Rare Mexican painting fetches five times its estimate in fine art auction

CINCINNATI – Cowan’s Auctions Fine and Decorative Art Auction realized $548,000 in its Nov. 17, 2012 sale. With a packed salesroom of 60-plus people and more than 150 bidders online, the auction saw competitive bids between the floor, online and absentee bidders throughout the day. Silver, furniture and paintings did particularly well in the sale.

“We had several strong works of art perform well in the sale,” notes Graydon Sikes,

The sale’s highest selling lot attracted considerable attention from both phone and Internet bidders. The work, a painting by artist Eugenio Landesio (1810-­circa 1879), titled “Sunlit Corridor, Guanajuato,” realized $24,000 – several times its original $3,000 to $5,000 estimate. (Photo courtesy Cowan’s Auctions)

director, Paintings and Prints. “I was pleased with the results of the Landesio, an extraordinarily rare picture of mid-19th century Mexico. Our estimate was $3,000 to $5,000, but I knew the painting would sell in the five-figure range; however, $24,000 was a very strong price relative to Landesio’s records of sale.”

Other fine art and works on paper performed quite well in the auction. A collection of works on paper by Dale William Nichols (1904-1995), an American rural regionalist painter, sailed past its pre-auction estimate of $4,000 to $6,000 and sold for $12,000. Similarly, a Joseph Hubert Diss Debar (1820-1905) sketchbook sold within its estimate of $10,000 to $15,000 to an Internet bidder and realized $12,000. Three bidders on the phone contended for an oil on board painting by Pauline Palmer (1867-1938), titled “Portrait of a Boy,” which fetched $10,800. A pair of Dutch Old Master portraits hammered down at $8,400.

A collection of fine silver also had a strong showing in the auction. A George III sterling tea set more than doubled its estimate of $800 to $1,200, and sold for $2,900 to a floor bidder. A set of Anglo-Indian sterling salt and pepper shakers realized $2,000, and two Internet bidders battled back and forth for a set of Gilt Sheffield wine coolers, which eventually sold for $3,500.

Additional sales highlights include:

• Louis XV-style mahogany commode sold for $10,800 – which was five times the low estimate

• Shaker ladder back chair realizing $3,240

A 19th-century Louis-XV Style mahogany commode, $10,800. (Photo courtesy Cowan’s Auctions)

• Kentucky Sheraton sugar chest fetching $2,880

• Rookwood Pottery Black Iris vase commanded $8,700

• Handel obverse lamp sold for $4,800

• Folk art figural mirror hammered down at $5,700

Cowan’s Auctions’ next event, the Winter Fine and Decorative Art Auction will be held Feb. 9. For more information, visit www.cowans.com or call 513-871-1670.

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