The design of François-Xavier Lalanne took top lot honors in Heritage Auctions
' $1.2 million 20th & 21st Century Design Auction as Pair of Marble and Painted Wrought Iron Bird Armchairs (large model) and Pair of Marble and Painted Wrought Iron Bird Chairs (small model), brought a combined $478,000. The near sold out April 23 event offered a selection of high design and the largest collection of Amsterdam's famed Droog design editions ever offered at public auction.
"New buyers ensured the auction was a near complete sell out," said Brandon Kennedy, Consignment Director of 20th & 21st Century Design at Heritage. "Collectors all over the world recognized this opportunity but the fact values were strong across every category shows the strength of the mid-century market."
In addition to Lalanne's Iron Bird Chairs, his Rhinocéros mécanique, 1980, sold for $203,000 and his 1974 creation titled Marble Bird Coffee Table, 1974, hammered for $30,000.
Three works from the Estate of Ray Frost Fleming, a Cranbrook Academy of Art graduate, notable studio artist, and owner of the Robert Kidd Gallery in Birmingham, Mich., lead the auction's selection of sculpture. Two works made by Harry Bertoia in the early 1970s saw intense action from bidders as Spray, reached $75,000, and Sonambient sculpture, sold for $50,000. Untitled (Tower), a bronze sculpture made by Julius Schmidt in 1985, sold for $17,500.
Property from the collection of The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas featured the largest single selection of the Netherland's Droog design editions ever offered at auction. Leading the collection was Frame Desk and Chair, 2009, a unique prototype by Studio Makkink & Bey, which sold for $35,000. Tejo Remy's well known Chest of Drawers, 1991, saw $25,000 after interest from eight bidders. Rarities from the Droog line also featured Jurgen Bey's Tree-trunk bench, 1999, which sold for $11,875 and Red blue LEGO chair, 2007, one of just eight produced by Mario Minale, which sold for $10,625.
The auction's selection of fine art paintings included Campus Martius (Cadillac Square), 1947, by Zoltan Sepeshy, which hammered for $15,000. Painted the same year that Sepeshy became director of Cranbrook Academy of Art, the bustling cityscape of downtown Detroit is preserved through depictions of electric streetcars and bold architectural edifices.
Additional highlights include, but are not limited to:
A Set of Four Lounge Chairs, 1954, by Florence Knoll sold for $13,750.
Desk (Model 901), 1959-60, by Bodil Kjaer brought $11,875.
Untitled (Musicians and Cocktails), a large and extraordinary hooked wood tapestry by Bill Hintz sold for $8,125.
A Chaise Lounge by Knoll International sold for $7,500.