Rare pair of Roedig oils brings £1m

A sale of Old Masters at Bonhams New Bond Street proved the enduring popularity of these paintings, raising a total of £2,840,960 with 90% of lots sold by value.

The results included a record price for a Roedig painting, following the exceptional appearance of, not one, but two examples of Roedig's work on the market.

The first, Tulips - featuring roses and other flowers in a classical urn overturned by a cat chasing a mouse with a statue of Flora beyond - and the second, Peaches - depicting grapes, pumpkins and other fruit and flowers in a wicker basket on a marble plinth, sold as a pair.

They left the auction block at £1,196,000, against a pre-sale estimate of £700,000-900,000.

By Johannes Christianus Roedig (1751-1802)
Tulips by Johannes Christianus Roedig (1751-1802), sold for £1.2m

Elsewhere, other paintings proved popular with buyers, with many lots exceeding their pre-sale estimates thanks to fierce competition both within the saleroom and internationally.

Theobald Michau's A winter landscape tripled its top estimate of £80,000 to sell for £240,000, whilst François Boucher's Les Caresses Dangereuses also performed well, reaching £228,000 against an estimate of £80,000-120,000.

Other highlights included an early 17th century painting by the Anglo Dutch School - a Portrait of Two Children, full-length, both in red costume which sold for £132,000 (estimated at £40,000-60,000), and a brace of paintings by Jan Wildens whose An Elegant Company departing for the hunt before an open landscape and A river landscape achieved £126,000 (way above its £50,000-70,000 estimate).

Also attracting tremendous interest was An Elderly Bearded Man in Prayer by Jacques de Rousseaux. It quadrupled its estimate to sell for �78,000 (over its �10,000-15,000 estimate), whilst the biblical scene Classical Ruins Before an Italianate Lake Landscape - featuring Christ handing Saint Peter the keys to the kingdom of heaven - and An Architectural Capriccio, both by Giovanni Ghisolfisold, brought �74,000 (over �30,000-50,000).

Earlier paintings had a similarly enduring appeal to buyers.

Cornelius van der Voort's Portrait of Lady went for �50,400 (estimated at �15,000-20,000) with The Interior of a Picture Gallery from the Studio of David Teniers the Younger reaching �40,800 (estimated at �7,000-10,000).

Also performing outstandingly well and way beyond expectation was A Skull, Lizard, Coins and an Hourglass in a Painted Stone Niche by the German School, dated circa 1600, which was hotly contested to eventually sell for �50,400; over ten times its pre-sale estimate of �2,000-3,000.

"We are delighted for our clients. We had anticipated considerable interest before the sale, but a number of particularly remarkable results are clear testament to the continuing strength of the Old Masters market," said Andrew McKenzie, Director of Old Masters at Bonhams.

Bonhams auction was the second high profile Old Masters sale to take place this week. On Tuesday (December 8), a �29m sale of Raphael's Head of a Muse sensationally eclipsed Rembrandt's 'priceless' Portrait of a Man (�20.2m) at Christie's.


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