To say that Bruneau & Co. Auctioneers’ February 3, 2018 auction featured an eclectic mix of merchandise would be a gross understatement. The top three lots in the 353-lot sale were a partial set of Chinese carved jadeite zodiac animal seals ($8,750); a U.S. flag rug made by the Boston Wool Association ($5,625), and a palace-size Persian Oriental rug ($5,000).
“Prior to the sale we had been sure of the quality of the jade, but we weren’t sure how receptive collectors would be with only nine of the seals present,” said Kevin Bruneau, the president and auctioneer of Bruneau & Co. Auctioneers. “Bidders were attracted to the excellent quality of the seals’ carving and the fact that each one showed a figural animal perched on a rectangular base.”
Travis Landry, a Bruneau & Co. specialist and auctioneer, added, “Overall it was a great sale, with strong results across all fields. I was delighted to see the appreciation for the Boston Wool Association carpet, a truly one-of-a-kind piece.” The 77-inch by 144-inch rug, depicting the American flag with the Association’s logo, was made for its museum in Lowell, MA. The museum was part of the Smithsonian American Textile History Museum prior to its closing.
The 19th century Persian Oriental rug was truly palace-size, at 31 feet 4 inches by 12 feet 3 inches. The rug – decorated with an allover red floral and tendril pattern over a blue ground within a contrasting border – came out of the collection of the Worcester Club in Worcester, Massachusetts, where it had been displayed since 1913. It was overall a great rug in good condition.
The Antiques & Fine Art Auction was held online and in Bruneau & Co.’s Cranston gallery. The day began with 43 paintings, followed by a mix of merchandise ranging from 36 lots of guns and antique ammunition to antiquarian books and chapbooks from a fine estate out of Coventry, RI. In total, the auction grossed $144,112, including the buyer’s premium.
Shoe-horned in was part of the collection of the philanthropist and dedicated collector Alan Shawn Feinstein. Proceeds from his items went to benefit the Feinstein Foundation.
Following are additional highlights from the auction, which attracted 110 in-house bidders, 32 phone bidders, and 128 absentee bidders. Another 8,000 people registered to bid online, via the sites Bidlive.Bruneauandco.com, Invaluable.com, LiveAuctioneers.com, and Bidsquare.com. All prices quoted include the buyer’s premium, applied on a sliding scale.
A gorgeous Arts and Crafts Handel Dogwood leaded glass and patinated bronze table lamp, 18-1/2 inches tall, with a leaded stained-glass dogwood pattern shade signed “Handel,” lit up the room for $2,325. The lamp, made in Connecticut around 1915, sat on a stepped rounded base, rising to a shaped bulbous shaft with inset glass panels. The base retained its original Handel cloth label.
A Danish .999 silver sculpture of a cheetah, 14-1/2 inches long, by the Dutch-American artist Loet Vanderveen (1921-2015), titled Stalking Cheetah, knocked down for $3,750. The sculpture depicted the cat in a taut, immobile pose and had an edition designation of “20/250” and “142 T.” Loet Vanderveen was known for combining patina and polished finishes to his sculptures.
An oil on canvas figurative portrait painting of a young girl by Israeli social realist Ruth Schloss (1922-2013), titled Batya of Jerusalem, 35-1/2 inches by 30-1/2 inches (framed), coasted to $2,125. The subject was pictured in a white headscarf, with an emotionless expression. The painting was signed lower left by Schloss and still has its original label from the Safrai Art Gallery in Israel.
Another large Persian rug – this one a Keshan wool carpet made in the first quarter of the 20th century and measuring 10 feet 4 inches by 18 feet 7 inches, in overall good condition – changed hands for $2,500. The rug was decorated with central hanging and standing urns and flowers.
A gorgeous 18th century Connecticut Queen Anne highboy, crafted from cherry with poplar and pine secondary woods, topped out at $2,250. The 76-inch-tall by 41-inch-wide piece was a fine example of a period Connecticut highboy and retained its original brasses and backer boards. It stood on svelte cabriole legs with pad feet rising into a shaped apron with acorn dropped finials.
A circa 1790 American Federal carved gilt wood and gesso bullseye mirror, adorned with reticulated gilt acanthus leaves and tendrils throughout, with a lower three-arm sconce, went to a determined bidder for $1,625. The handsome mirror was 51 inches tall by 24 inches in diameter.
Selling for the same price of $1,625 was a 19th century group of Italian micromosaic specimen plaques, 41 in all, the largest of which measured 1-3/4 inches by 1-1/2 inches. Each green, blue and black glass plaque was nicely inlaid with beautiful depictions of birds, baskets and flowers.
Bruneau & Co. Auctioneers has a new schedule for the current year. There will be no presale with the estate auctions, as before. They will usually be on the first Saturday of each month and will start at 11 AM ET. Monday night auctions will be held the third Monday of every month.
Bruneau & Co. Auctioneers will have live and online bidding at upcoming Antiques & Fine Art Auctions slated for Saturday, March 3 and April 14, at 11 AM; a Comic, Comic Art & Toys Auction on Saturday, April 28, at 11 AM; and a Pop Culture, Street & Unusual Art Auction on Saturday, May 12, at 11 AM. All times Eastern; all live bidding will be in the Cranston gallery.