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Antiquities

Sotheby's

10:15AM, December 11, 2002

Sale 7858


By Carter B. Horsley

This Antiquities auction at Sotheby's is highlighted by several fine Hellenistic and Roman marble and bronze sculptures and some interesting Egyptian works of art, a nice Cycladic figure, and a good Greek vase.

Cycladic marble figure of a goddess

Lot 10, Cycladic marble figure of a goddess, 8 5/8 inches high, early Bronze Age II, circa 2600-2500 B.C.

The cover illustration of the auction's catalogue is Lot 10, a fine and highly stylized Cycladic marble figure of a goddess, early Bronze Age II, circa 2600-2500 B.C. The 8 5/8-inch-high statue comes from the collection of the late Martha Goldman and had formerly been in the collection of Mathias Komor. It has an estimate of $50,000 to $80,000. It sold for $185,000 including the buyer's premium as do all results mentioned in this article. Although only about three-quarters, a not spectacular ratio, of the 169 lots offered in the morning session sold for a total of $5,909,895, the auction was quite strong with many lots, especially Egyptian, significantly exceeding their high estimates. A slightly lower percentage sold for the afternoon session.

Attic black-figured Nikosthenic amphora

Lot 29, Attic black-figured Nikosthenic amphora, signed by Nikosthenes, 12 1/4 inches high, circa 530 B.C.

Among the Greek vases, Lot 29, an Attic black-figured Nikosthenic amphora, signed by Nikosthenes, circa 530 B.C., is a standout. The 12 1/4-inch-high vase was once in the collection of Robert Hoe III, a famous book collector and a founder of the Grolier Club. It has a continuous frieze that shows three runners racing towards a judge, two boxers flanked an athlete and an umpire, and two wrestlers accompanied by an umpire. The broad handles are decorated with a hoplite holding a spear and helmet. The base has an estimate of $120,000 to $180,000. It sold for $174,500.

Greek marble head of a god

Lot 11, Greek marble head of a god, 15 1/2 inches high, circa late 4th Century B.C.

Lot 11 is a stunning Greek marble head of a god that was formerly in the collection of Baron Hans Heinrich Thyssen-Bornemisza. It has a conservative estimate of $60,000 to $90,000. It sold for $77,675.

Greek bronze helmet

Lot 26, Greek bronze helmet, 12 1/2 inches high, circa early 5th Century B.C.

Lot 26 is a fine Greek bronze helmet, circa early 5th Century, B.C. The 12 1/2-inch-high helmet represents, according to the catalogue, "the latest and most developed form of the Corinthian helmet and was frequently used, both by Classical Greek sculptors and Roman copyists, for statues of Athena. It has an estimate of $80,000 to $120,000. It sold for $174,500.

Lot 13 is a very fine marble torso of a god or athlete, Hellenistic or early Roman Imperial, circa 1st Century B.C./1st Century A.D. The 7 3/8-inch-high sculpture was once in the collection of the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston and has an estimate of $30,000 to $50,000. It sold for $32,862.

Marble torso of a woman

Lot 14, marble torso of a woman, 12 inches high, circa 1st Century B.C. or earlier

Lot 14 is a very nice marble torso of a woman, circa 1st Century B.C., or earlier. The 12-inch high sculpture of a woman has lovely drapery and a modest estimate of $4,000 to $6,000. It sold for $15,535.

Lot 17 is a powerfully sculpted marble torso of an athlete, Roman Imperial, circa 1st Century, A.D. The 30-inch-high torso is modeled after a Greek sculpture of the 5th Century B.C., probably the Diadoumenos of Polykleitos. It has an estimate of $100,000 to $150,000. It sold for $119,500.

Greek bronze figure of a woman

Lot 23, Greek bronze figure of a woman, 3 1/8 inches high, circa 470-450 B.C.

