Issue 9, July - December 2014

Introduction

Today's billionaire collectors showcase their art in specially designed museums often with their names over the door. The princes and aristocrats of the sixteenth century enshrined their most precious works in wunderkammern: rooms of wonder intended to be a reflection of the marvels of the world. The contents would include
naturalia, scientifica and exotica such as precious stones, metals, fossils as well as art and artefacts made by mankind from foreign lands.

With over 900 sales held worldwide each year and 60 collection departments, Bonhams sometimes feels like a giant wunderkammer. This edition of the Review contains an extraordinary diversity of naturalia and exotica items, from an important Chinese jade vase to a collection of 'hearts and arrows' diamonds sold in Hong Kong, and modern day scientifica, most notably the Apple 1 Motherboard sold in New York last October.

At the heart of every wunderkammer, a kabinettschrank like The Ballyfin Cabinet on pages 14 and 15 would have occupied pride of
place. The Ballyfin Cabinet, originally discovered by Bonhams back in 2006, is one of only a few known kabinettshranks in existence, and was one of the highlights of our European works of art sale
in December.

As usual in the Review there are some delightfully surprising links between the star lots. For example Bonhams are honoured to have been appointed to sell The Lauren Bacall Collection on 31st March and 1st April in New York. On page nine you will see one of the exquisite Henry Moore bronzes from her extraordinary collection that we sold
in November 2014. Turning to the next page, you will find the piano used on the set of Lauren Bacall's first husband, Humphrey Bogart's most famous film, Casablanca. All of which goes to show that the auction world is an easy place to play six degrees of separation.

I hope that you enjoy this look back at some of the most precious objects that have passed through Bonhams over the last six months.

Harvey Cammell
Group Director
Art Collections, Estates & Valuations
+44 (0) 20 7468 8230
harvey.cammell@bonhams.com

  1. <i>The Ex-Jo Schlesser/Henri Oreiller, Paolo Colombo, Ernesto Prinoth, Fabrizio Violati</i><br /><b>1962-63 FERRARI 250 GTO BERLINETTA</b><br />Chassis no. 3851GT<br />Engine no. 3851GT

    Page 2

    FERRARI 250 GTO
    Sold for $38,115,000 (£22,843,633) at Quail Lodge, 14 August 2014 A world record for any car sold at auction

    The world's longest single-ownership Ferrari 250 GTO Berlinetta - which had effectively...

    James Knight
    Group Director of Motoring

  2. A rare and important blue and white garlic-mouth vase Yongzheng seal mark and of the period (2)

    Page 4

    BLUE AND WHITE GARLIC MOUTH VASE YONGZHENG SEAL
    Sold in Hong Kong for HK$76,280,000, 27 November 2014 This is a world record at auction for a blue and white vase.

    This magnificent garlic-head vase is extraordinarily rare – the only other known example is in the Palace Museum, Beijing from the Qing Court Collection. It encapsulates the very finest of imperial Yongzheng period porcelain production painted in underglaze blue and white. The relatively short Yongzheng period was a peak of innovation in form and refinement in design and execution as the ...

  3. Shibata Zeshin &#26612;&#30000;&#26159;&#30495; (1807-1891) PANEL WITH DESIGN OF FARMHOUSE IN THE SNOW AT SANO &#38634;&#20013;&#20304;&#37326;&#65288;&#12300;&#37474;&#12398;&#26408;&#12301;&#65289;&#22259;&#33940;&#32117;&#38989;&#38754; Meiji era (1868–1912), 1883 (4)

    Page 6

    FARMHOUSE IN THE SNOW AT SANO LACQUER PANEL
    BY SHIBATA ZESHIN Sold for £842,500 in London, 5 November 2014 A world record for the artist at auction

    Shibata Zeshin produced a number of large-scale lacquer panels during the last two decades of his career. Clearly intended to emulate the scale and impact of framed Western oils and establish lacquering as an independent painting medium, these panels are among Zeshin's most unusual and striking works. This panel appears to be the only one by Zeshin to feature ...

