On Wednesday, January 31 at 10am, Doyle will hold an auction of Russian Works of Art in New York. The sale will be presented as a special section of a larger auction comprising English & Continental Furniture & Decorative Arts and Old Master Paintings.
Highlighting the sale is Property from the Descendants of Russian Grand Duke George Mikhailovich (1863-1919), grandson of Emperor Nicholas I (1796-1855), and his wife Princess Marie Georgievna (1876-1940), née Princess Maria of Greece and Denmark, daughter of King George I (1845-1913). Having remained in the family over the course of the last century, this remarkable collection comprises thirty-five lots of Fabergé, silver, icons, books and family heirlooms with close connections to the Russian Imperial Family.
The collection features an icon depicting the Mother of God, Christ and John the Baptist (est. $7,000-10,000) that is closely related to one produced for Empress Alexandra Feodorovna. An icon of similar design from the collection was bequeathed by the Grand Duke’s daughter, Princess Xenia, to Middlebury College Museum of Art in Vermont.
An important group of four World War I photograph albums (est. $4,000-6,000), never before seen in public, document Grand Duke George’s important diplomatic mission to Japan in 1915. Sent as the representative of Emperor Nicholas II, the Grand Duke’s mission led to a secret Russo-Japanese alliance signed in 1916.
A Fabergé Silver-Gilt Icon of the Mother of God (est. $7,000-10,000), which has descended in the family of Grand Duchess Xenia Alexandrovna of Russia (1875-1960), was a gift from the Grand Duchess to her son, Prince Nikita, on Easter 1916.
Property from other collections and estates features a silver samovar produced in Fabergé’s Moscow workshops (est. $35,000-55,000). The samovar is applied with the coat of arms of the Berdyaev family, an important aristocratic military and literary family in Imperial Russia. The family produced a long line of high-ranking military officers and the important political and religious philosopher Nikolai Alexandrovich Berdyaev.
Fabergé produced miniature sculptures of animals in a range of hardstones, inspired by Chinese and Japanese hardstone carvings. Property from a Virginia Private Collection offers two hardstone carvings by Fabergé that were included in a major Fabergé exhibition in Munich, Germany in 1986. One depicts a duckling (est. $15,000-25,000) that is nearly identical to an example in the British Royal Collection from the famous Sandringham Commission.
A selection of Russian porcelain figures from a Philadelphia Private Collection includes examples by the Imperial Porcelain Manufactory and the Gardner, Popov and Kornilov manufactories. Highlights include a Rare Russian Porcelain Group of Pranksters, after a model by August Spiess (est. $9,000-12,000).
Among a wide range of bronzes by artists such as Troubetzkoy, Lanceray, Bertram and Grachev is a rare and large Bronze Group of a Troika after the model by E. Karpov (est. $20,000-30,000) from a New Jersey Private Collection.
Highlights of the Old Masters and the English and Continental furniture sections of the auction feature a portrait of an aristocratic boy by Dutch artist Jacques Vaillant (1643-1691) (est. $8,000-12,000) and a pair of Louis XVI canapés by Nicolas-Denis Delaisement from the collection of the Earl of Rosebery, Mentmore Towers, Buckinghamshire (est. $8,000-12,000).
The public is invited to the exhibition on view January 27 through 29. Doyle is located at 175 East 87th Street in Manhattan. View the catalogue and bid online at Doyle.com