from our friends at Clarke Auction, Larchmont:
The antique market has reached a level where quality antique furniture is now more affordable, and modern design items are more available. Due to the mixed monthly offerings by local houses like Clarke Auction in Larchmont, the summer is an especially important time for buyers to get the best items for the best prices.
Ten years ago a Baker breakfront would have been a steal at $3,000 or $4,000. The same breakfront is now offered on July 20th at Clarke for an estimated $1,000-$1,500. The same applies to a vintage Kindel highboy now up for auction for $300-$500. The quality has not changed, but the prices have. According to local sources, however, the retail market for these types of pieces is still pretty active. Auction houses like Clarke have thusly provided retail venues with a supply of valuable merchandise for incredible prices.
The Decorative Arts selection of Clarke’s July 20th sale offers a slightly different perspective. Finely carved and cast marble and bronze statues, even in the traditional or antique vein, are performing better in today’s auction market that the furniture of the same era. A fine example at Clarke is a large outdoor bronze depicting Diana the Huntress that holds a conservative $6,000-$9,000 estimate. The estimate reflects the quality of make, but also of the desirability for these types of items in local gardens. Unlike more urban areas where outdoor space is at a premium, Westchester homes have the space and the style to support antique statuary.
Quality marble and bronze figural statues are also featured at Clarke with more affordable estimates. A finely carved antique marble figure of a woman in shroud is estimated $1,000-$1,500, while a bronze sculpture of a panda is featured in the $500-$700 range.
Many consumers have asked, “If antiques are where the market used to be, where is the high market now?” 20th Century Design is now the sought after category at auction, and Clarke has been able to sustain an impressive response through a variety of offerings.
Clarke will host a number of important designer pieces including a Kofod-Larsen “Elizabeth” Chair, a pair of which brought over $30,000 at Clarke last year to break an auction record for the pieces. The current single chair is estimated $2,000-$3,000 with higher expectations. A set of 6 George Nakashima chairs and a set of 6 wastepaper baskets by the Scandinavian designer P.S. Heggen are each estimated $4,000-$6,000. There are a number of items that span all value levels in the selection, and since the trend is toward interior decorating with either full modern appeal or modern design accentuation, there is a piece for any buyer. For sellers, there may be no better time to consign modern pieces to auction, especially with the results that Clarke has achieved specifically in the last two years.
Fine Art is another section of the sale has always maintained a foundational relevancy. Fine paintings in the July sale include everything from an oil on canvas of a figural scene by Teodoro Andreu, estimated $1,000-$1,500, and a Maud Mason still life oil on canvas, estimated $600-$900, to a pair of oil portraits of John and Jaclyn Kennedy, and estimated $300-$500.
The rise of works on paper and printmaking have also affected the buyer’s attitudes in the market, and Clarke will provide a number of important works including a $2,000-$3,000 Henry Moore aquatint and etching portfolio, a Joan Miro signed print, entitled “Lucifer”, to be featured at a $800-$1,000 estimate, as well as a Rufino Tamayo Lithograph, estimated at a modest $1,000-$1,500.
Jewelry and Sterling Silver selections often mimic the desirability of art insofar as they maintain a constant value for buyers and sellers. Clarke will feature many jewelry groupings of gold and silver at reasonable estimates to begin the selection before opening the biddings for items like a fancy yellow heart shaped loose diamond, estimated at $4,000-$5,000. A 14kt gold, diamond, and emerald ring, estimated $3,000-$5,000, and an 18kt gold, emerald, and diamond ring, estimated $1,500-$2,500 also exemplify the range of pieces that Clarke will present for auction on Monday.
Finally, the current secondary market for Chinese Objects and Artwork has become unpredictable, while still maintaining the possibility of high reward for sellers. Clarke will offer a large Chinese enameled porcelain vase at a $3,000-$5,000 estimate, a pair of matching Chinese porcelain plaques, estimated $1,000-$1,500, an embroidered silk fragment of an immortal at $300-$500, and much more.
The in-house previews will be held at Clarke Auction Gallery, 2372 Boston Post Road in Larchmont, on Friday and Saturday, July 17th and 18th from 12pm to 6pm. Previews will continue on the day of the sale,
The online catalog is available 24/7 and is updated daily at ClarkeNY.com. For information on lots, or to register to bid please call the gallery directly at 914-833-8336 or email email@example.com. Live online bidding is available at LiveAuctioneers.com.