March Carpet Auctions, Sold Highlights from Vienna, Stuttgart and Marseilles
Among the European auction houses with 2014 spring season sales including rugs and textiles were Udo Langauer’s Austria Auction Company’s ‘Fine Antique Oriental Rugs I’, held in Vienna on 15 March, Nagel in Stuttgart’s ‘Collector Carpets and Ethnologia’ on 25 March, and, arguably most interesting of all, on 27 March a small consignment of carpets organised by Yohann Gissinger for Leclere Auctions in the city of Marseilles in southern France.
The 235 lots in the AAC sale yielded a gross total, including 22% buyer’s premium, of just over three quarters of a million Euros, not quite as much as the inaugural sale, but nevertheless a creditable performance that augurs well for the continuation of Langauer’s venture. The classical period Ushak medallion carpet, lot 109, featured on the catalogue cover was bought-in against a very punchy €150-200,000 estimate, so top lot, not surprisingly, was the superb Yomut Turkmen chuval-gül main carpet, lot 124, which fetched €54,900.
Another interesting Yomut type main carpet, lot 82, attributed to the ‘Abdal’, was sold for €21,960, while lot 85, Langauer’s meaty Arabachi chuval, familiar from BARE (Berlin) and ARTS (San Francisco), was sold for €9,150, and lot 166, an unusual Tekke Turkmen wool on wool pentagonal asmalyk, fetched €12,200.
Other diverse lots that did particularly well included: lot 29, a small ‘Transylvanian’-type ‘Lotto rug, at €29,290; lot 134, a rare white-ground Caucasian Chichi rug that sold for €14,640; lot 150, a beautiful Turkish Melas prayer rug that made only €8,450; and lot 186, a classic ‘Transylvanian’ type Gördes column prayer rug fetched €18,300.
Meanwhile lot 117, a Kiasar minimalist flatwoven cover from Mazanderan in north Iran, sold for €6,100; lot 169, a very-familiar 18th century white ground Azerbaijan carpet, once in the Robert de Calatchi collection, fetched €41,480, and lot 189, a very good Shahsavan sumakh khorjin face made €5,490. Finally, lot 220, an early 18th century Ningxia carpet with a complex geometric lattice design was probably cheap at €21,960.
Nagel’s results were rather less satisfactory, with only a handful of lots doing well, including their cover piece, coincidentally another classical period Ushak medallion carpet (lot 89), which made €47,880, including commissions of 33%. Lot 1, a curious Caucasian village rug, offered unsuccessfully three times some years ago at RB in Wiesbaden, was sold for €27,930. Perhaps calling it Anatolian helped!
In Marseilles, Johann Gissinger, in co-operation with Leclere auctions, had just eight carpet lots in his sale, but three of them were seriously good/interesting/beautiful examples. Top lot was a Type B Star Kazak rug, which fetched €46,546 (including 25.8% commissions) against a miserly €3,000-5000 estimate (lot 1). Next best was lot 7, an 18th century Caucasian Shield carpet, which sold within its estimate range for €31,450, while lot 2, a wonderful yellow-ground lattice design Northwest Persian kelleh of a rare but desirable design type, underestimated at €4000-6000, made €25,160. Not bad for openers.