March - Current news and Augustin Exhibition

Sales in the Online Market

This attractive mourning miniature sold for $1204, which seemed a modest price compared for how these items often sell for. The rear inscription reads "In Death Lamented, as in Life Belov'd". I believe it is American and quite rare.

This early 20C miniature portrait of an unknown lady sold for $381, a very reasonable price for the well regarded artist, Rebecca Newbold Van Trump.

She was born in Philadelphia, PA and studied in at the PAFA; Académie Julian, and in Paris with T. Robert-Fleury and Boulanger; also A. Mollin, Corot & Courtois in Paris. She exhibited: PAFA Ann., 1879-1903 (12 times); Paris Salon, 1893; Phila. AC, 1898; Columbian Expo, Chicago, 1893; AIC. As is so often the case, it is a pity the sitter is unknown.

The mid 19C miniature of a young lady is an interesting example for people who worry about buying cracked miniatures. I could not pick the artist, but it sold for $263 after bidding by several people. That shows cracked miniatures are collectible.

French Exhibition
For anyone lucky enough to be in France in the spring, there is an Exhibition of miniature portraits by the famous French artist Jean Baptiste Jacques Augustin in his home town of Saint Die de Vosges.

The exhibition will be in the Museum Pierre Noel and runs from 17 April 2010 - 20 June 2010.

Bernd Pappe who has written most of the wonderful catalogues of the Tansey Collection has also written this exhibition catalogue.

Bernd kindly advises me that;
The exhibition will be but small, with about 80 works exhibited. There are many prestigious works lent by the Louvre and the Napoleon foundation in Paris. Other museum lenders are the musée Cognacq-Jay, Paris, the musée Antoine Lécuyer, Saint-Quentin, the Musée Lorrain, Nancy; private lenders come from France, Belgium and Germany (Tansey foundation, Celle). The exhibition is in big part dedicated to Augustin, a small part shows works by Pauline Augustin, Augustin Dubourg and "Augustin fils / neveu" all from the Augustin family. The catalogue (written by Bernd himself), 96 pages, shows all exhibits in colour. It includes a main article on Augustin, but reveals also the hitherto unknown identities of Augustin Dubourg and "Augustin fils / neveu".

Collectors still need to be careful of buying fakes, or miniatures with false signatures.

This miniature is currently for sale on eBay for $6000 and claims to be by Thomas Sully (1783-1872), the well regarded American artist.

However, I seriously doubt that. The quality of the miniature looks to be too poor for such a well known artist; also the writing looks to be too fresh, and seems modern in style.

I do not think a serious collector will be fooled, but it shows that new collectors need to be very careful about their purchases, until such time as they have built up some personal knowledge on the subject.

In this case it is quite probable the seller is not aware of doubts about the signature, which could have been added any time in the last 30 years.

1 comment:

  1. Great entry Don :)
    Always enjoy your thoughts and learning from you!