Nye and Company's first auction of the 2015 season is now live with over 800 lots posted to www.igavelauctions.com
through February 10th, 2015. The sale includes a wide array of fine and decorative arts from the greater Metropolitan area, but two collections stand out among the highlights:
The Walker Collection
The Walker art collection was amassed over 50 years by a Franco-American family who lived in Paris, London and New York at various times. The unifying vision for the collection came from Patricia Walker, who had been a promising art student studying at the The Arts Student League in New York with Hans Hoffman and with Fernand Leger in Paris. Reared in a conventional Irish Catholic family and educated by nuns at The Convent of the Sacred Heart and Manhattanville College, Ms. Walker went on to become a rebellious, outspoken modernist in her mid-20s. As her family moved back and forth between Paris, London and New York, she sought out the contemporary art scene in these capitol cities, attending thousands of art gallery openings over the years and bought moderately priced art that she liked. The collection includes sculpture, paintings both small and large, prints and various idiosyncratic objets. Many of the sculptures are British, the work of such artists as Paul Mount and Robert Adams, who were gifted but lesser known contemporaries of Henry Moore and Barbara Hepworth. In the late 1980s, the Walkers returned to New York for the final time, where Patricia immersed herself once again in the contemporary art scene and now focused her attention on moderately priced American artists and sculptors, including John Grillo and Jack Youngerman. She continued to attend art gallery openings and to add to the collection up until her mid-eighties. Always on the cutting edge of fashion, she was featured in The New York Times styles section three times, two of those times in her 70s and 80s. She remained rebellious, outspoken and curious about modern art until her death.
The Duskin Collection
Ken Duskin was one of the most famous and influential commercial art directors on Madison Avenue during The Golden Age of Advertising in the 1960's. He was the original Don Draper and a giant among the "mad men." By twenty-nine years old Duskin was the hottest young art director in New York. He drove a jaguar, smoked French cigarettes and had a keen sense of fashion and design. He worked at Doyle Dane and Bernbach which, at the time, was the largest and most famous ad agency in the world. He was a protégé of Bill Bernbach. While there, Duskin created some of the most famous ads of his time including the Volkswagen Circus commercials, Porsche, Hubert Humphrey's 1968 Presidential campaign, Nelson Rockefeller's re-election as Governor of NY and General Electric, to name a few. Duskin eventually left DD&B where he went on to pursue a career as a commercial director and photographer. After some years, he went back into the advertising world and joined Kenyon and Eckhardt, as a creative director. While there, he headed up the Chrysler account re-energizing the brand with both Ricardo Montalban and Lee Iococca, taking the company out of bankruptcy and saving tens of thousands of jobs. He finished out his career there working closely with Iococca until his retirement.
Aside from the two aforementioned collections, numerous sterling silver pieces by Tiffany, Gorham, Black, Starr and Frost among others are included in the auction. Some of the more interesting pieces are an Art Nouveau centerpiece bowl commemorating a twenty-fifth wedding anniversary and accompanying spoon still in its original presentation box. Other pieces from this private New York collection comprise serving spoons, flatware and other hollowware.
Paintings are also abundant including: a beautifully executed late 18th century portrait of handsomely dressed woman may depict Martha Washington. Coming from a private Pennsylvania collection, though unsigned, the work is thought to have been painted by noted artist, Rembrandt Peale. There's also a Folk Art portrait of famed Major League baseball player Pete Rose, done by, F. M. Brown, the Philadelphia Phillies team trainer. Another work, attributed to possibly Wladyslaw Szerner depicts Cossacks galloping on horseback. There are maritime scenes, landscapes, still life paintings and other attractive works. Numerous paintings and prints are being offered, including one of Chagall's Metropolitan Opera series.
Rounding out the sale is American, English and Continental furniture from the 18th, 19th and 20th centuries, including several pieces of mid-century modern, as well as rugs are from the first-half of the 20th century.