Impressive sporting & military bronzes to come under hammer at museum sale

An impressive group of decorative bronzes taken from a single, private collection will go under the hammer on Saturday 28th March as part of a major auction of arms, armour and items of military interest. The works, which depict figures of historical and military significance such as Leonardo Da Vinci, a Bedouin Prince on horseback, and a huntsman with hounds amongst others, would lend an air of magnificence to suit any country home or club, and are sure to be of interest to potential collectors of militaria or country sports.

Lot 239_a large bronze Bedouin Prince on horseback

Lot 239_a large bronze Bedouin Prince on horseback

One of the stand-out features of the collection is the exquisite attention to detail evident in the moulding of each figure. Lot 239, in particular, is a fine example of this: depicting a large bronze Bedouin Prince on horseback, mounted on a plinth and modelled after the famous French artist Emile Guillemin. The figure, in typically elaborate dress, holds a long rifle in hand with spoils of hunt draped over the rear of the saddle and is guided at an impressive £1000-2000. Similarly, lot 567, a contemporary life-size bronze sculpture of a huntsman with two hounds, is also guided £1000-2000. As well the interesting subject matter featuring the huntsman in traditional attire holding a rifle the figure, mounted on a rectangular base, is well cast and will no doubt generate interest amongst collectors of hunting memorabilia.

Elsewhere, and of more interest to collectors of militaria, lot 450 is a large cold painted bronze figure of a 17th Century Portuguese soldier guided at £1500-2000. Standing at 106cm tall, it features excellent detailing with the soldier’s arm raised and dressed with cuirass, doublet and breeches. From Renaissance Europe to figures of Oriental prominence, lot 393 is further evidence of the varied nature of this wonderful collection. Guided at £600-1000, it depicts two Japanese Samurai Warriors – again with superbly accurate detail – both dressed in tribal armour, each holding long staffs topped with birds, and standing on naturalistic bases.

Making up the remainder of the collection are lot 53 – a large 19th Century bronze figure of Leonardo Da Vinci with floor standing oak plinth which, featuring fine detailed casting, is guided at £300-500 – and lot 54, a 19th Century bronze figure of a Spanish Conquistador with conforming standing plinth, guided at £400-600.

West Midlands auction house Cuttlestones will handle the sale on site at Stratford Armouries Museum, with the catalogue covering lots derived primarily from arms and armour spanning various periods and continents. The auction marks a change of direction for the museum which, located on the former WWII RAF Snitterfield airfield on the outskirts of Stratford-upon-Avon, will retain its collection of items relating to the English Civil War, First and Second World Wars to tell the story of these three major conflicts.

The auction will take place on Saturday, 28th March at the Stratford Armouries museum, with viewing taking place for three full days prior to the sale. The full catalogue will be available to view online at www.cuttlestones.co.uk from the beginning of March; with commission, telephone and live online bidding options for those unable to attend the sale in person.

For more information, call Cuttlestones on 01785 714905.

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