BOULDER, Colo. – Artemis Gallery, which has been selling antiquities and ancient art online to collectors and institutions for more than 20 years, was co-founded by Teresa and Bob Dodge. Not only are the Dodges trusted implicitly for what they sell, they’re also called upon by fellow market leaders to provide their unique expertise in authenticating and evaluating objects.
“It takes many years to build a great reputation and only minutes to ruin it. We have no interest in handling anything in our auctions that isn’t absolutely authentic and legal, and of very fine quality,” said Bob Dodge. All items auctioned by Artemis Gallery -- and whose sales are carried on LiveAuctioneers -- are guaranteed to be as described and legal to buy/sell under the United States statute covering cultural patrimony (Code 1600, Chapter 14).
Each of Artemis Gallery’s auctions reflects a deep respect for ancient cultures of all geographic regions. That’s why the template for all of the company’s sales is so intentionally multicultural, Dodge said. The 500+ lots in their December 5 Ancient Ethnographic Art Holiday Auction includes Classical Egyptian, Greek and Roman antiquities, as well as art and relics of Pre-Columbian, Native American and Oceanic peoples. Additionally, the auction includes Part II of the collection of William Norris Dale, an American diplomat who was stationed in Turkey in the early 1960s. During his tenure with the US State Department in Turkey, Dale amassed a premier collection of Classical Greek, Roman and Anatolian art.
Roman offerings are led by Lot 77E, a 1st-2nd century CE bronze figure of a satyr carrying a wineskin. Presented on a custom stand, the 3¾-inch tall satyr is beautifully detailed, with long pointed ears, a short tail, well-defined pectoral and abdominal muscles; and parted, wavy hair. Formerly in a New York City private collection, it comes to auction with a $12,000-$15,000 estimate.
Lot 23d, an exceptional circa-560 BCE Greek Boeotian aryballos, is one of the finest vessels of its type ever to have been offered by Artemis Gallery. “It was designed to hold perfume for athletes or for use in the bath. It was made in Boeotia, northeast of the Gulf of Corinth, but its decoration is attributed to an Attic painter who emigrated north from Athens,” said Dodge. The art depicts two sphinxes in a confrontational position with paws extended and wings outstretched above their arching backs, tails curled behind them. Its archaic style of art may have influenced some of Picasso’s mid-20th-century pottery designs. A Greek masterpiece with provenance from Millennium Antiquities, London, it is expected to make $8,000-$12,000.
Another irresistible Greek object, Lot 23A, is an Attic red-figure owl lekythos or handled oil vessel. Standing 4.13 inches high, it is adorned with hand-painted images a large owl staring forward and standing between two laurel sprigs. With distinguished provenance, the lekythos was exhibited at the New York 5th International Antiquarian Fine Art Fair in November 2001. Its presale estimate is $4,500-$6,000.
Anyone interested in gifting their special someone with a regal holiday bauble that isn’t available in any jewelry store need look no further than Lot 135A – an exquisite circa-17th/early 18th century Spanish gold pendant cross set with 34 table-cut emeralds. The old Spanish gold in this piece is of a high-karat content and carries the mark on verso of the pillars of Hercules. A near-identical example was sold at Sotheby’s on July 9, 2009. Artemis Gallery’s pre-auction estimate on the cross in their sale, which comes from a British private collection, is $10,000-$14,000. Also in the auction treasure chest are more than 20 other pieces of stunning gold and gemstone jewelry from Ancient Egypt, Greece, Rome and the Near East.
The face of Ancient Egypt is captured quite strikingly in Lot 2A, a circa-21st to 26th Dynasty (circa 1075-600 BCE) wood mummy mask. Carved from a fine-grained hardwood, the visage has finely delineated features, darkly outlines almond-shape eyes and finely arched, tapering eyebrows the follow the contour of the forehead. Retaining its original paint and gesso, it has original peg holes on verso for attachment to a sarcophagus. Ex-Adeon Gallery in Chicago, it is entered with a presale estimate of $2,000-$4,000.
Several Pre-Columbian treasures from Panama are expected to make the top 10. Lot 176 consists of a matching pair of Panamanian Cocle figural portrait vases – one depicting a male; the other, a female. Each stands about 6 inches tall and displays both painted and bas-relief features. With provenance from Splendors of the World, Los Angeles, the lot of two is expected to reach $8,000-$10,000 on auction day.
Also from Panama, Lot 216 is a circa-500 to 1000 CE Diquis carved-stone trophy head. Some anthropologists, including Professor John W. Hoopes, an expert on headhunters of Central America, are of the opinion that such stone effigies were created to consecrate or commemorate the taking of a human head. Measuring just under 10 inches in height, the example offered by Artemis Gallery is larger and finer than most others that have come to the marketplace in recent times. Its estimate is $6,000-$9,000.
Other Pre-Columbian highlights include Lot 173E, a circa 300-600 CE Mochica (northern coastal Peru) hollow high-karat encasement-style gold ring formed as a finger with knuckles and a nail, estimate $1,500-$2,000; and Lot 209, a spectacular Teotihuacan (central Mexico, circa 200-800 CE) tripodal vessel carved with old Aztec deities. Made of terracotta, it stands 5¼ inches tall by 8½ inches wide. It was formerly in the collection of the late Anthony M Kurland Jr, PhD, an archaeologist who earned degrees from Yale and Harvard. Estimate: $1,200-$1,500.
Lot 249 is a mid-20th-century Navajo rug from the Crystal Area (Arizona/New Mexico) and features an eagle feather design in complementary shades of cardinal red, charcoal, light grey and white. In excellent condition with no significant damage or signs of wear, the 114- by 57-inch rug is an outstanding work of art and is estimated at $5,500-$7,700.
For additional information about any item in the auction, call Teresa Dodge at 720-502-5289 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
View the fully illustrated catalog and sign up to bid absentee or live via the Internet at www.LiveAuctioneers.com.
Artemis Gallery LIVE
About Artemis Gallery LIVE
ArtemisGalleryLIVE offers online-only auctions of Greek, Roman, Egyptian, and Pre-Columbian antiquities, as well as Near Eastern, Far Eastern, Tribal and Ethnographic art. All artifacts offered for sale are guaranteed ancient/authentic, and have been legally acquired and are legal to sell.