In Memory of Ron McLean, Auctioneer Extraordinaire

Ronald McLean, the patriarch and founder of modern-day Waddington’s, passed away this past Saturday morning, March 25, at the age of 92.

Ron will be remembered for both his business integrity and engaging charm, but most people will also fondly recall his skill, character and humour, as a wonderful auctioneer. Whether he was selling an eclectic, one of a kind piece to an anxiously excited client at a Waddington’s regular weekly auction, or a fine painting that was destined to grace the wall of a prominent collection offered in a catalogued auction, his auctioning style was the same, delivered in his broad, Northern England accent. Informed, at the same time entertaining, and never missing a bid.

In contrast to this new era of anonymous and impersonal online auctions – Ron, sitting above the crowd and declaring an item he was offering as “not hard sold” was the classic old school auctioneer.

A celebration of Ron’s life will be held in early May at Waddington’s.
Posted: 3/27/2017 12:00:00 AM
By: Duncan McLean

SKAM Graffiti Art Online Auction April 3 - 13

Waddington’s is proud to present Toronto’s first auction of Graffiti Art. A collection of 16 recent works by Toronto-based artist Jason Wing, known as SKAM, will be offered in an online auction April 3 to 13. Highly-regarded, Jason is considered one of Toronto’s true, original graffiti artists.

Formally trained in graphic design at George Brown College, Jason began creating his art over 20 years ago, which now appears everywhere from dark back alleys to gleaming corporate spaces. Of the works featured in the Waddington’s auction, each is an original, spray-painted freehand onto canvas, varying in size from 48” x 48” to 48” x 96”.

In answer to what he is inspired by, Jason says: “It varies, sometimes I sketch beforehand and sometimes I don’t. Nowadays with over a 1000 plus pieces under my belt I generally free style. I get inspiration from anywhere and everywhere: fashion, art, music, etc.”

Jason skillfully balances maintaining his street credit with receiving mainstream recognition for his work. He has designed movie sets, conducted live painting engagements for festivals and special events, as well as created commissioned artwork for clients like Yabu Pushelberg, Google, Beanfield Metroconnect, and Louis Vuitton.

In addition to his graffiti work, Jason is also an entrepreneur, and has turned his lifelong passion into a storefront business, Homebase, which sells graffiti supplies, providing other artists with access to great products and to connect with him. Jason is also prolific. He paints personal pieces on a weekly basis, completing an average of 80 works a year.

Duncan McLean, president of Waddington’s, notes that “urban art plays a critical role in constructive societal discourse. It is free expression at its ultimate and underlines our innate need to chronicle our stories, struggles, history.” He adds: “Waddington’s has been the vanguard of promoting diverse forms of Canadian art, from our first sales of Group of Seven works in the 1960s, to creating new markets for Inuit art over the last four decades, and developing a secondary market for contemporary Canadian art through our Concrete Contemporary Art Auctions and Projects division.”

Posted: 3/2/2017 12:00:00 AM
By: Tess McLean

Waddington’s Canada 150 Auction

The Canada 150 auction is a special Waddington's event celebrating Canada's 150th anniversary featuring art and objects of historical and cultural significance. Some may be whimsical, others more important, all drawn together to celebrate and tell the stories of 150 years of Canadian art and culture.

Waddington's is proud to be Canada's oldest auction house, founded pre-Confederation. Our deep well of expertise crosses multiple collecting categories, showcasing our rich passion and capacity for scholarship and linking our heritage to Canada's. This specialized auction will share in the excitement of Canada’s sesquicentennial.

We are pleased to accept consignments for this auction, please contact Sean Quinn for further information:

View the Preview Gallery


Estimate: $2,000—3,000


Estimate: $300—400


Estimate: $2,000—3,000


Estimate: $3,000—5,000


Estimate: $150—250
Posted: 1/27/2017 9:00:00 AM
By: Tess McLean


Selling through Waddington's means partnering with a firm with 167 years of experience auctioneering fine and decorative arts. Last year alone, Waddington's sold over 12,000 objects ranging from rare Group of Seven paintings to vintage wines. Our team of specialists is dedicated to providing you with prompt and courteous service as well as exemplary expertise.

Now Accepting Consignments for our

Spring Canadian Fine Art Auction






If you are thinking of selling your art, here are a few simple steps that will help expedite our response to you. With this information, we will be able to quickly provide auction estimates, date of sale, deadlines and terms for your consideration.


1. A basic description of the work: artist, title, medium (oil? watercolour? drawing? print?)

"Lumber Camp"
oil on wood panel

2. Measurements (excluding frame) - height x width in inches.

3. Any information you have on the history of ownership.

4. Photos (front and back).

You're all done! Now just press SEND to or mail these details to us at Waddington's 275 King Street East, Toronto, M5A 1K2.

Please be sure to include your telephone number in case we require clarification.

Our turnaround time for most inquiries is less than one week. If for any reason you are unable to provide the information above, please contact our office directly to determine what alternative may be available to you. 416-504-5100

We look forward to being of service.


*There is no charge for this service for clients who sell through Waddington's.

Written appraisals for probate, insurance, family divisions, donation and other purposes can be provided by our appraisal department to current USPAP standard. For more information please contact

Posted: 1/26/2017 12:00:00 AM
By: Tess McLean

Fine & Rare Wine Live Auction Nota Bene Feb 25

Dear Wine & Fine Spirit Lovers,

Don't miss our special auction of Rare & Fine Wine on Feb 25 at Nota Bene. 200 top lots from excellent private cellars featuring the best of Bordeaux, Burgundy, the Rhone Valley, Champagne, Italy, Spain, California and Australia; virtually all the first growth Bordeaux, Premier and Grand Cru Burgundian producers as well as excellent selections of Cult California Cabernet and Super Tuscans, combined with the opportunity to spend the afternoon at one of Toronto's best restaurants.

Location: Nota Bene, 180 Queen Street West, Toronto
Guests are welcome to bring a special bottle (corkage fee - $30) or order from Nota Bene's wine list.

Time: Live Auction - 1:30 pm

We are extremely excited to be holding this event and look forward to seeing you there.

Best regards,
Stephen Ranger

Find out more about Nota Bene:

Posted: 1/25/2017 9:00:00 AM
By: Stephen Ranger

Canadian Fall 2016 Fine Art Auction Results

Waddington’s Fall Auction of Canadian Fine Art included 128 works that grabbed the attention of seasoned collectors and newcomers alike. The high-calibre selection of lots emphasizing quality, variety and freshness to the auction market were received enthusiastically by bidders, and resulted in a great number of lots far outperforming their pre-sale estimates.

Our specialists believe strongly that everyone should have the opportunity to participate in collecting art, and to that end, focus on offering works that appeal to buyers with varying degrees of buying capacity. Waddington's is piqued by the exceptional and marvelous at every price level. "Specialist Linda Rodeck says “We are motivated to locate consignments that will make our buyers stop, look twice, and feel as though their life has changed, even if only a little.

Waddington's sells over 12,000 lots per a year across our various sale categories including Fine Wine, Asian, Canadian, International, Inuit and First Nations Art, Jewellery, and Decorative Arts, with prices ranging from a few hundred dollars into the millions.

Waddington's is now accepting consignments for our online and catalogue sales. If you would like to discuss the auction process with us, please contact the Canadian Art department at or 416-504-5100.

