Cowans News

Cowan's to Host April 16th Cleveland Live Auction

CLEVELAND, Ohio Since opening here nearly two years ago, the northern-Ohio gallery for Cowan's Auctions has been a microcosm of the Cincinnati operation. The April 16 sale again proves the point, but with a twist. In addition to a strong selection of fine and decorative arts and Americana, the Cleveland auction includes a session devoted to highly collectible prints ranging from Old Masters engravings to Japanese woodblocks to 20th-century images.

 This is the first time a grouping of the artwork will be sold live in Cleveland by Cowan's. The only previous offering here was in an online session.

 "We're excited about giving the public a chance to bid on such a wide range of prints, including six works by Rembrandt" said Carrie Corrigan, Cowan's coordinating specialist for the auction.

 The best of the engravings by Rembrandt van Rijn (Dutch, 1606-1669) is Adam & Eve, signed and dated 1638 within the plate, and estimated to sell for $4,000 to $6,000. The couple are pictured in the Garden of Eden with Eve holding the forbidden fruit and a dragon-like serpent observing overhead while clinging to a tree.

 Other works by the noted Dutch artist include an image of his mother sitting at a table, circa 1631, estimated at $2,000 to $4,000, and a landscape with a stone archway, estimated at $800 to $1,200.

 Among the other artists represented in the prints session are Albrecht Dürer (German, 1471-1528), The Birth of the Virgin, woodcut on laid paper, monogrammed within the plate, circa 1503, estimated at $800 to $1,200; Francisco de Goya (Spanish, 1746-1828), The Prisoner in Chains, etching, unsigned, estimated at $200 to $400; and James Abbott McNeill Whistler (American, 1834-1903), La Vieille aux Loques (From Twelve Etchings from Nature), signed within the plate, 19th century, estimated at $500 to $800.

 Penitentiary Near Pittsburgh by Karl Bodmer (Swiss, 1809-1893), a hand-colored engraving, circa 1840, is estimated at $400 to $600. Two 19th-century lithographs depicting hummingbirds, by John Gould (British, 1804-1881) and Henry Constantine Richter (British, 1821-1902), are being offered together, estimated at $300 to $500. Eighteen lots of Japanese woodblocks include works by Kunisada I Utagawa (1786-1865), Keisai Eisen (1790-1848), Hiroshige Ando (1797-1858) and Kawase Bunjiro Hasui (1883-1957), with estimates ranging from $50 to $400.

 The price range, varying age and subject matter of the artwork is expected to attract a broad spectrum of buyers, from novice to advanced.

 Front and center in the first session are fine art, silver, porcelain, early glass and furniture. Diversifying the sale is an intriguing mix of Americana, including advertising and petroliana, two of the hottest categories on today's antiques market, fresh from the lifetime collection of Jim and Judy Bowman of Ohio.

 The best of the advertising includes a large tin sign for Oilzum motor oil, nearly 4 feet by 3 feet, estimated at $2,000 to $3,000, while additional items range from a circa-1950s electric wall clock promoting RCA Victor Radio Television, estimated at $150 to $250, to a Mail Pouch Tobacco porcelain thermometer, 73 inches tall, estimated at $600 to $900.

 Country store items include an Enterprise No. 216 floor-model, double-wheel coffee mill estimated at $700 to $1,000 and a Victorian child's mannequin having a cloth-covered body and cast-iron feet, 37 1/2 inches tall, estimated at $400 to $600. A salesman's sample of The Columbia washer, made by Benbow Mfg. Co. and having an 1895 patent date, complete with its wringer and metal washtub, 20 inches high, is estimated at $1,000 to $1,500. A hard-to-find composition Rabbit and Bunnies Trio candy container, German, 19th century, is estimated at $1,000 to $1,500.

 Artwork in the first session includes an anonymous period copy of The Spirit of '76, Archibald Willard's famous rendering of two drummers and a flutist marching in front of an American flag, oil on canvas, late 19th century, estimated at $2,000 to $3,000.

 The best of the art glass is a Steuben vase, blue Aurene over yellow jade, circa 1925, 8 inches high, estimated at $3,000 to $5,000. Other glass offered includes Lalique, Tiffany and Galle. A Russian engraved goblet from the late 18th century, the design including an imperial eagle and the cypher of Empress Elizaveta Petrovna, is estimated at $1,000 to $2,000.

 A strong selection of lighting is led by a Lalique Perruches table lamp designed from a molded and frosted cranberry vase having a design of parakeets in flowering branches, circa 1919, estimated at $2,500 to $3,500. A pair of Sabino art glass table lamps from the 1920s or '30s, the shades and illuminated bases in frosted glass decorated with streaks of teal, coral and yellow, are estimated at $1,400 to $1,800.

 Silver offered includes a Mexican six-piece sterling silver coffee and tea set estimated at $2,500 to $3,500; 78 pieces of Wallace sterling silver flatware in the Grand Victorian pattern, estimated at $1,200 to $1,500; and a British silver-plated wager cup, late 18th or early 19th century, having eight George III half pennies incorporated into the body, each from the early 1770s, the bottom having three dice under glass, estimated at $200 to $400.

 Furniture ranges from formal to country, including an American late Classical meridienne, circa 1840s, estimated at $900 to $1,200, and a walnut pie safe, the 12 punched tins having a star pattern, estimated at $200 to $400.

 The mix continues with items as varied as a selection of glass bottles and jars, stoneware, treen, kitchenware, cast-iron banks, dolls, textiles, folk art, Persian rugs and Asian carvings.

 "One thing unique about the Cleveland office is that our sales allow us to showcase a lot of the categories that Cowan's does," said Corrigan. "It introduces people to the wide variety that we can handle."

 The bi-annual live salesroom auction will be held at Cowan's Cleveland salesroom, 26801 Miles Road, Warrensville Heights, Ohio. Public previews are noon to 5 p.m. Friday, April 15; and 8 to 10 a.m. Saturday, April 16, the day of the sale. The auction starts at 10 a.m. Bidding is also available by phone, absentee and live through

 For more information, phone Carrie Corrigan at (216) 292-8300 or visit

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