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Tonya Cameron to auction European antiques and Asian art from fine Boston estates, Feb. 20
18th/19th-century gilt bronze sculpture of seated Guanyin, 7½ inches high. Est. $8,000-$12,000. Tonya A. Cameron Auctions image.

WAKEFIELD, MASS.- Beautiful estate antiques and Asian art from residences in Boston’s Newton and Chestnut Hill will share the spotlight at Tonya A. Cameron’s Feb. 20 auction. The evening sale, which will be held at Cameron’s gallery in Wakefield, Mass., also features a selection of amusing vintage toys, some in their original boxes.

A cataloged auction of approximately 250 lots is “just the right size,” said auctioneer Cameron. “Our last sale had the same number of lots, and we breezed right through it. Everyone was thrilled that they could choose from the cream of the crop and not have to sit on a chair for hours on end. We learn a lot from our bidders.”

Asian art comprises half of the Feb. 20 auction offering, with a range of objects that includes jades, paintings, furniture, snuff bottles, textiles, porcelain plaques, bronzes and brush pots. The highest-estimated Asian lot is an exquisitely carved circa-1890s white jade mountain presented on a rosewood pedestal base. Its three-dimensional details include a pagoda, human figures and landscape elements. The artwork is expected to make $50,000-$80,000 at auction.

“This particular piece came from a private collector and exhibits the very highest standard of carving,” said Cameron. “It is meant to be in the collection of a Chinese art connoisseur or perhaps a museum collection.”

A pair of matching Chinese huanguali cabinets from the late 19th or early 20th century will be sold as a pair. Each is heavily carved with two side-by-side drawers and double doors beneath an ornately detailed, recessed opening. Together they are estimated at $8,000-$12,000. The furniture section also includes a pair of huanghuali side chairs.

The highlight amongst the paintings is a signed Qi Baishi (Chinese, 1864-1957) watercolor scroll, possibly from the 1950s. Adorned with a floral scene whose motif incorporates plum tree branches and red blooms, the artwork is estimated at $4,000-$8,000. Another noteworthy item is the 18th/19th-century gilt bronze sculpture of seated Guanyin, 7½ inches high and estimated at $8,000-$12,000.

“There has been a marked interest in Chinese textiles lately, so collectors may encounter competition for the Qing dynasty Imperial family robe we will be offering,” said Cameron. A superior work of art with gold metallic thread throughout, its design includes many of the details that confirm its illustrious provenance: five-toed dragons on the sleeves, shoulders, front and back; and distinctive chevron-like panel work around the border. Profusely decorated on a predominantly yellow ground, this special garment is entered in the sale with a $3,000-$5,000 estimate.

Approximately 100 lots of French, American and Continental antiques will be auctioned. One of several items of special note is a signed and dated 1785 Spanish silver repousse chandelier. It comes to Tonya A. Cameron Auctions straight from a Boston estate and is expected to realize $4,000-$6,000.

A handsome Greek Revival (1820s-1850s) gaming table has eye appeal to spare with its elaborately carved foliate pedestal above four saber legs with paw feet. Its woods are plum pudding mahogany and satinwood veneer, with tiger-maple corners. Estimate: $1,000-$1,500. Other key furniture lots include a pair of matching French satinwood-inlaid chairs, a French gilt curio cabinet, and an unusual serpentine mahogany three-drawer dresser with porcelain pulls and inlaid floral satinwood rendering a marquetry effect.

Toys add whimsy to the auction lineup, with top lots including Lionel trains, a boxed Marx battery-operated Bengali Tiger, and a large (26 x 13½ in) Steiff Lion with desirable button in ear. A circa-1920 Heubach & Koppelsdorf bisque South Seas doll in grass skirt is estimated at $300-$400.

Additional highlights include Mexican and Southwestern sterling silver jewelry, paintings, porcelains, a pair of fine, marble-base torcheres, a 1930 fireman’s jacket and a magnifying glass with a figural Bakelite handle shaped as a hand.

Tonya A. Cameron’s Estate Antiques, Asian Art & Vintage Toys Auction will take place on Wednesday, Feb. 20, 2013, starting at 6 p.m. The auction gallery is located at 37 Water St. (ground floor), Wakefield, MA 01880. Preview on Tuesday, Feb. 19 from noon till 5 p.m., and on auction day from noon till 5:45 p.m.

All forms of bidding will be available, including telephone, absentee and online through For additional information, call 781-233-0006 or e-mail Visit TAC Auctions online at

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