Rarely seen masterworks by Emily Carr, Jean-Paul Riopelle, Jean-Paul
Lemieux, Lawren Harris and Tom Thomson drive impressive sales and
exceed pre-auction estimates at the Toronto live auction
With seven record-breaking sales, this year's live auction reached a
total of more than $13.5 million, far surpassing pre-sale expectations
The Crazy Stair (The Crooked Staircase) reached $3,393,000 - a record for an Emily Carr work at Canadian auction
Thomas John (Tom) Thomson's Canoe Lake (unseen since 1915) sold for nearly $1.7 million
Jean Paul-Riopelle works, Sans titre and Iceberg IV surpassed estimates and resulted in a combined sale of $1,281,150
Two Lawren Stewart Harris pieces, Herbert Lake, Algoma and Lake Superior Sketch XCVII sold for a combined $374,400
TORONTO, Nov. 28, 2013 /CNW/ - Tonight, Heffel Fine Art Auction House
celebrated the best in Canadian art with its much anticipated fall
auction, held at the Park Hyatt Hotel in Toronto. With 137 lots and
hundreds of buyers - either present at the hotel, watching live online
or bidding by phone - the evening achieved impressive total sales of
$13,416,975 million (all prices are in Canadian dollars and include a
17 per cent buyer's premium).
Leading the evening was The Crazy Stair (The Crooked Staircase) by Emily Carr which commanded $3,393,000, setting multiple auction
records: the most ever paid at auction for an Emily Carr painting, the
most achieved for the work of a Canadian female artist and the fourth
most valuable piece ever sold in Canadian art auction history. This
large format painting from Carr's mature period is indicative of the
artist's lifelong engagement with First Nations culture. Holding
special significance, The Crazy Stair was, until tonight, the property of the Vancouver Club who purchased it
prior to the creation of the Emily Carr Trust, which houses many of
Carr's works. The estimate of $1,200,000 - $1,600,000 was far exceeded
after a lively bidding war ending in a record sale to an anonymous
"Many of the fine works offered today have never been for sale prior,"
said David K.J. Heffel, president of Heffel Fine Art Auction House.
"The winning collector of Emily Carr's The Crazy Stair made one last passionate bid and one big boost for the Canadian art
In total, eight Emily Carr pieces were sold during the fall auction.
Other notable Carr sales this evening were War Canoes, Alert Bay and Westcoast Sea and Sky, selling for $339,300 and $93,600 respectively. Inclusive of tonight's
sales, Heffel has sold 220 works by Carr, totalling $50,599,444.
The Group of Seven and Tom Thomson continue to draw significant
attention from buyers and tonight's sale of Thomson's Canoe Lake was no exception. Originally expected to bring $400,000 - $600,000, the
piece sold well above estimate for $1,696,500. For the first time seen
at auction, the piece, a tribute to one of Thomson's favourite
subjects, was originally given to the owner by the artist himself.
Thomson's Autumn, Algonquin Park also sold in tonight's auction and reached $526,500.
A perennial favourite amongst Canadian art enthusiasts, Jean-Paul
Riopelle's 1954 work, Sans titre, which was estimated at $500,000 - $700,000, sold for $789,750. The
dramatic 78 3/4" x 110 1/4" canvas, Iceberg IV reached $491,400. In total, five Riopelle pieces sold in this year's
fall auction and brought an impressive total of $1,825,200.
Additional highlights from this year's fall auction include:
One of six William Kurelek pieces sold, the 1971-dated, Rink Making, achieved a notable $163,800, more than tripling its estimate of $35,000
Sold for an artist record of $105,300, David Lloyd Blackwood's Ephraim Kelloway's White Door more than doubled its pre-auction estimate
The first-ever Frederick Alexcee presented at a Heffel auction broke an
artist record when Pole Raising at Fort Simpson, BC sold for $128,700 (est. $30,000 - $50,000)
Bruno Joseph Bobak's Halifax Harbour set a new Canadian auction record for a Bobak work at $18,720
Setting a record for a William Hodd (Bill) McElcheran piece at auction,
the bronze sculpture Thoughtful sold for $38,025
Jack Bush's dynamic, contemporary piece Off Green, reached $140,400 (est. $100,000 - $150,000)
Karlukwees, BC by W.J. Philips far surpassed the previous record of $35,000 for the
sale of a print at auction, reaching $93,600, also making it an artist
Sir Frederick Banting, best known as the co-discoverer of insulin, has
also proved to be highly regarded as a painter. His work French River sold for $58,500 (estimate $40,000 - $60,000)
Montreal artist Jean-Paul Lemieux's L'évêque en noir reached an impressive $351,000 and signaled the 141st sale of a Lemieux work at a Heffel auction to date
Hochelaga by March-Aurele Fortin set a new record for the sale of a pastel,
This year's fall sale marked the tenth anniversary of Heffel's first
live auction in Toronto. Having sold more than a quarter of a billion
dollars in Canadian art, Heffel is truly Canada's national auction
house. As the first auction house in Canada to split historical and
contemporary Canadian art into separate sales, it remains the only
house to produce separate detailed catalogues for each session;
Canadian Post-War & Contemporary Art and Fine Canadian Art. This year's
contemporary session reached more than $4.3 million in sales and the
fine art session totaled at $9.2 million. The success rate of 91 per
cent exceeded the industry standard.
More information on the pieces and artists included in this year's fall
auction can be found at www.heffel.com.
About Heffel Fine Art Auction House
Canadian-owned and a family run business, Heffel has sold more Canadian
art than any other auctioneer worldwide, with more than $350 million in
art auction sales since 1995, and has conducted the most valuable live
auctions of Canadian art. With offices and representatives in
Vancouver, Toronto, Ottawa, Montreal and Calgary, Heffel provides
superior client services to both sellers and buyers nationwide. In
addition to full-colour printed catalogues, Heffel publishes its entire
live auction online at www.heffel.com, from initial promotion and illustrated lot listings, to the auction's
live multi-camera webcast and final sale results.
Follow us on Twitter @HeffelAuction
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*All estimates are in Canadian Dollars and include buyer's premium
Image with caption: "The Crazy Stair (The Crooked Staircase) by Emily Carr earned $3.39 million setting multiple auction records: the most ever paid at auction for an Emily Carr painting, the most achieved for the work of a Canadian female artist and the fourth most valuable piece ever sold in Canadian art auction history. (CNW Group/Heffel Fine Art Auction House)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20131128_C6149_PHOTO_EN_34103.jpg
SOURCE: Heffel Fine Art Auction House
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