A complete list of results from our recent sales and a list of upcoming sales and events can be found on our website at

Posted: 11/30/2016 12:00:00 AM
By: Tess McLean

Fine Wine Auction Report

With 92% of all the lots sold in our November auction, we are delighted to report a highly successful end to Waddington’s wine auction year. Highlights of the auction:

- Auction total $645,792 (including premium)
- Our best sell-through rate to date with 2,300 bids placed on 505 lots
- 137 successful bidders

Here’s a sampling of some of the top lots:

Lot 287 - 5 bottles of Chateau Lafite Rothschild 1982 sold for $15,600
Lot 324 - 4 bottles of Chateau Haut Brion 1989 sold for $7680
Lot 483 - Single bottle of Chateau Petrus 2000 sold for $4800
Lot 141 - 12 bottles of Opus One 1996 sold $4320
Lot 94 - 3 bottles of Masseto 2007 (OWC) sold for $3120

It's safe to say that the success of this auction also bodes well for the addition of some very fine offerings to the wine lists of Toronto’s prominent dining establishments.


Our 2017 wine auction season will include a blue chip offering to be sold live at Toronto's Nota Bene Restaurant on February 25. Chef David Lee will prepare an exquisite three-course lunch before we launch into the auction. Tickets for the lunch are strictly limited, but all are welcome to attend the auction itself. What a great way to chase away the mid-winter blues! Ticket and menu information will be available shortly.

Other fine wine auctions scheduled in the new year include online auctions February 20 - 28, and May 8 - 16. Consignment deadlines will be shared shortly.

Until then - we wish you all the best for the season ahead and thank you for your continued passion for fine wine at Waddington’s.

4 bottles of Chateau Haut Brion 1989 - $7680
Single bottle of Chateau Petrus 2000 - $4800

12 bottles of Opus One 1996 - $4320
3 bottles of Masseto 2007 (OWC) - $3120
Posted: 11/28/2016 12:00:00 AM
By: Stephen Ranger

Inuit and First Nations Art Auction Fall 2016

Waddington’s fall auction season was highlighted by an important auction of Inuit and First Nations Art on November 22, 2016 in Toronto. Celebrating 38 years in the Inuit Art market, Waddington’s presented 200+ works by some of the most important artists in Canada.

Christa Ouimet, head of Waddington’s Inuit and First Nations Art department, was diligent during the consignment process to ensure that the vast majority of art in the auction would be fresh to the market. The carefully curated auction included major pieces from several important private collections; with many works on offer on the secondary market for the first time. Ouimet cites the rare, large scale, double-sided work in bone by iconic Canadian artist Karoo Ashevak as an example; the consensus is: for such a large and striking piece by this distinctive artist to have been unknown to the market until this time is extraordinary. Spirits Faces - Tooth Pull was a major highlight result of the auction setting a new record for the artist of $132,000.

Other examples of previously little-known works include an exquisite, early stone sculpture of a group of midwives by Ennutsiak, sculptures by Charlie Ugyuk including excellent examples of his top three subjects: an intricate demon; a highly realistic fishing scene; and his famous falcon. Superb pieces by Judas Ullulaq in both stone and antler were also featured in the auction, along with a selection of fascinating early Cape Dorset works including several small-scale gems for the Small Wonders section of the auction. Ouimet adds of special note was a large number of carvings that comprised the 1986/87 Art Gallery of Windsor exhibition: Sugluk, Sculpture in Stone 1953-1959.

An additional highlight of the auction was a magnificent 7’ work on cloth, Dropping Atom Bombs, by Métis artist Bob Boyer, which sold for $8,400.

Duncan McLean, President of Waddington’s, and leading Inuit Art expert says, “Waddington’s has played a vital role in establishing new markets for Inuit Art since our first auction in 1978. We are passionate about the art form and the culture of the Inuit and First Nations people and are delighted to present this unique art to an increasingly expanding market of discerning collectors."

Referring to the auction preview McLean added, "Can you imagine a better way to introduce a visitor to the culture of Canada than inviting them to explore the diversity of Canadian art? Side by side, complementing each other, Canadian historical, Contemporary, Inuit and First Nations, Group of Seven, pre-historic, etc.; our auction preview provides a rare opportunity to appreciate the depth and breadth of Canada’s art and culture."

Auction Highlights

Lot 80 - Karoo Ashevak, Spence Bay / Taloyak
A monumental work in dense whalebone carved to both sides with dramatic shaman or spirit faces, highlighted by antler, stone and bone inlaid eyes and inset bone teeth. The tattooed face grins widely with a prominent third eye and the opposing face with crossed eyes, mouth agape and a removable tooth attached by sinew, signed in syllabics.
Estimate: $35,000—45,000
Price Realized: $132,000

Lot 196 - Bob Boyer
Mixed media on blanket, signed, titled (faded) and dated Spring ‘88 on the reverse.
A Métis artist with a cultural background influenced by the Assiniboine and Sioux, Boyer’s works, broadly, speak to notions of a dual cultural perspective of his Native heritage and Western traditions of Abstract and Contemporary art. Though he worked in a variety of media throughout his career, Boyer is perhaps best known for his series of blanket paintings completed between 1983 and 1995. Boyer elected to use a blanket as his substrate rather than a traditional canvas to address the political issues of First Nations people.
Estimate: $4,000—5,000
Price Realized: $8,400

View the Auction Gallery

Posted: 11/18/2016 12:00:00 AM
By: Tess McLean

Waddington’s Canadian Fine Art Auction - November 21, 2016

Toronto, ONNovember 15, 2016

Waddington’s Auction of Canadian Fine Art on Monday, November 21 will make collectors stop, look twice, and maybe even feel as though their life has changed. That’s the goal of Linda Rodeck, Waddington’s Senior Canadian Art Specialist.

This fall’s auction includes 128 works that are fresh to the market, a preoccupation of Rodeck and her team, whom she refers to as ‘part art specialists and part sleuths’.

Waddington’s Canadian Art team are in fact building a reputation for offering works that have not been already passed around the art market. Prime example is The Crossing by James Wilson Morrice, R.C.A. Rodeck notes that examples of Morrice's best work have become increasingly difficult for collectors to acquire, with the recent large gift of 50 of the artist’s works to the National Gallery of Canada, added to the previous Laing Collection gift which included over 75 works, as well as a further group of Morrice sketches donated to the Art Gallery of Ontario. As a result, few oil sketches of this calibre remain on the open market, making The Crossing one of the highlights of the Canadian auction season.

While the investment value of a work of art has become increasingly part of the dialogue at art fairs and auction previews – and is not lost on Rodeck – her interest and that of her team and the broader specialist community at Waddington's is piqued by the exceptional and marvelous at any price level.  “We are motivated to locate consignments that will make our buyers stop, look twice, and feel as though their life has changed, even if only a little. I'm not after the stratospheric sticker prices alone and while I like selling valuable paintings as much as the next person, I want to sell quality at any price level."  

To further demonstrate her philosophy, Rodeck refers to an Econ 101 class lesson of “in search of a greater fool”. Rodeck reminds us that the “greater fool” theory states that the price of an object is determined not by its intrinsic value, but by the irrational beliefs of market participants. Simply put, one may pay a price that seems "foolishly" high because one may rationally expect that the item can be resold to a "greater fool" later. Rodeck continues, “We have seen a lot of this lately with the same works being passed back and forth, each new "investor" wanting his or her ten-point mark up, and PDQ! Inevitably, however, someone gets caught holding the hot ‘art’ potato.”

