• Review: Antique & Decorators’ Auction Saturday 28th February 2015


    A turn of the century bentwood hat and coat stand made £300 and a marble top boulle work side cabinet, £950

    We are thrilled with the results of our February Antique and Decorator’s Auction which proved that objects of quality from private sources will always generate a great deal of interest in the auction market and that Ramsay Cornish is the place to find – and sell – these kind of pieces!

    We were lucky enough to have objects from two private collections, one from a major Scottish country house, the other an Edinburgh town house. In both cases the pieces consigned to us came from families with a long history of acquiring interesting and beautiful pieces for their homes. The history of collecting was reflected in both of these collections.


    A marble bust of Augustus by Leone Clerici realised £1100

    A marble bust of Augustus by Leone Clerici realised £1100

    Of particular interest to the market were Grand Tour items such as a pair of carved stone reliefs of Roman senators which achieved a hammer price of £8800 and a fine 19 century Carrara marble bust of Augustus by a prominent Roman sculptor selling for £1100. Although we keep hearing that traditional “brown” furniture does not do well at auction, high quality examples still generate strong bidding from both private and trade buyers. Examples of this in the sale were a handsome late Victorian country house sofa which sold for just under £3,000 and an imposing mahogany console or side table in the English Palladian taste by prominent Edinburgh cabinet makers, Whytock and Reid which, despite some condition issues, was knocked down at £1400.


    A pair of 19thc Chinese Famille Rose decorated vases realised £800.

    The fun of these sales is the wide range which this time ranged from 18th century Chinese porcelain to contemporary art, from Masai spears to Jaeger le Coultre vintage watches. The values of these pieces also offer collectors an opportunity to buy pieces from as little as £50 to, in the case of this auction, the day’s record price of £53,000!

    The atmosphere in the room was electric and, for the first time, in addition to our bidders in the room, on the telephone and by commission, we offered live online bidding.

    This new technology caused us some pre-auction anxiety but our fears were unfounded and the addition of online bidders further widened our audience, and helped to boost prices.

    Our next Antique and Decorator’s auction will be on Saturday 30th May 2015, further entries invited. Please contact us for a free pre-sales valuation. Posted by Richard Edwards, March 2015