The three-day Decorative Arts and Old Master auctions opened on 18 May with a shining sale of jewellery. Notable price increases were also seen for impressive 18th, 19th and 20th century porcelain and silver.
The highlights of the notable 18th century porcelains included a Meissen small terrine from the Swan service of 1739 – 1740 after a model by Johann Joachim Kaendler and Johann Friedrich Eberlein. The small porcelain attracted hopeful and determined bidders, ending at last by 94,000, going to the German trade (lot 823 40/60,000). Also of great interest were late 20th century pieces with snowball decoration by Meissen, with the results high above the estimates. Such was the case for a 77 cm high snowball vase with a birdcage foot of Belgian noble provenance, one of a large set produced by Meissen. The impressive result of 42,200 was invested by a Belgian collector (lot 855, 15/20,000). Two snowball jugs of equal size sold for 26,000 and 31,000 to a Czech collector (lots 853/854, each 7/9,000).
The early 20th century porcelain included a notable offering from van de Velde for Meissen. With an estimate of 15/20,000, a large 'Gemüsenapf' terrine from 1903/1904 rose to 28,500 (lot 862, 15/20,000), and a large sauciere went way above the estimated value of 8/12,000 up to 34,700 (lot 863). Success was also had by Henry van de Velde's large stoneware vase (lot 874, 8/12,000). Altogether, this small collection of van de Velde works gathered a total result of 122,000 (lots 862 – 871).
The usual broad offering, this time with almost 280 pieces, with numerous examples of artist's jewellery, was again presented in a separate catalogue. Top lots included the catalogue cover Art Déco double clip 'Eventail' by Suzanne Belperro, which sold for 64,500, one of the rare Art Déco jewels from the period when the famous Parisian jewellery designer worked for the Maison Boivin (lot 94, 50/70,000).
A result of 23,600 was reached by an 1890 – 1900 Belle Époque diamond collier (lot 72, 10/15,000). A Neoclassical intaglio parure with gems from the Roman period and the
17th–19th centuries sold for 17,400 (lot 14, 12/15,000), and a further collier with antique gems for 16,000, nearly double the 8/10,000 estimate (lot 19).
Made between 1560 and 1588, a Strasbourg cup with unusually fine engraving was the highlight of the, as ever, wide range of silver. Dietrich Brey, was one of the premier Strasbourg silversmiths of the late 16th century. The piece eventually went to a German bidder for 52,000 (lot 804, 40/60,000). Great interest was awakened for a 116 cm wide Napoleon III table set made by Christofle Paris in around 1870. Alone seven telephone lines fought over the stately silver plated work, selling to a Rumanian collector at last for 37,200 (lot 850, 10/12,000).
An inlaid architect's table after a model by Percier et Fontaine and attributed to Jacob-Desmalter made in Paris around 1810 – 1815 sold for 27,300 to an American bidder (lot 843, 20/30,000), whilst an opulent Italian table from the first quarter/mid-19th century went for 52,000 into Russian hands (lot 846, 40/60,000).