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Meissen masterpieces fetch extraordinary prices at Bonhams European Furniture Auction
A good Meissen porcelain centerpiece, late 19th century. Height 29 1/4in (74cm). Sold for $50,000 including buyer's premium. Photo: Courtesy of Bonhams.

LOS ANGELES, CA.- Bonhams announced a successful sale for the European Furniture and Decorative Arts auction on June 16 in Los Angeles. Registered auction bidders competed heavily against each other particularly for the fine ceramics and glass offered at auction.

Meissen porcelain proved to be highly-desirable, of which three items surpassed their high estimates. A good Meissen porcelain centerpiece of the late 19th century sold for an astounding $50,000 (estimate $12,000-15,000), more than four times its lowest estimate. The item boasts a large, ornate oval reticulated bowl and reaches a height of more than two feet. The centerpiece is adorned with delicate porcelain carvings such as a maiden holding a cornucopia and a bacchanalian plutto raising a wine glass to toast. Also notable is a Meissen porcelain: "Triumph of Amphitrite," late 19th century, which consists of an intricately executed porcelain carving of a mythological figural group. At the center is the goddess riding a shell form chariot and various putti, nereids and mermen surrounding her and dolphins, turtles and shells on a raised sea form base. The fine example was hammered down for $33,750 (estimate $8,000-12,000), nearly four times its lowest estimate. Another Meissen porcelain centerpiece bowl, late 19th century, features at the center a panel of figures in 18th century attire in rural garden landscapes with a border of flower heads and flanked by scroll handles and putti holding floral garlands. The piece fetched $23,750 (estimate $3,000-5,000), almost eight times its lowest estimate. Equally impressive was a late 19th to early 20th century monumental Vienna style porcelain covered vase on a stand. The vase boasts a height of 40 and one-half inches painted with a continuous scene of classical figures, which brought in $27,500 (estimate $15,000-20,000).

Other highlights in the sale include a late 19th century fine Berlin K.P.M. and German porcelain and carved giltwood tallcase clock that achieved $62,500. Noteworthy Italian furniture and decorative items included an exceptional late 19th century Italian Renaissance Revival carved walnut fire surround, which amazingly took in $50,000 (estimate $7,000-9,000), more than seven times its lowest estimate. The item gathered intense global interest and ultimately sold to a London telephone bidder. A late 19th century Italian carved walnut sideboard sold for $23,750 (estimate $4,000-6,000), more than five times its estimate, and a late 19th century Italian life-size carved marble figure of a woman fetched $21,250 (estimate $12,000-15,000).

More than 250 clients registered for the popular European furniture and decorative arts auction in Los Angeles, representing more than 30 different countries. Many lively bidders were also in attendance at the packed saleroom on Sunset Boulevard.

Bonhams European Furniture and Decorative Arts Director, Andrew Jones, comments, "It was wonderful to see an auction room so full of people and energy. The international demand for the lots in the sale, in particular the porcelain continues to be strong."

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