Blog - Grand Auctions

Henry Moore textile wall panel

Grand Auctions is offering for sale on 23rd May a textile wall panel designed by Henry Moore in the 1940s, only 65 of which were made. Moore was commissioned to design textiles by Zika Ascher, a Czech textile manufacturer, who had fled Gemany before the war. He also commissioned Sutherland, Picasso, Matisse and Derain.

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  • Posted by Jonathan Riley
Deux Femmes dans un Arbre Pablo Picasso etching

It is not often that a small provincial town can offer for sale a work by Pablo Picasso, the world’s greatest painter of the twentieth century. Grand Auctions has for sale ‘Deux Femmes Nues dans un Arbre’, 1931, an etching by Picasso from an edition of a hundred. One similar impression was sold in Christies, New York in 1988 for $4950 and another sold in Sothebys, Paris recently for over 10,000 euro. The etching displays all of Picasso’s skills as a draughtsman, subtlety and strength.

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  • Posted by Jonathan Riley
white gold platinum round brilliant cut diamond solitaire ring

As a firm of auctioneers and valuers, Grand Auctions deals mainly with two types of valuation. Auction valuations and insurance valuations. These two types of valuation can result in two wildly different values. One morning last week we had a client who wished to know the value of their diamond engagement ring. The ring was very attractive. It featured a round brilliant cut diamond of approximately 1.50 carats. The colour was good, around G or H on the Gemmological Institute of America’s colour grading scale. The clarity was also not bad. Around SI (slightly included) on the GIA clarity grading scale. The setting was pretty standard but the ring was very commercial and very saleable.

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  • Posted by Simon Rufus
David Hockney art exhibition Royal Academy

I went to the Royal Academy early on a Monday morning to find a long queue waiting to gain entrance to the Hockney Exhibition – at 9.30 in the morning! Fortunately, being a member, I was able to join a very short queue, which moved very rapidly with the assistance of the charming and helpful staff employed by the RA, they really are very welcoming. My first surprise was the electronically operated coat stand in the cloakroom, very technologically advanced. The exhibition itself was a tribute to the energy and drive of David Hockney, hardly a youngster. The sheer scale and size of individual canvases was amazing.

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  • Posted by Jonathan Riley
William Turner Flint Castle

Anyone wanting to see a great exhibtion should go to Margate to the Turner Gallery. On Saturday I had almost my perfect afternoon, lunch at the Ambrette, in my humble opinion the best Indian restaurant in the South East, and then to the Turner Gallery. At first I was not sure what to make of it all, there was a foul stench as I neared the entrance. I could not work out whether it was decaying sea weed or the odour from some protestors camping by the entrance. I never found out what they were protesting about, it must have been the seaweed.

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  • Posted by Jonathan Riley
Faberge silver inkwell

For centuries silver has been admired and collected by many for its beauty, brilliant lustre as well as for its intrinsic value. However, silver was once considered by some to be a necessity, symbolic of one's place in society. Whether you were a nobleman in the 18th century or of the Medieval period, a magnificent display of silverware was almost paramount.

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  • Posted by Robin Newcombe
Argyle pink Jubilee diamond

An incredible discovery was made at the Argyle diamond mine in the East Kimberley region of a remote northern corner of Western Australia a couple of weeks ago. Miners there found a rough pink diamond weighing 12.76 carats, the largest such stone found in the country. Estimated to be worth millions, the diamond has been named the Argyle Pink Jubilee and will be cut and polished over a period of ten days in Perth, before being sold later this year.

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  • Posted by Simon Rufus
Fabio Capello pensive glasses

All the news today seems to be centred on the resignation of Fabio Capello. He appears to have become incensed over the Football Association’s removal of John Terry as captain of the England Football team. In very difficult financial times it is quite hard to accept the obscene wages of players and managers alike, who seem to have evaded politicians expansively muttering about the greed of bankers. At least the bankers bought art with their massive incomes.

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  • Posted by Jonathan Riley
Charles Newington Folkestone giclee print

We all know the cost of insurance has recently escalated dramatically. Many people have paintings inherited or bought that have become valuable and are a lure for thieves. So why not make as perfect a copy as possible to hang on the walls with the original safely stored? Delicate watercolours no longer need be hidden behind their own curtains to avoid fading in the light and hence ruined. Giclee prints are generally known as the finest quality reproductions of images that can be made and they don’t fade.

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  • Posted by Jonathan Riley
Fra Angelico et les Maitres de la Lumiere

Recently I visited the wonderful exhibition, Fra Angelico et les Maîtres de la Lumière, at the delightful Musée Jacquemart-André in Paris. Paintings have been collected from many sources to produce an exhilarating experience for the viewer. At first my heart sank as I saw the immense queue in the street waiting to gain entry. I wondered why so many people wanted to see such an esoteric exhibition, but this was France and Paris.

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  • Posted by Jonathan Riley
Lady Windmere's Fan by Oscar Wilde

Grand Auctions will be selling paintings of costumes for Wilde’s Lady Windermere’s Fan. The play is well known, especially for Wilde’s epigrams. ‘We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars’, ‘Wicked women bother one, good women bore one, that is the only difference between them,’ are two of many.

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  • Posted by Jonathan Riley
silver tea service set

Antique silver objects have been seen as a safe haven for savvy investors for a long time, but for many people who have acquired silver objects, knowing how, who to sell to and when to sell can be a difficult decision to make.

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  • Posted by Robin Newcombe
Elizabeth Taylor eyes

Recently there has been a great deal of publicity for the much inflated prices people were prepared to pay for jewellery belonging to Elizabeth Taylor. The lady concerned seemed to have considerable skill in receiving very expensive presents only equalled by her ability to marry rich husbands.

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  • Posted by Jonathan Riley

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