This week's top lots
What: Punch bowl mark of Cornelius Kierstede, New York, 1700-10
Where: Sotheby's New York (January 22, Important Americana)
Sold For: $5.9 million
This punch bowl—the largest known example of early 18th-century American silver—descended in the family of Commodore Joshua Loring of Jamaica Plain, Massachusetts. It was brought to London after Joshua Loring Jr., who fought with the British army in the Revolutionary War, reunited with his parents, who had previously fled to England. The punch bowl was stored in the family's bank vault for over 230 years, and only came to light in England last year. It has been suggested that the punch bowl's original owner may have Col. Abraham de Peyster, Mayor of New York City from 1692 to 1694, as most of Kierstede's patrons were wealthy and prominent New Yorkers. About thirty-two pieces by Kierstede are known today and most are in museum collections.
What: Copper and glass bead necklace by Albert Paley, 1973
Where: Rago Arts and Auctions (January 17, Modern)
Sold For: $20,740
A prime example of the modern studio jewelry movement, this necklace was hand fabricated from ordinary materials by Albert Paley—a metal sculptor still working today. Its massive curves and interlocking forms relate very closely to Paley's more well-known designs for architectural metalwork including Portal Gates at the Smithsonian Institution's Renwick Gallery, which was commissioned around the same time this necklace was made. What makes this lot especially desirable is that it comes with its original bill of sale and was purchased directly from Paley.
What: Silver miniature caudle cup, mark of John Hull and Robert Sanderson, Boston, c. 1665
Where: Christie's New York (January 21, Important American Furniture, Folk Art, Silver & Chinese Ceramics)
Sold For: $158,500
This miniature caudle cup, measuring only 4 inches long, is one of only thirty-one known silver objects made by the partnership of Hull and Sanderson, who were the first silversmiths to work in North America and the Colonies' first mint master. As a miniature or "toy" caudle cup is is exceptionally rare and only one other example by Hull and Sanderson is known that today is in the collection of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. The initials engraved on it, "ET," are belived to represent either the Tilton or Turell families of Boston, in which the cup has descended for eleven generations.