Lalique vase
Sarah Waddington

Member Article

Lalique vase most expensive art sold in region

An unusual Lalique vase found in a house outside of Morpeth, Northumberland yesterday became the most expensive work of art sold in the North East.

Entitled ‘Deux Figures Femmes Aillee’ and featuring two winged female nudes with outstretched arms, the rare cire perdue vase was sold for £280,000 to a private collector in the USA during an auction with Anderson and Garland in Newcastle-upon-Tyne.

Just one of four, it was produced in 1922 and as well as having the R Lalique wheel engraved mark, has a full and partial thumbprint on its base.

Discovered packed away in a box during a routine probate valuation, the vase had evidently been used to store flowers, despite the high value of the item.

Cire perdue is another name for lost-wax casting, a drawn-out and painstaking process that results in completely unique, one-off pieces of art.

A French glass designer, Rene Lalique became famous in the first part of the twentieth century for the Art Deco style of his ornaments and jewellery. Noted for his naturalistic approach to art, his pieces have continued to gain in popularity throughout the years.

Mark Waller from the Gallery Moderne – Le Style Lalique in New York State placed the second highest bid for the vase. He said: “The poignancy of bidding for a vase with angels on, on the anniversary of 9/11 was not lost on me. It’s a very nice vase and I visited its pair in Sunderland.

“These rare vases are always sought after by collectors and dealers and I was keen to acquire it for my 30th anniversary in the trade and the gallery. Anderson and Garland did a great job promoting it and got a well deserved result.”

Julian Thomson, director at Anderson and Garland, said: “When I saw the vase, it immediately caught my eye and after consulting our ceramics expert Steven Moore, it soon become apparent that this was quite a special find – the vase is just one of four and is a limited edition.

“Although it was originally valued at £30,000, we had experienced a lot of interest in the piece so believed the figure could end up significantly higher depending on activity on the day. As it happened, bidding quickly moved from £10,000 to £100,000, finishing at £280,000. It’s a fantastic result and great for the North East for the vase to have been sold here.”

Prior to the sale of the Lalique, the most expensive work of art ever sold in the region was an Imperial Kangxi celadon water pot that went for £270,000 also at an auction by Anderson and Garland.

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This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by Sarah Waddington .

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