Lot 23 is a lovely Greek bronze figure of a woman, 3 1/8 inches high, circa 470-450 B.C. The woman is holding the folds of her dress in her right hand, but is missing her left arm. It has a modest estimate of $2,000 to $3,000. It sold for $7,170.

Hellenistic marble figure of a muse

Lot 36, Hellenistic marble figure of a muse, 72 inches high, circa 1st Century B.C.

Lot 36 is a 72-inch-high Hellenistic marble figure of a muse, circa 1st Century B.C., that was once in the collection of Elie Borowski of Basel. The impressive but rather weighty statue is missing the muse's arms and has an ambitious estimate of $1,000,000 to $1,500,000. It sold for $1,549,500.

Hellenistic bronze head of a man

Lot 43, Hellenistic bronze head of a man, 12 inches high, circa late 2nd Century B.C. to 1st Century A.D.

Another Hellenistic work is Lot 43, a superb bronze head of a man, circa late 2nd Century B.C. to 1st Century A.D. The 12-inch-high sculpture has an estimate of $400,000 to $500,000 and is in fine condition. It failed to sell.

One of a pair of Hellenistic bronze fulcrum terminals

One of a pair of Hellenistic bronze fulcrum terminals, Lot 46, 6 3/4 inches long, circa 2nd half of the 1st Century B.C.

Lot 46 is a striking pair of Hellenistic bronze fulcrum terminals in the figures of mules, one 6 3/4 inches long and the other 6 1/16 inches long. Dated circa 2nd half of the 1st Century B.C., the pair is closely related to an example in the Louvre. Mules often served as mounts for satyrs. The lot, which has a beautiful blue-green patina, has an estimate of $60,000 to $90,000. It sold for $119,500.

There are numerous good Roman sculptures.

Roman Imperial bronze terminal

Lot 72, bronze terminal, Roman Imperial, 8 3/4 inches long, circa 2nd-3rd Century A.D.

Lot 72 is a highly animated bronze terminal with a pantheress rampant over the heads of two deities, Roman Imperial, circa 2nd-3rd Century, A.D. The 8 3/4-inch-long terminal was once in the collection of Mathias Komor. It has an estimate of $10,000 to $15,000. It sold for $11,950.

Lot 38 is a quite voluptuous and fine marble torso of Aphrodite Anadyomene, Roman Imperial, circa 1st Century, A.D. The 14 1/2-inch high torso has an estimate of $20,000 to $30,000. It sold for $32,862.

Lot 40 is a beautiful marble torso of a satyr, Roman Imperial, circa 1st Century A.D. Modeled after a Hellenistic prototype, the figure's body is dynamically turned to the left and wears an animal skin draped over his right shoulder. The 22-inch-high statue has a conservative estimate of $12,000 to $18,000. It sold for $53,775.

While the Egyptian section of the auction has no blockbusters, there are several handsome lots.

Faience figure of a baboon

Lot 86, blue-green faience figure of a baboon, 3 1/8 inches high, 26th-30th Dynasty, 664-525 B.C.

Lot 86 is an exquisitely carved blue-green faience figure of a baboon from the 26th to the 30th Dynasty, 664-525. The 3 1/8-inch high figure is seated on a fragmentary base. It has an estimate of $20,000 to $30,000. It sold for $107,550.

Egyptian head of a divinity or ruler

Lot 102, bronze head of a divinity or ruler, 1 3/4 inches high, 21st-22nd Dynasty, 1074-716 B.C.

Lot 102 is a beautiful small bronze head of a divinity or ruler, probably reign of Sheshonk I/Osorkon I, 944-888 B.C., cast for attachment to a figure in bronze or other material. The 1 3/4-inch high head has an estimate of $40,000 to $60,000 and is illustrated on the back cover of the auction's catalogue. It sold for $152,500.

Bastet bronze

Lot 103, bronze figure of the goddess Bastet, 6 inches high, 26th Dynasty, 664-525 B.C.

