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Nevertheless, when the group, right, by the less-well-known Berlin sculptor Professor Poertzel, was consigned to auctioneers DDM, Brigg, (10% buyer’s premium) specialist Graham Paddison had no hesitation in putting it into the specialist sale at the Lincolnshire rooms on May 14 and15.

Often Mr Paddison has found that “lower-end things that have failed in an antique sale have sailed away in a general sale”, and is beginning to assign pieces accordingly. No such psychology, however, was needed for this 161/2in (42cm) cold
painted bronze and ivory group, right, of two dancers standing on a polished onyx octagonal column and base which went into the 1119-lot antique sale, where it attracted wide interest.

One of around 150-200 entries consigned from a local deceased state that netted in the region of £30,000, the group, inscribed Prof. Poertzel, was in poor condition with a badly restored arm and hand.

Nevertheless, Graham Paddison felt its quality was on a par with bronzes by the better known names, and buyers in the room, on the book and on five telephones agreed. The dancers were finally secured by a Manchester dealer on the telephone at £8200.

The estate furnished proceedings with many of its top works including a Georgian mahogany Pembroke table. Originally thought only to be Georgian in style, the trade felt it was the genuine article and it was taken to £2000, while a pair of mahogany Sheraton-period chairs with Edwardian inlay brought a £1650 trade bid.