Archives for posts with tag: Auction purchase

If you are like me you love to see the before and after photos of a great apartment/home renovation or redecoration.

One of my favorite sites for “Before and After” makeovers is a website called “ Apartment Therapy “. I am addicted to it. I read it daily and love the apartment makeovers they profile from all over the world. Whether it’s a Victorian apartment in London or a studio in Brooklyn, I love to see the creativity, and the way people are using vintage items and auction finds to make their apartments feel more like a home.

One post in particular resonated with me as they profiled a series of basic white box apartments decorated in an up to date modern style with a bit of chrome, plexiglass and modern pieces of furniture.  But each and every one of the rooms had a vintage or antique piece in it that added character, depth and timelessness to the room.  What was interesting as well, was that each person interviewed chose the antique piece as their “favorite find” that really made the apartment decoration come together and feel like home.

Storage and organization seems to be a common theme on the Apartment Therapy blog as well.  The limited space in apartment living makes for very creative storage solutions. Forget The Container Store or that bookcase from Pottery Barn, there is no better place to find furniture for creative storage solutions than Kaminski Auctions!

For inspiration I will show you a few pieces coming up in our October 25th Estate Auction that can be  mixed in with your modern décor that will make your decorating so much more interesting or could will provide a creative storage solution.

In the October 25th sale we have three “pier tables”,  perfect as a small entry table or in a living room set up as a cocktail bar.  The mirrored back to these wonderful tables provides a reflective element in the room that will make the room  look larger…perfect for a small space !

Lot 8110-19th Century Marble Top Pier Table

Lot 8110-19th Century Marble Top Pier Table

French Pier Table

Lot#-8210-French Pier Table

Lot#-8299-19th Century Mahogany Pier Table

Lot#-8299-19th Century Mahogany Pier Table

This old fashioned french vitrine could double as a coffee table and is a great way to display a favorite collection.

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Lot#-8404- French Vitrine

Lot- #8387 is a fabulous old English Regency Sideboard that could double as a cocktail bar and a television or media center could go in the base.

Lot#-8387-English Regency Sideboard

Lot#-8387-English Regency Sideboard

Not just for the kitchen…this brass baker’s stand provides great storage for any room in the house….  A perfect bookcase or étagère.

Lot#-8385-Brass Baker's Stand

Lot#-8385-Brass Baker’s Stand

or this English Regency version

Lot#-8274-English Etagere

Lot#-8274-English Etagere

This set of nesting tables are can provide extra surface space for parties or dinners in front of the television.

Lot#-8321-Adams style Nesting Tables

Lot#-8321-Adams style Nesting Tables

This beautiful marble stand would make a perfect plant stand and bring a little greenery into the room.

Lot#8226-Marble Stand

Lot#8226-Marble Stand

A French glass cabinet would dress up any apartment kitchen or dining room filled with glassware and dishes instead of hidden away in kitchen cabinets.

Lot#-8212 French Glass Cabinet

Lot#-8212 French Glass Cabinet

And finally this very decorative whatnot stand could hold towels in the bathroom, plants in the foyer or a collection of family photographs in the corner of your living room….

Lot#-8227- Decorative Whatnotstand

Lot#-8227- Decorative Whatnotstand

As with any antique purchase the piece will surely be a reflection of you, so buy what you love and you will find a place for it ! Click on any photo to visit our website http://www.kaminskiauctions.com and sign up to bid with KaminskiLIVE from the comfort of your home or on your mobile device !

In honor of Bastille Day this week I wanted to share with you some beautiful French Empire style furniture that you often see in our Estate auctions and show you ways to use it in your modern DéCoR.

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A little seems to go a long way with French Empire furniture but even one piece can add a lot of glamour to a room. I especially like to see pieces repurposed or used in a casual way that makes them look more modern.

19th century French Empire furniture became popular during the court of Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte.  It was furniture made of dark mahogany, fruitwood and yew imported from the African continent.  Highly polished woods were embellished with classical ornamentation of ormolu (mounts made of bronze). These embellishments were often in the forms of laurel wreaths, and urns, the European influence and many Egyptian motifs in the forms of sphinxes, winged cobras and serpents.

