NEW YORK, NY.-
On October 23, Christies
Important Silver sale will present 189 precious works in silver and gold by the 17th-century German goldsmith David I Schwestermüller, and English silversmiths Paul de Lamerie, Hester Bateman and Paul Storr. Among the sales many highlights is a group of works from Paul de Lamerie, including a Fine George II Silver Cake Basket, 1739 (estimate: $150,000-250,000), which with its significant weight and exquisite ornamentation, represents the height of fashion in the 1730s.
Another highlight is a German silver-gilt sideboard dish made by David I Schwestermüller in Augsburg around 1650, (estimate: $150,000-250,000, lot 141), which has remained in a private New Jersey collection for the past century. An object of the highest quality from the golden age of German silver, this monumental dish relates to important works in silver made in Augsburg, some of which were commissioned by European courts and intended as diplomatic gifts. A similar dish by Schwestermüller, commissioned in 1647 by Queen Christina of Sweden as a gift to the Russian Tzar, remains in the Kremlin collection. Other surviving objects by Schwestermüller include rare examples of silver furniture that were the height of luxury in the 17th century. The decoration of the present dish includes figures representing the four continents that may also allude to the series of long-standing conflicts between the Ottomans and the Europeans that devastated Central Europe in the 16th and 17th centuries. The armor laid to rest in the foreground of the dishs central scene may commemorate a rare period of peace in the centuries-long conflict.
The sale also includes 30 examples of silver by Hester Bateman, comprising the most significant collection by this maker to come to auction in recent years. Bateman continued to run the business after the death of her husband, using methods of industrial production with up-to-the minute neo-classical fashions, to become one of the leading silver manufacturers in Britain. Hester Bateman silver continues to have a dedicated following among collectors who appreciate the stylish designs and the legacy of The Queen of the Silversmiths.