Admittedly, sourcing fresh works is a harder row to hoe but it’s particularly important in an age when everyone can check out what something last traded for with a few key strokes. Rodeck concludes, "I think it's more gratifying for our collectors and for us to find fresh works for their consideration and it fits the ethos of Waddington's, which is an auction house that celebrates originality and creativity."  

A selection of favourites which Rodeck and her team of "sleuths" have brought onto the market this season include:

The Crossing
Estimate - $100,000/150,000
(pictured above)

Wartime Harvesting Near Winnipeg
Estimate - $30,000/50,000

Sold together with two drawings: St. Peter’s Church and Bermuda Street Scene
Estimate - $25,000/40,000

The Butterfly
Estimate - $20,000/30,000

Estimate - $10,000/15,000

Monday, November 21, 7 pm

Public Preview
Friday, November 18, 12 – 5 pm
Saturday, November 19, 11 – 5 pm
Sunday, November 20, 11 am – 5 pm
Monday, November 21, 10 am - noon

About Waddington’s
Waddington's is the Canada's most diversified provider of auction and appraisal services.  Waddington's offers live and online auctions of fine art and collectibles across a broad spectrum of markets, including Asian, Canadian, Inuit and First Nations, International and Contemporary art, as well as Decorative Arts, Jewellery and Fine Wine & Spirits.  

Waddington’s Fall 2016 Auction Season includes:
Inuit Art – November 22, 2016
Asian Art – November 28, 2016
Fine Jewellery – November 29, 2016
Decorative Arts – December 5, 2016
International Art – December 6, 2016

For more information on Waddington’s visit:

For Media Information
Tess McLean
Tel: 416.504.9100
Cell: 647.296.8377

Posted: 11/17/2016 9:00:00 AM
By: Tess McLean


The November auctions feature a cornucopia of treasures for Fine Wine and Spirits lovers that are sure to please every palette and budget. With over 500 lots of wine and 133 lots of fine spirits, this may be our most diverse offering to date as we complete our first full year of Fine Wine auctions at Waddington’s. All the great names in Bordeaux, California, the Rhone, Champagne, Italy, Spain, California, Port and Australia are beautifully represented.

As we approach our anniversary, we wanted to share some things we've learned from our clients. First of all, the vast majority prefer our online format to the live auctions as it offers the time and leisure to peruse the catalogues closely in the comfort of home or office or on your mobile device. We also offer a printed catalogue for those who have purchased in the past, to make notes and study, away from the screen of your computer. If you would like to receive one in the future, please send us a note and we will be happy to oblige. Please note however, the online gallery is usually available at least a week before the printed version.

Secondly, there is a hard core who love coming to a live sale - and to that end we will be hosting a live auction on February 25 at Note Bene in Toronto. More details will follow shortly along with a beautiful luncheon menu prepared by star chef David Lee. Reservations are required for the luncheon, but the auction will be open to the public.

As usual we wanted to share some highlights of this November's auction.

Lots 67 through 107; Italian magic featuring case and half-case verticals of Super Tuscans and rare gems.

Lots 244, 245, 246 are full case lots of the 100 point rated 2009 Chateau Leoville Poyferre, a veritable trove of greatness.

Lots 358 through 398 features an array of hard-to-find cult California Cabs and Pinot Noirs.

Lots 496 through 507. If size is your thing, please have a look at the large format bottles perfect for a winter feast, or maybe just lunch!

If you are having difficulty finding a particular wine please use the wine searcher tool we have custom-developed that will make it easy to find any producer, vintage or format in the auction.

We welcome your comments and suggestions at any time. Please visit for our full 2017 auction dates and deadlines for consignment.

Wishing you good luck in your bidding as well as lots of vinous pleasure for the Holiday Season.

To bid in the current fine wine and spirits auction please visit

Posted: 11/17/2016 12:00:00 AM
By: Stephen Ranger

Fall 2016 Inuit Art Auction - Catalogue Available Online

This November 22nd, Waddington’s will hold our bi-annual live auction of Inuit Art including First Nations artwork.

On view at our 275 King Street Toronto location November 18 - 21, the auction encompasses 200 works of sculpture and graphics, including six major collections, among the most notable, the never-seen-before collection of published poet and scholar Dr. Francis Sparshott; as well as the collection of Peter J. Landry which was exhibited at the Art Gallery of Windsor and whose exhibition catalogue is the primary resource on the art of Sugluk / Salluit.

The auction is also comprised of individual works entrusted to Waddington's by important artists such as our feature sculpture by Karoo Ashevak which graces the fold-out cover of the catalogue.

View the Auction Gallery

View the PDF Catalogue

View the Catalogue Essays PDF

Catalogue Orders:
Lynda Macpherson

For more information:
Christa Ouimet

Posted: 10/27/2016 9:00:00 AM
By: Christa Ouimet

Shades of Grey: Prints & Photography Auction

Shades of Grey brings together the very best prints and photography under the harmonized palette of the black-and-white, significant “must haves” to complement any collection. This specially-curated auction features highly sought after works by major masters of both mediums from 19th century legends to today’s avant-garde contemporary artists.

Shades of Grey as a theme celebrates the finest monochromatic prints and photography, covering a range of notable styles from the abstract art of Dame Barbara Hepworth (lot 12) to the architecturally inspired contemporary photography of James Nizam (lot 27) – a selection, exclusively chosen for this sale.

The leading lot in the auction is David Bailey’s coveted Box of Pin-Ups – a rare, complete collection of 36 photographs dating from 1965 (lot 1). This portfolio is a seminal photographic treatise celebrating the cult of celebrity and fashion. This portrait ensemble features superstar icons such as Mick Jagger, John Lennon, Michael Caine and David Hockney among others. Exceptionally complete portfolios such as this are scarce and we’re very excited about presenting this to the market.

Two other key lots by trailblazing artists from both the printmaking and photography world include Sybil Andrews’s Canon (sic) Street – Railway Bridge (lot 20) and Helmut Newton’s Portrait of Violetta (lot 23). A pioneering force in the art of printmaking, Canon (sic) Street is one of Andrews’s earliest etchings. In this work dating from her early career, Andrews explores a fascination with the modern transport age, a theme that was to become iconic of the artist’s career as a whole. Helmut Newton’s photography revolutionized the intimacy of the female nude and beauty and Portrait of Violetta was produced at the height of his fame. To this day, Newton’s photographs from this seminal period remain highly sought after by collectors.

Other notable highlights include graphics by iconic modern masters such as Pablo Picasso, Henry Moore and Joan Miro; whose legendary individualistic styles are captured in these prints.

Shades of Grey offers something for every collector. Our auction contains fascinating and groundbreaking artwork by well-known artists at affordable price points all brought together by the enigmatic palette of the monochromatic, grisaille and black-and-white.

Register and bid here

Posted: 10/26/2016 9:00:00 AM
By: Tess McLean

Concrete Contemporary Blog Fall 2016

This fall we continue our partnership with New York-based Artsy to present over 60 works in an online auction featuring the very best of Canadian Contemporary Art.

Stunning works by painters John Hartman, Michael Adamson, David Urban, Kim Dorland, Ron Martin, Nicole Katsuras, Stephen Appleby-Barr, Joe Fleming, Tom Hopkins and Shelley Adler among many others are offered alongside photo and conceptual masters such as Ian Wallace, Iain Baxter&, Edward Burtynsky and Barbara Astman.

This is certainly one of our strongest offerings yet and our partnership with Artsy allows for tremendous international exposure, one of the founding precepts of Concrete Contemporary. Bidding is online only through the Artsy auction site but the previews will be held live in Waddington’s gallery October 27 through November 3 with special weekend hours coinciding with Art Toronto.

