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Quinn's Fine Art auction spans Old Masters to Modern, with a premier of French paintings as its centerpiece
Leon Augustin L’hermitte (French, 1844-1925), oil-on-canvas harvest scene, 32 by 38 inches, est. $100,000-$150,000. Quinn’s Auction Galleries image.


FALLS CHURCH, VA.- Some of Washington DC’s most elegant homes were the sources for Quinn’s Auction Galleries’ upcoming sale of international fine and decorative art, with an afternoon session dedicated to Asian art and antiquities. The Dec. 10 event includes 750 lots led by a selection of French paintings whose overall quality surpasses that of any seen in previous Quinn’s auctions.

“We’re particularly excited about the French paintings in this sale, especially the oil-on-canvas harvest scene by Leon Augustin L’hermitte, which is expected to make $100,000 to $150,000,” said Quinn’s Executive Vice President Matthew Quinn. According to the consignor’s family records, the 32 by 38-inch artwork by L’hermitte (French, 1844-1925) was purchased from New York art dealers in the 1930s for a mere $200.

“Only recently, a L’hermitte of similar size and subject matter sold for $278,000 at Sotheby’s, so we feel the one in our sale could very well bring a similar amount,” said Quinn.

An excellent watercolor and pencil on paper laid to board painting by Eugene Boudin (French, 1824-1898) is initialed by the artist and dated “66.” The 5½ by 10 1/8 inch work is a classic scene of women at the beach with parasols and is titled Sur La Plage (On the Beach). Purchased at Sotheby’s in 1984 for $16,000, it is now estimated at $20,000-$30,000.

An exceptional Pablo Picasso (Spanish, 1881-1973) aquatinted lithograph, Tete de Femme, pencil-signed and numbered “2/125,” was created in 1930. With a 2005 auction price of $11,400 as a comparable, it is entered in Quinn’s sale with an estimate of $8,000-$12,000.

Old Masters are a fitting complement to the French artworks in the sale and include a painting by the accomplished Dutch artist Abraham Hendricksz van Beyeren (1620-1690), whose works have sold in the past for as much as $100,000. On Dec. 10, Quinn’s will offer an especially nice van Beyeren oil-on-panel still life that depicts ripe peaches and plump bunches of grapes in a beautifully detailed silver taza. The artist-monogrammed work was executed circa 1675-1676 and measures 24 by 19¾ inches (framed). The painting comes to the auction block from a London art dealer and has been conservatively estimated at $25,000-$35,000.

A signed and dated 1670 oil-on-panel painting by Jan van Hutchenberg (Dutch, 1647-1733) depicts a hunting party at rest in the Roman Campagna. Consigned by the same London art dealer as the van Beyeren, the 13- by 16-inch picture titled An Elegant Company Making Merry near Classical Ruins is expected to bring $12,000-$16,000.

Another noteworthy painting is a Eugene Claude oil on canvas, approximately 30 by 50 inches, that Quinn says “has all the elements for which the artist is known.” This particular painting incorporates asparagus, beets, pomegranates, a rabbit and chicken. Estimate: $4,000-$6,000.

Three Rembrandt (Dutch, 1606-1669) etchings are entered in the auction, including a 1633 first-state etching of Ship of Fortune. First-state examples of this particular etching are very rare, according to Quinn. “To our knowledge, this is probably only the third one to emerge in the last 25 years,” he said. Measuring 4½ by 7 1/8 inches, it carries an estimate of $13,000-$15,000.

The two other Rembrandt etchings to be auctioned include The Omval, second state, 1645, estimated at $8,000-$10,000; and The Raising of Lazarus, undetermined state, 1631-32, with an estimate of $2,000-$4,000.

The Saturday morning session features a broad range of classic art, from 17th-century Old Masters to late-19th-Century Impressionist works, but collectors of modern works will not be left out. The array of desirable modern paintings awaiting bidders includes such highlights as Montana artist Theodore Waddell’s (b. 1941-) 72-inch-square oil-on-canvas still life titled Blackfoot Horses, est. $8,000-$12,000; an autumnal oil-on-canvas landscape by Brown County, Indiana artist Derk Smit (1889-1985), est. $3,000-$5,000; plus one other work by Smit.

In addition to art, Quinn’s will offer 40+ lots of American, English and European silver; as well as decorative art, including an estate collection of Rookwood pottery. The majority has come direct from private residences in the DC area. A furniture highlight is a circa-1860 to 1870 American carved oak Renaissance Revival hunt board of unusual design. Its cabinets are carved with high-relief depictions of fish and fowl, and its top has a carved anthemion crest flanked by scrolling acanthus over a carved deer-head trophy mount with real antlers. An impressive piece, it is estimated at $3,000-$5,000.

The afternoon session commencing at 3 p.m. is devoted exclusively to Asian decorative art and includes a fine selection of 200+ snuff bottles. Nineteen of the bottles have provenance from The Estate of Edmund F. Dwyer, and were part of the collection sold on Oct. 12, 1987 at Christie’s. A choice example from the assortment in Quinn’s sale displays an opalescent snowstorm ground with red glass overlay carved with a continuous river scene and figures. Dating from sometime between 1750 and 1820, the bottle is estimated at $3,000-$4,000.





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