Decorative Arts - Basel Büttenmann

The auction with high-quality works of art comprises 590 lots – and together with 153 mortars, a total of 743 lots.

One of the highlights in the section “Kunstkammer, Furniture and Textiles” – and one of the highlights of the auction – is an important ivory sculpture of “Hercules Fighting the Hydra”, which can be dated to before 1644 according to a radiocarbon examination, and which originates from Southern Germany or Austria (lot 1458, € 120/150,000). Of special significance is a collection of seven important Roentgen boxes, the top lot being a unique museum-quality pair of boxes (lot 1555, €120/130,000).


The top silver lots are the "Basel Büttenmann" by Hans Heinrich Oberried, made in around 1660 (lot 1010, € 80/90,000), and a museum-quality drinking vessel in the shape of a mortar made by Johann Eissler in Nuremberg in around 1665 - 80 (lot 1012, € 30/35,000). In addition, 17 lots of exquisite Strasbourg silver from a North German collection (lots 1141 - 1157) find special mention in the catalogue.


In a separate chapter, around 109 Meissen porcelains with decorations based on Asian models and with the finest flower painting are presented as the third part of the Münster collection of Renate and Tono Dreßen which has been hitherto successfully auctioned by Lempertz. Following the Dreßen collection are 45 important early Meissen armorial porcelains and significant Kaendler figures from a Palatine private collection. The top lot of this collection and the porcelain offer as a whole is the large figure group by Johann Joachim Kaendler, “The Hungarian Couple” from 1750 (lot 1376, €40/50,000). A further highlight in the porcelain/stoneware section is an important relief with lamentation of Christ made of red Böttger stoneware and from a South German private collection (lot 1401, € 20/30,000).

Highly Important Mortars from the Schwarzach Collection III

The third part of the large and important Schwarzach mortar collection, so far very successfully sold at Lempertz, comprises a total of 152 lots. Persian mortars are represented by 19 objects from the historical region of Khorasan (of particular significance is lot 505, € 3/4,000), whilst the 14 French mortars from the Renaissance period feature one example attributed to Strasbourg (lot 532, € 3/4,000). There are 53 lots of Dutch and Lower Rhineland mortars, with the focus on the productions of the Hachmann foundry family from Kleve (lots 536, 542, 550, 555, 589). In addition, a total of 37 German Gothic single-handle mortars from the 15th century are mostly from Nuremburg and the surrounding area. A particularly impressive representative of this chapter is a large Nuremburg example with acanthus leaf relief (lot 606, €8/10,000).

Standing out amongst the “mortars from various ownerships” is an important museum-quality piece by Albert Hachmann from a Westphalian collection (lot 647, € 15/20,000).


In addition to the offer of antique or archaeological-historical and historical jewellery, there are also quality English portrait miniatures and fine stone jewellery of the Belle Epoque and Art Deco periods (here, for example, a brooch with a fine Colombian emerald circa 6,53 ct., lot 89, € 15,500/16,500).

The artists’ jewellery once again forms a highlight of the auction and, as is tradition, the Cologne School is prominently represented – exemplified by a link necklace with yellow sapphires and fine granulation by Elisabeth Treskow (lot 106, € 4/6,000). Also worth noting are a number of highly original unique pieces by Teddy Hahn, such as his glamorous cuff bangle with multicolour cabochons (lot 147, €7/9,000), a high-carat starfish brooch by Georg Hornemann (lot 151, € 8/10,000), and a pair of earrings from Hemmerle with aquamarines and lace agates (lot 145, € 8/10,000).

The modern jewellery also offers high-carat works: one particular star lot is the American Cartier platinum ring with a radiant blue Ceylon sapphire of around 14 ct., (lot 188, € 15/30,000). From a Rhenish private collection is a ring with a natural, three-carat Ceylon sapphire (lot 187, €30/40,000), and an alterable diamond brooch, the centre stone of which is either a natural Burmese ruby or a green irradiated diamond solitaire of circa 3.52 ct., (lot 181, €30/40,000). Two band rings with transition-cut diamond solitaires of circa 3.8 ct. each were made for a family from Rome (lot 182, € 15/20,000 and lot 183, €18/22,000). American red-carpet glamour of the 1970s and 1990s is spread with two garnitures of necklaces and earrings by Carvin French and David Webb (lot 250, € 25/30,000 and lot 251, € 20/25,000).


If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me at 0221/92 57 29–30.

Edgar Abs Press and public relations Cologne, June 2021