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Rare Patek Philippe Wristwatch
The rare Patek Philippe wristwatch sold for $576,000 recently in an Antiquorum New York auction
Q: I picked up a painting at a yard sale held by a world traveler. I don't see a signature on it, but she told me it was by August Schwabe, a German artist. Value?
A: Let me count the reasons why I cannot begin to quote you a price. First, the art must be seen to verify that it is indeed a painting. Many "paintings" are actually prints. Then, is it on board or canvas? And what is the condition? Is the subject figural, landscape or neither? Are aesthetics pleasing? Is it a good example of what it is supposed to be? And so on and so on. All those factors impact value.
Next, is it indeed by Heinrich (Henry) August Schwabe, an American painter from New Jersey who lived 1843-1916? You have only a say-so on that. The fact that the seller was well traveled means zip when determining the artist.
Known especially for portraits and some landscapes, Schwabe was a realistic painter. According to www.artfact.com, a database of auction prices, his top price was
Fact is, the painting must be authenticated, and that costs. If it is indeed a Schwabe, the process can pay. For a qualified appraiser, see FYI below.
Q: What is value on my Niloak pottery vase? My camera does not work, but I'll give you sizes.
A: This is another case where the piece must be seen. If the exterior has a high-gloss glaze, value is easily double that of a matte finish.
First, let's clue readers about the pottery. Started around 1910 in Benton, Arkansas, Niloak Pottery was based on the unique characteristics of Arkansas clay. Instantly recognizable for its swirl pattern, Niloak's Missionware pottery is a classic of American art pottery.
Some swirl pieces are all shades of one color. Others have two colors. Some combine up to four shades plus white in a single swirl piece.
As with most pottery, the earliest examples and specific patterns tend to bring the most. Niloak made Missionware for three decades, and much is marked. Value is affected by unusual swirls, unique shapes and/or coloration, and certain marks. That's why an art pottery expert needs to eyeball the piece.
When researching values, it is always helpful to look up recent sale results. Buying a short-term subscription (starting at
One such database, www.artfact.com, quotes a sale last fall where four Missionware swirl vases brought
The results site www.liveauctioneers.com covers only auctions beamed by the site, but it is free. There, recent vase sales were
Q: Decades ago, I bought a Moser syllabub bowl for
A: An old English/Irish drink that combines ale, wine, or other alcohol with cream, sugar and spices, syllabub is often served in a large upright bowl that is sometimes covered.
I'll bet more collectors relate to Moser than to syllabub. A Bohemian master of fine art glass, Moser is more collected than syllabub paraphernalia. That collector is your target buyer.
An auction that sells fine art glass may take the piece. I'd shop it around. You can also take good photos from several angles to large antiques shows in the area and offer it to dealers.
Early and highly decorated Moser is better than later work. A fancy bowl brought
AUCTION ACTION: Introduced in 2006, the Reference 5104 Patek Philippe wristwatch marked a new high in complications for the Swiss watchmaker. A one-owner version brought
The watch with a skeleton perpetual calendar has transparent sapphire crystal disks that show days of the week, months, moon phases and leap years. Sold with a fitted winding box that has a voltage converter, the platinum watch has mechanisms plated in pink gold.
Question: When did Niloak Pottery stopped making cast wares?
a. Late 1940s
b. Early 1950s
c. Mid 1940s
d. Mid 1950s
Answer: The answer is b. Source: "Collector's Encyclopedia of Niloak," 2nd ed., by David Gifford (Collector Books,
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