  4. HENRY MOORE O.M., C.H. (1898-1986) Working Model for Reclining Figure: Bone Skirt 27 in (69 cm) (length, including base) (Cast in 1977-79)

    Page 8

    WORKING MODEL FOR RECLINING FIGURE
    BONE SKIRT BY HENRY MOORE (LAUREN BACALL ESTATE) Sold for $1,061,000 in New York, 4 November 2014

    The Reclining Figure is the key element in Henry Moore's sculptural vocabulary, a constant from the early 1920s through to his very last works and forming more than half his finished oeuvre. The Reclining Figures are by turns archaic, surrealist, abstract and neo-classical,
    until in late works, such as Working model for reclining figure: bone
    skirt they are seemingly ...

  5. The piano from Casablanca on which Sam plays "As Time Goes By"

    Page 10

    THE PIANO FROM CASABLANCA
    Sold for $3,413,000 in New York, 24 November 2014

    Of the two pianos played by the character Sam (Dooley Wilson) in Casablanca, this one appeared at all the crucial points of the film. It is Sam's melodies which establish the mood in Rick's Café Américain, and most of the memorable moments of this iconic film are accompanied by his music. One of the best known – and most ...

  6. EDGAR DEGAS (1834-1917) Danseuses et contrebasse 9 x 6 3/4 in (23.2 x 17 cm) (Painted circa 1879-1880)

    Page 12

    DANSEUSES AND CONTREBASSE BY EDGAR DEGAS
    Sold for $485,000 in New York, 4 November 2014

    The hallmarks of Degas' mastery as an Impressionist are at play in Danseuses et contrebasse which was painted around 1880. He reveals a scene which is both photographic and fleeting, in a manner entirely foreign to the traditional salon painter. Rather than capturing a quiet moment of time standing still, Degas chooses a moment of transition. Although he only began ...

  7. An Exceptional Augsburg 17th century silver-gilt mounted ebony Table Cabinet with Florentine pietre dure plaques from the Grand Ducal workshops by Elias Boscher, circa 1660

    Page 14

    AUGSBURG 17TH CENTURY TABLE CABINET
    Sold for £482,500 in London, 5 December 2014

    This cabinet, known as the Ballyfin Cabinet, after the Irish stately home for which it was purchased in the first half of the 19th century, belongs to a rare group of important table cabinets from Augsburg, made during the 17th century, originally commissioned as a testimony to the status and intellect of wealthy patrons. It is one of a few ...

  8. George Bellows (American, 1882-1925) Two Women 59 1/4 x 65 1/2in (Painted in 1924.)

    Page 16

    TWO WOMEN BY GEORGE BELLOWS
    Sold for $1,265,000 in New York, 19 November 2014

    This work was one of two monumental canvases painted by Bellows in the summer of 1924 during the last productive season of his life. He died tragically young the following January. It is modelled on Titian's Sacred and Profane Love which Bellows knew from illustrations. Indeed, this was the initial title of his painting. Two Women, like the work ...

  9. Dame Barbara Hepworth (British, 1903-1975) Cantate Domino 209.8 cm. (81 1/2 in.) high (including the base) (Conceived in 1958, the present cast is number 2 from an edition of 6 and was cast by the Art Bronze Foundry. BH.244)

    Page 18

    CANTATE DOMINO BY BARBARA HEPWORTH
    Sold for £542,500 in London, 17 November 2014

    Cantate Domino is a powerful and elegant sculpture conceived in 1958, just two years after Hepworth had begun to work with bronze; her first recorded piece using this medium. It is intended to be sited outdoors, and is most successful when viewed in the context of its surrounding landscape. Tastefully positioned in the Burton family's old garden on a ...

  10. Vasudeo S. Gaitonde (1924-2001) Untitled, 1963

    Page 20

    UNTITLED 1963 BY VASUDEO S GAITONDE
    Sold for $1,685,000 in New York, 17 September 2014

    This beautiful work was in the collection of Morris Graves who bought it directly from the artist's studio in 1963 on his first visit. In a letter he wrote to friends immediately afterward he explained the impact of the work and in doing so perfectly encapsulates the essence of the artist. "One of the finest painters I have ever ...

