It’s open season for art auctioneers Whyte's

Whyte's kicks off its art-selling season. Des O'Sullivan reports
It’s open season for art auctioneers Whyte's

'The Bog Road', by Paul Henry at Whyte's on Monday week
'The Bog Road', by Paul Henry at Whyte's on Monday week

ART auctioneers Whyte’s, who enjoyed a record-breaking year in 2019, will kick off its 2020 art-selling season on Monday week.

The sale of Irish and International Art includes works by Yeats, Paul Henry, William Conor, Beatrice Glenavy, William Sadler, Nathaniel Hone the Elder, Louis le Brocquy, Tony O’Malley, Donald Teskey, Barrie Cooke and many more sought-after artists.


Whyte’s says this inaugural sale of the new decade presents collectors with a new opportunity to acquire masterworks by Ireland’s most celebrated artists.

Results in 2019 were aided in no small manner by the record-breaking November sale of the Ernie O’Malley Collection at which two works by Jack B Yeats soared past the €1m barrier.

A 1948 Yeats, Rusty Gates, is the most expensively estimated lot in the upcoming sale with an estimate of €100,000- €150,000.

The work depicts two elderly gentleman standing before a gateway in a high stone wall in a setting reminiscent of County Wicklow with a Sugar Loaf-like mountain in the background.

The first ROSC exhibition in Dublin at the RDS in 1967 was built around 50 of the “best” living artists at that time and included Francis Bacon, Willem de Kooning, Roy Lichtenstein, Joan Miro and Pablo Picasso.

Among those exhibiting was Polish artist Tadeusz Brzozowski (1918-1987).

His work Mastiff (above) from that show returns to the RDS to go under the hammer as Lot 53 with an estimate of €80,000-€100,000.

There was controversy over the fact that no Irish artists were included. Louis le Brocquy, a friend of Francis Bacon, might easily have fitted in and the sale at Whyte’s features two of his portraits, a charcoal of James Joyce and a watercolour of Samuel Beckett.

The Bog Road by Paul Henry dates to 1917-1923 and is estimated at €50,000-€70,000, Stage Girls by Daniel O’Neill is estimated at €30,000-€50,000.

Meanwhile, works by Sir John Lavery include two portraits and a painting of two cigarette girls in Seville in colourful costume.

There is work by Gerard Dillon, Colin Middleton and George Campbell and Reclining Woman by Roderic O’Conor is estimated at €15,000-€20,000.


Large oil paintings by John Shinnors and Donald Teskey, Sculptor’s Scarecrow and Coastal Report II, are each estimated at €10,000- €15,000, while Mayo Summer by Tony O’Malley is estimated at between €15,000 and €20,000, and Rakaia Gorge I by Barrie Cooke (above) is estimated at €6,000-€8,000, as is an Aubusson tapestry from the 1970s by Patrick Scott.

The Embarkation of King George IV at Kingstown 1821 by William Sadler II is full of minute detail recording the historic visit to Ireland by the British monarch.

The Embarkation of King George IV at Kingstown 1821 by William Sadler II, at Whyte's.
The Embarkation of King George IV at Kingstown 1821 by William Sadler II, at Whyte's.

The king arrived drunk and suspicions persisted that the main purpose of the trip was to visit his mistress, Lady Conyngham at Slane Castle.

The visit was presented as a success and Lot 98 is estimated at between €12,000 and €18,000.

There are 200 lots on the catalogue and viewing at the RDS gets underway at 10am next Saturday. The sale is at 6pm on Monday, March 9.

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