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A fine Régence style gilt bronze mounted Chinese celadon glazed stoneware jar. the bronze first half 19th century, the jar Ming Dynasty. photo Bonhams

SAN FRANCISCO, CA.- An extensive offering of European & American decorative arts includes property from noted estates and collectors

Fine arts auctioneers
Bonhams & Butterfields will host the firm's largest and most extensive auction of Fine European and American Furniture and Decorative Arts on Monday, June 14, 2010 in San Francisco. The late spring sale features American, English, French, Italian and Continental decorative arts, with an evening session devoted to furniture and decorations from the Ed Hardy San Francisco Collection.

Highlights include property from private and institutional collections across North America – including property from: the Brinsmade Estate of Houston, Texas; the estate of Los Angeles philanthropist Nancy M. Daly; the Corinthian Studios Collection; and property of the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco - sold to benefit future museum acquisitions.

Jeffrey Smith, Vice President and Director of the Bonhams & Butterfields Furniture & Decorative Arts Dept., said,
"We have put together a sale spanning several centuries and continents ranging from 16th century Renaissance cabinets to 1960s Italian modernist furniture with a special evening session offering the collection of Ed Hardy San Francisco."

One sale highlight is the important 18th century Harris family Boston Chippendale mahogany chest of drawers, expected to attract strong bids, estimated at $80/120,000. The current owner David Holmes is the co-founder of the Harry & David Company in Medford, Oregon.

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The important Harris family Chippendale mahogany block front chest of drawers, Boston, possibly the workshop of George Bright, third quarter 18th century. photo Bonhams

height 32in (81cm); width 23 1/2in (60cm); depth 38in (97cm). Estimate: $80,000 - 120,000

Provenance: William Harris,
to his great grand daughter W.H.A. Parks,
to her grand daughter Marjorie Parks Weston
sold by Ginsburg & Levy, Inc., New York 1943 to
David Holmes, of the Harry and David firm, Medford, Oregon
to his descendant.

William Harris, of Boston built the masts for the frigate Constitution.

Literature: The Magazine Antiques, December 1947 'Related chests in the Boston Fine Arts Museum, the Karolik Collection,' page 417

A secretary bookcase with similarly carved articulated knobbed claw foot and notched foliate carved bracket signed by George Bright is with the Boston Museum of Fine Arts, as well as the carved feet and bracket on the Alsop Secretary, with the Detroit Institute of Art ascribed to Bright.

Silver collectors will have the opportunity to bid on a rare silver flatware service of San Francisco historical provenance. The 84-piece set was presented to San Francisco Guards Brigadier General John Hewson in 1875 (est. $35/40,000).

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A silver partial flatware set, in canteen, W. K. Vanderslice, San Francisco, California. photo Bonhams

Comstock, with crest, the canteen with silver plaque engraved: "Presented to Brigadier General John Hewson, Jr., by the Com'd Officers of the No C Second Brigade, San Francisco, Feb'y 2nd, 1875"

Comprising: 12-8in table forks, 12-7in dessert forks, 12 teaspoons, 12 coffee spoons (g), 12 dessert spoons, 12 tablespoons, 1 mustard ladle (g), 2 salt spoons (g), 2 butter serving knives, 1 pickle fork (engraved tines), 1 jelly slice (engraved blade), 1 pastry server (engraved blade), 1 berry scoop (gilt and engraved blade), 1 sugar spoon (g), 1 gravy ladle (g) and 1 soup ladle (g), (84 pieces), all in the maker's burl faced fitted wooden canteen with hinged lid and one drawer, with blue satin lining and key. Estimate: $35,000 - 40,000

From the Estate of Nancy M. Daly, one of Southern California's most energetic activists on behalf of abused and neglected children and an avid arts supporter, come a pair of weathervanes: a late 19th century patinated gilt copper cow (est. $7/9,000) and a gilt copper rooster (est. $6/8,000), both expected to intrigue Americana collectors.

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A gilt copper rooster weathervane. New England, late 19th century. photo Bonhams

height 25 3/4in (65.5cm); length 23 1/2in (60cm); width 5in (13cm) Estimate: $6,000 - 8,000

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A patinated gilt copper cow weathervane. New England, late 19th century. photo Bonhams

height 18in (45.5cm); length 24in (61cm); width 8in (20.5cm) Estimate: $7,000 - 9,000

Bonhams is pleased to offer property from the Estate of Dr. and Mrs. Alan Brinsmade of Houston, TX. According to Jeffrey Smith, "Their collections represent decades of seeking out notable and fine decorative arts and paintings from around the world." Highlights include an early 18th century Louis XIV boulle marquetry commode (est. $30/50,000) and a very rare Ming dynasty gilt bronze mounted celadon jar.

