Fine Art Auction achieves high sales in the 1 & 2 December sale. The two day auction lasted a total of eighteen hours, with impressive bidding many of the 1408 lots being sold online.
The sale hits a high note for the end of a fantastic year for Roseberys, who officially relaunched last month with the new expansion of the building and by introducing their new company Vertu at Roseberys. Vertu at Roseberys is a platform for online-only auctions to meet the demands of an increasingly digital marketplace. Vertu also features an elegant show room for clients to visit and engage with the pieces for sale.
Day one of the sale was highly successful, achieving an estimated £74,000 in the Jewellery section alone. A highlight of the Jewellery section was A Cartier Tank Anglaise stainless steel and rose gold ladies quartz wrist watch, 2014, with a silver dial and Roman numerals. The piece sat alongside other magnificent jewels including a rare set of Cartier bracelet charms and a breath taking Bulgari cluster ring of 18ct gold, featuring a 1.67ct oval cut emerald with a border of round cut rubies, highlighted with brilliant cut diamonds.
Cartier was founded in Paris by Louis-François Cartier and was made into a global phenomenon by his grandsons Louis, Pierre and Jacques. The three brothers built their international empire by travelling to Russia to serve the imperial family, before opening in New Bond Street, London in 1909 attracting the British aristocracy. Cartier have served the Maharajas of India to reset gemstones into modern pieces and since opening in New York in 1909, have provided jewellery to stars of silent movies and later celebrities. Between 1904 and 1939, Cartier was awarded 15 Royal Patents making them a highly desirable and exclusive brand. This watch attracted extensive interest from private bidders perhaps looking to buy high quality Christmas presents or complete their collections.
As early as 1904, Louis Cartier saw that wrist watches were the future of time-keeping and developed the timeless styles that underpin Cartiers designs today including the Santos Watch for the pioneering aviator Alberto Santos-Demant. In 1917, Cartier developed the original Tank Watch from which Lot 176 is inspired. The Tank Watch featured refined lines and strap attachments which caused a sensation when originally released. This design evolved into adaptions including the Tank Anglaise style, which was first seen in 2012. Lot 176 originated from a private source and had been a gift that was never worn, was presented in mint condition contributing to the high value of the object, which achieved £3,321 in the sale. [Lot 176]
Also included in the notable jewellery sale was a Rolex Oyster Perpetual Submariner gentlemans wrist watch, c.2014 with automatic movement, waterproofing, a screw-down crown, green ceramic unidirectional rotatable time-lapse diver's bezel, a scratch-resistant sapphire crystal and inner reflector ring engraved with the serial number P2162198. This particular piece is a green 'Hulk' Anniversary Edition, numbered 116610LV, and was supplied by the same private source as the Cartier wrist-watch in excellent condition and boxed together with its booklet.
Since the foundation of Rolex in 1908, the brand has been hailed as a leading innovator in timepieces, beginning in 1910 when a Rolex was the first wrist-watch to receive the Swiss Certification of Chronometric Precision. The complex elements in the design of the watch have been developed gradually by Rolex over the last century. In 1926, Rolex was the first maker to introduce a waterproof and dustproof wristwatch in a hermetically sealed case which was named the Oyster, the original design of the Hulk edition Oyster seen at Roseberys.
The Oyster was tested by British swimmer Mercedes Gleitze who swam across the channel with it in 1927 and found it still working. Furthermore, the date-just that is featured on Lot 177, was originally introduced in 1945 when Rolex released the first self-winding wrist chronometer. Finally, the Submariner from which Lot 177 takes its name was released in its original edition in 1953. This was the first divers watch, waterproof to depths of 100 meters and featuring the rotatable bezel that is still featured on the 2014 edition, which allowed divers to read their emersion time. The successful sale of this limited edition piece is owed to the high quality mechanisms of the watch, the rich history of Rolex, the pieces bold colours and the impeccable condition it is presented in. The watch sold for £4920. [Lot 177]
A strong Fine Wines section started Day Two of Roseberys Fine Art Auction enjoying great success, particularly with the sale of a bottle of Romanee-Conti 1976, J L P Lebegue and Co. Ltd, no 003264. La Romanée was bought by Louis-Francois de Bourbon, Prince of Conti (1717-1776) and Lord of Nuits and of Argilly in 1760. The Prince was a great patron of La Romanée until his death however during the French Revolution he was stripped of his holdings and his vineyards were sold as a national asset. Today the Société-Civile Domaine de la Romanée Conti is co-owned by two families represented by shareholder-managers Aubert de Villaine and Henri-Frédéric Roch and remains a luxurious brand with a Royal Charter.
The year of production of this bottle, 1976 saw a good vintage for the Burgundy region following several years of poor harvest. Not only is the date of this wine highly desirable, but it also originates from the Echezeaux area, one of the most notable holdings among a group of highly prized vineyards. The success of this sale also owed to the exceptionally good condition of the bottle, which featured the labels and seal still in good condition. This lot achieved £3567. [Lot 937]
Day Two continued with success in the Works of Art section with the sale of a late 19th century violin with an interior label for Andrea Verini, no 391 1891, Newbury and London. The sale of this violin continued Roseberys previous success in sales of antique musical instruments. As a popular and growing market, antique musical instruments have attracted great interest and the violins of Lots 1021-10125 generated widespread enthusiasm during viewing days. The quality of the piece as part of an extensive package with two bows and a wooden case enabled this lot to sell for an impressive £2091.00. [Lot 1022]