Grogan & Company is pleased to announce their annual Fall Auction on Sunday, November 15, 2020. This year’s sale features over 380 lots of fine art, jewelry, silver, and decorative arts. The well curated selection of objects is being offered from private collections and estates from New England and beyond. The Fall Auction will be held live at the firm’s Beacon Hill headquarters with all bidding participation executed remotely via absentee, internet, and telephone bids. The sale will be live streamed on their website.
During the Black Lives Matter protests in Boston in June 2020, Grogan & Company’s front door was spray painted with the message "#BLM DO BETTER, ART WORLD!” With the consignment of 13 works by Black artists to The Fall Auction, the firm has identified an opportunity to do so. Grogan & Company will contribute 5% of their proceeds from the sale of lots 16 through 28 to Boston's Artists For Humanity (AFH). The donation will provide support to the next generation of BIPOC artists, and is meant to encourage others in the art world to take the challenge to “Do Better.” AFH provides under-resourced teens with the keys to self-sufficiency through paid employment in art and design.
A collection of fine art compiled by a Wellesley, Massachusetts family in the 1970s and 80s features 25 works, nine of which are by Black artists and included in the AFH donation. Primarily purchased directly from the artists themselves, the collection is headlined by an original mixed media piece by Romare Howard Bearden (American, 1911-1988) titled In the Garden. Dated 1978, the colorful 10 x 7 inch work was shown at the Massachusetts College of Art exhibition, Boston Collects Bearden, in May 1982. It is being offered with an estimate of $40,000-60,000. Also from the collection is the original of the widely reproduced painting, Jesus Loves Me, by Varnette P. Honeywood (American, 1950-2010). Dated 1983, the 36 x 48 inch acrylic on canvas depicts a colorful rendering of a church service packed with attendees dressed in their Sunday best. It was purchased by the family through the 17 Wendell Street Gallery in Cambridge, Massachusetts and is accompanied by correspondence between the collector and the artist. The piece is being offered at $10,000-20,000. Finally, the collection also features several works by Benny Andrews (American, 1930-2006), including two striking oil and fabric collages.
A second collection of fine art offered includes a group of Robert Motherwell (American, 1915-1991) works on paper from the estate of accomplished scientists Drs. Dorothy and Norman Zinberg. Dorothy was a beloved Harvard Kennedy School scholar, biochemist, sociologist, and pioneer for women in sciences and higher education. The Zingbergs were friends of Motherwell, and several of the 11 lots offered were gifts from the artist, bearing affectionate dedications in the margins. Also on offered from the Zinberg estate is an original oil by Black artist Robert Louis Thompson (American, 1937–1966), titled The Raising of Lazarus. The characteristically colorful 9 x 12 in. work highlights Thompson’s twinned interest in the Old Masters and Abstract Expressionism and bears an estimate of $20,000-30,000. The Thompson is one of the 13 works included in the Artists For Humanity proceeds donation.
Other fine art highlights include a Roy Lichtenstein (American, 1923-1997) lithograph, woodcut, and screenprint in colors on Arches paper titled The River, from the series, Landscapes (C. 214). The colorful 40 x 55 in. piece comes from the collection of a Florida collector and is estimated at $50,000-75,000. From the same collection is a Frank Stella (American, b. 1936) lithograph, linocut, and screenprint in colors titled, Had Gadya, which is the back cover image from Illustrations: After El Lissitzky's Had Gaya. The work is being offered at $8,000-12,000. The prints and multiples section of the sale also includes two works that previously belonged to Senator Ted Kennedy. Robert Rauschenberg’s Kennedy for Senate ($2,000-4,000) and Roy Lichtenstein’s Composition IV ($8,000-12,000) were each created for one of Senator Kennedy’s campaigns. A playful, large scale Angel Botello (Puerto Rican, 1913-1986) bronze leads the offering of three-dimensional works. Francoise with Pigtails (est. $40,000-60,000) was purchased directly from the artist in the early 1970s and has remained in the same family since that time. A Gloria Vanderbilt (American, 1924-2019) 50 x 30 inch oil on canvas titled Girl with Flowers is being offered at $20,000-30,000. It is accompanied by correspondence from Vanderbilt in which she notes that the work is “still one of my favorite paintings.” Grogan & Company currently holds the record for the highest price paid for a Vanderbilt at auction, set in their June 14, 2020 auction with the sale of Gerta for $53,125. The fine art offerings of The Fall Auction are rounded out with two volumes of John James Audubon’s 19th century books. A seven volume octavo edition of The Birds of America (1840-44) is being offered at $15,000-30,000 and a three volume edition of The Quadrupeds of North America (1849-54) is being offered at $5,000-10,000.
