Works of master craftsmen Escherick sell well at Rago Arts



A superb collection of rare and conceptual pieces of furniture have been sold by Rago Arts and Auction Center in Lambertville, New Jersey.

Wharton Escherick's stylish, angular 'Wagon-Wheel' table, made in 1932, was expected to sell for just $80,000-110,000.

Unsurprisingly for a piece constructed by the man once called the 'dean of American craftsmen' it beat this estimate, actually reaching a price of $198,400.


Wharton Escherick's master craftsmanship can be seen in this table

It was a piece he made at a time when he was exploring themes of organicism and cubism, and so he sought to combine the contrasting styles together, as can be seen in the way the table top is sharp and angular, but the legs are curved and more natural.  

His style changed over the years though, as his work took on a more natural curved, free-form flair. This can be seen in the second highest selling piece of the auction, which is a Escherick sideboard made in 1969.

The work, which is visibly smoother and almost looks as if it is flowing, was sold for $173,600, again above its estimated worth of between $100,000-150,000.


Produced later in his life, Escherick's 'organic' sideboard made $173,600

Other famous furniture makers whose work featured in the sale included Judy Kensley McKie's Hippo Bench, which sold for $62,000 - more than double its high end estimate - Philip and Kelvin LaVerne's incredible looking console table, which reached a value of $57,040, and Harry Bertoia's  remarkable 1970s bronze sculpture.

Clearly, the high prices achieved by these pieces, with many of them selling well above estimates, proves that there is a lot of interest in furniture sales currently.

Other sales which have been reported recently by Paul Fraser Collectibles have also seen successful, meaning that for those with an interest in fine furniture, now is the time to get involved and make an investment.


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