Fine art pieces…

Words by:
William Gregory MRICS, Golding Young and Thos Mawer Auctioneers
Featured in:
July 2011

One of the most interesting aspects of auctioneering is cataloguing and valuing pictures. Art has a unique place in the auction room. Unlike other items offered the value is less easy to define and more subjective. The Art market is often led by fashion which can have a dramatic effect on prices and values. The relationship between price and value is often contradictory and it sometimes appears easier to fix the price and then defend the value, but I prefer to concentrate on the value before speculating on price. The value of a picture can start simply in how a person views it. Is it interesting? From there we can speculate on the artist and what he or she is trying to achieve. This can be very personal to both the artist and to the viewer and not easy to value and even more so to put a price on. When a picture is entered into an auction an estimate of price has to be given and so I have chosen two pictures I am currently cataloguing for our next Fine Art auction in September.

Firstly, a watercolour by the artist Peter De Wint. It is a landscape, typical of the artist and the period. Peter De Wint was born in 1784 and became one of England’s foremost landscape artists. It is recorded that he visited Lincoln in 1806 and later met and married Harriet Hilton whose family lived in Lincoln. Many of his works are within the Usher Art Gallery Collection and one, ‘The Deer Park’, is currently showing within ‘The Charter of the Forest’ exhibition at The Collection, Deansgate Lincoln.

Secondly, an oil on canvas by Joshua Anderson Hague. Titled ‘Mousehole Cornwall’, it illustrates a typical Victorian scene. Born in Manchester in 1850 Joshua Hague trained at the Manchester Academy of Fine Art and later became the leader of a group of artists named, ‘The Manchester School’. This work is an excellent example of nineteenth century genre painting.

Both are valuable pictures I hope you agree. As for their estimated auction price, considering their individual merits and researching past auction prices for similar works, I have advised both owners that their pictures should fetch £1000.

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