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Sotheby's to hold a dedicated sale of English & European furniture from the celebrated Kentshire Galleries
An Important Pair of George II Giltwood Pier Mirrors, in the Manner of Matthias Lock, Circa 1750. Estimate $100/150,000. Photo: Sotheby's.
NEW YORK, NY.- Sotheby’s New York will offer more than 400 pieces of fine English and European furniture and decoration from New York’s legendary Kentshire Galleries in a dedicated auction on 18 October 2014. The impressive range of furniture and objects carries estimates spanning from $100 to over $100,000, with the majority of works being sold without reserve – a unique opportunity for new and established collectors and designers to acquire the very best from the celebrated connoisseurs. The full auction will be on view in Sotheby’s York Avenue galleries beginning 11 October.

Alistair Clarke, Worldwide Head of Sotheby’s English & European Furniture Department, commented: “It is a privilege to offer works from Kentshire Galleries, a name synonymous with the very best in English furniture and decorative arts. Fred Imberman and Robert Israel are absolute pioneers in this community, with an impeccable eye for quality and a keen sense of what collectors want to live with. The October auction represents a spectacular opportunity for buyers of all types.”

Since its founding in 1940 by Benson Imberman, Kentshire Galleries has become recognized internationally as America’s premier resource for exceptional antique furniture and works of art. Mr. Imberman’s son Fred and son-in-law Robert Israel joined the firm in 1968, and profoundly changed the Kentshire experience. The gallery acquired an eight story loft building in Greenwich Village and elaborately appointed it in the grand English Country House manner. This became the unique home for a vast inventory of exciting and fine antiques sourced throughout Europe and America.

Kentshire’s new approach to presenting furniture and decorative arts coincided with a renaissance in the popularity of English furniture in the United States, driven by the Country House aesthetic championed by legendary decorators like Mark Hampton, Sister Parrish, Albert Hadley, Mario Buatta and Bunny Williams – all Kentshire enthusiasts.

In the 1980s, Kentshire expanded to offer a curated selection of antique and period jewelry headed by sisters-in-law Ellen Israel and Marcie Imberman, establishing a boutique in Bergdorf Goodman in 1988 to showcase this collection. In 2006, the third generation of the family – Carrie and Matthew Imberman – joined the firm, and in June 2014 a new jewelry salon was opened on Bergdorf’s 7th floor.

In 2007, Kentshire opened its’ store at 700 Madison Avenue showcasing fine period jewelry, artisan and vintage costume jewelry, and objets d'art. The gallery continues to exhibit at many of the finest antique shows, including The International Fine Arts and Antiques Show and the Winter Antiques Show in New York, Masterpiece in London and the San Francisco Fall Antique Show.

Fred Imberman and Robert Israel said: ‘‘Three generations of our family have pursued a love of truly exceptional objects at Kentshire Galleries. While we have sold our 12th Street building, and are therefore partnering with Sotheby’s to auction a significant selection of works from that location, we remain focused on our beautiful space on Madison Avenue and our new salon in Bergdorf Goodman. Our family looks forward to continuing our work presenting collectors and connoisseurs with the finest in jewelry and the decorative arts.’’

AUCTION HIGHLIGHTS

An Important Pair of George II Giltwood Pier Mirrors, in the Manner of Matthias Lock Circa 1750. Estimate $100/150,000

Matthias Lock's designs were the first in the full Rococo manner of importance and originality to be published in England. He had found a vehicle for his great fluency and English love of naturalistic ornament. Not only a designer, but a master carver as well, Lock worked with Thomas Chippendale in the middle years of the 18th century – it is clear that the two craftsmen were equally accomplished masters of the Rococo idiom in the branch of decorative woodcarving.

A William IV Ormolu Mounted Cast-Iron Italian Specimen Marble Top Center Table, The Marble Top by Giacomo Rafaelli. Dated 1831. Estimate $120/180,000
Raffaelli came to prominence in 1780 and was appointed Principal of the School of Mosaics in Milan in 1804, where he began work for the Napoleonic Court. The present table was acquired from Raffaelli on 8 March 1831 by Lord John and Lady Augusta Kennedy-Erskine, and remained in the family by descent until 1973.

An Anglo-Indian Carved and Inlaid Rosewood, Ebony, Hardwood, Mahogany, Bone, and Ivory Parcel Gilt Circular Center Table. Ceylon, circa 1830. Estimate $40/60,000
The Galle District of Ceylon was famous in the 19th Century for its specimen-wood furniture, remarked upon by a traveler in 1848 who described a tea table as a ‘fine specimen of the Point-de-Galle inlaid work, on which we are expended the varied beauties of Ceylon’s ninety-nine species of cotly wood. The skilful artificers of Galle tempt the traveler with exquisite productions of their art’.

A Fine George III White-Painted Breakfront Bookcase in the Manner of Mayhew and Ince. Circa 1760. Estimate $80/120,000

An Important Victorian Mahogany Patent Circular Dining Table by Johnstone Jeanes & Co. London, circa 1845. Estimate $80/120,000

German Baroque Japanned Bureau Bookcase. Dresden, second quarter 18th century. Estimate $80/120,000
German Baroque cabinets of the 18th century derive directly from English models of the late 1600s and early 1700s, when English furniture exerted strong influence in Northern Europe, particularly in Denmark, the Netherlands and the North German states. To the continental eye, one of the most iconic pieces of English furniture-making was the bureau cabinet, which was simply called "English Cabinet."





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