In other news, we are delighted to be involved in a number of important charitable events this fall including the 23rd Casey House Art with Heart auction, the Look2016 auction for Contemporary Calgary and the very special Buy Art Not Kids auction on November 1 that will raise funds to support the fight against human trafficking in Canada and in Cambodia. If you would like more information on these events, please visit the links below.

If you are unable to attend our previews for the Concrete Contemporary auction but would like to see or discuss any of the works on offer, please do not hesitate to contact us.

We really look forward to seeing you in the gallery this fall.

Posted: 10/17/2016 9:00:00 AM
By: Stephen Ranger

Highlights of our Fall 2016 Inuit Art Auctions

Please enjoy this selection of highlights from our upcoming Fall 2016 live auction of Inuit Art which includes major sculptural works by Ennutsiak, Karoo Ashevak and Niviaxie as well as an impressive collection of Salluit and Cape Dorset sculpture from the early 1950’s.

Please also note our upcoming online auction of Inuit Art November 17 - 24.

For more information contact Christa Ouimet at

NIVIAXIE (1909-1959), E7-1077, CAPE DORSET RECLINED POLAR BEAR CUB EATING SEAL stone, c. 1957 3.25" x 5" x 8" — 8.3 x 12.7 x 20.3 cm. Provenance: The Peter J. Landry Collection of Inuit Art, U.S.A.
Estimate: $700—1,000
JUDAS ULLULAQ (1937-1999), E4-342, GJOA HAVEN/UQSUQTUUQ HAPPY FISHERMAN stone, bone, sinew, antler, musk ox horn, c. 1987, signed in syllabics 16.5" x 12" x 7" — 41.9 x 30.5 x 17.8 cm. Provenance: Acquired directly from the artist by the consigner in 1987.
Estimate: $7,000—10,000
MATUSI UNGNAITOOK (1905-1961), SUGLUK / SALLUIT MAN AND BEAR stone, c. 1956 9" x 8" x 4" — 22.9 x 20.3 x 10.2 cm. Exhibited: Sugluk: Sculpture in Stone, 1953-1959, exh. cat., Art Gallery of Windsor, (Windsor, ON), 1992, illustrated p. 37 and on the catalogue cover, cat. no. 8 This work is accompanied by the Art Gallery of Windsor hand written exhibition label.
Estimate: $2,500—3,500

KAROO ASHEVAK (1940-1974), E4-196, SPENCE BAY / TALOYOAK SPIRITS whalebone, signed in syllabics 14" x 19" x 6" — 35.6 x 48.3 x 15.2 cm. Provenance: Acquired directly from the artist by a gallery owner, Yellowknife, By descent to present owner, British Columbia
Estimate: $35,000—45,000
ENNUTSIAK (1896-1967), E7-603, IQALUIT MIDWIVES WITH BABY stone, c. 1958 4.5" x 7.75" x 6" — 11.4 x 19.7 x 15.2 cm. Provenance: The Hon. W. Dan Chilcott, Q.C. Collection, Ottawa
Estimate: $8,000—12,000
UNIDENTIFIED, CAPE DORSET / KINNGAIT YOUNG WOMAN HOLDING A CHILD stone, c. 1955 5.25" x 2.5" x 3.5" — 13.3 x 6.4 x 8.9 cm. Provenance: The Peter J. Landry Collection of Inuit Art, U.S.A. Note: This is an exquisite work that could have been carved by any of the masters of the Qikiqtaalik region.
Estimate: $600—900
Posted: 8/30/2016 9:00:00 AM
By: Christa Ouimet

Concrete Contemporary Art Auctions

One of the biggest perks of working at Waddington's is getting to see the remarkable examples of Canadian contemporary art that come through our doors. The moments when we see a work of art that makes us stop in our tracks and say, “Wow!”...well, let's just say that's what makes the everyday workload suddenly become lighter. And then we get to share our enthusiasm with our clients during the auction previews and feel that rush all over again when we discuss the stories that each work of art we offer holds within it: the who, what, when, where, why and how of the work and of its maker. That’s when art becomes part of our stories.

But before we can have these shared experiences, the art must be assembled. Our fall auction is shaping up wonderfully with consignments of artwork by Canada's leading contemporary artists such as Kim Dorland, Edward Burtynsky, David Urban, Stephen Appleby-Barr and many others, but there is room for much more. If you or someone you know is considering a consignment of Canadian contemporary art, please let us know. We can provide complimentary and confidential assessment of its auction value.

To continue broadening our reach to new audiences, we are pleased to announce that all lots offered in November’s auction will be held in conjunction with

This past April, Concrete Contemporary Auctions and Projects introduced an exciting partnership with Artsy, one of the world’s leading resources for art education and collectors of fine art. With nearly half a million subscribers, Waddington's consignors benefited from Artsy's global reach and when combined with our ever-growing following of contemporary art collectors, it was a perfect match with nearly all works offered through this collaboration selling on auction day. We anticipate continued growth and success working with Artsy on this and future auctions.

Auction: October 27–November 3

Auction Preview: 27 October – 3 November
Weekday hours: 9-5; Weekend hours 11-5

(exhibited with “Shades of Grey” Prints and Photography Auction)

Posted: 8/25/2016 12:00:00 AM
By: Kristin Vance

Fine Wine & Spirits Autumn 2016

While the sunshine is reminiscent of summer, days are getting shorter as collectors’ thoughts turn to sipping some of their favourites in the cooler days ahead. Our concurrent November 14-22 Fine Wine and Fine Spirits auctions will be sure to satisfy.

Following a busy season of harvesting and gathering, when we bring together all the artwork, objects and everything else for our fall auction season, our fall appears to be a season of plenty. With our successful September 12-20 fine wine auction and our November 14-22 sale, we will be offering over 1000 lots this November. The quality of the offerings is outstanding, anchored by three major cellars from Toronto, Mississauga and Prince Edward County.

One of the many truisms I have found in the wine world is that a wine often never tastes better than right where it was made, in the cave or tasting room of the producer. One of my favourite memories was a trip I made through the Southern Rhone Valley one summer many years ago. The mistral was fierce, blowing through the valley with a force that left my ears ringing, but the wines in villages like Rasteau, Gigondas, Vacqueyras, Orange and Chateauneuf du Pape matched with the local Provençal cuisine were simply outstanding and a respite from the wind. Sampling them with their producers, salt of the earth farming families, was truly magical and remains an important moment in my personal pursuit of great wine experiences.

I came across an article in Wine-Searcher that helps explain Burgundy labels to novices. Here’s the link:

Posted: 7/4/2016 12:00:00 AM
By: Stephen Ranger

Fall 2016 Prints & Photography Auctions

At Waddington's we like to try new things and with this season's upcoming fall Prints & Photography auction series we are doing just that. Waddington's has been at the forefront of new initiatives within the auction house world and the wider art market ever since our foundation in 1850. With such deep seated roots, imbedded within our industry throughout Canada, and with a stellar reputation internationally, it is with great pride that we continually adapt and respond to the needs of the art collecting public.

As tastemakers and industry leaders in the arts, we feel a responsibility to constantly advance the art market and educate collectors by curating sales that pair fresh ideas with the highest quality art pieces, with a goal of developing engaging perspectives. We live for those "Aha" moments within our practice among our collector base, reigniting existing art passions or new discoveries that lead to a lifelong relationship with a particular movement, artist or medium...or all of the above!

