A weekend of 20th Century art sales at Tennants Auctioneers proved exceptionally popular, with the packed salerooms buzzing and a raft of enthusiastic online and telephone bidders resulting in strong prices across the board. Comprising the Modern and Contemporary Art Sale and a single owner sale Line, Colour & Form: A Private Collection, the two sales realised a total hammer price of £249,040, and a healthy 94% sold rate.
The single owner sale, Line, Colour & Form saw 125 lots of mid-late 20th century paintings, prints, ceramics and sculpture, thoughtfully put together over the course of thirty years by collectors in the North East of England. The top lot of the sale, selling for £12,500 (plus buyer’s premium), was “Vacances en France” by Spanish artist Carlos Nadal (1917-1998), a painter in the Fauvist manner who was captivated by the light and colour of the Mediterranean. A smaller beach scene by the artist, “Plage” also sold well at £4,500.
A lithograph by David Hockney (b.1937) of Christopher Isherwood and Don Bachardy beat it’s £6,000-8,000 estimate to sell for £9,000. Christopher Isherwood was an English writer best known for his semi-autobiographical novel ‘Goodbye to Berlin’ on which the musical Cabaret was based. He met his partner of over thirty years, American artist Don Bachardy, in 1952, and the pair broke convention to live together as an openly gay couple in an era when their hometown of Hollywood was deeply closeted. Also of note was “Fun Day no.3” by Wilhemina Barnes-Graham (1912-2004), which sold for £3,000. The three-dimensional works in the collection were led by “Girl on a Swing” by Sydney Harpley (1927-1992), which sold for £7,000, and ‘Blue double-twisted loop’ by Merete Rasmussen (b.1974), which sold for £2,200.