Silver shines for October
With over 260 keen bidders and standing room only all day, the Philips October auction was a resounding success with a striking 95% sale rate bringing great results for buyers and sellers alike. Of particular interest was a strong showing in silver ranging from cutlery, figurines, teapots and comports, and featuring a fine Georgian silver sugar basin by Paul Storr that sold well above estimate.
Of further note was a delightful still life by Frederick McCubbin selling to a private collector, a Russian gem set 14ct gold cigarette case selling for $9,000, and an attractive Napoleon III tortoishell and brass boulle centre table achieving $4,800.
October at Philips features a magnificent collection from the estate of Murray Piper. From a leading role within the travel industry, he had the opportunity to travel the world and carefully acquire a fine collection of decorative arts which will be sold in 305 lots, including paintings, rings and watches. Also well represented at this month’s auction are Oriental furniture and vases, Georgian furniture and Persian rugs.
Most recognised for the iconic depiction of the early Australian settlers in The Pioneer, Frederick McCubbin is one of the country’s most famous and sought after painters. Taking pride of place in the Piper collection is a rare and valuable McCubbin still life, similar to the work acquired by the National Gallery of Victoria. Still life: roses and books measures 25.5cm x 27.5cm and presents an amazing opportunity to own a major stake in Australia’s art history. Director Tony Philips says “It’s not often you get something like this from an estate – this is one out of the box!”
At a packed, standing room only September Philips auction, 248 bidders enthusiastically contested over 400 lots of decorative arts and delivered a fantastic clearance rate in excess of 85%. The afternoon’s highlight was the stunning result that Philips provided for the sellers of a Nephrite tray bearing the stamp of Fabergé and master initials MP for Mikhael Perchin.
With an estimate in the range of $10,000 – $20,000, bidding soon escalated to $70,000 and became a fiery contest between two determined parties who battled it out in $1,000 increments. After pausing for breath at a remarkable $120,000, the chase continued with the triumphant bid coming in at a stunning $150,000 including buyers premium. On hearing of the seller’s surprise and elation at the amazing result, Director Tony Philips commented, “We love ecstatic vendors!”
With a great range of silver, 60 lots of Georgian glass, a run of Persian rugs and fantastic furniture items, the Philips September auction could not be better. However, with the offering of a stunning Fabergé Nephrite Dish this event is set to be even bigger with huge interest in this rare and desirable piece.
From the collection of John Traina, and featured in the Géza von Habsburg publication Fabergé in America, this impressive vibrant green circular tray is dated pre 1896 and bears the mark of renowned Fabergé workmaster Michael Perchin. Director Tony Philips says, “You don’t often get works of this quality. It’s a very collectable item, and it’s a one-off!”
Going, Going, Sold!
In an extraordinary sales event, Philips Auctions closed off July with a double auction featuring the highly successful Timothy Menzel Fine English Porcelain Collection, followed by a blockbuster Decorative Arts auction that was the sales focus of the year.
Demonstrating the calibre of the Philips team, the offering and successful sale of the important Eugene Von Guérard oil painting The Pinnacles, Cape Woolamai represents a major milestone in the years auction calendar. The record breaking sale was delivered with strong bidding, opening at $30,000 and rising in $5,000 lots to achieve a great outcome of $198,000 including buyers premium. The vendor was thrilled with the stunning result, proving the market’s appetite for quality items with great provenance.
Director Tony Philips said “This major result represents great teamwork, and the trust our vendors place in us when dealing with serious and valuable works.”