lot 523 – a hallmarked, princess cut yellow diamond platinum ring surrounded by 16 brilliant cut diamonds, which went to a buyer in the room for £2,100.

Time to bid!

Watches and timepieces also saw some impressive performances – not least Lot 539, a hallmarked, 18ct gold open-faced manual wind chronograph by J. Hargreaves & Co of Liverpool which sold for £1,200 to a telephone bidder. Also selling on the telephone line was Lot 540 – a hallmarked open-faced pocket watch in 18Ct gold this time by Dent of London and bearing the inscription 'From the Viscount & Duchess Halifax. In memory of fifty years May 29 1868 – May 29 1918. And in token of much gratitude and affection' – which sold for £1,700.

The next star lot was also a pocket watch – this time of the musical variety – and consigned by the same private Midlands-based collector as the previous two. By Breuget & Fils it sold on the internet for £1,900.

Marvellous Miscellanea

The next raft of highlights came from a diverse range of sections. First up, a rare coin – a James I (1603 – 1625) gold unite, second coinage and bearing the 4th version of the Monarch’s bust. Consigned by a vendor from Birmingham it sold on the internet for £1,300. Also consigned by a vendor from Birmingham was Lot 616 – an Austrian cold painted bronze and onyx ashtray dating from the early 20th C and featuring five small dogs arranged around a circular base with well, which sold for £270.

Fine wines also stole the show – with Lot 634, twelve bottles of Chateaneuf du Pape, Domaine Pontifical by Roger Laget of the vintage 1986 – catalogued by Cuttlestones’ resident wine expert – sold to a bidder on the internet for £200. Also selling on the internet and showing the rising popularity of the style with Continental bidders was Lot 671 – a pair of ruby glass lustres along with a larger example which sold for £380.

Another example of a style which, although seen in some circles as dated, still very much has a fan base was Lot 810 – a Royal Doulton flambe figure of a tiger from a local estate. It achieved an impressive £180. And the ceramics success didn’t end there – Lot 832, a Wedgwood Jasperware two-handled urn with cover in green and white featuring classical and floral swag decoration sold for £280.

Figurines of a different type, meanwhile, came in the form of Lot 843 – a set of three Chinese bronze figures depicting the ‘Star Deities’ Lu, Fu and Shou. Consigned by a returning vendor, they sold for £550.
Next up was Lot 877 – a pair of 18th C antique Belgian flintlock pistols which sold for £500 to an internet bidder. Taxidermy from a private collection were the focus of the next highlight lots – some 15 lots from Lot 904 – 919 including fish and fowl both native and exotic amassed a total figure of £2,100; with the standout individual lot number 909 – a Pike mounted circa 1910 in a naturalistic setting which sold for £240.

Firmly in the ‘traditional antiques’ zone, the final run of highlights came from the clock and furniture sections. Lot 296 – an early 18th C longcase mahogany cased longcase clock by James Leicester, Drury Lane, London sold for £400 to a bidder in the room. A local buyer then snapped up Lot 935 – a lovely little French brass-cased combination clock/barometer which sold for £300; proving quality needn’t cost the earth.

The furniture section produced its own contingent of highlights – with Lot 939, an early-to-mid 20th Century kitchen cabinet complete with original canisters, originating from a local deceased estate, which sold for £300. From the strictly domestic to the very decorative next, as Lot 966 – a painted satinwood circular two-tier etagere, featuring floral painted detail throughout, saw the hammer fall at £420 to a telephone bidder.

Satinwood certainly proved popular with the same telephone bidder winning Lot 967a – an Edwardian Satinwood circular occasional table by Gillows for £550. A different telephone bidder, meanwhile, was successful on Lot 967 – also by Gillows, this Satinwood ladies’ desk saw the hammer fall at £750.

Cuttlestones is now consigning lots for its next two-day Fine Art auction which will take place in March 2018. To arrange a free valuation with no obligation, email [email protected] or call 01785 714905. The full results of the September Fine Art Sale can be found online here

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