Royal Dublin Society, Anglesea Road, Ballsbridge, Dublin .4.
A sale full of quality and many of the big names of Irish Art are represented.
Amongst the 211 Lots are fine landscapes by William Percy French, James Humbert Craig, Paul Henry, Maurice Canning Wilks, portraits by William Orpen, Seán O’Sullivan, Paul Nietsche, and Harry Kernoff. There’s also a fair dollop of Abstract rubbish in the sale including two Jack B Yeats works both of which carry the top estimates in the sale of €100,000 – €150,000 and which will undoubtedly reach or surpass their reserves.
Lot.9.”A Kerry Bog” 1934/35, oil on canvas (16″ x 18″) by Paul Henry which carries an estimate of €60/80,000.
Lot.19. “A Passage is Required” 1953, oil on board (9″ x 14″) by Jack Butler Yeats – Est: €100/150,000.
The star of the sale, for me, is the Harry Kernoff portrait of Aer Lingus Pilot, Captain John Tweddle (pictured below) which has an interesting back story.
Born in 1917, John Lawson Tweddle was a keen sportsman, winning medals for activities as diverse as diving and athletics, and being capped for Ulster rugby on at least four occasions. During World War II he served with the RAF and was made Flight Lieutenant. After the war, he worked for Aer Lingus and was one of the first pilots to fly BAC 1-11 jets in the early sixties. He was a close friend of Harry Kernoff. The painting comes with a copy of a 1965 newspaper article from the Daily Express, featuring Captain Tweddle who was shortly to appear in a musical. The paper reported that Tweddle (the “Singing Skipper”) was being allowed a week’s leave from Aer Lingus in order to play the part of Sultan Ali Ben Ali in the airline company’s own production of the “Desert Song”. Ref.Whytes.
Lot.42. “Portrait of Aer Lingus Pilot, John Tweddle” 1960, pastel (13.5″ x 10″), Harry Kernoff – Est: €800/1,200.
Viewing: Saturday 2nd to Monday 4th March from 10.00am – 6.00pm daily
Some serious prices paid at both Morgan O’Driscoll’s Important Irish Art Online Auction on 12th September and at Sotheby’s (London) Irish Art sale on the 13th September.
Plenty of quality art in both sales, but plenty of abstract rubbish too – particularly in Morgan O’Driscoll’s sale. That didn’t stop it selling though – surely a sign that the tiger’s back! No better item to illustrate my point than Lot.1. “The Horseman” by the late Basil Blackshaw. This piece – described as oil and mixed media – and which is in fact a poor daub on the back of an old cereal packet sold for an incredible €5,000 (€6,000+ when the Buyer’s Premium is included). A piece of jetsam from a greatly over-rated artist and probably something never intended to see the light of day in an auction room.
Lot.1. “TheHorseman” oil and mixed media. Basil Blackshaw RUA (1932-2016)
Still, there was plenty of quality including works by lesser known artists such as Maurice Canning Wilks, Percy French, Frank Egginton etc. and much of it remarkably good value.
Full catalogue with prices realized here.
Meanwhile over at Sotheby’s there were some good prices paid for big names including Paul Henry’s “The Road by the Lake” which sold at £150,000 (£185k incl. Buyer’s Premium) against a pre-sale estimate of £60/80k; and Sir John Lavery’s “The Cello Player” which sold for £90,000 against a pre-sale estimate of just £20/30k.
Left to right: “The Road to the Lake” by Paul Henry and “The Cello Player” by Sir John Lavery.
Above: An acrylic on canvas work by John Doherty “Prescriptions accurately prepared” featuring Parke’s Chemist in Clonmel sold for a healthy £27,500 (pre-sale estimate £15/20k). A little too photographic for my liking but each to his own.
Full catalogue with prices realized here.
Woodward’s (Cork) forthcoming sale on the 17th September features several interesting works including this by George Mountsey Wheatley Atkinson – “HMS Conqueror off Queenstown” which carries an estimate of €5/7,000.
Whyte’s sale of Irish & International Art – Dublin 29th September, 2014
There were strong results for both contemporary and traditional works in last night’s Irish & International Art Auction. The top result achieved was for the featured front cover entitled LE COURTISAN GROTESQUE (NO. 6) by Joan Miró which sold for €68,000 and Sir John Lavery remains ever popular with bidders battling it out for LADY IN GREEN (MRS. CARA H) which finally sold for €30,000. Andy Warhol was in demand by both national and international bidders with DOUBLE DAISY exceeding its estimate to sell for €27,000. Whyte’s Press release.
Above: Lot.101. The child-like series of squiggles of Spanish painter Joan Miró “Le Courtisan Grotesque (No.6)” achieved, as expected, the top price – €68,000 (pre-sale Est.€60-80,000). As abstract stuff goes, it’s inoffensive, but not my cup of tea.
Below: Lot.100. the Andy Warhol screenprint “Double Daisy” again inoffensive is the best that I can say but at €27,000……
Suprisingly, Lot.22. an oil on canvas by Paul Henry “In the West of Ireland” failed to sell (the pre-sale estimate of €45-55,000) but you can still have it – see below.
Many of the unsold lots are still available see list here: http://www.whytes.ie/AuctionPDFs/20140929US.pdf
QUARTERLY SALE OF IRISH PAINTINGS
Quality and value abound amongst the 231 Lots on offer in Ross’s Quarterly Irish Art Sale on Wednesday 26th March next.
All the usual suspects are here including the overrated Markey Robinson, the awful Graham Knuttel, the talented but repetitive Gregory Moore, Samuel McLarnon, Ken Hamilton and Dennis Orme Shaw but, for me, it’s the works by Maurice Canning Wilks and William Percy French that stand-out from the rest. Both artists are still just about within the budget of the ordinary art collector!
If there’s one criticism that I have of many of William Percy French’s paintings, it is that they are too damn small – I like a bigger bang for my buck and that is where the likes of Maurice Canning Wilks, Dennis Orme Shaw etc. win out. Big walls need big paintings but it’s hard not to be seduced by the beauty and simplicity of French’s watercolours. There are two included in this sale with low four figure estimates.
Monday 24th March from 10:00am – 8:00pm
Tuesday 25th March from 10:00am – 8:00am
Day of sale from 10:00am – 5:00pm
John Ross & Company (MIAVI),
37 Montgomery Street, Belfast, Co.Antrim, BT1 4NX
Tel: (028) 9032 5448 Fax. (028) 9033 3642
Enquiries about this sale:
(028) 9032 5448 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
* (048) prefix from the Republic.
‘It was a night for the master artists of Irish art at our auction on Monday with top results for Paul Henry, John Lavery, Walter Osborne, Mainie Jellett and Daniel O’Neill’. – Whytes Press Release.
Once again proof that if the quality is there the price will be right and more signs that the price for Irish Art is on the increase again. The top price was paid for a superb work by Paul Henry (see below) and another painting by Daniel O’Neill – ‘Two Women by the Sea’ – considerably exceeded expectations. A selection of watercolours from William Percy French also drew strong bidding and his work is now approaching the outer limit for the more modest collector – this one anyway!