Historical paintings selling well

International Art Centre
Important Early and Rare
March 29th

As often seems to be the case at International Art Centre auctions there is a major Goldie and this week there was another one. The subject, Kapi Kapi whom Goldie painted a number of times was one of the survivors of the Tarawera eruption. The work sold at its reserve price of $180,000.

Normally it is the Goldie which has the room buzzing at the high price but on this there was more buzz about a Vera Cummings painting. She was an early graduate of Elam and also taught by Goldie and her works are considered to be the Goldie to have when you can’t afford a Goldie. Her portrait “Kapi Te Toriri” (Tobacco is Good) sold for $10,600 well over the estimate of $3000 and is a reflection of both her ability as an artist as well as the increasing demand for Goldies or there look-a-likes.

The prices realised for many of the older works in the sale showed that the market for historical pieces is remaining constant with some of the important paintings attracting good prices.

A small watercolour view of Wellington from the period 1849 - 60 which was listed as being in the style of the soldier /artist Charles Emilius Gold was expected to sell for $800 but ended up selling for $3000, an indication of the interest in early views of the major towns.

One of the more interesting historical works was the Alfred Sharpe 1874 view of Auckland, “Gathering Firewood near Orakei Bridge” which went for $50,000 ($45,000).

The John Barr Hoyte view of Lake Tarawera before the eruption only managed to reach $24,000 ($30,000) and his “Marlborough Bay” got to $15,000 ($20,000) However “The Lion and the Palisades, Milford Sound” went for $23,000 ($20,000) and a coastal scene for $7200 ($7000).

Frances Hodgkin’s “Market Scene Dordrecht” went for $62,000 ($40,000)

The John Weeks works sold reasonably well with his modernist “Musical Composition” selling for $5250 ($6000) his “Arab Marketplace" for $4500 ($5000) and his historical record of the Elam fire for $7000 ($5000).

The modern works in the sale also did well. Two Michael Hight works were on offer, “Cemetery Road, Mt Boggs” which sold for $11,500 ($10,000 and “Taieri” $7500 ($8000). An Ian Scott lattice work went for $6000 ($5500) and one of Reuben Paterson glitter works “I Fall To Pieces” went for $9000 ($7000).

The Pat Hanly Pacific Fire painting of 1977 only managed to get to $30,000 ($40,000) similar to the fate last week of his “Pacific Hope Vessel” at Art + Object where the work achieved $60,000 ($80,000)

A couple of the other contemporary works of interest were a Colin McCahon lithograph (edition of 200) “Moby Dick is Sighted Off Muriwai Beach” from his Necessary Protection period which went for $2900 ($3000) and a Toss Woollaston watercolour “Motueka” which sold for $4500 ($5000)


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