Lot 103 is a fine bronze statue of Bastet, the goddess of the Egyptian city of Bubastis. The 6-inch-high figure is dated to the 26th Dynasty, 664-525 B.C. The goddess has the head of a cat and the body, in a close-fitting dress, of a woman. The catalogue notes that the choker with the Eye of Horus is unusual in this popular statue. It was once in the collection of Captain Edward George Spencer-Churchill. It has an estimate of $60,000 to $90,000. It sold for $141,500.

Bronze bust of Sekhmet

Lot 105, bronze bust of the goddess Sekhmet, 9 1/4 inches high, 21st-26th Dynasty, 1075-525 B.C.

An imposing bronze bust of the goddess Sekhmet, Lot 105, from the 21st/26th Dynasty, 1075-525 B.C. was once in the collection of Mathias Komor of New York. The 9 1/4-inch high bust has an estimate of $40,000 to $60,000. It sold for $47,800.

Bronze of Harpocrates

Lot 108, bronze figure of Harpocrates Enthroned, 8 5/8 inches high, 26th/30th Dynasty, 664-342 B.C.

A very interesting and impressive bronze sculpture of Harpocrates Enthroned, Lot 108, is 8 5/8 inches high and is dated 26th/30th Dynasty, 664-342 B.C. The young prince is surrounded by an entourage of deities. The lot has an estimate of $30,000 to $50,000. It failed to sell.

Egyptian sphinx

Lot 95, Sphinx of a king, limestone, 15 1/2 inches high, Ptolemaic Period, 304-30 B.C.

Lot 95 is a nice limestone sphinx of a king from the Ptolemaic Period, 304-30 B.C. The 15 1/2-inch high sculpture has an estimate of $20,000 to $30,000. It sold for $53,775.

Lot 80, a turquoise faience bowl,, Early 18th Dynasty, circa 1540-1400 B.C., had a high estimate of $15,000 and sold for $71,700. The 4 5/16-inch diameter bowl is decorated with fish and is chipped and cracked.

Lot 83, a cobalt blue glazed steatite knife handle, Late Period, 716-30 BC., had a high estimate of $30,000 and sold for $130,500. The 4-inch long handle terminated in a figure of a grasshopper.

 

See The City Review article on the Antiquties and Antique Jewelry auctions Dec. 12-3 at Christie's

See The City Review article on the June 12, 2002 Antiquities auction at Christie's

See The City Review article on the Fall 2001 Antiquities auction at Christie's

See The City Review article on the Fall 2001 Antiquities auction at Sotheby's

See The City Review article on the Spring 2001 Antiquities auction at Christie's

See The City Review article on the Spring 2001 Antiquities auction at Sotheby's

See The City Review article on the Fall 2000 Antiquities auction at Christie's

See The City Review article on the Antiquities auction at Sotheby's Dec. 8, 2000

See The City Review article on the Dec. 6, 2000 auction of Ancient Jewelry and Seals at Christie's

See The City Review article on the Spring 2000 Antiquities auction at Sotheby's

See The City Review article on the Spring 2000 Ancient Greek Vases auction at Christie's

See The City Review article on the Spring 2000 Antiquities auction at Christie's

See The City Review article on the Fall 1999 Antiquities auction at Christie's

See The City Review article on the Antique Jewelry evening auction at Christie’s Dec. 8, 1999

See The City Review article on the Dec. 9, 1999 antiquities evening auction at Sotheby's of the Christos G. Bastis Collection

See The City Review article on the Dec. 10, 1999 Antiquities auction at Sotheby's

See The City Review article on the June 5, 1999 Antiquities Auction at Sotheby's

See The City Review article on the Fall 1998 Antiquities auctions at Sotheby's and Christie's

See The City Review article on the Spring 1998 Antiquities auctions at Sotheby's and Christie's

See The City Review article on the Fall 1997 Antiquities auction at Sotheby's

See The City Review article on the Spring 1997 Antiquities auction at Sotheby's

 

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