NEW YORK—Buyers trolling for bargains were in evidence at the April 26 auction of American and European paintings, drawings and sculpture at Shannon’s auctioneers, Milford, Conn.
Eighty-two percent of the 272 lots found buyers and realized a cumulative total of $3.8 million. This figure included the buyer’s premium, in the middle of the presale estimate of $3/4.5 million, says Gene Shannon, president of Shannon’s.
Lots with the highest estimates—including Paul Cornoyer’s oil Early Evening, Madison Square (estimate: $60,000/80,000), and Peruvian Frederico del Campo’s 1892 Street Scene, Venice (estimate: $50,000/75,000) failed to find buyers, while many works in the $30,000/60,000 range sold just below the low estimate. An oil painting of a young woman by Charles Courtney Curran (1861-1942)—Far Away Thoughts (estimate: $120,000/180,000), which was on the cover of the catalogue—drew the highest hammer price of $115,000. Consigned by a private mid-Atlantic collector, the Curran was purchased by a dealer.
Bidding was more competitive for modestly priced pieces such as Mauritz F.H. De Haas’ oil Sunset on the Coast, which a New England collector acquired for $65,000, the second-highest hammer sale price of the day and more than double the high estimate of $30,000.
Shannon notes that 20 bidders competed for the painting, which had been consigned by a New York State antiques dealer.
Twin Records for Eric Sloane
Two paintings by Eric Sloane (1905-85)—Hill Farm and Autumn, Vermont, both estimated at $20,000/30,000—were each picked up for $50,000 —a figure that marks a record for the artist. “The sale was a mixed bag,” Shannon said, “but generally solid. People chased what they really wanted.”
Two paintings by Elliot Daingerfield flew past their estimates: Two Bluejays, estimated at $12,000/18,000, won $28,000; and A Country Road at Sunset took $17,000, more than tripling its $5,000 high estimate. Both a bronze bust of Abraham Lincoln, by George Edwin Bissell, and Anna A. Hills’ 1922 oil Evening Glow, Palm Springs, each estimated at $3,000/5,000, fetched $12,000 apiece. Dutch painter Adrian Lubbers’ 1924 Don Bepe drew $19,000, far exceeding its $5,000/7,000 estimate.
Perhaps the biggest surprise of the sale was the $20,000 paid for Henry W. Bannarn’s Modernist Exhibition, which had been estimated at $2,500/3,500. Two dozen bidders vied for the painting by Bannarn, an African-American art teacher in Detroit. Consigned by a private collector in Cambridge, Mass., it fell to a dealer.