Art

Dave’s Faves for Bonhams “Fairwater” auction on 22 September 2019

We all love a good home contents auction, but “Fairwater” in Point Piper is not just any old home, but the ultimate Sydney harbour front mansion on 11,000 m2 of manicured grounds. The largest privately-held property on Sydney harbour was owned by the Fairfax publishing dynasty for over 100 years. This year the family sold it for $100 million, the highest price ever for an...
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Dave’s Faves for the Menzies Auction 26 Sept. 2019

The Menzies Fine Art Auction on 26 September in Sydney promises some very interesting offerings among its 125 lots. There are a number of works on paper by international greats such as Pablo Picasso, Andy Warhol with a Mick Jagger portrait and Banksy (fear not, it won’t be shredded after the hammer comes down). Aboriginal art is represented by Australian masters Albert Namatjira, Emily Kngwarreye...
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Dave’s Faves for the Deutscher + Hackett Auction on 28 August 2019

The Deutscher + Hackett fine art auction on 28 August features very important artworks from two outstanding art collections. These collections span two very different, yet important times in Australian art history: early modernism and contemporary Australian art, and complement each other beautifully in our view. They are also both great examples in how to collect art in a considered fashion. The first 36 lots...
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Dave’s Faves for Sotheby’s Auction on 27 August 2019

Among the 87 lots offered at Sotheby’s sale of Important Australian Art on 27 August, there are several multiple offerings from a number of Australian masters – including not surprisingly Arthur Boyd, Hans Heysen, Sidney Nolan, Arthur Streeton, Norman Lindsay and William Dobell. More surprising perhaps is the appearance of four works by Cressida Campbell. But on reflection, given recent auction results demonstrating her status...
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Auction Records for Australian Women Artists at Davidson Auctions

Numerous hammer prices at multiples of the estimates, auction records for six female artists, and a number of sleepers made for a very exciting auction for both sellers and buyers at Davidson Auctions’ Fine Art sale on Sunday, 21 July 2019. Robert Davidson, principal of the highly respected and well regarded Sydney boutique auction house, was delighted with the level of interest and results achieved:...
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Monumental Painting by Emily Kame Kngwarreye in a First at Art Basel

In a first for Art Basel which concluded on 16 June 2019, paying for a stand at the world’s most prestigious art fair, has become somewhat easier (if you are accepted into the fair by the vetting committee in the first place – 290 this year from 34 different countries). Art Basel director Marc Spiegler announced in his press conference on the opening VIP day...
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Outstanding Auction Record for Ian Fairweather at Deutscher + Hackett

Rarely has the Cell Block Theatre at the National Art School seen so many art industry personalities, insiders and habitués as at the Deutscher + Hackett’s fine art auction on 10 April 2019. Many would have been there to observe how Charles Blackman’s Alice on the Table (lot 9) fared, after the artist’s Sleeping Alice offered just the previous night at Sotheby’s did not awaken....
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Dave’s Faves for the Deutscher + Hackett Auction on 10 April 2019

The first 8 lots of the Deutscher + Hackett sale on 10 April 2019 in Sydney contain four outstanding works by some of the Australian masters of the abstract from the 1960s to the contemporary (Balson, Miller, Audette and Frank), a beautiful selection for the connoisseur of non-figurative art. This serves as the lead-in to the big bang offering of the night: lots 9 to...
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Dave’s Faves for the Sotheby’s Auction on 9 April 2019

Sotheby’s autumn auction in Sydney on 9 April presents 81 lots of outstanding Australian art. This includes two oils by Russell Drysdale, a true rarity by this master of the Australian country town and outback landscape. Another eye catcher will be lot 27 John Olsen’s “Seafood Paella” – however, a very big wall (and pocket) is required, as this late masterpiece from 2007 comes in...
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Dave’s Faves for the Menzies Auction 28 March 2019

The first Menzies auction of 2019 starts with two collections, one from the estate of Gwendoline Mutton and the other from Sir Walter Baldwin Spencer. The collection presented in the middle of the catalogue is a real stand-out in the sale. Titled the Thomas Tyrwhitt Balcombe Family Collection, lots 56 to 68 are a veritable treasure trove of early colonial works on paper by this...
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Dave’s Faves for the Deutscher + Hackett auction on 28 Nov. 2018

