Brian Sewell's art collection almost doubles estimate

Christie's auctioned the collection of the late art critic and TV personality Brian Sewell on September 27.

Among the highlights of the sale was a large drawing by Daniele da Volterra (1509-1566) titled Dido Reclining, Asleep (1548).

Volterra Dido Christies
Volterra drew this work from his own sculpture of Dido

The work made £797,000 ($1m), up 431.3% on its £150,000 ($195,052) estimate and a new record for the artist at auction.

It's an exquisite rendering of a bronze by Da Volterra (also an accomplished sculptor) that can be seen today in Munich's Bayerisches Nationalmuseum.

Other star lots included Mattius Stomer's portrait of Saint Jerome.  

Stomer (circa 1600-1652) was a Dutch artist active during the golden age.

He was one of a group of artists from Utrecht that were directly inspired by Caravaggio (1571-1610) following their pilgrimages to the great galleries and churches of Rome.

While he was best known for his acerbic commentary on the art world, Sewell worked at Christie's for a time during the late 1950s.

Noel Annesley, honorary chairman of Christie's UK, said: "The results achieved at Christie's for the collection of my esteemed former colleague and mentor Brian Sewell gave particular pleasure.

"They demonstrated the appeal to today's collectors of the extraordinary wide range of pictures and drawings from all periods which he had selected during a lifetime's devotion to art.

"It was a celebration of a remarkable eye and a wide sensibility."

In all the sale achieved £3.7m ($4.8m) - close to double its estimate.

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