Selling Exhibition November 20

Reception Invitation Final

January 22, 2013 Auction Recap


Keno Auctions’ Important American Furniture, Paintings, Folk art and Decorative Arts European Paintings sale was a solid success, achieving a total of just over $2.35 million –right within the pre-sale estimate range for the auction of $1,733,050/$2,971,750.  More than 87% of the lots sold to 164 buyers; one third of whom were successful through the Internet.  Online bidding participation was the strongest to date for Keno Auctions.

The sale featured an excellent selection of American paintings, including the dramatic Boston’s Exchange Coffee House Burning of 1818 by John Ritto Penniman (American, 1782-1841) (est. $50,000-100,000).  This important picture, one of the earliest known American depictions of a fire, by one of Boston’s best known painters of the time, was eagerly sought by a several impassioned bidders in the room and on the telephone before selling to a Massachusetts-based client for $117,800.

The Estate of James Maxime DuPont and Violetta J.P. DuPont offered a magnificent painting by William Trost Richards (American, 1833-1905) Gentle Surf, New Jersey Coast, 1905 which achieved $86,600 (est. $40,000-80,000), snapped up by New York dealer Andrew Schoelkopf, who was bidding for a client.

The sale offered many exceptional pieces of American furniture including the Massachusetts Chippendale Serpentine-Front  Chest of Drawers from an Arizona collection.  The sale room buzzed with excitement as bidding escalated into a spirited battle between clients on the floor, via telephone and online, bringing a remarkable $117,800 against a pre-sale estimate of $50,000-80,000.

Another American treasure, the Diminutive Queen Anne Mahogany Table with Rectangular Drop Leaves (est. $15,000-30,000) sold for a strong price of $68,200 after an extended bidding frenzy.  One of just a few colonial tables in the world of this small size, it also retains much of its original finish which contributed to the final result.

The sale offered a number of charming American folk art pictures, of which the most highly desired depicted children.  The winsome colorful pastel Portrait of a Young Child in a White Dress and Red Shoes with Peach and Dog, by Deacon Robert Peckham (American, 1785-1877) brought $86,800 (est. $60,000-100,000).  Executed in Massachusetts, circa 1830, it survives with its original glass and frame intact.  The buyers, private collectors bidding in the room, were overjoyed to add this work to their growing collection of portraits of children.

One of the most exciting and untouched works in the sale was the Double Portrait of Wealthy Jones Winter and Sarah Marie Winter of Bath, Maine, attributed to John Brewster, Jr. (American, 1766-1854), which descended directly in the family of the sitters to the consignors.  Estimated at $40,000-80,000, this charming depiction brought $74,400, purchased by a private Americana collector with a great appreciation for Brewster’s work and its’ impressive provenance.  The painting hung until recently in Maine on the wall across from a portrait of their mother, Sarah Bowman, since it was painted circa 1827.

Another object that sold particularly well was the Gilt Copper Peacock Weathervane made by Jewell and Company, circa 1870, from The Collection of Joanne and Jeffrey Klein.  Estimated at $5,000-8,000 and in remarkable condition, it went to a private New York collector bidding against six telephone bidders and several people in the room for $39,600.  The sale of this lot was one of the most exciting moments of the sale.

There was tremendous interest in the delightful Group of Six Carved Alice in Wonderland Figures signed and dated 1925 by Augustus Davies (American 1867-1951) that fetched a stunning $39,680 (est. $5,000-8,000).  The set of figures is composed of the Mad Hatter, Frog Footman, Duchess, March Hare, Alice, and White Rabbit.  The bases of Alice, the Duchess, March Hare, and White Rabbit are signed and dated by the artist.  There was a slew of bidding on the floor, on the telephones and online, but a private collector in the room patiently waited out the frenzy and finally won the lot.

Quality examples of the work of artist Edward Lange (American, 1846-1912) rarely come to the market; Keno Auctions was fortunate to offer four fine examples.  John C. Tottan, Cold Spring, Long Island, 1881 sold for a healthy $14,800 (est. $8,000-12,000).

The sale also offered an eclectic mix of property, including a Group of 22 Chinese Jade and Hardstone Objects which sold for $17,360 (est. $1,000-2,000) and American sports memorabilia, including a Babe Ruth Signed Baseball that brought $6,820 (est. $1,000-1,500).

And finally, true love triumphed (at the auction) when a young man purchased the delicate Platinum and Gold Three Stone Diamond Ring, circa 1890, for $17,360 (est. $6,000-8,000) for his beloved; for whom he intends to propose to soon after taking possession of this symbol of everlasting love.

Leigh Keno, president of Keno Auctions, commented:  “We are very pleased with today’s result, especially for the prices achieved for iconic works such as the Serpentine Chest of Drawers which hammered at an outstanding $117,800, inspiring a good deal of competition between collectors.  We were also delighted to see arresting works such as John Ritto Penniman’s Boston’s Exchange Coffee House Burning of 1818 that was purchased for $117,800, coming in far over the high estimate.  Folk Art continues to be an increasingly strong collecting area and we are thrilled with the results of Peckham’s Portrait of a Young Child, the Brewster Double Portrait of Wealthy and Sarah Winter as well as the handsome Gilt Copper Peacock Weathervane. All of these objects had great interest among collectors and were fought over with a great competitive spirit.  We are impressed by the caliber of new and established clients in the sale who bid decisively on the best examples of fine and decorative arts.”

