Judith Dobrzynski Mentions Important German Expressionist Works Currently Offered by Everard Auctions


Popular American journalist and freelance writer Judith Dobrzynski mentions Everard Auctions current sale of important German Expressionist paintings by Gabriele Munter in her recent blog post.

Judith H. Dobrzynski

Judith H. Dobrzynski

In a sale now on the internet though Oct. 7 are two paintings by Gabriele Munter (1877-1962), whose work I like (the best trove I’ve seen is at the Milwaukee Art Museum). Now, the two up for sale at Everard probably are not museum-quality (Der Blaue Berg (The Blue Mountain) [top], from 1908, is estimated at $200,000-300,000, while Im Uhrmacherladen (The Watchmaker’s Shop) [below], from 1916, has a presale estimate of $100,000-150,000), and I am not suggesting that the Met run out and buy them. But the release sent me to the Met collections database to see if Kandel could have gone to the best, even for a less-rich experience.


Read the full story on Judith Dobrzynski’s blog on ArtsJournal

Lark Mason and John Nye Discuss Collectibles and High Tech Auctions on “The Collectors Show”


Lark E. Mason

Lark Mason of iGavel Auctions/Lark Mason Associates and John Nye of Nye and Company Auctioneers and Appraisers were guests of Web Talk Radio’s The Collectors Show episode last week with Harold Nicoll. They are the first members of the Antiques Roadshow to make an appearance on the show.

Click here to listen to Lark Mason on the Web Talk Radio website

For more information on Lark Mason Associates, visit LarkMasonAssociates.com


John Nye

Click here to listen to John Nye on the Web Talk Radio website

For more information on Nye & Company, visit NyeandCompany.com


iGavel Welcomes KC Auction Company!

KCAC (1) (1)-fixed

iGavel is proud to announce our newest associate seller, KC Auction Company, located in Kansas City, Missouri! Their FR3SH sale is currently live on iGavel through November 5, 2013, and features a selection of Chinese art, decorative arts, flatware and jewelry. Highlights include a pair of sterling silver pheasants by Sanborns Mexico, a 78 piece Manchester Leonore Sterling Silver flatware and a pair of Cuchimilco Figures. Click on the banner to view all the lots they are current offering:



Visit KC Auction Company Website
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Sale Preview | Litchfield County Auctions Presents Property from the Estate of Barbara Millstein

The upcoming Summer Estates Auction by Litchfield County Auctions present a marvelous collection from the estate of Barbara Millstein. In honor of the sale, Nicholas Thorn, the Vice President of Litchfield County Auctions wrote up an introduction of Millstein and her contributions to Brooklyn Museum throughout her life. The auction will take place on iGavel between July 10th though July 24th, viewings will be held between July 19th through July 24th. For more information, visit the auction listing.


Property from the Estate of Barbara Millstein (1926-2012) includes numerous paintings and prints collected over the past 50 years by this outstanding “character” of the art and museum world.


Born in Manhattan in the West Village, Mrs. Millstein group up in an artistic family. Her mother was an artist and her step father was an illustrator for Disney. Her intellectual bent came from her father who was a professor. Mrs. Millstein’s career began in the offices of 20th Century Fox, where she wrote subtitles which were later translated into foreign languages, but an opportunity arose one at a cocktail party one evening and she jumped at the opportunity to work at the sculpture garden of the Brooklyn Museum. She loved this job, and became familiar with many local architects who would bring her discoveries from the intricate architecture of the Brooklyn neighborhoods around the museum.


During her tenure in this position, she became involved in the rediscovery of original papers, documents and plans relating to the building of the Brooklyn Bridge (Or the “East River Bridge” as it was originally called.) Historian and author David McCullough credits her with this important re-discovery, which she helped usher into the hands of the Brooklyn Museum. In 1983, for the centennial celebrations of the bridge, the Brooklyn Museum held an exhibition that showed a selection of some of these original papers.


Later in Mrs. Millstein’s career, she moved on from these projects and followed her passion to the department of photography. In this capacity, she curated a seminal– and controversial– exhibition on African American photography entitled ‘Comitted to the Image’ which featured Anthony Barboza, Beuford Smith and Orville Robertson. Other photographers that she grew to know over the years included Vivian Cherry and Lewis Hind.


While the collection currently being offered, differs in style– she was a collector of older American art, her eye was none-the-less sharply honed.


