Freeman’s Spring/Summer 2022 season displayed market strength and competitive collecting across Freeman’s many specialist departments. Alongside strong results in the season’s thirteen sales, Freeman’s also appointed two new heads of department and two regional representatives in the Florida and New England areas in a show of continuing optimism in its business.
“The investments we’re making in our talented team of specialists are clearly paying off,” says Fraser Niven, Freeman’s Chief Executive Officer. “By hiring the finest talent, we’re able to deliver fresh-to-market works across categories, including rare and recently rediscovered items that lead to remarkable sales. With the projects in hand, I expect the upcoming season to be even more exciting.”
FREEMAN’S SETS NEW WORLD AUCTION RECOREDS FOR AMERICAN WOMEN ARTISTS
Freeman’s highly anticipated, twice-annual American Art and Pennsylvania Impressionists auction this June was led by the $252,000 sale of Fern Isabel Coppedge’s Winter Decoration and totaled $2.64M overall. In the sale, new world auction records were set for both Philadelphia Illustration artist Sarah S. Stilwell Weber and Emma Fordyce MacRae, a graduate of the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts and a member of the Philadelphia Ten.
IMPRESSIVE RESULTS CONFIRM STRONG MARKET FOR AMERICANA
Freeman’s Spring/Summer 2022 season was marked by significant buyer interest in early Americana, from letters and political documents to furniture, silver, and artwork. Freeman’s May Books and Manuscripts sale was led by the $1.8M sale of a 1776 letter signed by John Hancock announcing America’s independence to the state of Georgia, an extraordinarily rare document that commanded competitive bidding.
In a May American Furniture, Folk and Decorative Arts auction, the Pemberton-Morris-Lloyd Chippendale mahogany sideboard table achieved $163,800 against a $40,000-60,000 estimate, underscoring the demand for works of fine early American craftsmanship with impressive provenance.
BIDDING FROM INTERNATIONAL ONLINE BUYERS PUSHES PRICES UP
Freeman’s launched its Spring 2022 season with a dynamic new bidding platform, Freeman’s Live, that makes it easier than ever for buyers to place bids from anywhere in the world. In turn, the season was marked by spirited bidding between international buyers, resulting in prices that soared well above their pre-sale estimates.
These remarkable results spanned departments: a pair of Chinese huanghuali armchairs from the late Ming to Qing dynasty sold for $948,000 (estimate: $80,000-120,000); Henry Moore’s elegant bronze Architectural Project achieved $428,400 (estimate: $200,000-300,000); Marc Chagall’s Devant la Fenêtre à Sils, an important gouache from a single-owner collection, commanded $453,600 (estimate: $250,000-400,000); and a “Conoid” bench by George Nakashima s old for $94,500 (estimate: $40,000-60,000).
INVESTMENT AND EXPANSION: NATIONAL AND INTERNATIONAL GROWTH
Freeman’s announced the arrival of two new heads of department this season: Lisa De Simone as Head of Modern and Contemporary Art, and Lourdes Winnick as Head of Jewelry and Watches. Freeman’s expanded geographically as well as departmentally: Adam Bitzer joined the company as its New England regional representative, and Kate Della Monica was appointed as the company’s first Florida regional representative.
Alongside this ongoing investment in talent, expertise, and client service, Freeman’s maintains a robust presence on the international market—in part through its strategic alliance with its sister auction house Lyon & Turnbull in Scotland.
WHAT’S NEXT: FALL 2022
Following a successful Spring/Summer 2022 season and a late-summer Luxe: Summer Jewels auction, Freeman’s presents a full roster of Fall sales: Books and Manuscripts on September 21, Art and Design on September 29, Asian Arts on October 18, Modern and Contemporary Art on October 25, Design on October 26, Books and Manuscripts: Rare Americana and American Furniture, Folk and Decorative Arts, both on November 15, Jewelry and Watches on November 22, and Luxe: Boutique Jewels on November 23. All fall auctions are currently welcoming consignments.