Recently returned to a family after it was stolen more than 40 years ago, Norman Rockwell's endearing Lazybones (Boy Asleep With Hoe), also known as Taking a Break, sold for $912,500 as Heritage Auctions
totaled more than $4.3 million at its Nov. 3 auction of American art.
Illustration Art swept the sale's top lots as Rockwell's Fishes Like Neckties, an interior illustration study for American Magazine, 1934, reached $200,000 and The Rescue of Theophilus Newbegin, painted by Joseph Christian Leyendecker in 1907 as a cover for The Saturday Evening Post, sold for $187,500.
"Bidders responded to the incredible diversity we brought to the block this fall, as evidenced by the by the 90% sell-through rate that we achieved" said Aviva Lehmann, Director of American Art at Heritage Auctions. "We offered superb material across the board, while setting artist records in the process."
The sale set multiple auction records in the arena of Golden-Age illustration, most notably for Albert W. Hampson's Bump Mobile, a Saturday Evening Post cover published June 22, 1940, which sold for $137,500, and Monte Crews' Amateur Nite - Cowboy Bill's Ramblers, a 1936 Saturday Evening Post cover illustration that achieved $40,000.
Classic Hudson River School and Impressionism fetched high prices on November 3 as well: A stunning oil painting by George Henry Durrie titled Winter in the Country, A Cold Morning, 1863 ,a masterwork identified as "one of his best contributions to native winter landscape painting in the nineteenth century," realized $324,500. Harriet Whitney Frishmuth's iconic bronze Joy of the Waters, 1917 far exceeded its pre-sale estimate when it sold for $150,000. Offered for the first time in nearly 30 years, William Merritt Chase's Untitled (Nude Resting in a Chair), circa 1888, brought $125,000.
Leading a selection of California and Western Art, Howard Terpning's Absaroke Trail, 1993, sold for $162,500, more than double its pre-sale estimate. Wild Heliotrope near San Juan Capistrano,by John Marshall Gamble sold for $68,750 and Dave McGary's bronze Long Soldier (Life-size), 1989, fetched $52,500.
Additional highlights include, but are not limited to:
Francis Criss, Third Avenue El, circa 1933 realized $62,500
Wolf Kahn, Redwing's Pond, 1982 realized $47,500
Leyendecker's, Fitted for a Suit, The Saturday Evening Post cover study realized $47,500