Bonhams & Butterfields Celebrates its June Sunset Estate Auction its Largest

June’s two-day sale included works of Modern, Contemporary and 20th Century art, Natural History, decorative arts, designer furniture and vintage and estate jewelry

International fine arts auctioneers Bonhams & Butterfields offered its largest Sunset Estate Auction in Los Angeles in June, totaling more than $800,000. Over two-days — June 24-25, 2007 – the eclectic sale featured an exciting array of luxury and décor items, including jewelry, timepieces, designer furnishings, silver and for the first time, a desirable German automobile.

According to Carolyn Mani, Director of Sunset Estates Auctions, “We were pleased to see such strong sale results across the board in all categories offered. From Modern, Contemporary and 20th Century works of art, Natural History, rugs, and books and manuscripts to decorative arts including Asian works of art. The June Sunset Estate sale had something for all collecting levels” from the novice bidder and the experienced connoisseur, to the new home owner looking for something special.”

Following the multi-million-dollar success of the firm’s inaugural -Made in California and Modern & Contemporary art sales in May, the fine art section of the June Sunset Estate auction continued the strong buying trend with over 80% of offered lots sold.

Featured in the section was a collection of more than 200 lots including Japanese artist Akira Tanaka’s unframed Newspaper Woman (sold for $5,100); Figure with Owl by Hungarian/American artist Francis De Erdely (sold for $3,900) and Repository by American Contemporary artist John Baldessari which sold above its $700-900 estimate for $2,700. Works by Hans Burkhardt, John Laddie Dill, Roy Dowell, Leonard Edmondson, Robert Graham, Stanley William Hayter, Mel Kendrick and Milford Zornes sold to competitive bids. Collectors and members of the trade enthusiastically support the now-regular inclusion of Modern & Contemporary and 20th Century artworks in monthly Sunset Estate Auctions.”

In addition to a large selection of traditional and contemporary furnishings, June’s sale featured a selection of Natural History items, from décor to jewelry. A rare Narwhal tusk from the Artic Circle which stands nearly six-feet high sold above the $8,000-$10,000 estimate for $13,200. As well, stone bowls, picture frames, decorative household items and semi-precious jewelry attracted buyers.

Several grand pianos were also offered, including the sale’s top lot — a black Steinway &Sons Model B grand piano from the (sold for: $18,000) and a George Steck Sheraton style inlaid marquetry style grand piano enhanced with a disc player brought $6,600.

Highlights from several other private estates include a multi-colored sapphire and eighteen karat white gold necklace (sold for $9,000) and a ruby, diamond and 18k white gold necklace in a swag design (sold for $3,900) together with more than 300-lots of vintage and estate jewelry and timepieces with examples from Van Cleef & Arpels, Mauboussin, Cartier, Georg Jensen, Buccellati, Tiffany & Co., and Hermes selling well.

Additional featured lots in the eclectic Sunset Estates sale included a 1984 Mercedes 380-SL coupe changing owners at $4,800; a pair of Edwardian marble top consoles sold for $5,700; a Chinese crackle glaze ovoid vase which brought $4,500 and a desk by famed Los Angeles designer Rose Tarlow which sold for more than double its high estimate, bringing $4,500.

Named for the famed boulevard on which the auctioneer’s Los Angeles galleries reside, the monthly Sunset Estate Auction event has become a reliable resource for those in search of unique decorative items and antiques, attracting novice buyers and design experts across all categories. Bonhams & Butterfields monthly Sunset Estate Auctions have become the interior design resource. The next offering is slated for July 29, 2007. See for the illustrated auction catalog.