NAKOMIS, Fla. – An 18th century gilt bronze egg given to Paul I will be among the antiques and art to cross the block online at Elder’s Fine Art & Antiques Auction Feb. 18-March 3.
Self made American millionaire William Boyce Thompson (1869-1930), an industrialist and mining mogul, was part of the American Red Cross Mission sent to turbulent Russia in 1917 after the February Revolution and the overthrow of the Czar. The purpose of the Mission was to find ways to feed the hungry populace while the provisional government of Alexander Kerensky tried to stabilize the country. Thompson donated $1 million of his own money to the cause, in vain it turned out, because the Bolsheviks came to power after the second Revolution in October and discarded all outside aid efforts.
Russian 18th Century gilt bronze Easter egg.
Thompson’s trip was not entirely without results. While in Russia he used his considerable wealth to take advantage of the opportunity to acquire a number of major Russian art treasures under favorable circumstances. One of those treasures was a relatively large 6-inch, elaborately decorated gilt bronze Easter egg reported in the book by Robert C. Williams “Russian Art and American Money 1900-1940” to have been presented to Paul I by a prime minister. The egg will soon be presented again, this time for sale at Don Elder’s Fine Art & Antiques Auction during the two week online sale hosted by iGavel Feb. 18-March 3. Elder expects the egg to sell for between $10,000 and $15,000.
Another treasure, this one from the East, bears the Qianlong reign mark of 18th century China. A large vase and cover, 9 inches tall, carved entirely from white jade having an unusual color called “white water,” features a highly stylized taotie mask on the body with an interior chair carved attaching the lid to the body.
Chinese white carved jade vase and cover .
For more information, call 941-488-1005, or go online to www.eldersantiques.com.