13 ink drawings and watercolours no larger than A4 start off the Deutscher + Hackett sale on 28 November in Melbourne. Their modest size and medium belies their importance: among them are the last pre-settlement portraits of Tasmanian Aboriginal people and extremely early depictions of  Western Australia, created between 1801 and 1804 on the Baudin voyage to Australia by French artists and naturalists Nicolas-Martin Petit...
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Dave’s Faves for the Menzies Auction on 22 November

In their last auction of the year, Menzies present a diverse offering of 125 lots in their summer sale held in their South Yarra premises in Melbourne. The star painting is without a doubt the cover lot: Jeffrey Smart’s “Outside the Ministry” from 1970, and it’s as impressive a Smart as you are ever going to see. If you prefer landscapes to the urban, look...
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Dave’s Faves for the Sotheby’s Auction 20 Nov. 2018

Sotheby’s Sydney auction on 20 November starts with a veritable fanfare from the collection of John Symonds, of Aussie Home Loans fame. Among the 14 artworks are masterpieces by some of Australia’s greatest modern and contemporary artists: Blackman, Boyd (Arthur and David), Brack, Nolan, Olsen and Smart to name a few. This selection was awarded a separate catalogue and contains essays researched by Elizabeth Hastings,...
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Dave’s Faves for the Bonham auction on 14 November 2018

If you love fine art and auctions, November is going to be a very busy month with 4 major art auctions scheduled, before the long break until March/April 2019. It is Bonhams who are launching the summer auction season on 14 November, followed by Sotheby’s on 20 November and Menzies on 22 November, and Deutscher + Hackett the week after on 28 November. We will...
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Hot or Not? at Sotheby’s on a Chilly Sydney Winter Night

On an evening in Sydney with an arctic chill in the air, Sotheby’s sale of Important Australian Art in Sydney on 28 August 2018 did break a number of Australian auction records. But one still has to wonder about the random nature of selling art in the auction room, which can particularly be observed in a tight sale containing just 67 lots. Perhaps before bidding...
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Dave’s Faves for Sotheby’s auction on 28 August 2018

Sotheby’s offer 67 tightly curated lots in their Sydney auction on 28 August, with several juicy, and indeed fruity offerings. They include lot 17, Grace Cossington Smith’s “Fruit in the Window, 1957 (unknown fruit – perhaps quinces?), lot 33 Julian Ashton’s “Picking Fruit”, 1914 (apples), lot 36 Norman Lindsay’s Bacchanalian Festival (apples again), lot 38 Justin O’Brien’s “Boy in Red Jacket in Landscape (pears) and...
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Dave’s Faves for the Menzies Auction on 9 August 2018

Menzies’ Winter Auction in Sydney on 9 August incorporates some very interesting collections. Lots 1 – 20 and then again lots 81 – 114 are from the Sandra and Peter Geyer collection of contemporary art, and it is a cracking offering: sculpture, photography, works on paper, oils, Australian and international by some of the greatest names in contemporary art – Antony Gormley, William Kentridge, Bill...
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DAVE’S FAVES FOR THE BONHAMS AUCTION ON 20 JUNE 2018

In their half-yearly fine art auction, Bonhams present 162 lots, an unusually large offering including a number of Aboriginal artworks. Closer inspection of the catalogue reveals that the first 19 lots are from mixed vendors, and the remainder is made up from just two collections: the Bonita Croft and late Gene Zemaitis collection comprising lots 20 to 58, while the majority, lots 59 to 162,...
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Dave’s Faves for the Sotheby’s auction on 16 May 2018

The upcoming Sotheby’s auction on 16 May is titled “Important Australian & New Zealand Art”, a departure from the usual “Australian & International Art”, and with good reason: lots 97 and 98 are created by two of our neighbour’s most sought-after artists, Charles Frederick Goldie (1870 – 1947) and Gottfried Lindauer (1839 – 1926). Both Goldie and Lindauer are best known for their Maori subjects,...
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Dave’s Faves for the Menzies Auction on 26 April 2018

