Smith & Singer

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Award Winning Australian Landscapes

15 November 2016

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Australian Financial Review  |  Peter Fish

Sotheby's Australia has pulled a rabbit from the hat for its Sydney fine art sale on November 23, with an early Charles Blackman taking the million-dollar top billing at the auction, amid a refined offering of works by artists ranging from Brett Whiteley and Arthur Streeton to a pre-World War II Herbert Badham Centennial Park scene.

The Australian  |  Michaela Boland

Sotheby’s Australia is expecting a record $1 million-plus sale for Charles Blackman’s iconic Alice in Wonderland painting, The Game of Chess, at auction in Sydney on November 23.  The oil-on-board depicting Alice and the White Rabbit playing chess at a table has been on loan to the Art Gallery of Ballarat, Victoria, for seven years but the owner, who lives abroad, has decided to sell and the Art Gallery of NSW is considered a likely buyer.

Jeffrey Smart Painting Released to Auction to Establish Future Acquisition Fund

3 November 2016

Sotheby’s Australia has been entrusted with the sale of Jeffrey Smart’s The Two-Up Game (Portrait of Ermes de Zan) (2006) (estimate $500,000-700,000, lot 48).  Consigned by the TarraWarra Museum of Art, the painting will be auctioned on 23 November, with funds raised to establish a future acquisition fund.

Panoramic or extended lateral compositions form a distinct and significant sub-group of paintings within the oeuvre of Jeffery Smart.  The Two-Up Game (Portrait of Ermes de Zan) relates closely to a series of ‘container’ compositions from 1990 that depict corrugated structures of various colours at the Italian port city of Livorno, on the west coast of Tuscany.  The central placement of the figure, Smart’s life partner Ermes de Zan, successfully expresses the feeling of social, even existential displacement that is so much a part of the culture of late capitalism.

Geoffrey Smith, Chairman of Sotheby’s Australia commented: ‘The de-acquisition of a painting by a collecting institution is not entered into lightly.  TarraWarra Museum of Art has given careful consideration regarding the sale of The Two-Up Game (Portrait of Ermes de Zan), assessing the work in the context of the existing collection and future acquisitions.  The museum and its founding benefactors, Eva Besen AO and Marc Besen AC, are long-term supporters of Jeffrey Smart.  The museum holds an additional ten major paintings by Smart donated by Eva and Marc Besen.  In addition, the Besens also provided the funds for Smart’s largest composition, Container Train in a Landscape (1983-1984, Arts Centre Melbourne), that has become one of the most beloved and admired of all of the artist’s works.  We look forward to assisting the museum in achieving the optimum result for their future acquisition fund.’

Victoria Lynn, Director of TarraWarra Museum of Art commented: ‘While we are saddened to let go of such a wonderful Jeffrey Smart painting, our aim of establishing a fund for the future acquisition of major works of modern and contemporary Australian art will provide the Museum with long term opportunities to enhance our outstanding collection of Australian art.’

Australian Financial Review  |  Peter Fish

A solid gold 1881 horse racing trophy once owned by media giant Kerry Packer is one of two unique race cups on offer at a Sydney auction this month. The other cup, also in gold but dating from 104 years later, was presented to the winner of the Melbourne Cup by Prince Charles and Diana, Princess of Wales, in 1985, during their only visit to the event.

The Advertiser  |  Louise Nunn

Syndicated: The Courier-Mail, The Daily Telegraph, The Herald Sun,, Perth Now

A SOLID gold colonial horse racing trophy made in South Australia and owned over the years by Australian high-flyers in business and the media, will be auctioned in Sydney this month. The 1881 Adelaide Hunt Club Cup, crafted by Adelaide’s leading silversmith Henry Steiner, is expected to fetch between $160,000 and $220,000 at Sotheby’s Fine Asian, Australian and European Arts and Design auction on October 25.

Herald Sun 

Synidcated: 9 News, Adelaide Advertiser, The Australian, Cairns Post, The Courier-Mail, Geelong Advertiser, Gold Coast Bulletin, The Mercury,, NT News, Perth Now, Townsville Bulletin, The Weekly Times,

Won by What a Nuisance and presented by Prince Charles the 18 carat gold 1985 Melbourne Cup is up for sale.

Australian Financial Review  |  Peter Fish

A bumper sale at Sotheby's Australia, which saw two paintings fetch a total of more than $3 million amid a host of other impressive prices, appears to have put the auction house in pole position to dominate the annual art auction tally for the first time in six years.

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