Lempertz can celebrate a successful decorative arts auction with an exceptionally high sales quota. The sale featured several magnificent private collections, and the jewellery and porcelain departments shone out especially
The top lot in this spring’s decorative arts auction was a cylinder bureau made by David Roentgen. The elegant mahogany veneer writing desk was made in Neuwied in 1790 and sold for €198,000 (lot 1074, est. €140–160,000).
Highlight among the silver on offer this season was an exceptional communion jug made in 1728 by the Augsburg silversmith Johann Pepfenhauser II for the house of Nassau-Saarbrücken, commissioned by Countess Luise Sophie (lot 1038, est. €58–65,000).
The 299 lots making up this season’s jewellery sale were once again presented in a separate catalogue and brought excellent individual results, impressive price increases and an exceptional total result, making this auction not only by far the best jewellery sale ever held by Lempertz, but also the best the city of Cologne has ever seen. As usual, the second part of the jewellery sale will be taking place in Monaco in late July. Alongside Roman intaglios, historic pieces and art jewellery, works of the Belle Époque, Art Deco and Modern periods were particularly sought after. An Austrian collection of 21 historic jewels, mainly of the Renaissance and Baroque eras, also proved a great success, with a rare “gimmel” ring of the early 17th century rising from the estimate of €6–8,000 to achieve €31,000 (lot 30).
Highlights among the numerous items of antique jewellery in the sale were several diamond set pieces of the Belle Époque and Art Deco. The hotly disputed top lot was a geometrically designed Art Deco diamond bracelet in the original case by Boucheron, which was purchased by an English art dealer for €85,600 (lot 106, est. €20–25,000). A German dealer paid over three times the estimate of €15-20,000 for a Parisian Art Deco diamond bracelet with a floral design of cut coloured stones, purchasing the piece for €64,5000 (lot 107). A rare mid-19th century Roman micro mosaic bracelet rose from the estimate of €6–8,000 to achieve €31,000. One particular highlight among the modern jewellery on offer this spring was a brooch by the Munich Hemmerle goldsmiths set with a large, rare harlequin opal of exceptional colour. The piece was eventually won amid strong competition by a German bidder for €41,000 (lot 149, est. €20–25,000).
Two large private collections provided numerous highlights among the porcelain and ceramics on offer this season. The important 140 piece faience collection of Dr Erwin Lukas focussed on early Delft and Hanau pieces, as well as rare models by German manufactories. The 65 Meissen and Frankenthal porcelain figures of a private collector from Rhineland-Pfalz were also highly sought after, with the most impressive increase being achieved for two groups showing the triumph of Luna and the Triumph of Phoebus Apollo, which rose from the estimate of €5–6,000 to €18,600 (lot 552).
Medieval armour and weapons were also highly popular, and brought numerous impressive price increases. A 136cm Renaissance falconet cannon rose from the estimate of €6–8,000 to sell for €22,300 (lot 1003). Further impressive increases were also achieved for a Flemish gothic tapestry fragment from the early 16th century, which also sold for €22,300 (lot 810, est. €15,000) and a small, late gothic Limoges enamel medallion from the late 14th/early 15th century, which sold for €21,000 (lot 810, est. €15,000).