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Category Archives: Blog

Lionel Girls Train Set: The Little Enginette That Couldn’t

Lionel Girls' Train Set (Lot 1617, Estimate $1,000-2,000)

Collecting and playing with model trains has been a popular past time for over one hundred years. At the forefront of this train-crazed mania was Lionel Trains. These sturdily constructed toy trains were praised and collected for their life-like realism by adults and children alike. Originally marketed towards fathers and sons to promote bonding, electric trains started to emerge as a male-centric hobby. Mothers and daughters might be visible in their advertisements, but more as someone who could passively view the trains in motion instead of engineering them.… Read More

How to Spot a Counterfeit Coin

Here you can see the noticeable color difference as well as the sand-cast surface. Also of note, the coin on the left weighs 12% less than the coin on the right.

One of the largest nuisances in the field of numismatics is detecting counterfeits. Dealers and collectors alike can still find themselves susceptible to coins and currency meant to deceive. Everybody has a story from when they were duped or made mistakes regarding valuable pieces or even seemingly insignificant ones. Every now and then, we see counterfeit pieces brought in by consignors who are unaware of the item they have. Here are a few easy tips to make sure your coins are original.… Read More

Coins of The Carson City Mint

1885-CC GSA Morgan Dollar (Lot 1115, Estimate $200-400)

1885-CC GSA Morgan Dollar (Lot 1115, Estimate $200-400)

Carson City Morgan dollars are some of the most iconic coins in American numismatics. The Morgan dollar series in and of itself is highly collectible, obtaining staggering prices for higher end pieces. However, coins from the Carson City Mint, bearing the “CC” mintmark, have always excited numismatists, especially Morgan collectors. The branch mint produced only thirteen years of Morgan dollars, while the whole series experienced twenty-eight years of issue.… Read More

Fine Jewelry Appraisal Days

Art Deco Platinum, Diamond, Emerald, and Enamel Brooch, Charlton & Co. (Lot 443, Estimate $15,000-20,000)

Tuesday, January 31 | Providence, RI

Thursday, February 2 | Western Massachusetts

By appointment only.

Skinner’s Fine Jewelry department is inviting consignments for the March 21st Fine Jewelry auction. Experts from Skinner will be in Providence on January 31st and Western Massachusetts on February 2 to view items by appointment only.

To make an appointment please call: 617-874-4313

 … Read More

A Master of Many Mediums: Pablo Picasso’s Work in Ceramics

Pablo Picasso (Spanish, 1881-1973)   Maroon/Black Wood-owl, 1952 (Lot 103, Estimate $8,000-12,000)

Pablo Picasso (Spanish, 1881-1973) Femme au char triomphal, 1949 (Lot 100, Estimate: $40,000-60,000)

Pablo Picasso was a dynamic, creative force. He was intrigued by and experimented with countless media throughout the course of his long and illustrious career. Picasso’s Cubist oil paintings – some incorporating collage – of the 1910s changed the world of Western Art forever.  He worked in crayon, pencil, and pastel and was a prolific printmaker as well.… Read More

From Russia with Love: A History of Russian Art in Skinner’s January Auction

François Angiboult (Ukrainian, 1887-1950) Cubist Still Life (Estimate: $10,000-15,000)

Skinner’s January 27 Fine Paintings & Sculpture auction has almost 30 works by Russian and Ukrainian artists from the mid-19th through the 20th centuries. The works, featuring many differing styles and schools, include landscape, still life, portraits, and costume design.

Ivan Konstantinovich Aivazovsky (Russian, 1817-1900) Along the Coast, Capri (Lot 265, Estimate: $130,000-190,000)

Among the most significant and earliest of the artists is Ivan Aivazovsky (1817-1900), the leading figure of Russian Romanticism and master of marine painting and coastal scenes.… Read More

Exotic Places and Famous Faces: 19th-Century Photography on Offer to Benefit the Philadelphia Museum of Art

Skinner is delighted to offer a selection of works from the collection of Harvey Shipley Miller, who, with his then partner, J. Randall Plummer, began acquiring photographs in the 1970s just as the market for the medium was beginning to develop. Proceeds from the January 27 auction will benefit the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Among the highlights are a fascinating and eclectic group of the 19th-century offerings, including works by Antonio Beato, Auguste Salzmann, Francis Frith, Oscar Rejlander, Julia Margaret Cameron, and David Wilkie Wynfield, among others.… Read More

Fairytales & Silver: The Hanau Region of Germany

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From the monumental Tiffany centerpiece to the towering Polish tureen on stand and striking Russian Kovsh, the January 12 Fine Silver auction features some of the most imposing pieces I have worked with. While I have too many favorites to list, one such piece that caught my eye was the German sleigh-form centerpiece (Lot 206). Though my interest may stem from daydreams of this piece in the center of a holiday table setting, this impressive sleigh highlights some interesting aspects of the Hanau region of silver production as a whole.… Read More

Whimsy, Wit, and Balance: Alexander Calder at the Height of His Career

Alexander Calder (American, 1898-1976)  Aula Magna  (Lot 438, Estimate $25,000-35,000)

Alexander Calder (American, 1898-1976) Untitled (Standing Mobile, c. 1965) (Estimate: $150,000-250,000)

Alexander Calder was a prolific artist whose career spanned half a century. He is most renowned for his large colorful sculptures made of abstract forms painted in primary colors. Some of these are mobiles, like the huge one hanging in the central court of the National Gallery’s East Building in Washington, DC, and others are “stabiles” (stationary constructions) like Sandy’s Butterfly which you can see in the sculpture garden at the Museum of Modern Art in New York.… Read More

Works by 19th-century, Modern, and Contemporary Masters Featured in Fine Photographs Auction, January 27

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On Friday, January 27, Skinner will present its winter Prints & Photographs auction in Boston, beginning at 12 pm. The selection of fine photographs on offer features a range of 19th and 20th century works by such masters as Auguste Salzmann, Manuel Álvarez Bravo, Alfred Stieglitz, Irving Penn, Nan Goldin, and others.

Francis Frith (British, 1822-1898) Street View in Cairo, 1858 (Lot 132, Estimate: $2,500-3,500)

Among the highlights is a group of works being sold to benefit the Philadelphia Museum of Art (PMA).… Read More

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