Our fall Fine Prints & Photography auction programming carries this strong tradition of developing new ideas and innovative ways of thinking about engaging with progressive art that forms the very cultural fabric of daily lives.

Beginning with our Fine Prints & Photography Online Auction (October 1 — October 6, which will simultaneously be on view at our Toronto gallery), this sale will feature important lots, in both media from pop art icons, including Andy Warhol, Roy Lichtenstein, Ed Ruscha and Robert Indiana as well as European superstars: Henry Moore, Marc Chagall, Barbara Hepworth and Salvador Dalí, just to name a few. Equally attractive to seasoned collectors, who are looking to enhance their own collections by exploring different mediums, but also to budding buyers who seek to lay the foundation of their own art story with well-known artists of the blue-chip variety with affordable entry price points. You too can own works by artists who dominate the art market headlines and that form part of major institutional collections!

This will be followed by a new addition to our roster, Shades of Grey: Prints & Photography (also an online auction, running from October 27 — November 3 to be exhibited at our Toronto gallery space), a specially curated auction that celebrates the tantalizing qualities of vibrant contrasts, exhibited by the vivacious tonalities of black and white.

This sale will bring together important works of black and white photography alongside monochromatic prints, with a particular focus on modern and contemporary art movements.

Taking cues from the blockbuster literary works and film that have made Shades of Grey a catch phrase — this auction will also explore the intimacy of our connection to art, that stimulates our many senses, beyond the purely visual means. While also delving into the bond these palettes share and the power being expressed in these works of art.

Remaining at the forefront of our craft and due to the global demands of our consigning and buying public, it is only natural that these sales take place on our highly successful online auction platform. Best suited for today's international collector with around the clock bidding accessible from Saskatoon to Shanghai!

Don’t miss the opportunity to check out what we have in store with a small teaser of works that will be up for auction by clicking the links below to our preview galleries:

We look forward to seeing you this fall season!

For Consignment information, please contact:
Holly Mazar-Fox

Posted: 6/29/2016 12:00:00 AM
By: Holly Mazar-Fox

Small Art / Big Hearts Benefit Auction
June 24 – 28, 2016

Small Art / Big Hearts Benefit Auction
June 24 – 28, 2016

A pop-up contemporary art auction to benefit LGBT communities in Orlando and Toronto.

When Toronto artist Mark Gleberzon approached us about his idea to raise money for the LGBT communities in Orlando and Toronto, our immediate reaction was: how can we help. The opportunity to be able to respond to a tragedy that has shaken us all in an immediate and meaningful way, made suggesting to host an online art auction a no-brainer.

The Small Art / Big Hearts benefit auction in support of LGBT communities in Orlando and Toronto has touched the heart of the generous arts community. Over 100 artists have committed to donating works to the auction as a result of Mark’s facebook posting last week.

Mark has been overwhelmed by the outpouring of generosity. “When I put out my first post of Facebook last Tuesday I said ‘emojis, memes and pictures of rainbow flags are only going to do so much.’ I felt something more vital needed to be done. So I put out a small call-out on Facebook to some of my artist-friends to donate art and it snowballed from there!"

The auction will feature small-scale artworks (acrylic, oil and encaustic paintings, mixed-media, photography, sculpture, jewellery and more) by Mark Gleberzon, Sharon Barr, Ian Busher, Rob Croxford, Laura Culic, Shelagh Young-Howard, Carol Westcott, James Fowler, Marjolyn van der Hart, Julie Himel, Cindy Scaife and many more. The online gallery will be launched as quickly as we can photograph and catalogue all the art! Our thanks and appreciation to our staff and the many, many people who are donating their time and talent to this cause.

Follow us on social media as the auction comes together. #SmallArtBigHearts

Dates and Times
Online Auction to be held:
June 24-28, 2016

On View:
Thursday 23 June 2016 from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm
Friday 24 June 2016 from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm

Auction Details
Over 100 works including paintings, photograpy, prints, jewellery, etc., donated by GTA-based artists
No buyer’s premium
100% of proceeds will be donated
Proceeds go towards selected Orlando and Toronto-based LGBT organizations

About Mark Gleberzon
Mark is an OCADU Honours graduate & professional artist. He has a long history of showing his multi-media work in shows and galleries throughout Canada and the U.S., France & Japan. His paintings can be found on every continent and have been featured in design & decor magazines, have appeared on TV and has been highlighted in online blogs.

A fearless artist and promoter of artists, Mark is indefatigable in his work and energy within the Toronto art scene.

Duncan McLean
President, Waddington's
Posted: 6/21/2016 12:00:00 AM
By: Tess McLean

Leading Off Our Spring 2016 Auction Season:
The Art of Canada

What better way to launch our Spring 2016 auction season than with our inaugural Art of Canada Auction on May 30. Leading off our series of seven auctions representing art and collectibles from around the world, it seems fitting to start at home. And what a rich foundation we have to draw from. The Art of Canada skillfully presents the diversity of artistic production by some of the country's best artists. A sweeping representation of artists and themes, the collection visits Kurelek’s prairies, Frank Hans Johnston’s Algoma Waterfalls, Banff Alberta from the perspective of Takao Tanabe, life in the Arctic as depicted in Josephie Pootoogook’s Joyfully I See Ten Caribou, and simple family pleasures in Ennutsiak’s sculpture of mealtime. Definitively Canadian, the collection includes works from the Group of Seven, Painters Eleven, contemporary Canadian artists, and the remarkable creative expression of leading Inuit and First Nations artists.

You’ll have noticed that we’ve been bringing all forms of Canadian art closer together in recent years in the belief that our clients are as passionate as we are about the art created within our borders. Waddington’s role in the ‘Canadian’ art market stretches back several remarkable decades – back to 1978 for our first auction of Inuit art, and further back to 1967 to our first auction dedicated to Canadian fine art. We have loved watching the work of so many Canadian artists gain popularity and respect here at home and around the world.

Other highlights of our May 30 Art of Canada Auction include Joyce Wieland’s Dancers, a celebration of lightness, boundless freedom and ultimately ecstasy (Lot 18); Jean Albert McEwen’s powerful Blason du Chevalier Rouge (Lot 29); Haida Gwaii artist Rufus Moody’s exquisite Lidded Box in argelite and abalone shell (Lot 35); Bison Foraging in Winter by Frederick Arthur Verner, (Lot 39); and Cape Dorset artist Kiawak Ashoona’s stone sculpture Bird Spirit (Lot 51).

Talking about art around the world, the second auction of the season is our Asian Art Auction on June 13. Featuring over 350 lots, the auction includes exceptional artifacts from jade to textiles; rare, museum-grade Japanese prints; several important pieces from the collection of Robert Stephenson including a massive Thai, Chien Seng or Sukhothai style bronze figure of Buddha Sakyamuni, 15/16th century (Lot 54); and select scrolls from an American collection. Of additional interest is a rare, large Imari ‘Dragon and Phoenic' Charger, Meiki Period late 19th century (Lot 42); and a rare pair of Cloisonné Zebras, Late Qing Dynasty, estimated at $20,000—30,000 (Lot 74).

