Samuel Pepys & Charles II document to be sold at auction

Samuel Pepys and Charles II document

ADVANCE NOTICE: To be offered in our forthcoming auction of Paper Collectables on 1st November 2011.

Charles II, King of England, and Samuel Pepys. A manuscript document on vellum in a secretarial hand, signed by King Charles II and countersigned by Samuel Pepys. Whitehall, London: dated 12th April 1678. 1p. folio (222 x 330mm.) The document addressed to ‘Captn. Cyprian Southack’ appointing him in command of the ‘Turky Friggott’ [probably the Turkey Frigate], with remnant of seal. Presale estimate £2500-3500. To view the lot click here.

The timing of the document suggests that Southack may have been commissioned as part of a larger force being assembled to deal with possible problems with the French in the West Indies, although this is supposition as no mention of a mission is contained within the document. Captain Southack was the father of Captain Cyprian Southack (1662-1745) who gained well-deserved fame for his cartographical work, and for the various maritime engagements which he took part in, or led, whilst employed in the colony of Massachusetts.

Toovey’s sold a similar document in a specialist auction at their salerooms on 17th May 2011, for £5300, which can be seen by clicking here.

Dora Gordine Exhibition at Worthing Museum

Dora Gordine and Richard

8 October 2011 to 21 January 2012

Fearless and feisty Dora Gordine stormed the art world of Europe from the 1920s to the 1950s, producing sculptures of nudes, portraits and public commissions. She also became involved in the early use of mass media advertising for the cosmetics industry. This is a rare opportunity to see this unique loan of over 25 sculptures, drawings, photographs, letters and magazines from Dorich House Museum and private lenders. The exhibition tours to Estonia in 2012 and Singapore in 2013. Guest Curator Brenda Martin from Dorich House Museum said: The social history of the 20th century is told through Gordine’s extraordinary life as an artist – wild Paris of the 1920s, exotic Singapore in the 1930s, war torn London of the 1940s and flamboyant America in the 1950s. The exhibition is accompanied by a series of talks and workshops for adults and family groups sponsored by Toovey’s Fine Art Auctioneers and Thomas Eggar LLP, a leading law firm in the south. John Bunker, Thomas Eggar LLP partner said: Thomas Eggar LLP Worthing is pleased to support the Dora Gordine exhibition at the Worthing Museum and Art Gallery. It’s part of our contribution to the vibrant life of the town. At the same time we are delighted to be a joint sponsor with Toovey’s. The collection brings something a bit different, some new cultural life to the town and with Worthing Museum being in a great central position it is one of those features of our community which is easy to take for granted. We’d wish to encourage the use of this valuable resource for Worthing, starting with this exhibition. Discover more about Gordine and her link to Worthing Museum by visiting the Museum’s website.

Nicholas Toovey visits the Brighton Art Fair

Claire Palastanga's Black Heart Dish

The Brighton Art Fair held its Private View this evening and opens the doors again on the 23rd, 24th and 25th of September. Nicholas Toovey had his usual snoop around the show viewing the contemporary art on offer. Familiar faces from the Contemporary Art Auctions were present and offered some of the highlights of the show. Dan Bennett was showing his amazing work inspired by phosphenes – the intricate swirling patterns that form before the inner eye. Natalie Martin had two wonderful depictions of the West Pier, Brighton on display, whilst Sheila Marlborough’s bright and vivid landscapes leapt from the white background of her stand. It is always a pleasure to have a chat with Eve Shepherd especially when you can admire her fascinating bronze ‘Broken’ in the process. It was also nice to see some ceramics on display, with Contemporary Art Auction regular Claire Palastanga having arguably the most subtle but eye-catching display in the Corn Exchange. A heart-shaped dish similar to the one pictured was truly beautiful in the flesh – unsurprisingly she had already made her first sale by the time Nicholas got to say hello. Sarah Young, Bill Phillip and Frances Doherty made up the other exhibitors that can regularly be found at Toovey’s Contemporary Art Auctions. Other artists that have not participated in the auction before, included Christine Tongue, Claire Bibaud and Gillian Bates, whilst the two printmakers Janet Brooke and Flora McLachlan are well worth seeking out at the 93 stand art fair. For more information visit www.brightonartfair.co.uk.

£120,000 Chinese jade table screen sold at Toovey’s

Chinese jade table screen

This antique Chinese jade table screen was sold by Toovey’s fine art auctioneers and valuers for £120,000. Top British and Chinese dealers descended on Toovey’s Spring Gardens rooms at Washington on Thursday 11th August for their specialist sale of Oriental ceramics and works of art. Prize of the auction was the diminutive jade screen, just over 6” wide, which dates from the reign of the Qianlong Emperor (1735-1796). Carved on both sides with landscape scenes and on one side with calligraphic text, the unassuming panel and later wooden stand were consigned to Toovey’s in a shoebox with several other items by probate solicitors after the clearance of a modest flat in Richmond. Toovey’s Oriental antiques consultant, Lars Tharp, subsequently identified the screen as rather more valuable an object than the shoebox suggested. On the day of the auction, the final bidding was left to two Chinese traders, one in the room, one bidding by telephone, who brushed aside competition from fellow dealers from China and the London specialist trade to battle it out to the emphatic hammer price, Toovey’s top result of the year so far. Further specialist sales of Oriental ceramics and works of art are scheduled throughout the rest of this year and early 2012. Visit the specialist sale page by clicking here to see forthcoming auctions, or contact Toovey’s to discuss the valuation and sale of your Oriental ceramics and works of art.

September Issue of Sussex Life Out Now

Nicholas Toovey writes an article for Sussex Life magazine every month on contemporary Sussex artists.  He was approached because of his contacts within the art world that he has formed from hosting the annual Contemporary Art Auctions at TOOVEY’S.  It enables Nicholas to further promote artists and the arts in Sussex, an area he is particularly passionate about.  His first article published in the March issue was on Brighton-based artist Chris Kettle. His articles so far have featured the work of Alison Milner-Gulland, Carolyn Genders, Eve Shepherd, Susie Jenkins and in the September issue he meets printmaker Sarah Young ahead of showing her work at the Brighton Art Fair.  It is available in the shops now for £3.65. Many of the previous articles can be viewed here: http://sussex.greatbritishlife.co.uk/arts/features/

Sarah Young featured in Sussex Life
September Issue of Sussex Life
Sarah Young's linocut 'Brighton Rock'
Sarah Young's linocut 'Brighton Rock'