Top Lots: Old Master Through Modern Prints

Wednesday’s sale of Old Master Through Modern Prints set several print records and saw strong results throughout every section of the sale, with American, European and Old Master prints achieving benchmark prices. The sale’s top lot was George Bellows’s Dempsey and Firpo, 1923-24, which sold for $108,000. Other American prints among the top 20 were Edward Hopper’s East Side Interior, 1922 ($48,000), and Night Shadows, 1921 ($40,800), as well as Childe Hassam’s Marie at the Window, 1923 ($22,800).

George Bellows, Dempsey and Firpo, lithograph, 1923-24.

A group of six etchings from James A.M. Whistler’s Jubilee or Naval Review Set brought $78,000. It was the most complete offering of etchings from this set of 12 seen at auction in the past 25 years.

Whistler, one of six etchings from the Naval Review Set, 1887.
The top old master print was George Stubbs’s striking etching and engraving, A Lion Devouring A Horse. This was the first unrecorded working proof to be offered at auction in the past 25 years. It sold for $69,600, a record for any print by Stubbs sold at auction.
George Stubbs, A Lion Devouring a Horse, etching and engraving, before 1788.
Among the European prints offered, a portfolio by René Magritte, Aube à l’Antipode, brought a record $62,400. The portfolio of seven etchings was one of 17 deluxe copies, published by Editions du Soleil, Paris, 1966.
René Magritte, Aube à l’Antipode, portfolio with 7 etchings, 1966.