Est. $20,000—30,000
Est. $10,000—14,000

Jewellery takes centre stage on June 14 with 120 lots of beautiful works from 18th century Flemish, 19th century Etruscan and contemporary rings, necklaces, watches and much more. Shining brightly are lots 43 – a beautiful Cartier Pasha Day/Date Wristwatch, with moonphase display and second time zone; circa 2000 in an 18k yellow gold case with display back and sapphire crown covers; with an 18k yellow gold strap and deployant buckle, estimated at $10,000—14,000; Lot 45 – a 18K white gold cocktail ring set with a fine, large oval cut tanzanite (approx. 24.0ct.) encircled by 102 brilliant cut diamonds (approx. 3.20ct.t.w.), estimated at $12,000—16,000; and Lot 97 – a stunning platinum ring set with a marquis cut diamond (approx. 7.70ct.) flanked by two trilliant cut diamonds (approx. 0.65ct. each), estimated at $60,000—80,000.

Our International Art Auction combined with Decorative Arts follows on June 20. The International Art portion includes three important oil paintings by American painter and illustrator Philip Russell Goodwin (1882-1935) who specialized in depictions of wildlife, the outdoors, fishing, hunting and the Old American West, never before on the market; a watercolour by British artist Sir William Russell Flint, Court of the Listening Busts, Richelieu, and a majestic ship portrait by renowned British Maritime artist, Montague Dawson. In the Decorative Arts section of the June 20 auction, we are pleased to offer a Barr, Flight & Barr Worcester Japan Pattern Service, c.1807-13; a set of four George II Silver Table Candlesticks, John Cafe, London, 1756; and a Glass Bird Sculpture ‘Pulcino’ by Alessandro Pianon, c.1960.

Est. $100,000—150,000
Est. $2,500—3,500

Est. $20,000—30,000

More Decorative Arts highlights include a French Carved Ivory Renaissance Style Figural Chess Set, 19th century, modelled as Europe vs. the Ottoman Empire with kings, queens, bishops and knights on rearing steeds, rooks as foot soldiers with pole arms on turrets and pawns as foot soldiers, with halberds or bow and quivers; a pair of Maps of Canada, Jacques Nicolas Bellin, 1755 ‘Partie Occidentale de la Nouvelle France ou du Canada and Partie Orientale de la Nouvelle France ou du Canada, considered to be among the most important early maps of Canada; and finally, a Canadian Regency Rosewood Bracket Clock, George Savage, c.1830.

Spring may have come late this year but we’ll be making up for that with a profusion of amazing auctions for your enjoyment. Find out more about our 2016 Spring Auction Season

Posted: 5/26/2016 9:00:00 AM
By: Duncan McLean

The Art of Canada Auction

The art of Canada originated with objects created by our indigenous peoples. Whether fabricated for practical or ritualistic purposes, or as a creative record of their history and culture, collectors in Canada and throughout the world have long been fascinated by these objects. Waddington’s has deep expertise in this collecting area dating back to the first Inuit art auction conducted by our firm in 1978.

We have ruminated for some time now on the possibility of a less restricted interpretation of Canadian art which might leverage our expertise in this area to unite the best examples of indigenous art production with the type of work that, traditionally, has been offered in our Canadian Art major catalogue sales.

We know that the best collectors in this country have always been receptive to an inclusive view of our cultural and artistic heritage. They have long understood that the narrative of Canadian art is artificially limited when we construct silos that separate the artists of this country by ethnicity. While such labels may be convenient, by creating them we inadvertently shortchange our aesthetic experiences and limit our openness to those objects which fall outside the familiar collecting parameters and patterns we may establish for ourselves.

And so this season we are proud to present a unique combination of works created by artistic masters representing The Art of Canada. The scope of works offered this season has been expanded to encompass a selection of quality works by Inuit and First Nations artists as well as Canadian historical, modern and contemporary artists.

The catalogue is intended to awaken and delight your senses and expand your collecting imagination. We hope you find yourself fascinated by objects you might never have considered before.


Auction Gallery

Linda Rodeck
Senior Canadian Fine Art Specialist
Vice President Fine Art

Christa Ouimet
Senior Inuit Art Specialist

Posted: 5/17/2016 9:00:00 AM
By: Linda Rodeck

Asian Art Spring Auction

It has been another busy season for Waddington’s Asian art department, and we are delighted to present our spring auction offerings for your consideration. The catalogue includes some exceptional pieces from notable private collections, and from exciting new consignors. We are very privileged to include the Collection of Harold Gordon Groves (lots 85-120), which is an outstanding example of one’s lifelong dedication to passionate collecting. Another important private collection, acquired mainly from Sotheby’s and Christie’s, London, during the 1970s through to the 1990s (lots 243-273), also features some exceptional artifacts – from jade to textiles. We are also offering rare, museum grade Japanese prints. These include Hiroshige’s In the Grounds of the Tenjin Shrine at Kameido (lot 12) and Shiko Munakata’s Hawk Woman (lot 26).

With more than 350 extraordinary lots, it is always challenging to select the covers. We are proud to present a massive 18th/19th century blue and white Ming-style dish (lot 180) as the front cover of our spring catalogue. The Ming dynasty “heaped and piled” decoration of cobalt blue has been considered the zenith of porcelain firing, and we are privileged to be entrusted with this fine example from a renowned Vancouver collection. The back cover is a very rare album of a bodhi leaf sutra (lot 343). Originally purchased in from the prestigious London dealer J. Nachemsohn in 1929, this piece was passed by descent and is in excellent condition.

We are also honoured to be entrusted with several exceptional pieces from the Collection of Robert Stephenson (lots 49-56), including his prized massive Thai bronze Buddha (lot 54). This finely cast piece has great presence, and we rarely see such pieces outside of a museum collection. Finally, we are very pleased to be featuring select scrolls from an American painting collection (lots 195-203). A decorated naval commander, James C. Taylor was stationed in Asia for much of his career, and he became captivated by Chinese scroll paintings. His collection was passed by descent to his grandson, Robert U. Taylor, who has also become a fervent collector.

We have strived to cultivate a diverse catalogue this season, while always maintaining our rigorous standards for quality and rarity. It has been a privilege assembling this auction, and a true pleasure to work with numerous fine examples of Asian culture from our valued clients. Our heartfelt thanks to all our consignors, buyers and consultants for your continued support.

View the Auction Gallery

Posted: 5/17/2016 12:00:00 AM
By: Chih En Chen

The Art of Canada Auction

Waddington’s is pleased to present our inaugural Art of Canada Auction. This important event combines the finest historical, modern and contemporary Canadian art with top works from Inuit and Northwest Coast artists.

From our Indigenous offering we are particularly excited to share with you eleven prints from the 1959 Cape Dorset Print Collection, including Tudlik’s Division of Meat and Josephie Pootoogook’s Joyfully I See Ten Caribou. Headlining our Northwest Coast offering this season is a stunning carved argillite box with inlaid abalone shell by Rufus Moody. The Art of Canada Auction also features classic period works from various Arctic Quebec settlements such as a miniature version of Joe Talirunili’s famous Migration sculpture.

The online session of our spring auction features our popular offering of Small Wonders, often imitated but never duplicated, they are a select group of miniature works that we sprinkled throughout the session for your viewing pleasure. We have fine sculpture by esteemed artists George Tataniq, Barnabus Arnasungaaq and Kaka Ashoona and early prints from the likes of Parr, Sakiassie and Kenojuak. Also on offer during this session is an exquisite collection of woven Salish baskets along with a rare sketchbook of drawings by Mary Ayaq.

We look forward to seeing you during one or more of the viewing times below.

Friday 27 May 2016
12 Noon to 5 pm

Saturday 28 May 2016
11 am to 5 pm

Sunday 29 May 2016
11 am to 5 pm

Monday 30 May 2016
10 am to 12 Noon

Auction Gallery



Posted: 5/13/2016 10:00:00 AM
By: Christa Ouimet


If there is a moment in your glorious long weekend when you find yourself alone in front of the computer dreaming of a great bottle of wine, make sure you check out what we have to offer in our online fine wine auction.

