Her­itage Auc­tions’ Amer­i­can Art Sig­na­ture Auc­tion

Dal­las, TX

Western Art Collector - - CONTENTS -

In a sale dom­i­nated mostly by Golden Age il­lus­tra­tion, Her­itage Auc­tions’ May 4 Amer­i­can Art Sig­na­ture Auc­tion brought to mar­ket a fine se­lec­tion of Western-themed ma­te­rial. The works, many of which were also il­lus­tra­tions, in­cluded im­agery of the lands, the peo­ple and the wildlife of that re­gion. “Ev­ery­thing sold in the Western sec­tion, which was won­der­ful,” says Alissa Ford, di­rec­tor of Her­itage’s Western art de­part­ment. “It seemed like over­all the mar­ket was very strong in Western art, but also across all cat­e­gories.”

One of the top land­scapes of the day was the fourth high­est earn­ing piece at the auc­tion: Graz­ing Sheep at Head­wa­ters of a Stream by John S. Jame­son. The work, which had been es­ti­mated to sell be­tween $40,000 and $60,000, more than quadru­pled its high es­ti­mate when it achieved $250,000. “What was ex­tra spe­cial about this work was it was com­pletely fresh to the mar­ket. It traced back to the artist and it was be­ing of­fered for the first time since he painted it,” says Aviva Lehmann, Her­itage’s di­rec­tor of Amer­i­can art.

An­other work com­ing to auc­tion for the first time was John Fery’s Lake St. Mary, Go­ing to the Sun Moun­tain, which had been in a crate from 1948 to 2005 when it was then loaned to the Hock­a­day Mu­seum of Art for 12 years. Es­ti­mated at $20,000 to $30,000,

the work sold for $27,500. “This was kind of de­but into the world re­ally,” says Ford. “It had been at the Hock­a­day, but it was the first time to mar­ket.”

Also per­form­ing well was W.H.D. Ko­erner’s Dude Wran­gler, an in­te­rior il­lus­tra­tion for the March 10, 1934, edi­tion of The Satur­day Evening Post. The piece, which had an es­ti­mate of $10,000 to $15,000, brought $27,500. In dis­cussing both the Ko­erner and the Fery, Ford ex­plains, “The sub­ject mat­ter for both pieces is what at­tracted the bid­ders. Fery’s was Glacier Park and such a mon­u­men­tal scene by him is re­ally rare. The Ko­erner, it was the sub­ject mat­ter, but also the fact that it was The Satur­day Evening Post in­te­rior il­lus­tra­tion. Those types of il­lus­tra­tions make them more valu­able.”

Other highlights in­cluded a small-scale paint­ing by Taos So­ci­ety of Artists found­ing mem­ber Eanger Irv­ing Couse. The work, ti­tled

In­dian Brave Kneel­ing Be­fore the Fire­light (est. $20/30,000), had sev­eral bid­ders vy­ing for it be­fore sell­ing squarely in its es­ti­mate at $25,000. Con­rad Sch­wier­ing’s Te­ton paint­ing

Moun­tain Rhap­sody (est. $10/15,000) had many bid­ders from Wy­oming bid­ding, rais­ing its fi­nal price to $17,500.

W.H.D. Ko­erner (1878-1938), Dude Wran­gler, The Satur­day Evening Post in­te­rior il­lus­tra­tion, March 10, 1934, oil on can­vas, 36 x 27” Es­ti­mate: $10/15,000 SOLD: $27,500

John Fery (1859-1934), Lake St. Mary, Go­ing to the Sun Moun­tain, oil on can­vas, 48¼ x 70¾”Es­ti­mate: $20/30,000 SOLD: $27,500

Con­rad Sch­wier­ing (1916-1986), Moun­tain Rhap­sody, oil on Ma­sonite, 30 x 36” Es­ti­mate: $10/15,000 SOLD: $17,500

Eanger Irv­ing Couse (1866-1936), In­dian Brave Kneel­ing Be­fore the Fire­light, 1921, oil on board, 7½ x 93⁄8”. Es­ti­mate: $20/30,000 SOLD: $25,000

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