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A fine Louis XIV gilt bronze and tortoiseshell mounted premiere partie Boulle marquetry commode, early 18th century. photo Bonhams

The gilt banded rectangular top with canted corners the Boulle work depicting a central canopy and stage with Commedia del Arte harlequin figures surrounded by acrobats and fabulous beasts within scrolling vines above three drawers inlaid with arabesques and scrolling vines ending in foliate sabots. height 32in (81cm); width 48in (122cm); depth 26in (66cm) Estimate: $30,000 - 50,000

Provenance: Purchased, Gilbert Fayette, Villeurbanne, 2001

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A fine Régence style gilt bronze mounted Chinese celadon glazed stoneware jar. the bronze first half 19th century, the jar Ming Dynasty. photo Bonhams

The wide-mouthed jar with ribbed outer walls and separately potted base bowl added to the walls before glazing and firing displaying a celadon glaze of Longquan type; the bronze mounts featuring bands of lambrequins, running scroll and acanthus, flanked by scrolled handles with foliate finial, raised on laurel and gadroon base with four acanthus scrolled bracket feet stamped D 1371. height 18in (45.5cm); width between handles 24in (61cm) Estimate: $8,000 - 12,000

Provenance: Purchased 1969 from M. Desarzens S.A., 29 Rue Centrale, Lausanne, Switzerland.

Footnote: For similar celadon glazed jars ascribed to the 14th century, see Regina Krahl, Chinese Ceramics in the Topkapi Saray Museum Istanbul (Sotheby's, 1986), volume 1 , cat. nos. 212 and 213, p. 292 and color plate p. 215.

From a Pacific Northwest collector is a very fine and impressive Paul Sormani commode (est. $50/80,000). Another piece stamped Sormani is a fine Louis XV style gilt bronze mounted kingwood bureau plat, expected to bring $10/15,000. Paul Sormani is among the elite of the 19th century furniture makers, his superb craftsmanship is distinguished by exquisite gilt bronze decorations.

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A very fine and impressive Louis XV style gilt bronze mounted marquetry commode, Paul Sormani, fourth quarter 19th century. photo Bonhams

The serpentine breche marble top in shades of taupe, tan, russet, brown and red with a double molded edge above two drawers sans traverse with scrolling floral marquetry within gilt bronze acanthus and palm frond encadrements; the corners with chutes in the form of espanolettes with feathered headdresses, ruff collars and laced bodices continuing to volute scroll cast sabots; the lock plate inscribed P. Sormani Paris 10, rue Charlot. height 39 1/2 in (100cm); width 74in (188cm); depth 26in (66cm) Estimate: $50,000 - 80,000

Born in the Kingdom of Lombardy-Venice in 1817, Paul Sormani, is counted among the most elite Parisian ébenistes of the 19th century, inspired by the furniture of Louis XV and XVI for his meubles de luxe. Recognized as the artistic heir to Andre-Charles Boulle, Sormani was respected around the world due to the exposure he received from numerous international exhibitions, including the Exposition Universelle in 1867 in which he received a medal for his glorious designs. His affluent clientele included the Vanderbilts and Empress Eugenie.

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A fine Louis XV style gilt bronze mounted kingwood bureau plat, Paul Sormani, fourth quarter 19th century. photo Bonhams

The gilt banded rectangular top with outset rounded corners and inset leather writing surface over a parquetry inlaid drawer, the lock plate stamped Sormani Paris 134 Blvd Haussmann centering a gilt scrolled and foliate heart form escutcheon flanked by scrolled acanthus handles, mounted at each side with a plume crowned Classical mask, raised on cabriole legs ending in sabots a la Turque, height 29in (75cm); width 42 1/2in (108cm); depth 27in (68cm) Estimate: $10,000 - 15,000

Paul Sormani is among the elite of the 19th century furniture makers whose superb craftsmanship is distinguished by exquisite gilt bronze decorations. The work of the Royal maitres menuisiers et bronziers of the 18th century were his inspiration. In 1867 he set up his workshop at 10 rue de Charlot, Paris. After his death in 1877 Sormani's son Paul-Charles took over the business and later moved it to 134 boulevard Haussmann.

