Auctioneer Press Release Freeman's

Freeman's First Auction of 2021 Fall/Winter Season Achieves 95% Sell-Through Rate

Sep 17,2021 | 12:00 EDT By Freeman's

PHILADELPHIA, PA - Freeman’s is pleased to announce the results of its September 15 Art and Design auction, in which all but six lots of the 126-lot auction sold, resulting in a 95% sell-through rate. Property from the Estate of Gabriele Lee (Lots 1-19), a prominent champion of the arts in Philadelphia, performed at a 100% sell-through rate; the auction overall achieved $563,475, outperforming its high estimate.

“We’re thrilled with the results of our season-opening auction, which saw consistent results across paintings, prints, sculpture, and design works, and strong performances by local Philadelphia and Pennsylvania artists like Thomas Chimes, Edna Andrade, James Havard, and Elizabeth Osborne,” says Olivia Zvara, Head of Sale. “We are especially pleased to have achieved a 100% sell-through rate for the Estate of Gabriele Lee, which demonstrates Freeman’s ability to secure strong results for single-owner consignments and estates.”


Art and Design demonstrated clear market demand for furniture works by leading 20th-century designers. Philip and Kelvin LaVerne’s rare four-door “Chan” cabinet (Lot 35) led the sale, sparking an extended bidding war and achieving $113,400, nearly quadrupling its pre-sale high estimate of $30,000. Warren Platner’s 1978 set of six dining chairs sold for $16,380 (Lot 7; estimate: $5,000-7,000), and Richard Artschwager’s 1987 Chair/Chair achieved $12,600 (Lot 18; estimate: $7,000-9,000). Two lots by Paul László - a settee and a pair of lounge chairs and coffee table, both from the 1950s—sold for $6,300 and $11,970, respectively (Lots 26 and 27), and two dormitory chairs designed by Marcel Breuer for Bryn Mawr College in 1938 both achieved $4,410 (Lots 82 and 83). The successful sales of these works also underscore Freeman’s international reach; the works by Artschwager, László, and Breuer all sold to overseas buyers.


The late Gabriele Lee was a prominent collector and champion of the arts whose impact is felt throughout the cultural fabric of Philadelphia. All property from Mrs. Lee’s estate offered in Wednesday’s auction sold, including the striking glazed ceramic work Untitled (Dango) by Jun Kaneko, which achieved $20,160 (Lot 2; estimate: $10,000-15,000). Free Way by Thomas Chimes, a celebrated Philadelphia painter, was the auction’s opening lot and more than doubled its pre-sale high estimate, achieving $10,080 (Lot 1; estimate: $2,500-4,000); an etching by Egon Schiele, Kauernde (Squatting Woman), garnered significant interest from buyers and also sold for $10,080 (Lot 17; estimate: $3,000-5,000). Additional works from Mrs. Lee’s collection will be offered in Freeman’s November 17 Modern and Contemporary Art and December 8 Design auctions; Freeman’s specialists are accepting additional consignments for these auctions until late October.


A suite of three works on paper by renowned painter March Avery all outperformed pre-sale high estimates, led by Summer Conversation (Lot 28; estimate: $1,500-2,500), which drew interest from multiple competing buyers and achieved $9,450. Color Field works performed particularly well, including two prints by Josef Albers, SP IV (from Homage to the Square) and SP XII (from Homage to the Square), which achieved $13,680 and $10,710, respectively (Lots 85 and 84). Ellsworth Kelly’s Untitled and Green Curve with Radius of 20’ (from For Meyer Schapiro) sold for $7,560 and $6,930, respectively (Lots 101 and 102).


Since 1805, Freeman’s has been part of the fabric of Philadelphia, helping generations of clients in the buying and selling of fine and decorative arts, jewelry, design, and more. We host many auctions throughout the year, including sales of single owner collections. Freeman’s, Philadelphia’s auction house. Sharing the world of art, design, and jewelry with you, wherever you are.

By Freeman's