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The 90 lots of predominantly Worcester, Chelsea, Bow and Meissen were collected by the Perth-born dermatologist, art collector and institutional benefactor Dr Harold Schenberg whose estate the auctioneers are dispersing through various sales in the UK and Australia this year. Although the sale recorded a selling rate by lottage of 62 per cent overall, it was substantially stronger for this property where only six lots failed to change hands. And at A$750,000 (£288,460), it also made a
disproportionately high contribution to the overall net total of A$2m (including premium).

Dr Schenberg began collecting 18th century porcelain in the 1970s. While many collectors today favour the simple designs produced when the earliest British factories were in their infancy, this collection showed a marked preference for highly decorative coloured rococo porcelains: the scale-blue pattern tablewares produced at Worcester in the 1770s and ’80s and elaborate bocage figures made at Bow and Chelsea in the 1760s. Several of these were pursued way beyond pre-sale estimates with, for example; a Chelsea gold anchor bocage group of The Music Lesson after Boucher doubling predictions at A$32,000 (£12,310); a near pair of pierced and floral encrusted hexagonal Worcester pot pourri vases of c.1770, measuring 151/2in and 16in (39.5 and 40cm) high, going to the New York trade for the same amount and an 81/4in (22cm) high scale-blue baluster shaped coffee pot of c.1770 making A$12,000 (£4615).

The biggest price in his collection was reserved for the luxuriantly painted 131/4in (34cm) wide rectangular Worcester dish from the Duke of Gloucester service pictured above which went to an Australian private collector for a quadruple estimate A$45,000 (£17,310).

Exchange rate: £1 = A$2.6