A Picasso, a Hockney, and a Kashmir Sapphire Highlight Grogan & Company’s Spring Auction

  • BOSTON, Massachusetts
  • /
  • May 28, 2020

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Lot 51. David Hockney, Water, 1989, gouache, 9 x 18 in., $15,000-20,000
Grogan & Company

Grogan & Company’s annual Spring Auction will take place this year on Sunday, June 14 at the company’s Boston headquarters. The auction, which features a curated selection of over 450 lots of fine art, jewelry, silver, and decorative arts from private collections and estates, will be brought to life for all taking part remotely thanks to several exciting new features. “We are pleased to announce these long-planned yet well-timed innovations that not only improve the bidder experience, but also make the sale more accessible for those participating from home,” remarks Fine Art Director Georgina C. Winthrop.

Lot 37. Pablo Picasso, Para Esther, 1958, crayon, 8 x 11 in., $20,000-40,000
Grogan & Company

Clients can step into Grogan & Company’s Beacon Hill auction gallery and experience The Spring Auction exhibition without leaving their house thanks to a 3D walkthrough of the gallery now available at groganco.com. In addition to leaving absentee and telephone bids through Grogan & Company’s website, clients may now bid live online during the auction. On sale day, the auction will be live-streamed on the firm’s website so that bidders can see and hear the auctioneer in real time as they bid live from their computers. Finally, a new mobile app allows clients to make inquiries, track lots, leave bids, and participate live on sale day wherever they may be.

The Spring Auction leads off with 213 works of fine art, a highlight of which is Para Esther, a charming Picasso crayon drawing depicting a bouquet of flowers. The work, which is inside a copy of David Douglas Duncan’s book “The Private World of Pablo Picasso,” was sent to Duncan’s aunt Esther as a get well present and has remained in her family ever since. Another top fine art lot is Water, a 9 x 18 in. gouache by David Hockney estimated at $15,000-20,000. The letters "WATER" float on the surface of a light aqua pool, their shadows cast on the bottom, inviting the viewer to jump right in! John William Godward’s Classical Beauty (est. $30,000-50,000) was newly rediscovered after hanging in the home of a Boston collector for the past 50 years. The 20 x 16 oil, painted in 1909 at the height of Godward’s fame, depicts a hauntingly beautiful young woman who Vern G. Swanson, PhD. has identified as the wife of art dealer Paul Cremetti.  

American fine art highlights include a Jane Peterson gouache of Venice bearing an estimate of $15,000-30,000, a Childe Hassam New Hampshire landscape estimated at $20,000-30,000, and a Guy Wiggins view of the New York Public Library, also estimated at $20,000-30,000. An intimate sketch by John Singer Sargent is estimated at $10,000-15,000. The pencil drawing, from 1924, is a preparatory sketch for Sargent’s oil portrait of Grace Elvina, Marchioness Curzon of Kedleston, the last oil portrait Sargent painted before his death. Lilla Cabot Perry’s Marie at the Window, Winter is one of a series of four works Perry painted of Marie at her New Hampshire home, each from a different season. This 40 x 30 in. oil is housed in its original Thulin frame and is estimated at $15,000-25,000.

Lot 277. Marcus & Co. Platinum, 4.81cts Kashmir Sapphire, and Diamond Ring, $80,000-120,000
Grogan & Company

A captivating 5 7/8 x 4 3/8 in. gouache by Henry Farny depicts a Native American woman with a child on her back and is estimated at $15,000-25,000, while The Circuit Rider, a 23 ¼ x 18 ¼ in. watercolor en grisaille by Frederick Remington, is estimated at $30,000-50,000. Stepping Stones, a striking 44 in. tall bronze figure of a man balancing with his arms outstretched leads the offering of three dimensional works in the auction. The work, which crosses the block with an estimate of $10,000-15,000, was commissioned by a Massachusetts family in 1923 and was sculpted by Philip Shelton Sears and cast by Gorham Co. Foundry. The auction also includes several important books, including the seven volume 1840 octavo edition of John James Audubon’s Birds of America, estimated at $30,000-50,000, and the three volume folio edition (1836-1842-1844) of Thomas L. McKenney and James Hall’s History of the Indian Tribes of North America, estimated at $15,000-30,000.

The 207 jewelry pieces in The Spring Auction are led by the top lot of the day, an Art Deco period Marcus & Co. ring featuring a 4.81 carat unheated Kashmir sapphire estimated at $80,000-120,000. Other lots featuring important colored stones include no heat Burmese star ruby and diamond bracelet bearing an estimate of $25,000-45,000, a 3.82 carat Colombian emerald and diamond ring estimated at $20,000-30,000, and an artful platinum, carved emerald, and diamond ring estimated at $5,000-7,000.

A highlight from the selection of signed jewelry in the auction is a Cartier gold, lion’s paw scallop shell, sapphire, and turquoise brooch estimated at $4,000-6,000, which was featured as the cover piece in a 2004 edition of the “Journal of Gemology”. Other notable makers represented in the sale include Tiffany & Company, Van Cleef & Arpels, Asprey, and Marcus & Co. The jewelry portion of the auction is capped off by an offering of 24 watches, the highlight of which is a 1940s Black, Starr & Gorham, Girard Perregaux gold chronograph wristwatch bearing an estimate of $4,000-6,000.

The auction concludes with a selection of silver, decorative arts, furniture, rugs, and textiles. Highlights from this portion of the sale include a Roger Williams Silver Co. Japanesque silver tea caddy (est. $2,000-3,000), a fine micromosaic plaque depicting the Roman forum (est. $1,500-2,000), and a Stephen Taber mahogany inlaid tall case clock (est. $10,000-20,000).

The Spring Auction will be held on live Sunday, June 14 at 11 am at Grogan & Company’s auction gallery in Boston’s historic Beacon Hill (20 Charles Street, Boston, MA 02114). The sale will be live-streamed on Grogan & Company’s website (groganco.com), and bidders may participate live during the sale through Grogan & Company’s website or through the Grogan & Company app. Telephone and absentee bidding are also available. A 3D walkthrough of the auction exhibition is available on Grogan & Company’s website, and one-on-one virtual previews are available by appointment. For more information, call 617-720-2020 or visit groganco.com.

Grogan & Company
20 Charles Street
Boston, Massachusetts
About Grogan & Company

Established in Boston in 1987, Grogan & Company is a boutique, high-end auction house specializing in the sale of fine art and jewelry from private collections, estates, and institutions. Our individualized approach is tailored to meet the needs of each client with whom we work, whether they are buying or selling. Grogan & Company is headquartered in a state-of-the-art auction gallery in Boston’s historic Beacon Hill, from where we provide a personalized gateway to the international marketplace. Our decades of experience gives us an unparalleled perspective on today’s auction market.

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