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Freeman's announces highlights from The Collector's Sale
A scale model of the S.S. Normandie repainted as the Queen Elizabeth and an S.S. Normandie decorative pillow, 20th century (estimate $800-1,200).

PHILADELPHIA, PA.- Beginning July 10, Freeman’s will host The Collector’s Sale. Now a staple of the house’s summer sale schedule, the Collector’s Sale was first introduced in August of 2017. Aimed primarily at emerging, young collectors, July’s auction will feature close to 1,200 lots, and will span three consecutive sale days, with each auction focusing on a different collecting area: Ocean Liner Memorabilia, Objects & Curiosities, and culminating with Furniture & Fine Art on July 12.With the majority of the lots carrying pre-sale estimates below $1,000, the sale offers the millennial and modern consumer an interesting buying experience and a more cost-effective alternative to high-end retail.

A selection of Ocean Liner memorabilia will kick-off the week’s proceedings. Around the first quarter of the 20th century, big shipping companies began replacing older, more outdated ships, whose designs catered to large numbers of third- and steerage-class immigrants. When the focus of transatlantic travel shifted from necessity to tourism, ship companies took note, offering Americans and Europeans alike so-called “superliners,” floating luxury hotels meant to be as much a destination in and of themselves as passengers intended destination abroad. Highlights from the memorabilia presented within the first portion of The Collector’s Sale include Lot 44, A scale model of the S.S. Normandie repainted as the Queen Elizabeth and an S.S. Normandie decorative pillow, 20th century (estimate $800-1,200), and Lot 53, a French Line souvenir ashtray in the form of a ship's funnel or smokestack from the S.S. France, circa 1960s (estimate $350-475).

The “objects and curiosities” offered on the sale’s second day include several specimen drawers of moths and butterflies. Lot 476, a set of 15 Gothic Revival walnut collector’s cabinet with moth and butterfly specimen drawers is estimated at $800-1,200, with proceeds to benefit the Philadelphia Insectarium and Butterfly Pavilion. A set of six specimen drawers is estimated at just $200-400.

The three-day sale will also bring to auction additional property from several private collections, including the Collection of Perry & June Ottenberg. The Ottenbergs were Philadelphians and patrons of many of the city’s most important fine artists. Freeman’s was pleased to offer artwork and furniture from the Ottenberg Collection in May’s American Art & Pennsylvania Impressionist and 20th Century Design auctions, respectively. The Collector’s Sale will feature more than 90 works of art and decorative objects from the Ottenberg Collection, including furniture and vases by Francis McCarthy, blown glass by Roland Jahn, and artwork by Philadelphia artists Arthur Beecher Carles, Jane Piper, and Elizabeth Osborne.

In April of 2017, Freeman’s hosted 1,000 Years of Collecting: The Jeffrey M. Kaplan Collection, and most recently offered nearly three dozen black-and-white photographs by prominent British photographers from the Kaplan Collection in the May 8 Modern & Contemporary Art auction. The Collector’s Sale will offer buyers yet another opportunity to bid on Mr. Kaplan’s collection, with 100 etchings, engravings, and other artworks up for auction. “El Sí Pronuncian Y La Mano Alargan Al Primero Que Llega” (from Los Caprichios) by Francisco Goya (Lot 923, estimate $1,200-1,800), an etching and aquatint on laid paper, and an etching of the Brooklyn Bridge by John Marin (Lot 970, estimate $2,500-4,000) are among the collection’s notable highlights.

Approximately 50 works of carved and turned wood vessels, objects, and sculpture from the Center for Art in Wood will also be up for auction. Located in Old City, Philadelphia, the Center for Art in Wood “nurtures and promotes the innovation of art in wood” through exhibitions, education, and collaborative residencies. Offerings include Lot 563, two vessels in bleached clack Locust burl and maple burl by Michael Peterson(estimate $800-1,200), and Lot 605, a cube, circa 2001, by George Peterson (estimate $600-800).

The sale also features a selection of copper pots, brass, and blue and white ceramics from a prominent Bucks County collection. The more than 85-item assortment will bring to auction Queen Anne, Federal, and Chippendale furniture, 11 works by Philadelphia artist and PAFA graduate June Groff, and smaller decorative items such as a collection of hand mirrors and candle snuffers (Lot 464, estimate $100-200).

“This is an extended and expansive sale,” said Junior Specialist and auction coordinator Andrew Taggart. “With so much variety among the property—and with most of it being offered at under $1,000—we’re expecting plenty of interest from both emerging and established collectors.”

A First Friday reception will open the exhibition preview on July 6, with exhibition hours through the weekend and on Monday, July 9, preceding the sale.

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