Los Angeles, CA— The Made in Mexico auction, presented by John Moran Auctioneers, was held on Wednesday, April 4th, at 10:00am PST. Bidders near and far showed interest in the 290-lot sale, featuring fine and decorative art and jewelry from Mexico, Cuba, Central, and South America, as well as some from the Los Angeles Latino community.
For fine art, lot 2054, Arnold Belkin’s, ‘Patzcuaro’ / (Del Ballet Tarasco ‘Los Pescadores,’) 1951 lead the category. Starting with an estimate of $4,000-6,000, this oil on Masonite brought in $9,375 (including buyer’s premium). Lot 2097 was another by the Mexican-Canadian artist, Two Figures, 1953, estimated $4,000-6,000, and sold for $5,000 (including buyer’s premium). Lot 2087 was a 1963 work from Emilo Rodríguez Larraín, Llansa – Cadaques Julio Agosto. This example from the Peruvian postwar and contemporary painter hammered in $9,100 (including buyer’s premium), outperforming its estimate of $5,000-7,000.
Lots 2086 and 2142 were sculptures that garnered a lot of attention. Victor Salmones had lot 2086, a life sized patinated bronze seated figure with turned head. This piece started with a modest estimate of $1,000-2,000 but after a brief bidding war, achieved over four-times its estimate, $8,750 (including buyer’s premium). Lot 2142 takes us back to the late Postclassic period circa 1200-1500. On the block was a Mixtec-style Xantil deity censer, valued $800-1,200. Bidders were definitely intrigued by the ceramic effigy brazier, bringing the price realized to $7,500.
This sale featured over 20 lots from the popular American silversmith, William Spratling (1900-1967). Lot 2102 was a pair of Spratling candelabras, estimated $3,000-5,000. The two-light candlesticks with scrolled rosewood bases had an exciting final bid of $8,750 (including buyer’s premium). Then there was a beautiful set of sterling silver highball glasses, lot 2106, with an estimate of $1,500-2,500. Made between 1949-1951, this eight-piece set brought in $7,500 (including buyer’s premium). Another example that Spratling silver brings a lot of interest was lot 2113, a “Jaguar” cream and sugar set. Originally valued $800-1,200, this two-piece set with ebony handles and jaguar finials sold for $5,000 (including buyer’s premium).
There was a lovely collection of Huichol yarn paintings, one of the highlights being from Jose Benitez Sanchez. Lot 2002 depicted multiple spiritual figures, animals, plants, and symbols and was done with polychrome yarn on a grey, purple, and black background. It brought in a whopping $4,550, almost quadrupling its $800-1,200 presale estimate.
A “Made in Mexico” sale wouldn’t be complete without some carved animals from Manuel Jiménez Ramírez. Lot 2119 featured four of his carved wood animals: a donkey, a rabbit, a squirrel, and a large cat, all with a $800-1,200 estimate. Ramirez is credited as the originator of the Oaxacan version of “alegrijes,” animal creatures carved in wood and painted in strong contrasting colors with intricate designs. Collectors of his work continued the bidding all the way to $4,375 (including buyer’s premium)!
Last, but definitely not least, was the stunning collection of Mexican jewelry, especially some Matl and Antonio Pineda pieces. Lot 2148 was a set of Matl snake motif silver jewelry by Matilde Poulat and Ricardo Salas. The necklace and earrings set, estimated $1,000-1,500, was set with natural and faux turquoise, and sold for $3,438 (including buyer’s premium). A silver and onyx bracelet by Antonio Pineda was offered with an estimate of $700-900. Lot 2053, a chunk sterling silver hinged link bracelet with an oversized chevron motif and onyx crescent shapes performed extremely well with a final bid of $3,125 (including buyer’s premium).
Interested in consigning to a future Made in Mexico auction? We are currently accepting consignments for our October sale, so feel free to stop by our office or email photos to [email protected].
—Brenda Smith, John Moran Auctioneers
“This piece started with a modest estimate of $1,000-2,000 but after a brief bidding war, achieved over four-times its estimate, $8,750 (including buyer’s premium). ”
John Moran Auctioneers will continue their 2023 lineup with a two-day Traditional Collector auction, Tuesday & Wednesday, April 25th & 26th, followed by the California & American Fine Art sale, Tuesday, May 9th. Be sure to mark your calendars for these upcoming auctions so you don’t miss out on the action, and the treasures!
The Traditional Collector: Tues. & Wed., April 25th & 26th | 10:00am PST
California & American Fine Art: Tuesday, May 9th | 12:00 pm PST
Costume & Couture: Tuesday, May 23rd | 12:00 pm PST
Fine Jewelry & Timepieces: Wednesday, May 24th | 10:00 am PST
Art of the American West: Tuesday, June 6th | 10:00 am PST
For upcoming highlights, online catalogues, and more information on these sales, visit Moran’s website: www.johnmoran.com and follow us on social media: @johnmoranauctioneers. Along with our website, bidding is now available online via Moran’s new mobile app, Moran Mobile, available on both iOS and Android operating systems. You may also choose to bid by phone or absentee.
Consignments are always welcome:
Email us at [email protected] today!