If the south of France is your thing, in particular the Southern Rhone Valley, then bliss will find you as the sale is spectacularly endowed with great wines from all the top producers of Chateauneuf du Pape. We have it layered in three sections of the auction, so to save you time scrolling through, here’s where to look: Lots 60-97, Lots 159-209, Lots 283-336.

All these gorgeous wines are from one splendid cellar from a collector obsessed with buying the best the region has to offer. Beaucastel, Rayas, Marcoux, Pegau,Vieux Telegraphe, Sabon, 100 point rated 2001 La Mordoree, they are all here. Many are in original wood cases or original carton, purchased on release from the LCBO or SAQ and perfectly cellared since. Check out the ratings on these beauties, most score in the mid to high 90’s and many are ready for current consumption.

So, now that we have at least some of your weekend sorted out, please plan on spending at least a little time out of doors!

When we were assembling the fine wines for our May online auction, one theme emerged above all others. This is a group of wines made for drinking. Yes, there are some collectible gems like the suberb Chambertins of Armand Rousseau and the case lots of Chateau de Beaucastel Homage a Jacques Perrin, yet the majority of wines in the auction represent great opportunities for wine collectors, afficianadoes and restaurateurs to buy great, and in some cases, legendary wines for current enjoyment.

The sale begins with an abundance of ready-to-drink Bordeaux in case quantities and is anchored by an exquisite southern Rhone valley cellar featuring an incredible array of Chateauneuf du Pape wines from legendary producers such as Clos St. Jean Deus Ex Machina, Beaucastel, Grand Veneur, Chateau Rayas and Domaine de Marcoux among others. There is also a very interesting collection of wines from a prominent Toronto chef’s collection, some lovely vintage Salon and a number of rare California cult wines in original wood. For those of you who enjoy purchasing mixed lots of Bordeaux, you will be delighted. For current drinkability, this auction ticks all the boxes!

We have made some changes as a result of feedback from our clients. The sale will run a full eight days from May 16-24 giving lots of additional time to bid and will begin closing at 6 pm as opposed to an afternoon closing. We have also included far more tasting notes and ratings than in the first online auction.

View the May 16-24, 2016 Fine Wine Online Auction Gallery

View the May 16-24, 2016 Fine Wine Online Auction Catalogue PDF

For those of you interested in consigning to future auctions, we have streamlined the valuation process in order to get information back to you much more quickly. We have two more auctions scheduled for this year. Mark your calendar with the following dates:

Fine Wine Online Auction
Fine Spirits Online Auction
September 12 - 20, 2016
Consignment Deadline: Friday 15 July 2016

Fine Wine Online Auction
November 14 - 22, 2016
Consignment Deadline: Friday 9 September 2016

We are planning some tasting and social events this fall and we certainly welcome your feedback anytime.

Posted: 5/5/2016 12:00:00 AM
By: Stephen Ranger

Keeping an Eye Open

We don't always get a lot of time for quiet contemplation here at Waddington's. The life of an auctioneer-appraiser is a hectic one and in order to assemble a sale of 182 lots we may have to look at well over 1,000 paintings, sculpture or prints.

Lately, some of us have carved out time to read "Keeping an Eye Open", Julian Barnes’ collection of essays on art, in anticipation of his visit to Toronto the day after our major spring auction. A passage in the introduction serves to remind us of the benefits of refreshing our art experiences by looking at a lot of different art and not just the things we think we know.

Mr. Barnes makes a lot of good observations. He suggests that over time we learn that there are some artists we grow out of, others we grow into; artists to whom we have had a lifelong indifference and others we might suddenly discover after years of unnoticing (his word, and a great one); artists for whom our response was a bit negligent and others whose hold over us is persistent.

This way of thinking about art has close ties to the thinking behind The Art of Canada sale this season which combines works that you would traditionally expect in the Canadian Art Department's major catalogue sale together with exceptional works entrusted to our Inuit Art Department.

We welcome change and we like contrast and juxtaposition. We like to move pictures around in our homes to revive our experiences with them. We hope this sale brings you a similar enriched experience by awakening your senses. Please join us for our public preview leading up to the auction or contact us directly to arrange a private viewing. Mark May 30th in your calendar for Waddington's The Art of Canada spring catalogue auction.

We look forward to welcoming you once again to Waddington's!

Auction Gallery

Posted: 5/2/2016 2:00:00 PM
By: Linda Rodeck

Who Needs an Appraisal? At Some Point - Everyone Does.

There are so many reasons our clients contact us. Of course, we provide excellent auction services, but we are also a very busy provider of appraisals. Often a major life event can necessitate a variety of our services.

The majority of our contacts are from folks who aren’t quite sure what they need. It’s an interesting conversation to have, figuring out where they are in life, what has prompted the call, and how we can best help. In the past year we have performed appraisals for every imaginable reason – estates, moving, insurance coverage, family division, separation, charitable donation, and of course market value for auction.

Our roster of specialists, as well as the capability of producing a document that is up to ISA and USPAP standards, make it possible to produce accurate and informed documents for nearly any type of treasured artwork or piece of decorative art. Putting together an appraisal which determines value or estimates cost, is something I really enjoy doing. It’s always like being presented with a new puzzle to solve.

Sometimes it’s not immediately possible to find the perfect comparable, and that’s when you put on your thinking cap. The most recent example of this is a painting by Sir Frederick Banting that I was asked to appraise. In order to determine fair market value, which the CRA accepts as, "The highest price, expressed in terms of money, that the property would bring in an open and unrestricted market between a willing buyer and a wiling seller who are knowledgeable, informed, and prudent, and who are acting independently of each other", I would typically search for Banting paintings from the same time period, of the same size, medium, and subject. Well that just didn’t exist. Here is what I had to work with:

It’s a lovely piece, signed titled and dated ‘Fort Resolution, 1928’ on the back. The verso also had a forest landscape sketch – would that add to the value of painting? (No, not significantly) After some research, I was able to confirm that Banting had indeed travelled to Fort Resolution, NWT in 1928 with his frequent painter companion A. Y. Jackson, however another oil on panel from this trip hasn’t ever been sold publicly and therefore there wasn’t a ‘perfect’ comparable. I found many paintings of similar age, size, and composition by Banting but they were all Ontario and Quebec village scenes. A. Y. Jackson, though, has secondary market transactions recorded of many scenes painted during trips to NWT in this period, so I decided to see if the fair market value of an oil on panel of this size by A. Y. Jackson was effected very greatly by the location depicted in the scene. My conclusion was that it really did not affect the fair market value to a great degree, so I confidently compared other Banting village scenes in order to determine the fair market value of his ‘Fort Resolution, 1928’ creation.

As luck would have it, the painting was subsequently consigned to our live auction of Canadian Fine Art. It will be interesting to see how all of my conclusions fare.

If you’d like to chat about an appraisal, please contact us and ask for our Appraisal department – we’re happy to help!

Posted: 4/14/2016 12:00:00 AM
By: Ellie Muir

Invitation to Consign

Waddington's is currently accepting consignments for our forthcoming live auction of Important Inuit Art to be held in May 2016. We are also accepting consignments for our popular online Inuit Art auctions.

Our specialists are travelling this season in search of consignments. Contact us to find out if we'll be in your area.

Our specialists routinely view images and provide advice on saleability and value. Connect with us via email to find out more about your artwork.

