Two works by Canadian artist EJ Hughes going under the hammer tomorrow are expected to demonstrate once more the investment potential of art.
Two British Columbia depictions bought for a combined $600 in 1955, Coastal Boats Near Sidney, BC and Mouth of the Courtenay River, are projected to make $700,000 and $500,000, respectively, at the Heffel auction in Vancouver on May 17.
Hughes is thought to have spent 12 hours a day working on his seminal Coastal Boats over a six to eight month period in 1948.
His Courtenay River piece was produced in 1952.
The works have never before appeared at auction, having been acquired directly from Hughes by the College of Physicians and Surgeons of British Columbia, which is now selling the pieces to fund maintenance and insurance costs, reports Metro Canada.
"This really represents a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for collectors," auction house president David Heffel told the publication.
The sale will also feature works by many members of the Group of Seven as well as renowned British Columbia artist Emily Carr.