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‘Flight into Egypt’ soars to $84K to top 630-lot sale

A 19th century painting by renowned artist H.O. Tanner appealed to many a bidder during Nadeau's Auction Gallery Jan. 1 auction. The painting, which realized $84,000, was one of the sales that made up the more than $1 million total sales realized during this event.
"Flight into Egypt" realized $84,000. (All photos courtesy Nadeau's Auction Gallery)

"Flight into Egypt" realized $84,000. (All photos courtesy Nadeau's Auction Gallery)

WINDSOR, Conn. – For the third year in a row, Nadeau’s Auction Gallery sailed past the $1 million mark at its annual New Year’s Day auction, posting a $1.25 million+ gross at the Jan. 1st event and cementing its reputation as Connecticut’s only auction house that consistently conducts sales that surpass $1 million. This year’s auction featured 650 lots in a wide array of categories.

The top lot of the auction was an original oil on artist board painting by one of America’s first internationally renowned African-American artists, Henry Ossawa (H.O.) Tanner (Am./Fr., 1859-1937). The work, titled Flight into Egypt, gaveled for $84,000 following a fierce bidding war. The painting was signed by Tanner lower right and measured 17 ½ inches by 20 inches.

The auction was held in Nadeau’s gallery, located at 25 Meadow Road in Windsor, Conn. A standing-room only crowd of over 350 people packed the showroom, while 2,000 registered bidders participated online, through About 500-600 phone bids were posted and between 300 and 400 absentee bids were also recorded. The sale was a success by any yardstick.

“It was right up there with previous New Year’s Day sales that also surpassed the $1 million mark,” said Ed Nadeau of Nadeau’s Auction Gallery. “The day started strong with jewelry and progressed from there. Furniture did very well – better than expected, actually, thanks to the quality of the items – and several Oriental rugs sold for $6,000-$12,000. Art also did very well.”

Many paintings and prints in the sale were from the huge, 3,500-piece collection of banking giant Credit Suisse, featuring large framed portraits, period American furniture, quilts, maps and more. The balance of the collection will be sold in subsequent auctions throughout 2016, also by Nadeau’s.

Following are additional highlights from the auction. All prices quoted include a 20 percent buyer’s premium.

An oil on panel rendering of Diamond Cove on Waikiki Beach, Hawaii by Frank Chamberlin

Lady's diamond bracelet, featuring more than 100 diamonds.

Lady's diamond bracelet, featuring more than 100 diamonds.

(N.Y./Calif., 1873-1961), measuring 11 ¾ inches by 20 inches, realized $27,600; and a signed oil on canvas by Marin Rico y Ortega (Sp./It./Fr., 1833-1908), titled Venetian Canal, 28 inches by 18 ¼ inches and signed lower left, hit $27,000.

Many large and impressive portrait paintings all found new homes. A full-length portrait of the iconic American inventor Thomas Edison by Ellis Meyer Silvette (Va., 1876-1940), measuring a larger-than-life 90 inches by 40 inches, signed by Silvette and inscribed by Edison, brought $16,250.

The top-selling portrait painting was a ¾-length rendering of Andrew W. Mellon (1855-1937), the U.S. Secretary of the Treasury from 1921-1932, by Philip A. deLaszlo (1869-1937). The 1926 oil on canvas portrait reached $25,200. Also, an oil on canvas portrait of Collis Potter Huntington (1821-1900), by Francis Lathrop (1849-1909), done in the 1890s, went for $17,500.

Tops in the furniture category was a coffee table made by Philip and Kelvin Laverne, titled Eternal Forest. The acid-etched and enameled patinated brass and pewter clad table, signed and 41 ¾ inches in diameter, realized $20,400. Also, a lovely R. J. Horner Victorian oak safe cabinet having carved winged griffins backsplash and fitted birds-eye maple drawers, sold for $12,000.

Steinway & Sons Model L piano, sold for $24,000.

Steinway & Sons Model L piano, sold for $24,000.

Other furnishings and jewlery that sold include a:
• Steinway & Sons East Indiana rosewood grand piano that realized $24,000.
Bidjar Oriental carpet saw $12,000.
• Lady’s platinum diamond bracelet with 16 v-shaped links, featuring more than 100 diamonds, also sold for $12,000.

Two paintings posted identical selling prices of $25,200. One was an oil on canvas trompe l’oeuil (trick of the eye) image of American currency by Victor Dubreuil (N.Y./Fr., 1846-1946), titled Hand Over the Money. The other was an oil on canvas rendering of the Hills of Carmel Highlands, overlooking Mount Doud on Big Sur, by Arthur Hill Gilbert (Calif./Ill., 1894-1970).

Two other portrait paintings sold well. One was a circa-1902 oil on canvas of James Jerome Hill (1838-1916), the Vice President of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce from 1908-1912, by Adolfo Muller-ury (U.S./Switz., 1862-1947), signed ($15,600); and a 1921 oil on canvas of Jacob Henry Schiff (1847-1920), by George Laurence Nelson (1887-1978), after Seymour Thomas ($14,400).

For more information about Nadeau’s Auction Gallery, visit To consign an item or a collection to Nadeau’s, call 860-246-244 or email