Chinese carved hardwood opium bed supports a price of $53,680 in Chicago

There have been a number of exciting stories for furniture collectors this week.

Some of the details of the Suzanne Saperstein collection at Sotheby's were announced, Americana week at Christie's reach $24.8m, largely on the strength of the furniture, and an antique William and Mary cabinet brought $112,575 in Pennsylvania.

Now a Chicago auction house has also demonstrated that worldwide demand for fine and rare property remains powerful, as their January 22-24 sale of property from O'Hara's Gallery realised $1,54m.

Internet bidders were crucial to this result, with an average of nearly 800 bidders per day.

Chinese carved hardwood opium bed
The evocative antique Chinese carved hardwood opium bed

Naturally French antiques and art works are always going to draw interest, and a suite of French giltwood parlour furniture decorated with Vernis Martin lacquer work sold for $23,180. Chandeliers are always impressive, and a daunting pair of Empire gilt bronze 36-light examples brought $21,960.

A pair of gilt bronze mounted cobalt urns brought $10,370; and a French champlevé and porcelain mounted mantel clock brought $9,300. Fine European furniture also realised exceptional prices.

As is often the case now though, it was the Chinese antiques which really got a buzz going.

The top lot in the sale, which sold to a collector in Hong Kong, was a Chinese carved hardwood opium bed. Boasting inset marble panels it left the stage for $53,680 after some frenzied bidding.

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