  11. Leica NASA, c.1966

    Page 22

    LEICA NASA MDA 1966
    Sold for HK$ 4,360,000 in Hong Kong, 29 November 2014

    In 1966, NASA ordered 150 Leica cameras, of which this is one, to be used on their lunar missions. Although Hasselblad cameras had been used in many previous space missions, the Leica's lightweight body gave it an edge for the lunar missions where the crucial and untested challenge of lift off from the moon's surface on the return ...

  12. Childe Hassam (American, 1859-1935) Lady in a Garden 18 x 15in (Painted circa 1890.)

    Page 24

    LADY IN A GARDEN BY CHILDE HASSAM
    Sold for $905,000 in New York, 19 November 2014

    In, Lady in a Garden, Hassam explored one of the many gardens on Appledore Island off the coast of Maine and New Hampshire where he was a frequent visitor and guest of Celia Thacker – an avid patron of the arts – and her brother. The scenery emphasises the remote location that Appledore provided, with the undefined space in the distance. Despite ...

  13. A pair of George III carved mahogany 'Gainsborough' type open armchairsin the French taste (2)

    Page 26

    PAIR OF GEORGE III CARVED MAHOGANY 'GAINSBOROUGH'
    TYPE OPEN ARMCHAIRS Sold for £182,500 in London, 19 November 2014

    These were fascinating pieces of furniture with intriguing links to Thomas Chippendale. The pronounced curve of the arms and the shaping of the cabriole legs, for example, relate closely to a pattern for a 'French Chair' illustrated in the third edition of Chippendale's The Gentleman and Cabinet–Makers Director of 1762. There are also significant connections with the cabinet-makers ...

  14. Joan Mitchell (American, 1925-1992) Untitled (Triptych) 1975-1976

    Page 28

    JOAN MITCHELL UNTITLED (TRIPTYCH) 1975-76
    BY JOAN MITCHELL Sold for £278,500 in London, 17 October 2014

    While Joan Mitchell is known for her often enormous polyptychs, huge sprawling paintings which dominate a room, Untitled (Triptych), (1971-1973) and it companion work Untitled (Triptych), (1975-1976) – which was sold at the same sale – reveal a more intimate approach. In them, Mitchell combines her quintessential energy, her love of colour and tone and her virtuoso handling of paint, pulling all ...

  15. A Flawless Collection of Hearts and Arrows Diamonds (16)

    Page 30

    COLLECTION OF HEARTS AND ARROWS DIAMONDS
    Sold for HK$20,280,000 in Hong Kong, 26 November 2014

    This flawless collection of 16 Hearts and Arrows diamonds weighed 39.98 carats in total, ranging from 4.49 to 1.16 carats. Hearts and Arrows diamonds first emerged from Japan in the 1980s, and they fulfilled three very important criteria. They were cut to the 'ideal proportions' set out in Marcel Tolkowsky's 1919 Bible Diamond Design: cut with ...

  16. A gilt bronze figure of the Buddha seated on an associated base Ming dynasty

    Page 32

    GILT BRONZE FIGURE OF THE BUDDHA
    Sold for $485,000 in New York, 15 September 2014

    This superb Ming Dynasty figure of the Buddha poses an interesting question of interpretation. The figure's clasped hands with raised index fingers have been identified in various ways. It could be the gesture made by Vairocana, the Buddha that embodies the dharmakaya – or the truth body – described in the Brahma Net sutra and the Avatamsaka sutra. The two wheels ...

  17. Romanée-Conti 1985, Domaine de la Romanée-Conti (1 methuselah)

    Page 34

    ROMANÉE-CONTI 1985 METHUSELAH
    Sold for HK$735,000 in Hong Kong, 14 November 2014

    This Methuselah – 6 litres of wine, equivalent to eight bottles – of one of the great years of one of the great Burgundies, was understandably keenly contested. Critics have long vied for superlatives to describe this vintage. According to wine writer and noted Burgundy expert, Allen Meadows, the wine is: "Gorgeously expressive and highly spiced with a rich panoply of aromas ...