Keno Auctions next sale of Impressionist, Modern & Contemporary Art is scheduled for June 11, 2013 at 10:00 a.m., at Keno Auctions headquarters at 127 East 69th Street New York City.

*Please note, all prices include the buyer’s premium which is 24% of the hammer price.


Highlights from the Important American Furniture, Paintings, Folk Art and Decorative Arts Sale:

Lot 102
Serpentine Chest of Drawers
Massachusetts, 1760-1780 H. 32 in.; W. 34 in.; D. 20 in. Literature: Two related chests are illustrated as ‘Best’ in Albert Sack, Fine Points of Furniture (N.Y., 1950), p. 100; and as ‘Masterpiece’ in Albert Sack, The New Fine Points of Furniture (N.Y., 1993), p. 103.
Sold $117,800 (Estimate: $50,000-80,000)


Lot 120
John Ritto Penniman (American, 1782-1841)
Boston’s Exchange Coffee House Burning of 1818
Boston, 1824 Signed and dated lower right, “J R Penniman Pinxt 1824” Oil on canvas 27 3/8 x 41 5/8 inches.
Sold: $117,800 (Estimate: $50,000-100,000)


Lot 260
The Estate of James M. DuPont and Violetta J.P. DuPont
William Trost Richards (American, 1833-1905)
Gentle Surf, New Jersey Coast, 1905
Signed and dated lower left: “Wm. T. Richards. 05″ Oil on canvas 28 1/4 x 48 1/8 inches.
Sold: $86,800 (Estimate:  $40,000-80,000)


Lot 39
The Dr. and Mrs. Robert Isbell Collection
Deacon Robert Peckham (American, 1785-1877)
Portrait of a Young Child in a White Dress and Red Shoes with Peach and Dog Circa 1830 Painted in Massachusetts Pastel on paper 25 x 20 ½ inches.
Sold: $86,800 (Estimate: $60,000-100,000)


Lot 49
Descended directly in the family of the sitters to the present owners
Attributed to John Brewster, Jr. (American, 1766-1854) Double Portrait of Wealthy Jones Winter and Sarah Marie Winter Bath, Maine, circa 1829 Oil on canvas 22 x 17 inches
Sold: $74,400 (Estimate: $40,000-80,000)


Lot 53
The Dr. and Mrs. Robert Isbell Collection
Diminutive Queen Anne Mahogany Table with Rectangular Drop Leaves Massachusetts, 1740-1760 H. 28 in.; W. (closed) 12 in.; W. (open) 29 in.
Sold: $68,200 (Estimate: $15,000-25,000)


Lot 90
Chippendale Mahogany Shell-Carved Desk Attributed to Samuel Loomis (American, 1748-1814) Colchester, Connecticut, 1774-1800 H. 43 in.; W. 37 in.; D. 21 in.
Sold: $55,800 (Estimate: $30,000-$60,000)


Lot 121
The Joanne and Jeffrey Klein Collection
Gilt Copper Peacock Weathervane
Massachusetts, 1850-1877 A.L. Jewell and Company, Waltham, MA
Sold: $39,680 (Estimate: $5,000-8,000)



Lot 95
A Group of Six Carved Alice in Wonderland Figures
American, circa 1900 Comprising: the Mad Hatter, Frog Footman, Duchess, March Hare, Alice, and White Rabbit.  The bases of Alice, the Duchess, March Hare, and White Rabbit are signed Augustes Davies (American, 1867-1951), Frog Footman signed “Augustus Davies 1925” H. (tallest) 17 in.
Sold: $ 39,680 (Estimate: $5,000-$8,000)



Lot 81
Edward Lange (American, 1846-1912)
John C. Tottan, Cold Spring, Long Island, 1881
Signed lower right: Edw. Lange/ Artist./ Elwood Suffolk Co NY/ 1881Ó Watercolor and gouache on paper 17 x 24 inches
Sold: $14,880 (Estimate: $8,000–12,000)

Lot 221  Platinum and Gold Three Stone Diamond Ring
Circa 1890. Containing three old European cut diamonds weighing approximately 1.23 carats, 1.58 carats and 1.24 carats each. The ring has a gross weight of approximately 4.5 grams. Along with an antique Tiffany ring box. The ring shows wear to mount. Unsigned. Sold $17,360 (Estimate:  $6,000-8,000)


Lot 233
The Estate of James M. DuPont and Violetta J.P. DuPont
Group of Chinese Jade and Hardstone objects
Twenty-two items including a figure; a pendant; two cups;  a mounted plaque;  rings, and other small examples.  (22)
Sold: $17,360  
(Estimate: $1,000-2,000)


Lot 245
Babe Ruth Signed Baseball
American League Desirable Sweet Spot signature. Baseball type cannot be determined. Date and marking on south panel written in unknown hand.
Sold: $6,820 (Estimate: $1,000-1,500)