A highly important large mid-19th century Italian pietra dura and micromosaic table top is included in the auction's Italian decorative arts section. This table top, possibly from the Vatican workshops, is inlaid with 25 micromosaic scenes of famous Roman sites (est. $80/120,000).

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An important large Italian pietra dura and micromosaic table top depicting scenes of Rome, mid-19th century. photo Bonhams

The central panel depicting Saint Peter's square within radiating scrolls of specimen marbles, the outer border inlaid with twenty four micromosaic scenes of Rome and beyond, including the Arch of Janus, the Trevi Frountain, Piazza Novona, Tomb of Caecila Metella, Basilica of Constantine, Capitoline Hill, Temple of the Sibyl, Arch of Titus, the Forum, the Pantheon, Castel Sant'Angelo, Arch of Septimus Severus, the Colosseum, Temple of Saturn, Temple of Antonius Faustina, Temple of Hercules Victor, Portico di Consentes, Arch of Constantine, and the Temple of Vesta, all within a Greek key banding raised on a 20th century Neoclassical style walnut base with tapering legs. height of base 21in (53cm); diameter of top 46in (117cm) Estimate: $80,000 - 120,000

Notes: The ancient technique of mosaic was revived in Europe during the 16th century after Roman antiquities, including mosaics, began to be unearthed in archaeological excavations. Techniques developed and improved, with mosaic images becoming increasingly subtle as the individual glass pieces, known as tesserae, became smaller, and the range of available color pigments grew larger. In 1588 Ferdinand de' Medici established the Grand Ducal workshop in Florence, which supported and patronized the art of hardstone mosaics. Soon craftsmen were attempting to create the perfect 'stone paintings' through the clever exploitation of the natural variations in pigment of the stones. As techniques quickly improved, the mosaics became more figurative than geometric.

In the 18th century the glass micromosaic technique was developed in the Vatican Mosaic Workshop in Rome. The first recorded showing of the new technique, mosaico in piccolo, as it was called, was in 1775. Incredibly, there were 1,400 glass bits to the square inch. The workshop produced micromosaics depicting popular attractions of Classical Rome which were popular souveniers with the Grand Tourists of the 18th and 19th centuries.
The offered lot is similar to a table top commissioned by Tsar Nicholas I (reigned 1825-55) depicting sites he visited on a tour of Italy. It may have been commissioned in a similar spirit, in order to commemorate an Italian trip including visits to popular Roman monuments.

An interesting trio of Venetian Gothic Rosso di Verona window surrounds are each estimated at $20/30,000. These 10 to 12-foot high carved surrounds were imported from Italy at the beginning of the 20th century by the architect Addison Mizer, intended for installation in a Palm Beach, Florida project for John S. Phipps. The surrounds were discovered during a demolition of the estate after Mr. Phipps' death in 1961.

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An important Venetian Gothic Rosso di Verona window surround, early 15th century. photo Bonhams

The upper section of flamboyante trefoil form with dentilatted outer edge raised on pilaster form supports with acanthus leaf carved capitals and spiral twist inner border. height 124 1/2in (315cm); interior height 110in (280cm); greatest width 60in (152cm); interior width 41in (104cm); depth 11in (28cm) Estimate: $20,000 - 30,000

Note: This and following two lots were brought from Italy to the United Sates at the beginning of the 20th century by the architect Addison Mizer. Mr. Mizer planned to include these arches (and four others from the same set) in Casa Bendita, Palm Beach, Florida that was being constructed for John S. Phipps. It was decided at a later point not to use the arches and they were stored underneath the villa. After Mr. Phipps' death in 1961 the house was demolished and the arches were discovered and moved to another part of the estate. The current owner of these arches purchased them from a direct descendant of John S. Phipps in 2005.

The sale's evening session features property from the Ed Hardy San Francisco Collection. Ed Hardy is one of the most important dealers of decorative arts internationally. His exquisite eye brought together 17th century Roman giltwood tables with mid-century design, including Italian and French art deco and modernism. The collection includes Hellenistic marble fountain masks (some with W.R. Hearst provenance), Murano chandeliers, Chinese ceramics, American modernist furnishings, carpets and unique objets d'art.

The auction previews open in San Francisco on Friday, June 11th at Noon and continue daily until the auction on Monday, June 14th at 10AM, the evening session, devoted to the Ed Hardy Collection, begins at 6PM.