A selection of furniture that sold in our July 9th Estate sale are very typical of this style such as the following wonderful pieces…

French Empire Style mahogany and ormolu center table, the three standards modeled as winged caryatid terms on lion claw feet, the apron embellished with bronze paterae detailed with anthemion sprays and laurel

French Empire Style mahogany and ormolu center table

          This center table would add glamour and drama to any room. Imagine it in an entry hall or even as a cocktail bar in a living room….

19th century French Empire desk and chest, mahogany

19th century French Empire desk and chest, mahogany

French Empire Style bleached and bronze mounted wood tall pedestal, the top inset with St, Anne marble and embellished with paterae of fountains flanked by lions, the four standards crested by winged bronze female terms

French Empire Style bleached and bronze mounted wood tall pedestal

Some interesting pieces coming up in our August 9th auction include this drop down secretary which could work in a living room, again as a cocktail bar or as a fancy home office with your computer table as the drop down desk…or repurposed as a great looking television cabinet that can hide the screen away in your bedroom or living room.

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French Bombe Chest with marble top and ormolu mounts

French Bombe Chest with marble top and ormolu mounts

French bombe chests are being repurposed as vanities in a bathroom.

French Empire style side tables with marble tops

French Empire style side tables with marble tops

French Empire style bedroom side tables would make fabulous plant stands flanking both sides of an entry, liquor cabinets in a                            living room, storage in a bathroom or just as they meant to be as bedroom side tables.

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Or just add some instant drama with a French style wrought iron and crystal chandelier in any room in your home.

Let your imagination go wild the next time you are antiquing or at auction and think of creative ways to use this beautiful furniture in your modern DéCoR !

Several years ago I was visiting the Cantor Center for the Visual Arts at Stanford University. The museum’s collection spans all types of art from antiquity to contemporary art.  It also houses one of the finest collections of Rodin sculptures in the world, displayed in the B. Gerald Cantor Rodin Sculpture Garden. The Rodin garden alone is worth a trip to this amazing museum.

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As I walked in, the attendant handed me a button that said “A Passion for Collecting“. That phrase struck a chord in me and I wore that button on my coat for years and have since kept it in the pocket. That phrase inspired and moved me. I thought, what would it be like to spend years learning all you could, about a certain artist or artistic movement and then to amass a collection like this.

Photo courtesy of insidersf.com

Photo courtesy of insidersf.com

The act of collecting becomes a lifelong passion and the thrill of the hunt for each piece, is as exciting as owning it. Most people don’t have the means to purchase great art or sculpture, but a collection can be anything…porcelain, glass, stamps, medals, dolls, etc.

Various items from the Religious Collection

Various items from the Religious Collection

Over the years I am amazed at the unique things people collect, and the ends they will go, to acquire them. Their passion sometimes borders on obsession, but I am always impressed at the wealth of knowledge they have gained along the way. A very prolific collector once told me “if you cannot afford what you love, collect the books to learn more about it”.

Great collections are eclectic and intriguing, but usually have a coherent theme. People collect for different reasons, aesthetic, intellectual but most often, for emotional reasons. I often wonder how they house all these special things. Do they incorporate them into their décor and live with them everyday to give them pleasure?

Bronze of Napoleon

Bronze of Napoleon

19th Century Napoleon II Riding on Horseback painting

19th Century Napoleon II

Kaminski Auctions is pleased to present three unique and exceptional collections in our June 7th auction. The first is a collection of Napoleonic items, which includes bronzes, oil paintings, miniatures, statuary, and Sèvres porcelain depicting Napoleon and Josephine.

The second is a unique collection of religious items including 18th and 19th century carved Italian figures and putti, Spanish Santos, chalices, reliquaries, crucifixes and so much more…

18th Century Italian carved figure

18th Century Italian carved figure

And finally a collection of Art Deco, including Icart etchings, various figures and a rare Demetre Chiparus sculpture titled “Les Amis Toujours” .