Nicholas Thorn
Vice President
Litchfield County Auctions

Associate Seller Brian Witherell Interviewed on Online Auctioning

Image Credit: AUTUMN PAYNE / apayne@sacbee.com

Brian Witherell. Image Credit: AUTUMN PAYNE / apayne@sacbee.com

iGavel associate seller Brian Witherell was recently interview by The Sacramento Bee on the benefits of online auctioning and how it helped him to reach larger audiences around the world. The below excerpt was taken from the article. Click here to read the full article on The Sacramento Bee website

For Witherell’s auction house in midtown Sacramento, the Internet has opened up a whole new world.


Brian Witherell said online auctions have enabled his house at 20th and C streets, along with other relatively small operators, to draw the attention of bidders all over the map.


Their quest to reach a larger audience is one of the factors that propelled online auctioneering into a multibillion-dollar business over the past 20 years. Witherell’s, a family-run company dating back to 1969, shifted its auctions entirely to online in 2002.


“Online has changed everything, not only for clients but for research and (determining) value,” said Witherell, whose firm offers both auctions and appraisals. “It’s allowed more people to become involved, no matter where they live.”


At Witherell’s spring online auction in May, the firm expected to raise $200,000, but came away with $325,000.


A Maynard Dixon painting titled “Guard of the Cornfields” went for $69,000, or nearly 40 percent more than expected; a stained-glass Tiffany “Daffodil” table lamp fetched a hefty $35,460, and a Louis Vuitton trunk found in a basement sold for nearly $5,000.


Witherell’s typically features fine art, antiques and other objects of value, but it has appraised and auctioned off items of all stripes over the years. The boutique firm occupies a tiny slice in a massive national and international online auctions pie, a market that includes everything from eBay to auto auctions to super-high-end players like Sotheby’s.


While eBay is the industry giant with millions of buyers and sellers, smaller auction houses like Witherell’s are becoming increasingly popular, touting deep expertise in art, antiques and older items. After all, you wouldn’t want to sell great-grandma’s brooch online for 50 bucks, when it might actually be worth $5,000.

Within the industry, there are subsegments – some auctions accept online bids at a live auction site with on-site bidders – but true online auctions are just that: only online bids are accepted for a specific period of time.


Industry trackers estimate current annual online auctions revenue at somewhere north of $25 billion, or about five times what it was just 10 years ago.


Some analysts say they think the $25 billion number might be conservative, given the myriad kinds of online auctions held in the United States each year. San Jose-based eBay Inc. alone reported revenue of $14 billion in 2012.


“I don’t think anyone has a handle on the true value of online auctions,” said Peter Schaub, a marketing and branding expert in New York. “The industry has grown so quickly, and how do you separate out live auctions that have online bidders?


“It could be worth billions more than current estimates.”


Witherell said his business has been growing 25 percent annually for four years running. In the industry, he’s well-known. He has been one of the featured appraisers on PBS’ “Antiques Roadshow” for years.


Witherell said online auctions have been on a very fast track in the United States due to a combination of generational changes and technology advances.


“We’ve seen an increasing number of aging baby boomers involved,” he said. “Tastes change, and fewer people are interested in keeping the sterling silver flatware or the furniture that’s been in the family for generations.”


Witherell’s is among a group of companies that sell online through New York-based iGavel Auctions (www.igavelauctions. com), a $25 million-a-year enterprise.


iGavel offers a platform for independent auction firms to host auctions. Specializing in fine arts, antiques and collectibles, iGavel promotes sales via social media, collectors forums and other links. Lark Mason Jr., president of iGavel, said the wildfire growth of online auction technology – driven in part by giant-volume enterprises like eBay – has made it possible for a “small auction house to remotely reach a large audience. Because of that, this dramatically increased competition for consignments.”


Witherell said his auctions typically draw bids from as far away as Florida, New York, New Mexico and Massachusetts.


Witherell’s handles many estate items and currently conducts four online auctions annually – spring, summer, winter and fall. Witherell said the company is considering adding more in the future.


Each auction lasts two weeks; the next is set for Aug. 6-20. Lots can be seen online and on-site. Commissions vary, based on the number of lots and the nature of the items up for bids, but 10 percent is the general standard.


Witherell says a good auctioneer-appraiser typically has an eye for detail, a strong grasp of U.S. and world history and a quick head for numbers.


Not surprisingly, he’s handled clients who had some eye-popping items.


That includes a seller of White House china stretching from the administrations of former presidents Abraham Lincoln to Woodrow Wilson. And he once encountered a client with “suitcases” full of old coins.


A future auction item is a chair that once graced George Washington’s Mount Vernon home in Virginia.


Asked why a prospective seller should choose his company over eBay, he smiled and said: “I would say we’re efficient … in determining value. You don’t want to make mistakes … sell something for far less because you didn’t know its value.


“People might say they know it all in this business. But believe me, you don’t know it all in this business … You have to work at it.”


