Twenty-five years ago this past March, Michael Grogan conducted the Inaugural Auction of his new company, Grogan & Company Fine Art Auctioneers and Appraisers
. To commemorate this milestone, Grogan and Company will be holding their Twenty-Fifth Anniversary Auction on June 16th, 2013. The auction will offer a fine selection of Fine Art, Furniture and Decorative Works of Art, Silver, Jewelry and Oriental Rugs. "It is exciting to be celebrating our twenty-fifth anniversary with such a diverse and quality filled auction," stated Michael B. Grogan, "With almost 800 lots, there will be a little something for every interest."
Fine art highlights include Landscape with Figure on a Road, a 14 x 20 inch oil on canvas by Texas Impressionist painter Julian Onderdonk (1882-1922). The landscape is estimated at $20,000-30,000 and will be included in the forthcoming catalogue raissonne by Halff Fine Art and The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. Sculpture offerings include Frederick MacMonnies' (1863-1957) Pan of Rohallion, a 30 inch bronze cast in 1899 by Parisian foundeur, Jaboeur & Rouard. Estimated at $10,000-15,000, the cast is a smaller version of a garden statue Stanford White commissioned MacMonnies to create for his Rohallion, New Jersey estate. Other American works of art to be featured include The Big Bow an oil by John Sloan, The Wind River watercolor by Ogden Pleissner, Marvin Cone's Iowa Barn and landscapes by Cape Anne painters Emile Gruppe and J.J. Enneking.
On the heels of the recent and hugely successful Contemporary Art Sales in New York, the auction will include a nice selection of affordable works. For buyers who don't have millions to spend, collectors will find works such as Forms in Space, a color serigraph by Pop artist Roy Lichtenstein estimated at $25,000-35,000; and Australian artist Sir Sidney Nolan's Leda and the Swan, a circa 1960 ripolin on board, is estimated at $30,000-50,000. Forms in Space was created in 1985 specifically for the Institute of Contemporary Art of the University of Pennsylvania's benefit "Rally 'Round the Flag. For philanthropically minded buyers, Notes in Hand, a set of 50 prints by Claes Oldenburg, is one of the highlights from a collection of Contemporary works to be sold to benefit the Hasbro Children's Fund.
European offerings include a 17th century Old Master painting depicting The Annunciation. In the manner of French Baroque painter Charles Poerson, the oil on panel is estimated at $18,000-22,000. In addition to a selection of Old Master paintings and prints, other highlights include a Portrait of a James Morley, by 18th century English portraitist George Romney, estimated at $15,000-20,000; and Study of Benjamin West attributed to English portraitist Sir Thomas Lawrence, estimated at $10,00-15,000. Swiss painter Fritz Zuber-Buhler's Girl with Chicks, estimated at $15,000-20,000, is a classic example of his romanticized views of peasant children. "The sale features over 250 works of art spanning four centuries of artistic expression," commented fine art specialist Allyson Lee, "As far as I can recall, this is the largest selection of fine art we have offered in a single auction to date."
In addition to fine art, the auction will include an impressive selection of furniture, decorative arts, silver, jewelry and Oriental rugs. An important furniture offering is a Louis XVI Marquetry Inlaid Ormolu Mounted Table des Muses, circa 1870, in the manner of Alfred-Emmanuel-Louis Beurdeley. This popular model is a copy of a table supplied in 1771 for Louis XVIs garde meuble. The original is in the permanent collection of the Musee de Versailles. With an elaborate marquetry inlaid and stained top representing the mythological figures of Urania and Calliope along with their instruments of astronomy and poetry, the table has a presale estimate of $5,000-8,000.
A pair of historically interesting Chinoiserie copper relief architectural panels, measuring 125 inches, is another highlight of the auction. The circa 1914 panels, commissioned by Mrs. Alva Vanderbilt and designed by the architectural firm Hunt & Hunt of New York, were inset in the walls of the Japanese tea house on the grounds of Marble House in Newport, Rhode Island. The panel, which was originally a two-sided panel featured at the main entrance to the tea house, was blown into the ocean during the devastating Hurricane Carol in 1954 and believed to be lost forever. Fortunately, it was salvaged and later surfaced at Goldberg Antiques in Boston where it was purchased by the current owner's father in the 1960s. The owner had the two sided panel separated into two one sided panels and framed in copper, as they are today. The panels are expected to fetch $30,000-50,000.
An interesting American highlight is a Printed Textile Panel depicting George Washington after a 1789 engraving by Cornelius Tiebout (ca. 1773-1832), after a design by Charles Buxton (1768-1833). Estimated at $2,000-3,000, the 26 ½ x 19 inches textile depicts Washington atop the pedestal in New Yorks Bowling Green Park, that supported a statue of King George III prior to the Revolution. A collection of L. C. Tiffany and Tiffany Studios lamps from a Massachusetts collector includes a Tiffany Studios Patinated Bronze and Leaded Glass Two Light Students Lamp, estimated to fetch $8,000-12,000.
Silver and Jewelry highlights from a private collection include two 18k yellow gold, diamond, and enamel pendant watches. One by Patek Philippe has a fleur de lis decoration and the other by Tiffany & Co. bears a dragonfly. They are expected to fetch $3,000-5,000 each. A Gorham Martele Silver Three Handled Loving Cup, made by Nels N. Haarklou and Emil Strasbery, circa 1905, weighing 38.5 ozs. should fetch $5,000-10,000.
Grogan, who graduated from Boston College with a degree in Art History, began his career at Sotheby's New York. First, he served as the head of the Oriental Rugs and Carpets Department, then as the Director of Sotheby's Appraisal Company and finally as Director of Sotheby's Arcade Auctions. Moving to Boston to open his own auction company twenty-five years ago has been an exciting journey for Grogan. In 1990 Grogan & Company assisted The Holyoke Massachusetts Public Library in de-accessioning over one million dollars of fine art and antiques. American Painting highlights from that auction included Eastman Johnsons Kite Flying, ($99,000) and William Chadwicks, Hamburg Cove ($93,500); the latter selling to the Springfield Massachusetts Museum of Fine Arts.
In 2004, Grogan discovered the rare and iconic Paul Revere Broadside, The Bloody Massacre, in the attic of a local estate which made a record price at the time of $195,500. A 2006 auction included William Morris Hunts Gloucester Harbor, which sold for $391,000, a price which still stands as an auction record for the artist. In the Modern field, a classic Joseph Albers, Homage to the Square, Late Sound, was sold in Grogans May 2012 auction for $236,000.
In the next 25 years, Michael Grogan and his wife, Nancy, contend their Auction company will move ahead with the times, as their daughter, Lucy Grogan, former coordinator of the Jackson Hole Art Auction, comes on board to work with the company's Fine Art and Jewelry departments. Their other daughter, Emily Grogan, currently works for Sotheby's London in the Digital Media Dept. and with luck one day will also join the "family business".
The auction will be begin at 10:00 a.m. Sunday, June 16th, with a three-day exhibition opening on Thursday, June 13th.