“Les Amis Toujours” by Demetre Chiparus

Collection of Art Deco Figures

Collection of Art Deco Figures

All three represent a true passion for collecting! View all the items on offer in these collections and much more in our June 7th Estate sale at http://www.kaminskiauctions.com and sign up to bid with KaminskiLIVE !

My most successful DéCoR post was when I compared design at Restoration Hardware with classic antiques we sell each and every month at Kaminski Auctions.

Our May 17th, Twentieth Century Modern Design and Fine Art sale is now on our website at www.kaminskiauctions.com. After reviewing the amazing pieces in the sale, I thought a similar post comparing what is in our May Modern sale, to the offerings from the company Design Within Reach was in order.

Design Within Reach is a company started in 1999 by a man named Rob Forbes who was just looking for simple, well-made furniture with classic lines to furnish his own apartment. He was enamored with the designs of many of the Scandinavian and Italian designers, whose work was only available by special order, and you had to wait months for delivery. Furniture designed by Saarinen, Eames and Bertoia were “out of reach” for most people. A true entrepreneur, he went out and bought 20 containers of product, mailed out a catalog and “waited for the phones to ring”.

At first phenomenally successful, Design Within Reach in July 2004, was valued at $211 million dollars. A downturn in the economy, over zealous expansion plans and lawsuits for design infringement ,brought the company to its knees. Herman Miller bought it in July of 2014 and a complete restructuring took place. With over 30 stores, which they refer to as  “studios”, it is still the number one resource for modern furniture today.

Perhaps the most recognizable pieces of Herman Miller furniture are the Charles and Ray Eames chair and ottoman. Depending on what leather you select the Design Within Reach price starts at $4130.15 and can go as high as $54015.15.

Lot#-2003

Lot#-2003

Lot #-2067Charles and Ray Eames for Herman Miller chair and ottoman

Lot #-2067

We have three Charles and Ray Eames chairs and ottomans in the sale Lots # 2003,2006 and 2007, with estimates of $1500.00-$2500.00 and $1000.00-$2000.00 depending on condition.

Two Warren Platner for Knoll pieces, a wire based coffee table and a dining table, are described in the Design Within Reach catalog as “if you combined the work of I.M. Pei and Eero Saarinen, the result might very well look like the Platner Collection (1962″ ) “.  At Design Within Reach they sell for $1522.00 for the coffee table and $3572.00 for the dining table.  Presented as Lot #2101 for the coffee table, it is estimated at $600.00-$1000.00 and the dining table, Lot #2035 is estimated at $800.00-$1200.00.

Lot # 2011

Lot- #2011

Lot-#2035

Lot-#2035

A pair of “Womb” chairs in “Morocco” wool upholstery from the Finnish architect and industrial designer, Eero Saarinen for Knoll is Lot #2068 estimated at $800.00-$1200.00. The DWR prices starts at $1036.00-$5143.00 depending on fabric, for each chair.

Lot- #2068

Lot- #2068

A Le Corbusier model LC4 chaise lounge, steel with original cowhide upholstery and original leather pillow is Lot # 2065 estimated at $1500.00-$2500.00, the piece new from DWR costs $3495.00-$4335.00 depending on fabric.

Lot- #2065

Lot- #2065

Described as “the consummate modernist chandelier” in the Design Within Reach catalog the iconic Poul HenningsenArtichoke” hanging lamp, in white enameled aluminum and stainless steel, circa 1960s, with original sticker, is estimated at $1500.00-$2000.00. The DWR price new is $9737.00- $17,186.00 for the larger size.

