Unique Auctions' Fantin-Latour painting tipped to make $770,000 at sale

A painting by 19th century French master Henri Fantin-Latour is being tipped by a leading art expert to smash its £10,000 high-end estimate at Unique Auctions over the weekend.

The 20 by 8 inch floral work goes under the hammer at the Lincolnshire, UK, auction house on January 1.

Research consultant to Unique Auctions, Terry Dean, believes that past sales of Fantin-Latour works suggest the true value of the oil on canvas could be significantly higher than its presale estimate.

"I think it could get up to £250,000 to £500,000," Dean told local newspaper the Lincolnshire Echo.

"His paintings don't come up that often, so we think this will generate a lot of interest from all over the world."

In 2005, an 18 by 23 inch Fantin-Latour, depicting a basket of flowers, sold for $1.69m at Sotheby's.

"He is famous for his floral studies and this example shows all his trademarks - a large expanse of emptiness around the subject and his technique of over-painting the flowers," Dean added.

Fantin-Latour at Unique Auctions
Will Fantin-Latour's oil on canvas smash 
its £10,000 estimate?

Fantin-Latour's compatriot Claude Monet is no stranger to major auction results.

Monet, a founder of the Impressionist movement, is hugely popular with collectors. His Le Bassin aux Nympheas sold for £41m at Christie's in June 2008, setting a record price for the artist and smashing its £24m high-end estimate in the process.

Yet there are opportunities for art collectors to invest in the great man at more manageable levels as well.

Currently available is a wonderful handwritten, signed note by the artist for sale at Paul Fraser Collectibles. It was written in 1920, six years before his death.

The note is in very good condition and features Monet's signature clearly.

It can be yours today for £5,950.

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