Old Masters

Traditionally this sector is defined as works by master painters working in Europe from before 1800. It includes Renaissance artists and Dutch Golden Age painters for example. Today Old Master auctions in London and New York will include works by British artists as well as some 19th century works.


Doge of Venice

05 March 2001

ITALY: ANOTHER Renaissance magnate, the Doge of Venice, Antonio Grimani (1521-23). His (29mm diameter) portrait medal made Li2m (£670).

$280,000 Fragonard sketch

26 February 2001

US: OVERLOOKED in our recent report on the New York Old Master sales, this Jean-Honoré Fragonard (1732-1806) oil sketch for a much-admired, but now lost painting of The Visitation is worth putting on the record after it fetched an upper estimate $280,000 (£197,185) at the New York rooms of Doyle’s (15/10 per cent buyer’s premium) on January 24.

Colnaghi’s take the wider view...

12 February 2001

US: THE January Old Master week in New York offered the opportunity to buy some exceptional drawings, but none was more exceptional than this panoramic view of Dordrecht, above, the work of Aelbert Cuyp (1620-1691) offered by Christie’s (17.5/10 per cent buyer’s premium) at their January 24 Old Master Drawings sale.

Venice by Naya

29 January 2001

FRANCE: Venezia Fodaco dei Turghi, Carlo Naya’s moonlit view of the Grand Canal (c.1870), headed the Baron-Ribeyre photo sale on December 19. The albumen print, 161/2 x 21in (41 x 53cm), was dubbed in perfect condition and raced to a treble-estimate Fr55,000 (£5200).

Bronzino hits gold with new record

04 December 2000

A pencil drawing by Bronzino (1503-72) earned Fr10.6m (£960,000) at Piasa on November 20, the highest ever price for an old master drawing in Paris, and a world record for a Bronzino drawing.

Gavels hammer down millions in London bid fest

10 July 2000

THE second week of London’s prestige midsummer sales saw the Modern given way to the traditional with a flurry of exceptional prices for Old Master paintings and drawings and Renaissance works of art.

A question of attribution

03 July 2000

ITALIAN Renaissance sculpture made a rare splash in the national news last week with the announcement that a £3500 bronze bought in Los Angeles by leading London works of art dealer Daniel Katz was now identified as a “multimillion pound masterpiece by Donatello”.

France to have Lagerfeld pictures

01 May 2000

US & FRANCE: TWO works by Philippe de Champaigne have been withdrawn from the sale of the Karl Lagerfeld collection, in New York on May 23, and offered to the French State.

Rare medieval painting to be reunited with altarpiece

24 April 2000

UK: LEADING London art dealer Simon Dickinson has announced the sale to the Brooklyn Museum of Art of the 14th century Florentine gold ground painting of Christ in Majesty which he bought for £66,000 at Dorchester rooms of Hy. Duke & Son on March 9

New York financier Saul Steinberg to sell his Old Master collection

24 April 2000

US: NEW York financier Saul Steinberg is to sell his collection of 61 Old Master paintings through the New York art dealer Richard Feigen. With obvious carrots dangled by the leading auction houses for such an important collection, conservatively valued at some $52m, this is a major fillip for the fine art trade.

Christie’s to sell part of Wernher Collection

10 April 2000

UK: Christie’s are to sell a selection of works of art from the Wernher Collection, expected to fetch over £10m, as the highlight of their summer season.

Michelangelo's Study for the Risen Christ

03 April 2000

UK: ONE of the most important drawings to appear at auction in London will be put up for sale at Christie's on July 4.

Duke's uncover a blessing in disguise

13 March 2000

UK: HAVING ascribed it to the Italian School of the 13th/14th century in their auction advertisement, Hy. Duke now believe that this 73/4 x 9in (20 x 23cm) oil on panel, right, is in fact the pinnacle – missing for 150 years – of the Madonna panel by Nardo Di Cione (1343-1366).

Highly important painting Cimabue discovered

21 February 2000

UK: A HIGHLY important painting by the early Italian master Cimabue (c.1240-1302) has been discovered by Sotheby's at Benacre Hall, near Lowestoft, Suffolk, home of the reclusive Sir John Gooch, 12th Bt., who died last year.

Botticelli scoop for Scottish gallery

30 November 1999

UK: A RARE catch indeed, the most important painting of its period in a British private collection, Botticelli’s Virgin Adoring the Christ Child, c.1490-1500, pictured right, has been acquired by the National Gallery of Scotland from the 10th Earl of Wemyss and March, who was about to sell it to America.

Lost Old Master found in a box at Newark

14 June 1999

UK: A DEALER’S £25 purchase at an antiques fair is likely to bring him a substantial windfall after being identified as a rare copper etching plate by Lucas van Leyden, the 16th century Old Master.

Bonham’s charming stopgap

26 April 1999

UK: IN common with a number of other London auctioneers, Bonhams (15/10 per cent buyer’s premium), were reserving their best quality Old Master consignments for July, but their April 13 sale in Knightsbridge did at least include the decorative charms of this 3ft 21/2in by 2ft 43/4in (98 x 73cm) canvas, illustrated here, of a young woman tending a bouquet of flowers, signed by the Italian-based still life specialist Abraham Brueghel (1631-1697).

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