Lot # 2101

Lot # 2101

These are just a sample of what is on offer at the Kaminski Auctions Twentieth Century Modern Design and Fine Art auction this Sunday, May 17th.  Original Twentieth Century iconic design, along with the furniture and lighting, you will find Twentieth Century art from Wayne Thiebaud, Alexander Calder, Salvador Dali, Marcel Mouly, and Peter Max, to name a few, and decorative art from Edward MoulthropMurano, Daum, Kosta Boda, Baccarat and many more…

Lot #-2114 Edward Moulthrop Bowl

Lot #-2114 Edward Moulthrop Bowl

Lot-#2019

Lot-#2019 Calder Lithograph

You can view all the items in the sale at www.kaminskiauctions.com. There are a few days left to request a condition report by emailing klachance@kaminskiauctions.com.  Sign up to bid from the comfort of your home with KaminskiLIVE by clicking on the KaminskiLIVE/Sign up tab in the upper right-hand corner of the Home page or call 978-927-2223 to bid by phone or absentee bid. Better yet … come to our gallery at 117 Elliott Street, RT. 62, Beverly, Massachusetts to preveiw the sale, Thursday- Saturday, 10:00am-5:00pm and at 8:00am on Sunday, day of sale.

Not to pick on Design Within Reach in is this blog…there are many other pieces of furniture in the auction from BB Italia, Saporiti Italia, Thayer Coggin and Dansk. But thats for another post!

Each year, for the past four years I have attended TEFAF, which stands for The European Fine Art Fair that takes place every March in Maastricht, The Netherlands.  Maastricht is probably one of the more beautiful, quaint European cities you will ever visit, with amazing restaurants and shopping, and the art fair is truly amazing. The art and antiques are serious, and so are the buyer’s and the prices. It is like going to the finest museum in the world, where everything is for sale.

Maastricht along the Meuse River www.nyenrodealumni.nl

Maastricht along the Meuse River
Photo by -www.nyenrodealumni.nl

TEFAF is for museum curators and serious collectors to add to their collections, and for people like you and me to go enjoy some of the most beautiful art and antiques in the world, all under one roof. Started originally as an art fair specializing in Old Master paintings, today the fair showcases fine art, modern and contemporary art, tribal art, antiques, design and the world’s top jewelers like Graff, Van Cleef & Arpels, and Buccellati. It is the largest and most diverse art fair in the world with over 275 international exhibitors and a strict vetting process.

There is always a fabulous display of roses at he entrance as a photo backdrop !

This year alone TEFAF saw over 70,00 visitors with 262 museums attending, including many of the top European and American institutions.  Maastricht is almost three hours from Amsterdam, and during 10 days in March, everyone is going there for the art.  The booths include works by Rembrandt, Van Gogh, Gauguin, Matisse, Goya, and modern masters like Chagall, Klee, Picasso and nearly every well-known artist that comes to mind.

Michele Marieschi (Venice 1710-1743)

Michele Marieschi (Venice 1710-1743)

Vincent van Gogh -The Laakmolen near The Hague c.10-15 July 1882

Vincent van Gogh -The Laakmolen near The Hague c.10-15 July 1882

Four carved swans- one of my favorites at TEFAF 2015

Four carved swans- one of my favorites at TEFAF 2015

The art is accompanied with the most dazzling display of Dutch tulips you will ever see.  The MECC, Maastricht where the fair is held, is an enormous convention site decorated top to bottom with tulips and fancy venues for fine dining, sushi, tapas, as well as champagne bars and espresso cafes.

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You might be curious why I go each year as part of my work. I go to see the art and for inspiration, but I also go to promote Kaminski Auctions, and make sure the dealers at TEFAF are shopping our estate sales online every month. You never know where the next masterpiece might be found. There have been several times when I will walk into a fancy European dealers booth, and see a painting that was sold at one time, through our auction gallery.

Every year it’s something different that creates a buzz.  My jaw dropped as I came around the corner this year, to see an enormous booth of Shaker furniture.  Even more surprising than the Shaker exhibit was the fact that it was the vision of Francois Laffanour of Galerie Downtown in PARIS!  It took him 5 years to put the collection together, as a joint venture with the Shaker Museum in New York.  They had on loan four pieces from the museum’s collection, and the rest were pieces they sourced themselves. According to their representative, everything had sold.