The Story Within the Story: African Art and The Men Who Collect It

Buxton BAACS photoE

John Buxton has appeared as an expert on Tribal art on PBS Antiques Roadshow since its inception 17 years ago. ArtTrak, his gallery, is currently offering Tribal Art and Folk Art in the Asian, Ancient, and Ethnographic Works of Art Auction.


Click Here to See All Pre-Columbian/Tribal/Ethnographic Lots in the Asian, Ancient, and Ethnographic Works of Art Auction

On Antiques Roadshow, ­we look forward to seeing objects that are not only interesting but have their own story. Encountering passionate collectors in the cities we stop in, the stories of the collections (and the collectors themselves) often provide insight into why we love antiques in the first place.

Rassiga Bembe figure

Bembe Figure


In the current Asian, Ancient, and Ethnographic Auction, there is a Bembe figure that was acquired and sold by Everett Rassiga when he owned the Black Tulip in Dallas, Texas. Rassiga, something of an Indiana Jones figure, was exposed to Pre-Columbian art during trips to Latin American countries as a Pan American pilot. In the 1950’s and 60’s, the parties held in his 3-story brownstone in New York were wild, even by today’s standards, and it seems plausible that the people he influenced to collect did so just to be a part of this charismatic man’s life.




Everett Rassiga


Rassiga had an impeccable eye and a thirst for adventure. In 1968, Rassiga used a helicopter to lift part of the polychrome stucco façade of a temple at Campeche and then shipped it to New York. When he offered it to Thomas Hoving at the Metropolitan Museum, Hoving alerted the Mexican authorities, who told him to return the façade or have his house in Cuernavaca seized. Rassiga chose the house, and the façade is now in the Maya hall in the museum in Mexico City. Though a bit of a rogue, Rassiga was a genius that could see and understand art better than most competitors and clients.



Jay Last

Jay Last


The Walwa mask was previously owned by Jay Last, a quiet, unassuming man who lives in a modest home in what is now Beverly Hills. Last, who received his PhD in Physics from MIT in 1956, was one of 8 founders of Silicon Valley, and made his money in the emerging market in computer chips. Recruited by William Shockley, who won the 1956 Nobel Prize for his role in the invention of the transistor.


Last Walwa mask

Walwa Mask


A prolific collector of African art, Last is regarded as one of the foremost experts in the art of the Lega from the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Last has been a major supporter of the Fowler Museum of Art on the UCLA campus and the Huntington Library in San Marino California, which houses his extensive lithography collection. Jay Last is a genius that values philanthropy as much as what he has accomplished in his professional life. When I look at the Walwa, I strive to understand what Jay sees and feels in this tough and powerful work of art.



Daniel Cooney presents John Mann and Brea Souders Exhibitions


iGavel Auctions associate seller Daniel Cooney is now hosting two shows in their Chelsea, New York gallery, one by John Mann (“Folded in Place”) and the other by Brea Souders (“Film Electric”). The events were recently featured on The New Yorker. Below is an excerpt from the review:

Two photographers who take a playful approach to their medium make an entertaining pair. Mann turns colorful maps and globes into sly tabletop sculptures, which he photographs as if they were features of a miniaturized landscape: a road sign, a billboard, a spiralling off-ramp. His touch is light and poetic, with echoes of Joseph Cornell, and a similar blend of sophistication and childlike pleasure in materials. Souders scatters snippets of old negatives on shiny sheets of acetate, then photographs them as random collages—bright shards of color, some as wispy as blades of cut grass. Save for a few recognizable images, these are jazzy abstractions, funny and fresh. Through March 2.

For more information, visit Daniel Cooney Fine Art at www.danielcooneyfineart.com

Private Guitar Concert in Your Home by Doug Munro.

Doug Munro will play a private 75 minute guitar concert in your home! All details must be previously discussed and mutually agreed upon with Doug.

Master musician and guitar virtuoso Doug Munro is an established veteran of the New York music scene. Since 1987 he has released eleven albums as a leader and has appeared on over 50 recordings as a sideman, producer, and arranger working with a diverse array of artists including Dr. John, Michael Brecker, and Dr. Lonnie Smith.  Doug has over 75 original published compositions and over 300 recorded arrangements performed by some of the finest players in the world. His current CD “A Very Gypsy Christmas” is a swinging “Django” style interpretation of 15 of your all time favorite Christmas songs.

In the recording field Doug has received two Grammy nominations and two NAIRD awards. Amazon.com picked Boogaloo to Beck , on which Doug performed, arranged, and co-produced, as one of its Top Ten Jazz CD’s of 2003. Doug also did orchestration work on the Oscar winning documentary When We Were Kings.

