PHILADELPHIA, PA.- Freemans
announced the results of its inaugural Ritual and Culture auction. Kicking off the houses Fall/Winter 2020 fine auction season, the 240-lot sale achieved a sell-through rate of 89% and realized nearly $680,000, well surpassing its pre-sale low estimate, and with 95% of bidding taking place online. A new addition to Freemans fall auction schedule, Ritual and Culture is one of four new, themed auctions that present art and objects from across specialist departments in compelling and unexpected ways.
Said Head of Sale, Tessa Laney: This sale featured a series of jewel-like collections that worked in tandem to tell a compelling story about the richness of human culture. Each group was assembled thoughtfully by dedicated collectors who were knowledgeable and passionate about their respective fields. The fantastic results of this sale demonstrate that well-curated collections resonate strongly with a range of buyers.
LEAF FROM THE GUTENBERG BIBLE EXCEEDS PRE-SALE HIGH ESTIMATE
The 20-lot Books & Manuscripts section achieved a 100% sell-through rate and realized nearly $200,000. The sale included 15 incunabula, led by the highly anticipated Leaf From the Gutenberg Bible (Lot 26), which sold for $81,250soaring past its pre-sale estimate of $40,000-60,000. Another highlight from this section was Biblia (in West Low German With Glosses According to Nicolaus de Lyras Postils) (Lot 31) which realized $32,500 against a pre-sale estimate of $20,000-30,000.
Said Head of the Books & Manuscripts Department, Darren Winston: Rarely does a collection such as this come to market. These 20 lots represent over 9,000 years of printing history. Led by an exquisite Leaf From the Gutenberg Bible, several of these titles havent seen any examples come to auction in over 100 years. It was a magnificent day in the book world today.
STRONG PRICES ACHIEVED FOR EGYPTIAN BRONZE CAT & FRENCH GOTHIC SCULPTURES
Competitive bidding also resulted in strong prices for antiquities and gothic sculpture from a Private New York Collection. Notably, an Egyptian Bronze Figure of a Seated Cat (Lot 3) realized $75,000, surpassing its pre-sale estimate of $30,000-50,000. Additionally, a Carved Alabaster Funerary Portar or Arch Voussoir, attributed to Jean de Cambrai (French, 1375-1438) (Lot 6) more than tripled its pre-sale low estimate to achieve $25,000, and a Carved Limestone Portal Figure Fragment of a Head of a Queen (Lot 5), doubled its pre-sale high estimate, realizing $18,750.
Other notable highlights from the auction included: a Great Plains Pictographic War Record from a Private Family Collection (Lot 46), which attracted spirited bidding and achieved $56,250; The Collection of Thomas McNemar, which featured over 100 lots of African masks and artifacts of ritual significance (Lots 98-207) and achieved a 97% sell-through rate and totaled over $87,000; and the mounted hanging scroll, Waterfall by Tani Buncho (1763-1840) (Lot 240) which realized $30,000, ten times its pre-sale low estimate.