The jewelry section of the sale is headlined by a pair of Art Deco dress clips by Raymond Yard. The diamond floral cluster-form clips are each set with an oval-cut blue sapphire accompanied by an American Gemological Laboratory report certifying the sapphires’ origin as Kashmir with no evidence of enhancement. Each sapphire weighs approximately 2 carats. The clips have descended within a Pittsburgh, PA family and will be offered with an estimate of $30,000-50,000.
Two important pieces of jewelry are being offered from the estate of a Milton, MA lady. One is a moval-cut yellow diamond set horizontally within an early 20th century open-work diamond mount. The ring is accompanied by a certification from the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) stating that the diamond is fancy intense yellow in color with VS1 clarity. It will be offered with an estimate of $8,000-12,000. The second piece is an important 18k yellow gold fancy-link necklace suspending approximately 9 carats of old European- and old mine-cut diamonds. The 21 drops feature diamonds bezel-set within scroll form frames, the largest central diamond weighing approximately 4.50 cts. The necklace will be offered with an estimate of $15,000-25,000.
From the estate of a West Hartford, CT lady is a 3.26 carat pear-shape diamond ring certified by the GIA as F color, VS2 clarity. The ring bears an estimate of $18,000-$25,000. The Fall Auction also features a Tiffany & Company diamond ring centering a 3.10 carat round brilliant-cut diamond that was purchased at the Tiffany store in Boston in 2002. Accompanied by a GIA report certifying the stone as D color, VS1 clarity, the ring is being offered with an estimate of $30,000-50,000.
Contemporary and collectible designers Seaman Schepps and Elizabeth Locke are well represented in The Fall Auction. Eight lots by Seaman Schepps originate from the estate of a Long Island, NY collector, including a colorful pair of 18K yellow gold and gemset "Fifties" hoop earclips estimated at $4,000-6,000. The Elizabeth Locke jewelry comes from a Virginia collector who purchased many of the pieces directly from Locke. The collection includes eight earclips, eight pendant/brooches, and one necklace. The necklace is comprised of faceted aquamarine beads centering a Venetian glass intaglio pendant and will be offered with an estimate of $2,000-3,000. Other designers represented in the sale include JAR, Cartier, Marcus & Company, Angela Cummings, Boucheron, David Webb, Judith Ripka, Rolex, and Patek Philippe.
Following the jewelry, the sale concludes with a selection of silver and decorative arts. An impressive Cartier Art Deco silver figure of Pegasus atop a stepped plinth-form humidor leads the silver with an estimate of $50,000-100,000. The piece originated in the collection of Carl Kiekhaefer, founder of Mercury Marine of Wisconsin. The piece descended to his niece and then was purchased by a private collector in Seattle, Washington. The piece is being sold from estate of the Seattle collector. A Buccellati silver figure of a gorilla seated on a rough geode is being offered from a Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania family. Over a foot in height, the charming figure is being offered with an estimate of $10,000-15,000.
Decorative arts highlights include a late 19th century pair of Sevres porcelain ormolu mounted covered vases standing at 40 inches tall. One depicts the Battle of Rocroi (1643) and the other the Battle of Lauffeld (1747). They are being offered from the same Seattle estate as the Cartier silver Pegasus with an estimate of $15,000-20,000. A pair of Aesthetic Movement gray painted parcel gilt open-arm chairs from the mid-19th century are in excellent condition with retail-ready upholstery. From a Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts collection, the chairs are being offered with an estimate of $5,000-7,000.
Private exhibition viewings are available by appointment beginning on Monday, November 2nd. For more information and an illustrated online catalogue, visit www.groganco.com.
Contact:Lucy Grogan Edwards
Grogan & Company
20 Charles Street
About Grogan & Company
Established in 1987, Grogan & Company assists the Boston and greater New England community with the sale of their fine art and antiques. Specializing in quality jewelry, fine art, silver, decorative arts, and Oriental carpets, Grogan & Company holds four to six auctions annually featuring items across all collecting genres.