Good Georgian pieces at knockdown prices

Bengal Tiger, Splash is the title of this painting by Joan Sharrock. Last sold at Christie's in 1998 it is at Marsh's sale in Cork next Saturday.

Des O’Sullivan says that despite rising financial markets, antiques prices are still low at auction.

A rather plain Georgian four-door, breakfront bookcase with astragal glazed doors is estimated at €2,000-€3,000 at Marsh’s sale in Cork next Saturday (Mar 1) at noon. A Cork Georgian satinwood banded tea table sold for €340 at Lynes and Lynes in Carrigtwohill last Saturday.

That estimate and this price underline the huge value to be had in antique furniture in austerity driven Ireland. Pieces like the aformentioned would have commanded prices that were far higher a decade ago. No matter how much the financial pundits talk up matters like increasing stock market valuations, the reality on the ground is that competition at auction has waned to such an extent that nowadays many auctioneers refuse to take pieces they know they cannot sell.

Bearing in mind the fact that bargains are to be had, the prime lot at Marsh’s sale in Cork next Saturday is a pair of Regency foldover card tables.

From a Cork city collection they are estimated at €6,000-€8,000. At the same sale a French boule cabinet is estimated at €1,500-2,000. Other lots on offer include a French ormolu mounted vitrine (€1,200-€1,500), a pair of rosewood polescreens (€600-€1,000) and some neatly-sized Georgian sideboards. Viewing at Marsh’s, located at Rochford’s Lane off Grand Parade-South Mall in Cork city centre, is from 10.30 am to 9pm next Thursday and Friday and from 10.30 am on this day week.


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