Menzies are celebrating their 20th anniversary in 2018 with some extraordinary offerings from both private and company collections. The auction with 142 lots will be held on 26 April in Melbourne. There are impressionist gems from the Sir George Tallis collection (tip: watch the video-blog), works from the ExxonMobil collection (check out the massive Inge King sculpture lot 9) and a lovely selection of paintings...
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Dave’s Faves for the Deutscher + Hackett Auction on 18 April 2018

Deutscher + Hackett kick off the 2018 fine art auction season with a finely curated offering of 117 lot on 18 April in Sydney. They include some sublime Australian impressionist works by husband and wife team Ethel Carrick and Emanuel Phillips Fox, a good number of 20th century sculptures from the greats (Klippel, King, Meadmore) to the young guns (Seton), and photography from Australia’s most...
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Dave’s Faves: Something to Crowe About

Australia’s best known Kiwi Russell Crowe is taking a somewhat tongue-in-cheek approach to the sale of his most eclectic collection. It contains 227 personal items, from art, movie props and costumes, sports memorabilia, jewellery, watches, guitars, music memorabilia and more, in an auction titled “The Art of Divorce”. Sotheby’s Australia scored the exclusive prestigious Hollywood gig and is holding the sale in Sydney on Saturday...
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Dave’s Faves for Menzies 30 Nov. 2017

Menzies’ auction on 30 November in Sydney offer 186 lots presenting a wonderful variety of artworks at price points that will suit all budgets. You could aspire to major works by Australian masters like Jeffrey Smart or Fred Williams (whose  “Waterpond, Cottlesbridge” gets cover lot credentials) or you could go for much more modestly priced photographs or prints by Marc Chagall, Max Dupain, Bill Henson...
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Dave’s Faves for Bonhams 19 Nov. 2017

One of Australia’s most prolific 20th century artists, Sidney Nolan remains one of our best known, most revered and loved. Perhaps also one of our greatest exports, living at “The Rodd” in Wales until his passing in 1992. With the passing of his widow, Lady Mary Nolan, in April 2016, another major offering of Nolan’s work, in fact 118 from Lady Nolan’s estate, are to...
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Dave’s Faves for Sotheby’s Auction 21 November 2017

The end of the year brings a bounty for the astute art collector: the next 4 weeks will be packed with fine art auctions. Bonhams, Deutscher + Hackett, Menzies and Sotheby’s combined alone will offer more than $ 30 million worth of art in this end of year round. To date in 2017, $92 million dollars worth of art have sold at auction. This means...
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Dave’s Faves for Deutscher + Hackett 20 Sept 2017 Auction

No rest for the team at Deutscher + Hackett: just three weeks after the phenomenal Fairfax auction follows their mixed vendor sale. It is a tightly curated auction with 78 lots, starting off with a bang with two rare colonial works on paper.  Lot 1 shows the fledgling town of Perth around 1836, while lot 2 is large panorama of the Victorian goldfields from c1858....
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Dave’s Faves for the D+H Fairfax auction 30 Aug 2017

Deutscher + Hackett secured the privilege to offer the finest artworks from one Australia’s most distinguished private collections: that of the late James O. Fairfax AC. The 54 lots offered on 30 August in Sydney represent a master class in Australian painting, with outstanding impressionist, modernist and modern classics. It’s worth going to the viewing just for the sheer pleasure of it. If you would...
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Dave’s Faves for the Sotheby’s auction 16 August 2017

The 97 lots in Sotheby’s winter auction on 16 August present a beautiful bouquet of some of Australia’s most revered artists. The front and back cover alone are enough to make you swoon: you are greeted by Arthur Boyd’s “Moby Dick Hill” from 1949 (lot 9), and farewelled by Russell Drysdale’s “Boy with a Lizard”, 1966 (lot 7). Not surprisingly, both made it into “Dave’s...
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Dave’s Faves for Menzies Auction on 10 August 2017

Art collectors are driven by passion, not just for the art, but the history of art, the artist and their contemporaries, and endless connections between them. In this regard, public art galleries and private collectors have much in common, and private collectors may go on to donate some or all of their own collection to a public museum, or even build their own art gallery....
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