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Miller & Miller Auctions, Ltd., Will Hold Online-only Auctions The Weekend Of March 25th And 26th

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By Author: Ethan Miller
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Miller & Miller Auctions, Ltd. will be a hive of activity later this month, with a Canadiana & Decorative Arts auction on Saturday, March 25th, followed the very next day by a Historic Lamps & Lighting auction. Both have start times of 9am Eastern and are online-only, with bidding via LiveAuctioneers.com and MillerandMillerAuctions.com.

“The March 25th sale offers collectors of Canadian heritage a chance to ‘drink from the cup’,” said company president Ethan Miller. “An important basket of fresh to the market material is hitting the market at once. A case in point: the Skip Kerr collection. When Skip wasn’t building the go-to online resource for ‘made in Canada’ Pequegnat clocks, he was hunting for them.”

Mr. Miller said many of the Pequegnat examples Skip fought the hardest to acquire will be featured in this sale. He added, “There are also contributions from Toronto’s beloved optometrist Marty Osler. Marty could easily be considered Canadiana’s poster child. He adds flavor to the mix with contributions ranging from fine Canadian furniture to Canadian folk art and militaria.”

As ...
... expected, the day’s anticipated top lot is an oil on board painting by the acclaimed Canadian folk artist Maud Lewis (1903-1970). Titled Traffic Jam, the 11 ½ inch by 12 inch early and humorous work depicts a cow blocking a car from getting by. It’s a bit out of sync with Lewis’s repertoire, but is a rare and important example of the breadth of her work (est. $30,000-$35,000).

All estimates quoted are in Canadian dollars.

Miller & Miller Auctions, Ltd. is no stranger to Maud Lewis. Her work has been featured in several past sales, including one held in October 2022, in which eleven paintings by the artist brought a staggering $559,510. Then, in February 2023, six original oil on board paintings and a watercolor and pen on paper by Lewis sold for a combined $198,830 – a grand total of $758,340.

A Georgian period (circa 1820s) Canadian breakfast table in mahogany and figured mahogany attributed to Thomas Nisbet (Saint John, New Brunswick), displaying all the typical features uses by Nesbit, is estimated to reach $12,000-$15,000; while a spectacular, circa 1880 Canadian or American Victorian-era three-piece bedroom suite in the Renaissance Revival style, consisting of a gorgeous bed and two marble-top dressers with mirrors, should also bring $12,000-$15,000.

A stunning bronze nude gymnast by the renowned German Art Deco-era sculptor Ferdinand Preiss (1882-1943), 16 ¼ inches tall, cast by Preiss & Kassler (Berlin), on an onyx and black marble base, has an estimate of $8,000-$12,000. Also, a mahogany, circa 1820s Montreal “key hole” wall clock by Martin Cheney (1778-1855), who produced “elegant house clocks” in both Windsor, Vermont and Montreal, 40 ½ inches tall, should chime on time for $9,000-$12,000.

An oil on tin panel depiction of the legendary race horse Oro Wilkes, titled Inspector Nick (circa 1915), by Jacob Beilstein (Canadian, 1867-1955), measuring 17 inches by 21 inches, is expected to cross the finish line at $6,000-$9,000. Also, a pre-1890 oil on canvas river scene by Homer Ransford Watson (1855-1936), an artist who was influenced by the painters of the Hudson River School and was dubbed the “Canadian Constable” by Oscar Wilde, should rise to $4,000-$6,000.

A rare model Pequegnat (Vancouver, Canada) tall case clock from the early 20th century and out of the collection of the aforementioned Skip Kerr, made from quarter sawn oak and standing 75 inches tall, is estimated to gavel for $3,500-$5,000. Also, oil on board original artwork for the Stratford Festival, rendered in 1960 by Walter Yarwood (Canadian, 1917-1996), unsigned but “definitely from Yarwood’s hand” according to his son Chip, should command $3,000-$5,000.

“The March 26th sale features an old gathering of 19th century lamps and lighting – an assortment so significant we decided they deserved a sale of their own,” Mr. Miller said.

The offering includes exceptional overlays and rare patents from the Valerie Lister, David Broughton and Keith Dill collections, ones that took these dedicated individuals years to acquire.

Six of the auction’s expected top achievers are overlay kerosene stand lamps, made in America between 1860 and 1880 by Boston & Sandwich Glass Company in Sandwich, Massachusetts, as well as other manufacturers. The makers of these six examples are unknown, but that doesn’t make them any less desirable. Their rarity and aesthetic appeal will attract keen bidder interest.

The green cut overlay kerosene stand lamp, cobalt double overlay kerosene stand lamp and ruby cut overlay kerosene stand lamp carry estimates of $9,000-$12,000; while the cobalt cut overlay kerosene banquet stand lamp and teal cut overlay kerosene stand lamps are estimated at $4,000-$6,000. The cranberry cut overlay kerosene banquet stand lamp should ring up $2,000-$4,000.

An extremely rare “Madonna” night clock and Olmstead miniature kerosene figural stand lamp, without a doubt make by the Boston & Sandwich Glass Company, featuring a frosted Madonna and a round, ribbed scalloped base, overall about 14 ½ inches tall, should fetch $3,000-$4,000.

While these are Internet-only auctions, bidders can tune in to the live webcast on March 25th and 26th, to watch the lots close in real time. Here’s a link to the March 25th auction: https://live.millerandmillerauctions.com/auctions/4-8OU2FD/canadiana-decorative-arts. Here’s a link to the March 26th auction: https://live.millerandmillerauctions.com/auctions/4-8X3IHM/historic-lamps-lighting.

To learn more about Miller & Miller Auctions, Ltd. and the March 25th-26th auctions, please visit www.millerandmillerauctions.com.

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