Top Lots: Winslow Homer, Preston Dickinson & James D. Smillie

The first of its kind at Swann to break $1 Million, the American Art auction on Thursday was our highest-grossing sale in this category ever, with a sale total of $1,020,970, thanks to a recently rediscovered sketch by Winslow Homer.  

Winslow Homer’s Study: Fresh Air, set a new record for a pen and ink drawing by the artist on June 12, 2014 at $106,250.  

There was spirited bidding across the board, for works from nineteenth-century artists to mid-century modernists. Particularly notable were Winslow Homer’s Study: Fresh Air, a recent discovery which—having previously been listed in the Homer catalogue raisonné as “whereabouts unknown”—had descended through the family of the artist James D. Smillie. It was a study for Homer’s seminal, same-titled watercolor Fresh Air, which is in the collection of the Brooklyn Museum.  

Preston Dickinson’s The Peters Mills brought a record price of $60,000 on June 12, 2014.   

Other note-worthy records were set for Preston Dickinson’s The Peters Mills, a 1924 brush, ink, wash and color pastel with pencil that sold for $60,000 and James D. Smillie’s Sunset Over a Lake, which brought in $11,875.   

James D. Smillie’s Sunset Over a Lake set a record in the June 12, 2014 auction when it sold for $11,875.