The highlight of Simon Chorley’s fine art sale on Thursday 26th June was undoubtedly Lot 665, an Irish early 19th century. While the seat had suffered some damage and a poor varnish, it ticked enough of the right boxes to realize a sale topping £26,000 against an estimate of £1500-£2000.
As the market continues to polarize, with much mahogany furniture struggling to fetch a bid, this piece epitomized the way in which quality items are still fetching runaway prices.
As always, provenance is crucial and this bench had good traceable roots having been made for Clogrennan House in Co. Carlow, Ireland, the seat of the Rochfort family in the 19th century. The family’s political aspirations cost them a fortune and the estate was sold off in the 1920s.
Probably by a Dublin maker, the bench had that slight mish-mash of styles and motifs typical of much Irish furniture of the period. The central robin, the family crest of the Rochfort family, was a charming extra to an already handsome piece. Flanked by the elaborate detail of the carved, scrolling crest rail and above a slightly bowed panel back it was not the only feature which singled it out. Some felt that the way in which the heavy arms joined the back was clumsy but this was made up for by the clever way in which the back legs were curved outwards, echoing the waisted back, and also backwards. This gave them a slightly twisted appearance and was clearly the work of a gifted cabinet maker.
With the economy slowing down it was gratifying to see so many top prices realized. Particularly strong sections of Jewellery, Oriental Porcelain and Clocks saw over 30 lots selling in excess of £1,000.
Simon Chorley Art & Antiques
Prinknash Abbey Park, Gloucestershire GL4 8EX
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For further information please contact Thomas Jenner-Fust at Simon Chorley Art & Antiques on 01452 344499 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Source: Iona PR