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Auction PR Publicity Announcements News and Information

Renoir Le Bouquet for Heritage Auction

Pierre Auguste Renoir’s oil painting, Le Bouquet, 1910, is expected to bring $500,000+ as the top lot in Heritage Auctions’ American & European Art Signature® Art Auction, being held Nov. 8 at the company’s Design District Annex, 1518 Slocum Street. Le Bouquet, 1910, comes to auction from the family of famed Texas artist Lucien Abrams, who acquired it in September 1933 from Renoir’s dealer, Durand-Ruel, in New York, who obtained it directly from the artist’s family. The still life has been in continuous family ownership to this day and is in an outstanding state of preservation.

Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Le Bouquet, 1910. Oil on canvas, 17 x 12-1/2 in.

“This auction represents one of the most select groups of American & European art that we’ve ever featured,” said Ed Beardsley, Managing Director of Fine Arts at Heritage. “Led by the beautiful Renoir, this auction is drawn from many private collections throughout the United States and from several abroad as well. The range of styles and themes is broad and is designed to appeal to a variety of collecting tastes and interests. ”

The auction is rich in the areas of American painting of the late 19th and early 20th-centuries, early 20th-century European Art, African-American art, Old Master and 19th-century drawings and watercolors, and School of Paris paintings, notably by Edouard Cortes.

The Estridge in Two Views Off Dover, 1800, by Scottish-American marine painter Robert Salmon is destined to become one of the most hotly contested paintings in the auction, as aficionados of great seascapes and collectors of American Luminism will both be vying for this historically significant work, estimated at $125,000+.

“Salmon played a crucial role in the development of maritime art in the United States,” said Dr. Marianne Berardi of Heritage Auctions, “and this beautifully preserved canvas is, together with Two Armed Merchantmen Leaving Whitehaven Harbor, Salmon’s earliest-known dated work. From 1970 to 2010 it belonged to a well-known marine art collector and great friend of Glen S. Foster, who assembled one of the most important American collections of marine art during the last half of the 20th century. The two men were yachting buddies and frequently competed against one another for prize examples of marine art.”

From a private collection in Kentucky comes one of the most exciting rediscoveries in the sale – a delicate still life of roses in a Japanese vase on a gold velvet cloth of circa 1885-90 by American painter, Martin Johnson Heade. The painting was unknown to Heade specialist, Dr. Theodore E. Stebbins, Jr., until it surfaced this year.

“Dr. Stebbins has kindly examined the painting in the original, and plans to include this previously unrecorded work in the next edition of his catalogue raisonné,” said Arianna Hartsock, Consignment Director at Heritage. “It’s a lovely example from Heade’s early St. Augustine-period work, and displays his interest in Japonisme.”

From the property of an East Coast Institution comes the oil painting Oyster Sloop, Cos Cob, 1902 by beloved American Impressionist painter and printmaker Childe Hassam, which carries a pre-auction estimate of $80,000+, an expected price matched by Daniel Ridgway Knight’s complex and ethereal oil painting Young Woman Knitting, which comes to auction from a private San Diego Collection.

Three American paintings share a $40,000 pre-auction estimate, and will appeal equally to collectors of sporting and landscape art: Willard Leroy Metcalf’s Woman in Field, 1878, is an early work by the artist, and pre-dates his period of study in France, while Edmund Henry Osthaus’s English Setters in Field and English Setter with Grouse are sure to appeal to enthusiasts of fine sporting art, both painted on an exceptionally grand scale and carrying the prestigious provenance of having previously graced the foyer of the elegant Houston Club for generations.

An important preliminary study painted by Thomas Hart Benton for his much-loved easel painting, Romance, of 1931-2, in the Michener Collection at the Blanton Museum of Art, University of Texas, Austin is another prize in this auction. The study has never been offered at public sale, having descended from the artist, to his daughter, from whom the current owner purchased it a generation ago. It carries a pre-auction estimate of $25,000+.

A small but choice offering of works by African-American artists is one of the highlights of the auction. Represented is a sculpture by Elizabeth Catlett, three oil paintings and one watercolor by Hughie-Lee Smith and prints by Romare Bearden and Jacob Lawrence.

A special feature of the auction is a rich array of more than 50 Old Master and 20th-century works on paper from the private collection of a European family who settled in New York during the 1950s. The offerings are strong in works by Italian, German, Austrian, Netherlandish and French draftsmen from the 17th through the 19th centuries, and includes two beautiful pen drawings by Swedish master etcher Anders Zorn and Spaniard Jose Solana. Also being offered three wonderfully detailed and picturesque scenes of England by acclaimed 19th century British watercolorist Louise Rayner, hailing from a superb British watercolor collection in Baltimore, MD.

Further highlights include:

*Edouard-Léon Cortès, Cafe de la Paix: Oil on canvas, 13 x 18 inches (33.0 x 45.7 cm). Signed lower right: EDOUARD CORTES. Estimate: $25,000+.

*Edmund Darch Lewis, A View of Cuba, 1874: Oil on canvas, 22-1/4 x 36 inches (56.5 x 91.4 cm). Signed and dated lower right: Edmund D. Lewis 1874. Estimate: $25,000+.

*Guy Carleton Wiggins, A Walk Along the Park, 1960: Oil on canvas, 30 x 25 inches (76.2 x 63.5 cm). Signed lower left: Guy Wiggins. Inscribed verso: A Walk Along the Park/ Guy Wiggins/ 1960. Estimate: $25,000.

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