Rare antique maps, an Einstein signed letter and a carousel giraffe top Neue Auctions' March 11 sale
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The Estate Fine Art and Antiques auction featured fine art, antiques, Mid-Century Modern, Modern Art, sterling, bronzes, decorative arts, printwork, maps, fine furniture, carpets. Online bidding was via LiveAuctioneers.com and Invaluable.com.

BEACHWOOD, Ohio - OhioPen -- Talk about an eclectic sale. The top five lots in Neue Auctions' Estate Fine Art and Antiques auction held online March 11th were a pair of rare old antique maps that combined for a staggering $147,600; a typed letter signed by Albert Einstein ($10,455); a carved and painted carousel giraffe ($9,840); and a stoneware vessel made by Claude Conover ($7,380).

The 342-lot auction was filled with fine art, antiques, Mid-Century Modern, Modern Art, sterling, bronzes, decorative arts, printwork, maps, fine furniture, carpets and more, from prominent estates and collections. Internet bidding was provided by LiveAuctioneers.com and Invaluable.com. All prices quoted are inclusive of the 23 percent buyer's premium.

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By far the top lot of the auction was a map of the Persian and Red Seas, after Claudius Ptolemy, Geographica, circa 1482 or later, 12 ½ inches by 22 inches. The engraved woodcut with original color was after Ptolemy's Cosmographia, showing Sinus Persicus (Persian Gulf) and Sinus Arabicus (Red Sea), a map of the Arabian Peninsula. The map blasted through its modest pre-sale estimate of $3,000-$6,000 to gavel for $110,700.

The other map was a 17th century Dutch Baroque map, Pascaarte van alle de Zecusten van Europa, published by Anthonie Jacobsz (Amsterdam), as seen in the lower cartouche. The map, in a 35 ½ inch by 42 ½ inch frame under old rolled glass, was rare and obscure, made on animal skin vellum. It sailed past the $4,000-$8,000 estimate, bringing $36,900.

The two-page typed letter signed by Einstein was dated 1950 on the physicist's stamped letterhead (Princeton, N.J.), written in German and addressed to the well-known medalist and portraitist Prof. Artur Immanuel Lowental of Vienna. It regarded Mr. Lowental's not being paid for a commissioned bust/medal of Einstein, who was sympathetic in the letter.

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The sale's expected top lot was the unusual but rare and visually striking carved and painted carousel giraffe, crafted circa 1910 by Gustav and William Dentzel. The restored giraffe, 64 ½ inches tall, featured inset glass eyes and was saddle carved with eagle's heads and green and red painted saddle details. It sold near its high estimate of $10,000.

Next up for Neue Auctions is an online-only Civil War-Americana auction planned for Friday, April 14th. It will be a timed auction on LiveAuctioneers.com. Bidding will open when the catalog is posted online the weekend of April 1st. For more information, visit www.NeueAuctions.com.

Cynthia Maciejewski

Source: Neue Auctions
Filed Under: Business

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