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Design of the Century: Works in Glass and Grand Style Highlight Fall Auction of 20th Century Decorative Arts
Dale Chihuly (American, born 1941), Vibrant Yellow and Blue Persian Wall Installation, 1997 blown glass blue/green persian with red lip wrap diameter approximately 34in (86.2cm); yellow persian with green lip wrap diameter approximately 22in (56cm); purple, yellow and green persian with yellow lip wrap diameter approximately 26in (66cm) Est. $40,000-60,000, sold for $36,600. Photo: Bonhams & Butterfields.
LOS ANGELES, CA.- Bonhams & Butterfields held its fall auction of 20th Century Decorative Arts on October 5, 2010. The 400 lot sale offered a diverse group of high quality pieces spanning a century of design by well-known figures of the period. Featured works included strong examples of Arts & Crafts, Art Nouveau, Art Deco, Mid-Century Modern and works by Contemporary Studio artists as well as well as a one-of-a-kind Tented Room designed by Tony Duquette and Hutton Wilkinson. The successful Los Angeles auction brought more than $1.1-million. According to 20th Century Specialists Angela Past and Jason Stein: "Bonhams continues to be the auction house of choice to buy and sell fine works in the mediums of glass from all periods, from early century works to contemporary pieces."

The firm was pleased to offer a strong selection of works in glass by Dale Chihuly. Among the highlights was a substantially large vibrant yellow and blue Persian wall installation. The iconic Seaforms, brought $36,600, to become the top lot of the auction.

Additional works of note by Chihuly included an eight-piece crisp white Seaform with Burlywood elements, 1997 (est. $12,000 - 18,000, sold for $24,400); a three piece Macchia Seaform in dark rose with sage lip wraps, 2001 (est. $15,000 - 18,000, sold for $20,740) and a four piece Macchia Seaform in blue pheasant with rouge lip wraps, 2002 (est. $12,000 - 18,000, sold for $20,740).

Other objects represented in the sale included a selection of early 20th century items such a Tiffany Studios gilt metal and Favrile glass Moorish Chandelier, circa 1900 (est. $12,000 - 18,000, sold for $33,550); a Tiffany Studios Favrile glass and patinated bronze Vine and Leaf lamp, 1899-1918 (est. $8,000 - 12,000, sold for $19,520) and a Chotka cold painted bronze figural lamp: Coffee House, circa 1900 (est. $12,000 - 18,000, sold for $18,300).

Leading the High Style offering were a selection works from a one-of-a-kind Tented Room designed by Tony Duquette and Hutton Wilkinson. Assembled for a prestigious California home in the late 1990s, the Tented Room was designed to evoke a surreal experience for each visitor, the pair created an environment of fantasy and whimsy through an ingenious use of rich draped fabrics, strategically placed furnishings, mirrors and lighting, which were used to generate optical illusions throughout the space.

Although items from the Tented Room were sold consecutively during the auction, it was displayed ensuite, which enabled the public to enjoy and experience the space as Duquette and Wilkinson intended at Bonhams & Butterfields in Los Angeles during the preview. Upon entering the Tented Room, each visitor was transported, enchanted and inspired by India, Morocco and Southeast Asia.

Items from the Tented Room were 100% sold and the collection exceeded its high estimate. Highlights from the Duquette/Wilkinson masterpiece included: four Indian peacock mixed metal chairs inspired by the Peacock Throne of Shiva, which were created for Tony Duquette and Hutton Wilkinson in Jaipur for the Paris residence of Mr. and Mrs. John N. Rosekrans and also used for this interior (est. $5,000-8,000, sold for $19,520); eight black painted metal and hubcap wall appliqués in the sunburst shape created by Duquette (est. $3,000-5,000 per pair, both sold for $5,490); and a Tony Duquette Studios custom leopard print patterned carpet (est. $1,000-1,500, sold for $4,880).

Also featured during the strong fall sale was a Cactus center table designed circa 1951, this example created in 1982, by Marc Lalique (est. $25,000 - 35,000, sold for $33,550); a burled wood kingsize headboard, 1971, by George Nakashima (est. $5,000 - 7,000, sold for $27,450) and a monumental signed and numbered black walnut Trestle Table with book matched top inlaid with holly snow geese detail by Arthur (Tripp) Espenet Carpenter III. The work sold for $17,080 and established a new world auction record for the artist.

Auctions of 20th Century decorative Arts continue on December 14, 2010 at Bonhams New York.

Bonhams & Butterfields | 20th Century Decorative Arts | Dale Chihuly |


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