Quoted in The Arts and Antiques Weekly, Francois Laffanour said, “It was no accident that his incredible collection of Shaker furniture was brought to TEFAF. “We wanted to expose the European market to Shaker furniture and design, something they are very unfamiliar with. TEFAF’S audience is extremely educated and sophisticated and the reception has been incredible.  They understand what we are doing and have embraced it.”

Shaker furniture on display  by Francois Laffanour of Galerie Downtown, Paris

Shaker furniture on display by Francois Laffanour of Galerie Downtown, Paris                         with an unimaginably long,long,long table!


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The Design section of the fair has grown tremendously over the past few years. With my interest in design I always make a beeline to Axel Vervoodt’s booth. The Belgian designer is probably one of the most influential European tastemakers of all time. He has published several books on design including Axel Vervoodt- Living with Light and Axel Vervoodt-Timeless Interiors both available on Amazon.com

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“We treasure things that are made by time,” says Axel Vervoordt,” ” the antiques dealer and interior designer’s celebrated style—which favors muted tones, weathered surfaces, richly patinated antiques, and a mix of ancient and modern artworks that share abstract, universal qualities.” (Quoted from Architectural Digest) 

His interiors tend to be minimalist, and he mixes sculptural furniture with classical antiquities and contemporary art.  Decorators and stylists from all over Europe visit TEFAF to see what he is doing each year. His stature in the design world influences trends in every aspect of interior design.

Axel Vervoodt

Axel Vervoodt”s booth at TEFAF 2015

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The photos above are from Axel Vervoodt’s booth at TEFAF this year.  He mixes old with new, and contrasts contemporary art with classical antiquities!

How does this all relate back to Kaminski Auctions and my DéCor Blog? I want my readers to know that our monthly Estate sales is where you will find the pieces that represent the latest design trends and the age old classical antiques to make your decorating style stand out from the rest. Whether it be a piece of affordable contemporary art, a European stone bust or a piece of mid century modern furniture from our May 17th Modern sale…such as these great furniture and art finds shown below.

Le Corbusier model LC4 chaise lounge, steel with original cowhide upholstery and original leather pillow

Lot#-2065-Le Corbusier model LC4 chaise lounge, steel with original cowhide upholstery and original leather pillow

Charles and Ray Eames for Herman Miller chair and ottoman

L0t#-2967-Charles and Ray Eames for Herman Miller chair and ottoman

Warren Platner for Knoll coffee table, steel base with original bumper with beveled edge glass top

Lot#-2011-Warren Platner for Knoll coffee table, steel base with original bumper with beveled edge glass top

Poul Henningsen

L0t#-2101-Poul Henningsen “Artichoke” hanging lamp, white enameled aluminum and stainless steel, circa 1960s

Pair of Knoll

Lot#2068-Pair of Knoll “Womb” chairs with “Morocco” wool upholstery on steel frame,

Alexander Calder print

Lot#-2019 -Alexander Calder print

              Victor Vaserely

Lot # 2097-Victor Vasarely (1906-1995). “Mexico City”, print, edition XII/CI

Our Modern sale goes online this Friday, May 1st, 2015 at 8:00pm. Don’t miss this opportunity to find your next design treasure.  Visit our website at http://www.kaminskiauctions.com and sign up to receive our email updates! ! !

Sorry for the long hiatus on writing this blog. I seem to get bogged down with writing press releases, pre and post every auction, social media and a  million other things that have to happen each month. My New Year’s resolution is to write, write, write, at least one post every single month if not more.

I would like to welcome Amy Cavilla as our new head of social media marketing. We have lots of fun things planned to keep you up to date on our Kaminski Auctions, and keep you informed on whats happening in the auction and art world. So be sure to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram if you don’t already.

Amy Cavilla

I have so much to learn about social media but the one thing the experts keep telling me is that I need to engage my audience. Although this blog is not quite the same thing, I realized that the posts I got the most comments on were those I made personal.

