The other night my friend Jessica invited me and my house guest Sabina to this preview. We had a wonderful time. The live music and cocktails made it very festive, and the viewing was pretty fabulous. This is a once a year auction featuring all things Louisiana, and it's a must for anyone who lives in or loves New Orleans.
If you'd like a look on line at the fabulous objects, go HERE
The auction is October 11 and 12.
The "star" of the show is this John McCrady (American 1911-1968) painting called "The Political Rally," Lot #245, estimated at $200,000 to $300,000
This type of Rococo furniture is not for me, but it seems every great Louisiana house has it. This is another show stopper, Lot#384, a fine American Rococo Carved and Laminated Rosewood Settee, mid 19th century attributed by its elaborate tufting to John Henry Belter.
Apparently it was saved from The Great Chicago Fire, and is estimated to go for $50,000 to $70,000.
Another settee of the same type, Lot #395, is nice, but it doesn't have the fabric in the pattern called "Tuthill King" as the red one does, so it's estimated to go for $8,000 - $12,000.
We all had our favorites. All three of us especially like all the paintings, drawings, prints, and photographs. This pink lady done in 1895 was one I really liked. Lot #63, a portrait of Elizabeth Alvina Hyde by Theobald Chartran (French, 1849-1907). It promises $5000 to $7000.0,000]
There is alot of antique Carnival memorabilia, and we all liked Lot #255, this Mistick Krewe of Comus cup from 1894 (it comes with an invitation from the ball that year too). It kind of looks like a pimp cup, and is estimated to fetch between $7000 to $9000.
George Valentine Dureau is a beloved living artist here in New Orleans, and Lot #627, mixed media on paper (it is the original art for a poster he did), expects to bring $1800 to $2400. I would really love to have this!
George Dureau also has some striking photographs, among them Lot #1151, entitled "Troy Josuha Brown" estimated at $1500 to $2500.
We all really loved this little lady, a pastel on silk of a flower seller, Lot #412, by Elizabeth O'Neil Verner, entitled "Charlotte Selling Flowers," and estimated at $2000 to $3000.
There are many fabulous lots by two painters named Woodward, Ellsworth and William. This one, Lot #277, is by Ellsworth Woodward, and is a tiny gem of a watercolor measuring 5 inches X 9 inches, and estimated at $6000 to $9000. The Woodward paintings are what Jessica came to see, and what she would love to have.
This Majolica garden seat, Lot #469, stopped my heart! Rare and signed and dated 1863 by Minton, the rectangular form with reticulated sides, two with oval cartouches with dragons, and the other two with stylized swastikas. It reminds one how a classic geometric design was corrupted with Hitler's unfortunate use of it. This little beauty is estimated at $9000 to $12,000.
Sabina loved this pair of Art Nouveau polychromed bronze conservatory tree floor lamps. Lot #480, circa 1890-1910, probably French or Italian, estimated for $10,000 to $15,000 the pair.
There is also alot of non fancy furniture in the form of primitives, like this cypress board table that Jessica is craving big time. It reminded her of her mother jamming all the kids in the car on a Sunday afternoon, and backroading it, stopping at barns along the way, sweet talking farmers out of their discarded furniture. Jessica said she hated these outings as a kid, but now as she comes into her mother's treasures, she appreciates what her mother did.
This table, Lot # 367, is early 19th century from the Tezcuco Plantation, but was found on the grounds (maybe in a barn!) of Bocage Plantation. It's estimated for $2500 to $3500.
All in all it was an exhilarating evening. The place was packed, and we don't know if it was the free food and drinks, and the great music by Washboard Chaz, St. Louis Slim, and Andy J. Forest. Lots of people we spoke to said they'd be bidding. To be there, you wouldn't know that major and middle class fortunes are being lost daily. We have no fortunes to win or lose, and alas no money to bid either. I did buy the auction catalog, and happily poured over it for hours.