|By Carole Deutsch
PASADENA, Calif. — An auction of Continental period furniture, fine European paintings, sculptures, silver and decorative arts was offered by John Moran Auctioneers on March 12 in a catalogued auction of 235 select lots that were acquired from a palatial Las Vegas private estate. Collectors from 37 countries bid with 240 in-house and 500 online registered bidders.
Furnishings were characterized by several unusual items that can be accurately categorized as once-in-a-lifetime finds. One desirable lot was that of an unpainted, carved pine, English mantel and room paneling designed by Daniel Marot in the late 17th to the early 18th century. The French architect and furniture designer was born in 1661 and worked as a Royal architect and Master of the Works during the William & Mary furniture period in Holland and England. The presence of the mantel alone would have been impressive but the accompaniment of six wall panels made it a unique opportunity for serious collectors and high-end decorators to acquire that which is virtually unattainable. The early mantel had some later additions that were appropriately executed in that the projecting over mantel was inset with a neo-classical oil on canvas portraying five women in a garden setting among a myriad of flowers. It was mounted above the surround under a swaged canopy that was flanked by birds and elaborate plumes. The mantel and panels had been deaccessioned from the Huntington Library, Art Collections and Botanical Gardens, and achieved the impressive price of $42,000 against a presale estimate of $15,000.
Another furniture item of distinction from the Huntington Library was an 18th century Northern Italian walnut cassone. The rectangular chest had a hinged domed top and was heavily carved in high relief with foliage scrolls and rosettes with figural putti flanking a coat of arms. This piece surpassed its estimate of $3,000 to realize $10,400. A Louis XV style carved walnut center table with a shaped and inset marble top had a pierced apron decorated with floral swags and joined by scrolled acanthus sheathed stretchers and achieved the sum of $10,800.
Among the sought-after items was a 19th century Continental silvered-bronze figural centerpiece. The piece stretched an imposing 40 inches wide with a 22 inch diameter and stood 13 1/4 inches high had an oval outline with scrolled ship’s prow-form handles and was embellished with foliate swags and four seated female allegorical figures. It was centered with an ornate foliate-crested cartouche, monogrammed “TEG.” It carried a presale estimate of $30,000 and commanded a price of $54,000.
A Russian silver and cloisonné enamel tea set made in 84 standard silver, circa 1899-1908, had an allover enamel pattern of flowering dogwood and foliates and was entirely trimmed with a celeste blue enamel beaded motif. The set was comprised of a sugar bowl, cream jug, and a pair of tongs and was presented in a fitted wooden case and had the maker’s mark of Maria Semenova. This lot was estimated at $5,000 and reached a realized price of $14,400.
A Hans Zatzka (Austrian, 1859-1945) oil-on-canvas that depicted a flower seller was signed twice by the artist, and it brought a price of $30,000 doubling its estimate. Another oil-on-canvas by Edouard Leon Cortes (French, 1882-1969) that depicted the Saint Michel view at Notre Dame was artist signed and sold for $18,000.
For an in-depth look at Moran’s visit their website at www.johnmoran.com.
Prices include a buyer’s premium from 20 percent to 22.5 percent.