Sworders celebrate success of inaugural silver and jewellery sale

AN Essex auctioneer is celebrating the success of its first ever specialist silver and jewellery sale.

The auction, held by Sworders Fine Art Auctioneers, made a record sales result, with 97 per cent of lots sold, totalling almost three quarters of a million pounds.

The auction featured 574 lots, including an early 20th Century silver and silver gilt crown which sold for �3,900, a pair of diamond earrings at �30,000 and a 5.3 carat diamond ring which made �22,000.

The star of the auction was a Chinese silver teapot decorated with battle scenes and dragon heads which was estimated to reach �800, but sold on the day for �9,000 - more than 10 times its guide price.

Sworders’ managing director Guy Schooling said: “This has been a quite incredible sale. It is very unusual for any auctioneer to sell 97 per cent of its lots, so that alone has broken records for us.

“Plus with many lots selling for more than double their estimated price just goes to show the benefits of holding a specialist sale that will attract collectors and buyers from all over the world. We have already booked two more Silver and Jewellery Auctions for 2012.

“This sale has also demonstrated an incredible surge in internet activity. For the first time, half of all those buying or under-bidding placed their bid live online.”

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Looking ahead to 2012, Sworders are also delighted to announce that their January 20th Century Art sale will be featuring a work by the internationally renowned sculptor, Dame Barbara Hepworth.

Hepworth, whose work is exhibited across the world, is widely regarded as one of the most important 20th Century British sculptors. Her studio in Cornwall is now part of Tate St Ives and The Hepworth gallery, featuring a selection of her work, opened last year in Wakefield, Yorkshire.

Locally one of her statues was given to Harlow on the opening of the new town after its display at the Festival of Britain in 1951. The statue is on display in the Glebelands Estate and is Grade II listed.

A 12 inch alabaster and wood Hepworth sculpture called ‘Two Rotating Forms Number 2’ will be auctioned by Sworders at their 20th Century Art sale on 10 January 2012 at a guide price of �60,000 to �80,000.

Commenting on the piece, Mr Schooling said: “This is, without question, the most significant piece of sculpture we have ever had the privilege to sell.

“We are already in discussion with the Tate, The Hepworth and the Henry Moore Foundation, who we hope may be interested in bidding for the item.”