Master Paintings: Part I brought a total of $57,142,500 with 72% sold by lot and 97% of sold lots bringing prices at or above their estimates. Twelve lots sold for more than $1 million, including Salisbury Cathedral from the Meadows, a preparatory work for one of John Constable’s most celebrated masterpieces, now in the Tate, which soared to $5.2 million after an extended battle, well in excess of expectations (est. $2/3 million). The top selling lot was Willem van de Velde the Elder, one of the greatest examples of a penschilderij (pen and ink painting) remaining in private hands, which brought $5.4 million, above the high estimate and a new record for the artist at auction. Auction records were also set for Giovanni Paolo Panini, Vittore Carpaccio and Antoine Coypel. Works from the collection of J.E. Safra were among the top selling lots, including Frozen River at Sunset by Dutch artist Aert van der Neer, which achieved $4.7 million, and Giovanni Paolo Panini’s Rome, The Pantheon, a view of the interior towards the Piazza della Rotonda, which sold for $5.3 million.
A remarkable group of European paintings from the late 13th century to the early 19th century will be offered in this January’s Master Paintings: Part I auction. The earliest work in the sale, from circa 1285, is a small gold ground of the Crucifixion with Saint Francis painted by the Master of the Latin Bible 18, possibly identifiable as Jacopino da Reggio. A stunning painting on copper of Noah’s Ark by Jan Brueghel the Elder leads our Flemish paintings. The masters of the Dutch Golden Age are well represented in the auction, with a group of 17th century Dutch pictures coming from the Estate of Bernard Palitz, including still lifes by Jan Davidsz. de Heem and Clara Peeters, in addition to masterpieces by Aert van der Neer, Pieter Claesz., Salomon Ruysdael, and Willem van de Velde the Elder from the collection of J.E. Safra. Highlights from the 18th century include Giovanni Paolo Panini’s interior view of the Pantheon, and an Allegory of Music by Antoine Coypel which includes a portrait of Mme. De Maintenon with the children of Louis XIV.
Click here to view the catalogue of the Property from the Collection of J.E. Safra.