This year collectors of fine and decorative art wont have to wait till Christmas to see their wish lists fulfilled. For the opening session of its Dec. 10-11, 2010 sale, Dan Morphy Auctions
has brought together a superb selection of artworks from private collections and individual consignors that even the fussiest connoisseur would consider topnotch.
A breathtaking Tiffany Studios stained-glass window featuring a lush garden scene with trees, ivy, vines and roses adds the ultimate wow factor to the sale. The framed 43- by 72-inch creation, which depicts two massive columns, a winding path and an urn-topped wall, has been authenticated through expert research over a 20-year period by the premier authority on Tiffany, Dr. Egon Neustadt. Accompanied by a letter of authenticity, it is entered in the sale with a $125,000-$200,000 estimate.
In total, 20 stained-glass windows will be offered. Among them is a stunning Frank Lloyd Wright (attrib.) design that displays the genius architects trademark elements of linear composition enhanced by jewel-like mother of pearl details. The Wright window, which came from a residence in upstate New York, is estimated at $10,000-$20,000.
More than 30 art glass lamps will be auctioned in the Dec. 10 session. A Tiffany Studios Hydrangea lamp with a signed mock turtleback base is expected to make $75,000-$125,000.
There will be 150 paintings of various genres, including several original works by Johann Berthelsen (American, 1883-1972) and an important oil-on-board Impressionist snow scene by Colin Campbell Cooper (American, 1856-1937). Titled New York City During a Snow Storm, the signed, 15½ by 19½-inch picture was probably executed in the 1920s, and shows the influence of Childe Hassam, with its vehicles and pedestrians maneuvering through wintry conditions as American Flags fly overhead. Estimate: $20,000-$35,000.
The art pottery section includes an excellent variety of vases, jugs, vessels and tiles. The array includes 30 pieces of Roseville, 100 pieces of Grueby and additional pieces from Rookwood and other potteries. A star lot within the grouping is a 21½-inch-tall Grueby Faience floor vase with feathered Arts & Crafts glaze and two-color leaf-and-bud design. It is estimated at $10,000-$12,000.
Furniture to be auctioned includes cabinets, desks, bookcases and other forms, with 30 examples by Stickley and Limbert. A classic Gustav Stickley china cabinet with handsome original hardware could reach the $3,500-$5,000 range.
Brimming with eye appeal, the Dec. 10 session also boasts 45 figural napkin rings, 50 lots of silver, Asian ivory carvings, scrimshaw, jewelry and mechanical music, with a highlight being a Nicole Freres 4-tune fat-cylinder music box, estimate $6,000-$8,000.
The lighthearted Saturday, Dec. 11 session features approximately 850 choice lots of toys, trains, mechanical banks, antique advertising and dolls, with the first 150 lots consisting of 1,000 vintage Barbie dolls, fashions and accessories from the Cristol/Glickman family collection. Among the top dolls is an original 1959 blond No. 1 Barbie in a striped swimsuit and high heels, complete with posing stand and original box. It is expected to realize $3,500-$5,000.
Another important entry is a 1959 brunette No. 2 Barbie boxed store display, with the teen fashion doll dressed in a Sweet Dreams negligee, accompanied by a brass alarm clock and wax apple for a bedtime snack. The pink silhouette box was given to dealers in 1959 for display purposes only. Estimate: $4,000-$6,000.
Morphys will also be offering 250 high-quality hand-painted and lithographed pre-war German and American trains from a 40-year collection. Many premium brands and rare examples will cross the auction block, including productions by Continental manufacturers Marklin, Bing and Carette; and early American trains by Carlisle and Finch, Knapp, Howard, Voltamp and Ives. Additionally, the inventory includes a fine selection of golden age Lionel and American Flyer standard and O-gauge trains, engines, engine and tenders, complete sets, and some postwar items.
A colorful mix of toys and pedal cars will follow, with more than 150 pieces of pressed steel from a single-owner collection, 150 general toy lots and 30+ European tin windups and autos, including a hand-painted Carette limousine, estimate $6,000-$9,000.
Among the most coveted of cast-iron mechanical banks to be auctioned, a J. & E. Stevens Panorama with 95%-plus original paint is estimated at $15,000-$20,000. This is a truly beautiful bank, and it was consigned by its original owner, which is highly unusual, said Morphy Auctions CEO Dan Morphy.
Known for its strong following in the antique advertising community, Morphys will present several outstanding collections from that category. The single-owner collection of 70 occupational shaving mugs includes examples emblazoned with images for a Dodge dealership, a taxi service dated 1929 and with a taxi on it an ice cream delivery truck, and a race car (estimate $2,000-$4,000). Perhaps the most unusual shaving mug is the one depicting a carnival horse performing a vaudeville-style trick in which the equine spells his name in the sand with his hoof.
Other antique advertising in the sale includes more than 100 lots of Coca-Cola items and many advertising signs, including an ammunition display board for Winchester Repeating Arms Co., estimate $15,000-$25,000. A collection of more than 40 items touting the soda pop brand Orange Crush is led by an extremely rare neon light-up sign estimated at $7,000-$10,000.
Three separate catalogs have been produced for Morphys Dec. 10-11, 2010 auction one for the fine and decorative art session, a second exclusively for the Barbies, and a third devoted to toys, trains, advertising, shaving mugs and coin ops.
All forms of bidding will be available, including live via the Internet through Morphy Live or LiveAuctioneers.com.