  18. Yiannis Moralis (Greek, 1916-2009) Full moon L (&#923;) 196 x 178 cm.

    Page 38

    FULL MOON L BY YIANNIS MORALIS
    Sold for £266,500 in London, 25 November 2014

    Painted in 1977, Full Moon L is a superb example of advanced geometric abstraction, distinguished by solid compositional structure, purity of form, harmonious proportions and dynamic rhythm of flowing curvilinear themes and interlocking patterns. True to his classical Greek heritage and yet utilising a formal vocabulary perfectly balanced to the scale of modern sensitivity, Moralis sought the realisation of a ...

  19. Bert Lahr's Cowardly Lion costume from the Wizard of Oz

    Page 40

    COWARDLY LION COSTUME FROM THE WIZARD OF OZ
    Sold for $3,077,000 in New York, 24 November 2014

    For many film goers, the Cowardly Lion played by Bert Lahr, is the most endearing and sympathetic character in The Wizard of Oz. Creating his costume, however, posed a real problem for the studio. These were the days before synthetic fur so the production team had no option but to use real lion skins. The challenge was to find lion ...

  20. An Egyptian dark green stone Osiriphoros statue for Padiaset

    Page 42

    EGYPTIAN STONE OSIRIPHOROS STATUE FOR PADIASET
    Sold for £136,900 in London, 2 October 2014

    Osiriphoros figures grew in popularity in the Late Period (664-332 BC) and there are a number of related figures in museums worldwide. The most important feature of this statue, which was made for a high priest called Padiaset, is the connection to the cult of Set. According to myth, Set murdered his brother Osiris and fought Osiris's son Horus ...

  21. An important emerald and diamond cluster ring

    Page 44

    EMERALD AND DIAMOND CLUSTER RING
    Sold for HK$ 7,420,000 in Hong Kong, 26 November 2014

    This antique cushion-shaped emerald, weighing 10.09 carats, within a brilliant-cut diamond surround, between shoulders of similarly cut diamonds was particularly prized for the outstanding quality of the emerald. Found in the Columbian Andes, this flawless stone from the mining areas of Muzo, Coscuez and Chivor has a purity rarely seen in emeralds from Columbia of this size. Columbia produces ...

  22. APPLE 1 COMPUTER. Apple 1 Motherboard,

    Page 46

    APPLE 1 MOTHERBOARD
    Sold for $905,000 in New York, 22 October 2014

    The Apple-1 computer is the first pre-assembled personal computer to come to market, heralding the dawn of the personal computer revolution. The story of its production and sale has become one of the most potent legends in 20th century history. Steve Wozniak had demonstrated his breakthrough design at the Homebrew Computer Club in Palo Alto and, with his high-school friend ...

  23. The ex-works, Mike Couper, Alpine Cup-winning, Brooklands starring,1934 Talbot AV105 'Alpine Racer'  Chassis no. 38706 Engine no. 110BG34

    Page 48

    1934 TALBOT AV105 ALPINE RACER
    Sold for £1,379,100 in London, Sunday 30 November 2014 A world record for a Talbot sold at auction

    In its day, this imposing car, known by its registration number 'BGH 23', was the outstanding British sports touring car and the ultimate Talbot development of the vision of the company's Swiss-born chief engineer, Georges Roesch. Of all the works and works-supported team sports cars that he conceived and developed to perfection, 'BGH 23' is the only one which ...

  24. A magnificent Imperial pale green jade archaistic vase, hu Qianlong four-character fang gu mark and of the period

    Page 50

    IMPERIAL PALE GREEN JADE ARCHAISTIC VASE HU
    QIANLONG 4 CHARACTERS Sold in Hong Kong for HK$ 19,160,000 Thursday 27 November 2014

    Formerly in the collection of the colourful ex MP Rodney Somerset de Chair, this archaistic jade hu vase is an exemplary imperial work of art. It represents the Qianlong Emperor's idea of archaism converted by the lapidary workshops into a magnificent and monumental jade vase imitating archaic bronze vessels of the late Spring and Autumn period (779-476 BC). The ...

Contacts
  1. Harvey Cammell
    Author
    Bonhams
    Work
    101 New Bond Street
    London, United Kingdom W1S 1SR
    Work +44 20 7468 8230
    FaxFax: +44 20 7468 5860

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