SAVANNAH, Ga. – Everard’s February 28 and March 1 Winter Southern Estates Auction features a luxe array of fine and decorative arts, with many exceptional pieces coming from long-held, high-quality collections. The variety is endless, spanning the traditional fine and decorative art realm from both a Western and Asian point of view. In addition, there are dozens of specialty categories, such as 19th-century lay-down scent bottles, folk art canes, Venetian glass, holy water fonts, Russian lacquer boxes, Royal Vienna porcelain, Sumidagawa pottery, portrait miniatures, antique maps and scientific instruments.
The elegance and enduring influence of the Art Nouveau aesthetic are gracefully present in this sale through the peerless work of Alphonse Mucha, Tiffany Studios artists, and celebrated sculptors of the period. An additional highlight from the first half of the 20th century is a collection of chic, always in-demand Art Deco jewelry.
Leading the Fine Art category is a complete set of Alphonse Mucha’s The Seasons, a suite of four lithographs created in 1896. Each of the color lithographs is sized 39½ inches by 19½ inches and conveys the artist’s inimitable talent for allegorical storytelling through the use of soft pastel colors and flowy spiraling lines. The set is estimated at $20,000-$30,000 and has a $12,000 reserve.
Alphonse Maria Mucha (Czechoslovakia, 1860-1939) stands at the summit of Art Nouveau illustration and design. He studied art in Munich before moving to Paris, where he was a student at both the Académie Julien and Colarossi. While living and working in France, he transformed the art of the poster and continued to break new ground with his increasingly ambitious commissions.
The first half of Mucha’s career was spent creating theatrical panels, but he went on to design jewelry, wallpaper and carpets, as well as theater sets and advertisements. He later retired to Prague and dedicated himself to the crafting of his magnum opus, The Slav Epic. Today, Mucha’s highly prized artworks are held in both private and institutional collections, including those of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The National Gallery in Prague, and Musee D’Orsay.
Another Art Nouveau highlight is a large French Art Nouveau onyx and marble figural sculpture. Measuring 43 inches by 26 inches by 21 inches, it depicts a female figure with outstretched arms, dancing atop a flaming urn. The base of the sculpture is electrified and, when illuminated, imparts a soft glow. From a Sea Island, Ga., private collection, the sculpture has an auction estimate of $2,500-$3,500, with a reserve set at $1,500.
Asian art offerings include a pair of circa-1825 China trade paintings, each measuring 16 by 20½ inches and estimated at $1,000-$1,500 the pair. The assigned reserve is $600. These beautifully executed gouache-on-paper artworks depict figures working in tea fields. They were purchased from Alfred Bullard at the Washington Antique Show in 1985.
The fine jewelry category is where this sale really shines. A circa-1900 18K gold, carved ivory and enamel match safe was designed by Georges Le Sache (French, 1849-circa 1920) and retailed by Tiffany & Co. It comes to auction with a $10,000-$15,000 estimate and has a $6,000 reserve. “La Sache created bespoke pieces by commission only for premier jewelers of the 19th and 20th centuries, including Falize, Baucheron et Guillain, and, of course, Tiffany,” said Amanda Everard, co-owner of Everard Auction. “His extraordinary designs are now held in some of the world’s most important jewelry collections.”
A stunning 18K gold and diamond ring is mesmerizing with its central emerald that weighs in at approximately 6.47 carats. Cataloged with an opening bid of $8,000, it has expectations of reaching $10,000-$15,000 on auction day. The sale also includes several fine men’s pocket watches and ladies’ pendant watches.
One of the top decorative-art lots is a circa-1910 Tiffany Studios 12-light Favrile glass and gilt bronze Lily lamp. All shades are signed, and the base is impressed Tiffany Studios, New York, 382. Against a $15,000 reserve, it is estimated at $20,000-$30,000. This stunning lamp was purchased from an estate in Chicago before residing in the same family for two generations.
A set of four 1759 Georgian sterling silver candlesticks by William Cafe, London, stands out in a sea of gleaming sterling silver. The stately candlesticks are engraved with stag and crown crests on their bases and on their removable drip pans. Additional marks include a rampant lion and identifications for the city, date and maker. The total weight for the four candlesticks is 89.57ozt. Bidding will open at $2,400, and the pre-sale estimate is $4,000-$6,000.
An ample selection of antique American furniture includes a circa-1800 Federal maple secretary bookcase, probably of Connecticut origin. This venerable 7ft-tall secretary has an auction estimate of $4,000-$6,000, with a reserve set at $2,400. An 1815 Federal breakfast table of New York origin, probably Duncan Phyfe, is estimated at $6,000-$10,000 and has a $4,000 reserve. The table’s provenance can be traced to John and Sarah Elliot Huger Wells, who were known patrons of Phyfe.
A circa-1815 Federal mahogany sofa featured in the sale is probably the work of New York cabinetmaker Michael Allison (1773-1855), who was a contemporary of Duncan Phyfe. The piece is being deaccessioned by the Telfair Museum in Savannah and is upholstered in a magnificent yellow patterned silk used in the John F. Kennedy White House. The fabric was provided to the Telfair by someone who worked at Jansen on the White House redecoration project. The sofa is expected to reach $4,000-$6,000 at auction and has a starting bid of $2,400.
For those whose passion is modern furniture, there’s a vintage black leather Herman Miller Eames chair and ottoman. The classic duo is estimated at $2,000-$3,000, with a reserve set at $1,200. There are also two pieces by Max Kuehne (Germany/New York, 1880-1968): a painted cocktail table and an experimental giltwood rooster sculpture. Kuehne’s work can be found in the Art Institute of Chicago, the Whitney Museum, and many private collections.
The Feb. 28, 2023 auction will start at 10 a.m. EST. Bid absentee or live online via Everard, LiveAuctioneers, Bidsquare or Invaluable. The public is invited to a Feb. 21 preview reception from 5-7 pm at Everard Auctions’ gallery, with additional previewing available Feb. 22-24, or by appointment. For more information on any item in the auction, call 912-231-1376 or email [email protected]. Everard Auctions & Appraisals is located at 2436 Waters Ave., Savannah, GA 31404. Visit the company online at http://www.everard.com/