Our social media campaign this month is “Some of Our Favorite Things” that sold this past year at Kaminski Auctions . So for my final post of 2014 I thought I would share with you some of my personal auction purchases of 2014 and how I used them to decorate my homes.

My first purchase of 2014 was from the May 20th Century/Decorative Arts and Modern sale and it was this Mies Van der Rohe for Knoll, Barcelona low table, “X” form with a chromed steel base and square glass top, circa 1950s.  An iconic table I purchased for $425.

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Mies Van der Rohe for Knoll, Barcelona low table

                                      

The exact same piece is selling on the popular Design Within Reach site for $1720. I used it as a coffee table in my Boston apartment.The glass top makes the apartment seem more spacious and airy. I unfortunately don’t have a photo of it to share. But you can see it works perfectly in a traditional or modern room.

A beautifully furnished traditional living room with a Mies Vander Rohe Barcelona table

A beautifully furnished traditional living room with a Mies Van der Rohe Barcelona table- Elle Decor photo

And a more modern apartment with the same table     Elle Decor phot

And a more modern apartment with the same table- Elle Decor photo

Another purchase which I absolutely love is this Mid Century root table.  It is really made  of grape vines from the vineyards in California but I thought it looked a lot like drift wood, and would work in my Nantucket home as a fabulous end table.

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It was described as a Northern California tree root table with glass top and I purchased it for $120.00.  I changed the black glass it was shown with to clear for a lighter more airy look as well. With the clear glass top you can see the beautiful roots below. Everyone who visited this summer loved this table.

A not so great auction purchase was this pair of carved continental style gilt wood planters that I paid $360.00 for.  They were an impulse purchase I made with a friend thinking they were” too over the top together” and we would each take one.

medium-9111.0_1They were also too garish all gilt. The plan was to wash them with a white paint and rub it off for a french washed wood effect or to paint different parts of them black for contrast and the French Empire look.  Needless to say neither one of us has had the time to do anything with them, so they were reconsigned to auction.  The beauty of a making a mistake purchase at auction is you can usually resell them at a future sale.

My two favorite purchases of 2014 were my last two. A beautiful console table constructed from a staircase segment.  It has  great provenance, as it was originally from the Newport, Rhode Island  home of Cornelius Vanderbilt.

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It is wrought iron with a sandstone top. A very mediterranean look.  I thought initially I would use it outside as a serving table on my loggia but found it was the perfect size and visually interesting enough to finish off my upstairs foyer.

Upstairs Foyer with New Console Table

Upstairs Foyer with New Console Table

Above the console table hangs an unusual Venetian mirror which is faux tortoiseshell. I purchased it some years ago at a Christie’s Interiors auction. Flanking the mirror on both sides are very large sepia photographs by Michael Kahn featuring exquisite details of two italian sculptures that stand in front of the Uffizi Gallery Museum in Florence, Italy.

At the Annual Thanksgiving auction I purchased this beautiful 19th century highly decorative Venetian mirror.  The glass surround has detailed images of gondolas and scenes of Venice.

medium-17008.0_1 It was the perfect thing to finish off my Venetian inspired bathroom with it’s very pink, very dramatic Designer Guild “gilded” wallpaper.  I carried the pink theme into the bathroom as it is just off the Venetian inspired dining room (from a previous post Updating a Traditional Dining Room, March 22, 2013).

My over the top Designers Guild wallpaper with my new Venetian mirror auction purchase.

My new Venetian mirror auction purchase.

The pièce de resistance of 2014 has to be my auction purchase from the “Oprah Winfrey Collection sale last November 2013.  Although from the previous year, I have to count it in this years purchases, as it arrived it the dead of winter in 2014 with four feet of snow on the ground.  After many months of searching for the perfect cistern and figuring out how the water would be pumped thorough the dolphins mouths and the center shell,here it is in it’s full glory.  The focal point of my loggia!

IMG_1388                     Happy Holidays to all and I wish you a great auction and decorating year in 2015 !