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Cecil Kennedy’s Summer Flowers sold for £8000 at Halls.

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The 19½in x 2ft 2in (50 x 66cm) oil on canvas had been purchased by the vendor from the London gallery Macconnal-Mason, the sole agents for Kennedy’s work until 1995. Summer Flowers, above, attracted bids from North America, and was knocked down above estimate at £8000, against a £4000- 6000 guide.

Kennedy’s detailed oil paintings of flowers, which often include a ladybird or a bumblebee, reached peak demand in 2002 when Bonhams took an auction record £82,000 for a hibiscus and mermaid rose still-life, a high that still stands according to Art Sales Index.

Elsewhere at Halls, the emancipation of women was the inspiration behind the portrait titled The Young Falconer by James Robert Granville Exley (1878-1967).

The 3ft 4in x 3ft (1.02m x 92cm) painting depicts the artist’s daughter Mary Exley, with a falcon perched on her right hand, and was displayed in the Festival of Britain exhibition at Bradford City Gallery in 1951.

It was one of a collection of works by Exley in the auction that had descended through the vendor’s family. The most expensive from the group, it sold for £3000 against a £1000-2000 guide.