Anthemion auctions’ February 2017 auction stunned buyers on the 22nd by exceeding all estimates of total possible sales. The auction began with fierce bidding in the jewellery and silverware section; as dealers become swept up in the excitement of a generous rise in gold prices. As the sale moved on, a collection of stunning 18th century wine glasses sold one after another for higher than estimated, and were followed by a collection of Welsh pottery and porcelain, including a Nantgarw porcelain plate which sold for £1,450. Also within the ceramics section, an 18th century salt glazed teapot, which was originally estimated at £300-500, successfully sold for £3,500.

The auction then moved on to paintings, and a truly stunning head and shoulders portrait of a lady, attributed to artist Luis Falero, whose possession had been keenly coveted in the weeks prior to the sale, realised a total of £6,800.

Attributed to Luis Falero - Head and shoulders portrait of a lady, Oil on canvas. Signed and dated '89 75 x 40cm. Sold for £6,800 at Anthemion Auctions
Sold for £6,800 at Anthemion Auctions

She was swiftly followed by another piece which caused a wave of international interest following the auctions online launch; an 18th century painting of Russian Emperor Peter III. The painting, which was originally catalogued simply as an 18th century portrait of a naval officer, raised speculation as to the sitter’s identity following an unprecedented number of enquiries. Following some intensive research by the auctioneer, its historical significance and desirability was revealed, and as the lot came under the hammer, buyers in the room competed with buyers online from around the world, as well as on every one of the auction house’s available telephone lines. To a near silent and tense room, and much to the auctioneer’s delight, the portrait eventually sold for £12,500.

18th century Russian School - Head and shoulders portrait of Emperor Peter III Great Prince Pyotr Fyodorovich, A young portrait in a tricorn hat wearing the imperial Order of St Anne. Oil on canvas 55.5 x 43cm. Sold for £12,500 at Anthemion Auctions
Sold for £12,500 at Anthemion Auctions

Finally, towards the end of auction, when most believed the excitement to be dying down, a pair of Chinese buddhistic altarpieces, which were estimated at £800 to £1200, and which formed part of an impressive local estate collection, went under the hammer for £11,500.

As the auctioneer and staff recover from a truly phenomenal day, collection and cataloguing of the next Fine Art sale in May has already begun, and entries from the public are invited. For any queries please contact Anthemion Auctions on 02920 472444 or