$4.2 million Edmund Tarbell painting tops American art sales

  • December 02, 2010 18:03

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At Bonhams, Joseph Seymour Guy's The Bed Time Story, 1878, set an auction record for the artist at $164,000.
Edmund Tarbell's 1899 oil painting titled Child and Boat at Sotheby's surpassed its estimate of $2,000,000-3,000,000 to fetch an artist auction record of $4.2 million.

Sotheby's netted the most during the week of American paintings auctions in New York with a total of $27,010,125 (prices include buyer's premiums) for 133 lots on Dec. 2. Ruling the day was the cover lot, Boston School artist Edmund Tarbell's idyllic seaside scene of 1899, "Child and Boat," which more than doubled the low estimate to reach an artist auction record of $4,226,500.

Tarbell's previous auction record was just $724,500, set in 2002 for "Portrait of Mrs. C. (Mrs. H.M. Channing)," according to Askart.

A fine selection of works by Theodore Robinson, Winslow Homer and Norman Rockwell each fetched in the upper-six and seven-figures.

Bathed in golden light, a Yosemite scene with deer, by Albert Bierstadt, flew by its low estimate of $400,000 to a final price of $854,500.

A blustery winter scene by Charles Burchfield, the subject of recent exhibitions, also soared by estimates to $962,500.

Bonhams' Nov 30 sale had a few stand-out lots. One was Seymour Joseph Guy's (1824-1910) charming "The Bed Time Story," of 1878, which realized $164,000, double the low estimate and an artist auction record. Its provenance listed the collection of Thomas B. Clarke, a leading American art collector in late 19th-century New York.

The other stunner was a sultry night scene by Everett Shinn (1876-1953), The Singer, 1920, which fetched $140,000.

Christie's American paintings sale on Dec. 1 tallied $21,206,800. Of the 148 lots offered, 96 sold, including Georgia O'Keeffe's "Canna Red and Orange," which was consigned by the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum to benefit its acquisitions fund, and fetched $1,426,500.

Two top lots included John Singer Sargent's "Ricordi di Capri," realizing $1,650,500; and Frank Benson's "Two Little Girls," garnering $2,098,500, just below the high estimate.

Similar in composition to his much-admired "Hill Top Farm, Winter" painting in the collection of the Museum of Fine Arts, BostonMaxfield Parrish's jewel-like "Early Morning, First Snow," fetched double the high estimate to reach $362,500. Also of note, his "Autumn Brook" went to $542,500, squarely within estimates. 

Maxfield Parrish's Early Morning, First Snow went for $362,500 at Christie's.

A serene 1860s luminist seascape by John Kensett, "New England Sunrise," swept to $662,500.

Following price expectations to realize $602,500 was a fine portrait titled Blue Plaid Dress (Annie) by Ashcan school leader Robert Henri.

Tags: American art

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