News & Insights

Spring Fine Sale Preview

15th February 2022.

Tennants Auctioneers’ Spring Fine Sale on 19th March is set to include property from three private estates, comprising both rare collector’s pieces and smart furnishing pieces with provenance. The estates comprise The Contents of The Laithes, Penrith from the Estate of Ian Stephenson, Property Removed from a Private House, to be sold on behalf of the 7th Earl of Durham, and The Selected Contents of a Private House, St Judes, Isle of Man. Highlights from the estates include a Spanish Part 17th Century Carved and Polychromed Bed and a Set of 18th Century Chinese Armorial Dishes for Sir John Lambert, 1st Baronet.

Highlights from other vendors in the sale include a Private Collection of 17th Century Needlework. Amongst the nine works on offer is a mid-17th century needlework picture depicting Rebekah and Isaac at the well (estimate: £3,000-5,000 plus buyer’s premium). Worked in coloured threads, the central figures are surrounded with animals and insects, trees, and a castle. Also of note is a circa 1660 picture of King Solomon and the Queen of Sheba, worked with coloured and metal threads and seed pearls (estimate: £2,000-3,000).  Also hailing from the 17th century is an Aubusson Verdure Tapestry, made in Central France. The rural scene with birds and animals in a wooded landscape with buildings beyond is woven in silks and wool, and the tapestry is offered with an estimate of £2,000-3,000.  

Amongst a good offering of ceramics in the sale is a Mintons Pâte-sur-Pâte Plaque by Louis Marc Emmanuel Solon, made circa 1872 and depicting Cupid standing at an anvil with a kneeling classical soldier and a maiden in a temple, flanked by putti (estimate: £2,000-3,000). Solon was instrumental in perfecting the painstaking pâte-sur-pâte technique, in which liquid white porcelain is applied by brush to a coloured ground layer by layer. The porcelain is then carefully carved back to create a finely detailed and translucent design. Solon trained at the Sevres factory but moved to England in 1870 at the time of the Franco-Prussian War. He soon found employment at the Minton factory, which became a centre of excellence for pâte-sur-pâte. A beautifully painted Porcelain Plaque painted in 1852 in the manner of Joseph Nigg is on offer with an estimate of £3,000-5,000. The unusually large plaque depicts a riot of flowers tumbling from a classical urn, an image taken from an early 17th century painting by Jan Davidsz. de Heem. Of interest to collectors will be a Meissen Porcelain “Hentschel Kinder” Figure, made circa 1905 (estimate: £500-700). The figure, a young boy with a newspaper hat riding a hobbyhorse, is one of a series of naturalistic figures depicting early childhood modelled by Julius Konrad Hentschel between 1904 and 1907, which captured the unadulterated joys of childhood.

Highlights from the clock section include a William IV Mahogany Striking Table Clock, made by J. Huggins in London circa 1830 (estimate: £1,500-2,000), a Brass Champleve Enamel Striking and Repeating Carriage Clock, retailed by R. Wenrly & Co. of Paris circa 1890 (estimate: £800-1,200), and an Early 18th Century Brass Striking Lantern Clock made by Thomas Sparrow of St Neots circa 1720 (estimate: £800-1,200). Further interesting lots include three 18th century green glass bottles, two of which are marked with initialled and dated seals; one inscribed ‘S.B 1767’ is offered with an estimate of £300-500, and one inscribed ‘S D 1781’ is sold alongside an unmarked bottle with an estimate of £300-500.

Fine furniture in the sale includes a good selection of chairs, such as a Pair of Victorian Mahogany Armchairs, made by Mackenzie and Crosbie of Edinburgh in the middle of the 19th century. Covered in vintage buttoned red leather, the chairs are offered with an estimate of £2,500-3,500. One of the most desirable makers of upholstered furniture at auction is Howard & Sons, and a late 19th or early 20th century example of their work is on offer in the form of a deep-seated armchair covered in Howard & Sons fabric, with shell and acanthus cabriole forelegs with ball and claw feet (estimate: £1,500-2,000). Also of interest is a Pair of George III Armchairs after a design by Ince and Mayhew, offered alongside a matching footstool with an estimate of £1,000-1,500.

Further highlights from the section include an imposing Victorian Carved Mahogany Mirror-Backed Sideboard from the late 19th century, which is decorated with vines, fruit, figural supports and Masonic symbols (estimate: £2,000-3,000), and a 19th century Mahogany and Blind Fret Carved Desk in George III Chippendale style (estimate: £1,500-2,000).


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