A real live auction today, a change from that virtual Ebay stuff – at Bonhams, New Bond Street, London.
This afternoon’s sale was titled Design 1860-1945, and included three items of mistletoe interest, all from the 1920s (correction! – 4 items, one from c 1910 – listed at the end…)
The first mistletoe lot was No: 276 `Boule de Gui‘ by Edgar Brandt. This was officially described as ‘A Cast Metal Paperweight, circa 1925 fashioned as a globe with central section of openwork mistletoe stems, on a square base 9cm high, stamped to base rim `Edgar Brandt’
Now I’ve seen these before, several times actually – the Brandt Gui paperweight is a well-known mistletoe article, sometimes seen fashioned into a lampstand. But this one is rather fine – compare it to another version, shown below, that was recently advertised on Ebay. Most of them are like the Ebay version – so the Bonhams piece looks very good. But it didn’t impress the buyers – only making £150 today.
Next up was lot 317 – René Lalique’s `Druide’ vase – described as ‘an Opalescent Glass Vase, design 1924 the globular vessel moulded with stems of mistletoe, with polished berries in relief, showing traces of blue staining 18cm high, etched `R.Lalique France No 937′.
This is much rarer than the Gui vases of similar shape (see pic in preceding blog) – and shows Lalique’s fascination with mistletoe (he used it on a huge range of items – even some modern Lalique ware uses the mistletoe theme ). Here he managed to create something significantly different with the same plant – the striking feature being the protuberant berries. This sold for £480.
And finally lot 329 – one of the Lalique ‘Gui’ bowls – described as ‘an Opalescent Glass Bowl, design 1921 moulded with mistletoe 20.5cm diam, etched ‘R.Lalique France’ and ‘No 3224’. A nice example, though unremarkable in terms of colour stain – not one of the more unusual ones.
This one did not sell (estimates were £500-700). Maybe it was overpriced – there’s a similar one at Bonhams Chester going soon – and that’s estimated at £150 – though it does have a slight chip.
More Lalique mistletoe glassware later in the week – at an auction in New York….
Almost forgot the 4th mistletoe item today – which I didn’t spot at first as it was such an unfamiliar design. This was lot 24 – a vase designed by Richard Joyce for Pilkington’s Royal Lancastrian range. It is a ‘High-Fire Vase, circa 1910 the shaped tubular vessel painted with sprigs of mistletoe in gold with white berries 17cm high, maker’s marks and artist painted monogram to base’ It was sold for £700.
Royal Lancastrian ceramics were made by Pilkington’s in Manchester – and were very different indeed to the Lalique and Brandt continental styles. Perhaps rather rarer now – I’ve not seen these design before, and though, in mistletoe terms, less true to the plant this design is rather stunning and very attractive.
Pity about the price (no, I didn’t bid…)