As an educator Doug created and was Director of the Jazz Studies Program at The Conservatory of Music at Purchase College from 1993-2002. He continues to teach there as Director Emeritus. This esteemed jazz program boasts a faculty that includes John Abercrombie, Todd Coolman, Jon Faddis, Eric Alexander, John Riley and many other top jazz performers. He is also a Teaching Artist at the Litchfield Jazz Camp.

“Doug Munro…well he can flat out play!” – Dr. Lonnie Smith


Custom Recording of A Salute to George Coleman from the 2012 Litchfield Jazz Festival

Executive Director Vita Muir had been looking for a way to more closely link the Litchfield Jazz Camp and Festival, and the opportunity presented itself during a camp faculty concert last summer, part of the “Kent Has That Jazz” series.

Teaching Artist Gary Smulyan had been working on the music of George Coleman with his students in their combo, and thought it would be great to present at a faculty concert. He couldn’t have imagined he response – it was so well received that Muir got on stage after the set and said, “How would you like to hear this music on the Litchfield Jazz Festival next summer?” She hired the whole band on the spot – the George Coleman Salute was born.

The Salute features Mr. Coleman’s own arrangements with Gary on baritone sax, Jeff Leder and Don Braden on tenor, Onaje Allen Gumbs on piano, Marcus McLaurine on bass, Matt Wilson (Artist-in-Residence from 2010/2011, Dave Ballou on trumpet, and Kris Allen on alto. Mr. Coleman’s health did not permit him to commit so far in advance, so Gary chose tenor saxophonist Eric Alexander as a special guest as he is a Coleman protégé.

You will own the only copy of this historic performance. The recording will be delivered to the winner by September 30th, 2012.

Daniel Cooney on the Emerging Artists Auction

iGavel Auctions and Daniel Cooney Fine Art have been collaborating on Emerging Artists Auctions for the past few years. In light of the most recent sale, now live on the site through June 7th, we spoke with Daniel Cooney of the eponymous Daniel Cooney Fine Art about the Emerging Artists Program, and here’s what he had to say:

I initiated the Emerging Artists Auctions in November of 2008 soon after visiting Atlanta Celebrates Photography where I had been invited to review portfolios of aspiring photographers.

Laura Skinner, Samsung (Jess), 2011

Laura Skinner, Samsung (Jess), 2011

The banks had just collapsed and Wall Street was reeling. Many of us felt uncertain about the future and I was unsure how to navigate my business through the worst economy since the Great Depression. Traveling to Atlanta to spend time with artists and colleagues proved to be a well-needed reprieve to what I was dealing with at work. It allowed me to start thinking proactively and creatively, and thus the Emerging Artists Auctions was born. I was already hard at work with the first auction on the plane ride home. 

In addition to owning and operating a contemporary art gallery in Chelsea, I teach at the School of Visual Arts and at the New School.

Alex Wein, Untitled (Soldier 3), 2012

Alex Wein, Untitled (Soldier 3), 2012

I am often invited to critique and review portfolios at many of the local art schools and photography festivals around the country. I have been involved with iGavelAuctions for over eight years offering secondary market material to collectors. Combining the two aspects of my professional life seemed organic in many ways. The first Emerging Artists Auction generated significant interest and attention in the art community including blogs and online news magazines, and prestigious collectors started buying quickly. 

As the auctions evolved, they provided wonderful opportunities for artists and collectors alike. Young artists have very few opportunities to make their work visible and iGavelAuctions has thousands of registered users.

Jenny Riffle, Sorting Change, 2009

Jenny Riffle, Sorting Change, 2009

Collectors don’t often have the time or resources to meet promising young artists as I do, so bringing them together seemed a great recession–busting idea. Emerging artists who have never sold anything might suddenly be in one of the most prestigious collections in the country. And those collectors have the pleasure of knowing they have invested in an artist’s future and added something fresh to their collections.

Another advantage to all concerned is that the exposure can result in a serious career boost for the artist. I have given many solo shows to artists I met through the auctions, including Timothy Briner, Shen Wei, Jen P. Harris, Lydia McCarthy, and Maciek Jasik, and I have worked on placing the work of other artists in both private and corporate collections. The auctions serve as an amazing conduit for all of us, the artists, collectors and dealers.

Josh Poehlein, The Messenger, 2008

Josh Poehlein, The Messenger, 2008

Our current auction is our sixteenth and I only expect them to continue to grow and provide more opportunities.

So please support these emerging artists and bid!


Click here to view the Emerging Artists Auction presented by Daniel Cooney Fine Art and iGavelAuctions.com