This remarkable, single owner auction attracted worldwide attention and offered enthusiasts over 600 lots of fine and decorative artwork, jewelry, antiques, and household items from one of the most recognized and admired families in history.
Windsor, CT, June 11, 2018 – Collectors were wildly successful in scoring a piece of the ‘Rock at Nadeau’s June 2, 2018 Peggy and David Rockefeller Collection sale. The auction featured a full spectrum of items from a number of the family’s residences, and provided a tantalizing snapshot of their “everyday” lives and interests. It also finalized the recent, almost $1B New York sale of Rockefeller family materials. When the hammer fell for the last time, 102 items sold for $1,000-4,999; 10 items made $5,000-9,999; and 4 realized over $10,000! Prices noted include the company’s buyer’s premium.
The Rockefeller family name and world-class art are practically synonymous, so it should be no surprise that works from their personal collections comprised the top lots in this sale. Good things came in threes with a trio a trio of hand signed bullfighting themed aquatints by Pablo Picasso. Each was estimated at $5,000-10,000, was part of an original set of twelve copies, was #3 of 12, and had its original Collection of Nelson A. Rockefeller and Collection of David Rockefeller labels on verso. The first, lot #350, was titled Muerte Del Toro (Death of the Bull) and made $20,740. The second, lot #351, was titled El Matador Brinda La Muerte Del Toro (The Matador Brings The Death Of The Bull) and sold for $14,400. And the third was lot #352, titled El Torero Sale En Hombros de los Aficionados (Bullfighter Exits On Amateur Shoulders) which realized $15,600. Also catching bidders’ eyes – and wallets – was lot #144, a large, bold purple and orange abstract painting by Maud Morgan. Estimated at $1,000-2,000, it changed hands at $9,525.
Outstanding bronzes depicting animals were also heavy metal favorites in this sale. Lot #109, Humberto Peraza’s signed “Toro” statue of a bull on the run sold for $2,750, over thirteen times its low estimate! And lot #153, Philip Grausman’s signed and numbered grasshopper statue leapt to $7,200 on its $500-1,000 estimate. This statue was one of many insect-themed decorative items featured in this sale.
The Rockefeller family is also known for its deep and longstanding commitment to Asia and in turn, Asian arts. This involvement started as far back as in the mid-1860’s. Beautiful examples of Japanese and Chinese porcelains, pottery, jade, and paintings that graced the walls, shelves, and bookcases of various Rockefeller homes were well represented in this sale. Lot #407, a large, 19th century Japanese bronze dog censer wearing a belled collar burned up its $200-400 estimate to make $5,490. A simple, 4-1/4″ tall celadon glazed footed pot sold for $4,128 on its $50-150 estimate. And bidders went positively wild over lot #181, a possibly 19th century or older black and grey wash watercolor painting of dragons and a tiger. It went on to make $4,375 on its $100-300 estimate.
Furniture, furnishings, and rugs were also key categories in this sale, with handsome tables, chairs, tables, and display cases from many eras and genres on offer. Keeping with the Asian theme, lot #157, a c. 1740 George II oak chest with its original Chinoiserie paint decoration sold for $6,033 on its $500-1,000 estimate. Jaws hit the floor when lot #188, a very worn 19th century Chinese oriental area rug with a gold border made $4,270. It was originally estimated at $150-250. And lot #68, a mahogany adjustable easel with carved swan neck ends and brass fittings sold for $2,540 on its $100-200 estimate.
This sale offered collectors a few golden opportunities to purchase jewelry and other personal items from the Rockefeller estate. Lot #2, a pair of Cartier 18k cufflinks decorated with red and black enamel tops made eight times their high estimate, selling for $2,000. And lot 5a, a sterling silver match safe, inscribed: DR The White House, made $445 on its $50-100 estimate.
This exciting and highly anticipated sale rounded out with robust selections of crystal and barware, tableware, books, souvenirs, linens, and other “routine” items from a family that was anything but. And, like most auctions, it also offered up some notable bargains for a number of savvy – or lucky – bidders. Lot #55, a large, signed Steuben footed bowl inscribed with the initials “DR” found a new home at $191 on its $200-400 estimate. And lot #301, a large, framed and signed c-print photograph from the early 2000’s by Michael Wesely capturing MoMA’s expansion and renovation made $2,520 on its $4,000-8,000 estimate.
According to Ed Nadeau, President of Nadeau’s Auction Gallery, “It was an honor and privilege to offer part of the Peggy and David Rockefeller collection through our Connecticut gallery. We had no idea how much global interest it would generate, and are thrilled with the results. I’m not surprised that the Picasso trio rose to the top of this sale, given how the recent sale of other Picasso works in New York has again put this artist in the spotlight. It is also astounding to me how many items made five or ten times their estimates. This only validates the status Rockefeller family, and their unmatched contributions to American culture, business, and politics.”
About Nadeau’s Auction Gallery Inc.:
Nadeau’s Auction Gallery is a full-service auction house providing a full range of estate offerings, nonprofit deaccession management, and fine art and personal property appraisals. The company presents about a dozen premier sales annually, with a focus on art, furniture, accessories, and important antiques. A second-generation family company, Nadeau’s enjoys a well-deserved reputation for outstanding merchandise, top-tier personalized service, and helping sellers realize the realize the maximum value for their collections. The company has been in business since 1985 and today is one of the largest and fastest growing auction houses in New England. Its state of the art auction facility is conveniently located right off Route 91 and easily accessible from all points in the mid-Atlantic and northeast.
Nadeau’s Auction Gallery is located 25 Meadow Road, Windsor, CT 06095 and can be reached by telephone at 860-246-2444, fax at 860-524-8735, or email at firstname.lastname@example.org. The facility is open Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday from 8:00am-4:00pm and Thursday from 8:00-6:30pm. For more information on this sale and Nadeau’s Auction Gallery, please see www.nadeausauction.com.