Waddington's has been the site of market milestones for almost 40 years. Our consigners have the advantage of offering their collections to Waddington’s cultivated network of buyers. When you choose to work with us, you gain the benefit of both domestic and international exposure through our reputation as the leading authority on the Inuit Art market. With a combination of personalized service and creative marketing, we do our utmost to ensure the maximum value for your collection.

We invite you to work with us on the successful sale of your collection.
To book a consultation, please contact:

Christa Ouimet
Inuit Art Specialist

View our 2015 auction results

Past Inuit Art auction highlights

Posted: 3/18/2016 12:00:00 AM
By: Christa Ouimet


This spring Concrete Contemporary puts forward an ambitious and important offering of over 150 works in both our online and live auctions from private collections across the country. We hope our online galleries will whet your appetite and we invite you to attend our extended preview at our Toronto, King Street East gallery.

The March 11-17 online auction features 77 works, accessibly priced, created by an array of extremely important contemporary Canadian artists. Many works are small in scale and are aimed at the emerging collectors market. Bid on a small work by Kim Dorland or a beautiful photograph by Max Dean or Lynne Cohen for under $3000. It’s a great opportunity to add blue chip art to a budding collection. We are especially pleased to be offering a number of works in support of the Scotiabank Contact Festival again this season.

For our live auction on April 11, we have partnered with New York based Artsy, who will feature approximately 15 lots for online bidding prior to the live auction on the evening of April 11. Log on to for full information on how to bid or contact Kristin Vance or myself directly for assistance.

The live auction is again a panoramic snapshot of the best in contemporary Canadian art. There are many notable works, but we are particularly proud to be offering two major canvases by Wanda Koop from the Estate of James Bisback, wonderfully divergent takes on landscape by Kim Dorland and Steve Driscoll; monumental photo-based works by Ed Burtynsky, Arnold Zageris, Michael Awad and April Hickox; and video installation and photography from Adad Hannah. The list is impressive, speaking to the breadth and talent of contemporary Canadian art.

We look forward to welcoming you to the gallery for the auction and previews. Please mark Sunday, April 10 at 2 pm in your calendars for a special preview event at 275 King Street East featuring a number of special guests and refreshments.

Posted: 3/10/2016 12:00:00 AM
By: Stephen Ranger

Fine Wine Auction February 27, 2016

Bringing Back Wine Auctions to Ontario!

Our inaugural live fine wine auction will be sure to please fine wine and spirits enthusiasts. Conducted at our Toronto gallery we’re excited to offer 437 lots of fine wine, featuring:

Domaine Armand Rousseau Chambertin 2010 Grand Cru (2 bts/lot);
Château Pétrus 2008 in original wooden case (6 bts/lot);
Jacques Prieur Musigny 2005 (3 bts/lot);
Comte Georges de Vogüé 2006 in original wooden case (6 bts/lot);
Château Rayas 2007 (6 bts/lot);
Screaming Eagle Cabernet Sauvignon 2009 in original wooden case (3 bts/lot).

The auction also includes multiple lots of rare Rhone wines from exceptional vintages and highly rated Grand Cru Burgundy.

Canada’s pre-eminent wine auctioneer and Waddington's Vice President Stephen Ranger is pleased that Waddington’s is able to assist Ontario fine wine and spirits collectors with their collections. Ranger notes, “Auctions are an excellent way to build a fine wine portfolio and provide an opportunity to buy wines that aren’t available through other channels Auctions are also a great way to help restaurants build world-class wine lists.”

Waddington’s was awarded the exclusive contract to provide fine wine and spirit auction services in Ontario under the authority of the LCBO, a first for an Ontario auction company. Waddington’s had conducted the LCBO’s Vintages Fine Wine and Spirits auctions from 2009 until 2013.

This auction begins at 10 am. Doors open at 9:30 am.

To find out more about this auction visit:

Posted: 2/26/2016 9:00:00 AM
By: Tess McLean

Good Spirits Are Always In Season...

Good spirits are always in season, especially in the post holiday depths of winter, so with that thought in mind, we welcome 2016 with two auctions. We begin with an online auction of Fine and Rare Spirits (February 22-25), followed by our rescheduled live auction of Fine Wine on Saturday, February 27.

Our historic Fine and Rare Spirits auction is led by lovingly tended collections of rare Scotch, Cognac and Bourbon including three (yes, three!) bottles of the super rare Pappy Van Winkle’s Family Reserve 20 Year Old Bourbon. This rare spirit seldom finds its way to the Great White North and will be sure to keep you warm through the winter. All three bottles are in impeccable condition.

The live Fine Wine auction features among other smaller offerings, two major Toronto area collections. The first features an almost comprehensive library of Southern Rhone wines, focused on the great wines of Chateauneuf-du-Pape. Multiple case lots, many in original wood, have all been perfectly stored and purchased directly from the LCBO. Due to the quantities in this collection, we will offer it in two parts, the second scheduled for our May online auction. The other featured collection is an outstanding Parker points topping group of wines from Bordeaux, Burgundy, Italy, California and Spain. Truly a connoisseur’s selection, expect to see producers such as Mouton Rothschild, Haut Brion, Margaux, Petrus, Armand Rousseau, Vogue, Dujac, single vineyard Guigal, Chave, Beaucastel, Rayas, Screaming Eagle, Scarecrow and Dominus among many other rare offerings.

As we continue to roll out the Fine Wine auction program, consignments are being considered for the next online auction in May 2016. Please contact either Stephen Ranger or me directly for more information. The live sale will begin at 10 am on Saturday, February 27. Refreshments will be served throughout the day and we look forward to seeing you in the saleroom at 275 King Street East as we begin 2016 in high (and fine) spirits!

Posted: 1/12/2016 12:00:00 AM
By: Ryan Corrigan

Pre-Columbian Art and Artefacts Online Auction

Comprising Pre-Columbian and modern Central and South American ceramics, sculpture and textile work, this collection showcases art and artefacts from a broad range of ancient and contemporary cultures. Many of the objects are from the well-known collections of Alan Lapiner, Nathan Cummings, Bruno J. Wasserman-San Blas and Nelson A. Rockefeller, and have been included in exhibitions at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and related publications.

The auction includes three excellent Mochica stirrup spout vessels, products of a culture which flourished in northern Peru between 100 B.C. and 800 A.D.. These ceremonial vessels, painted with scenes from nature and stylized figures, provide fascinating insight into the religious and social lives of the Mochica people. Centuries later, the Chimu culture developed in the same region of Peru and continued to produce similar vessels. Included in this sale are examples of their black and grey wares, produced in large quantities between 1000 A.D. and 1400 A.D., that demonstrate how technological developments in ceramic production and artistic ideas were passed from one culture to another.

One of the most impressive pieces in this online auction is the Mayan Polychromed Cylinder Pot, late Classic Period, 600-800 A.D.. The painted surface demonstrates the high level of skill that Mayan artists possessed, and its elaborate detail suggests that it may have been a funerary offering for an elite member of Mayan society. The relationship between life and death was of ongoing importance in the visual arts of ancient Mesoamerica. The Nayarit figures from Mexico depicting a diseased male and a female in birthing position likewise illustrate an interest in the cycle of life. Like the Mayan Cylinder Pot, these objects were recovered from burial sites, and thus belong to a long tradition of funerary art in Central and South America.

The collection also contains many stone pieces, an essential material used for both utilitarian objects such as axe heads and grinding stones, but also in fine art, exemplified in the Standing Male Figure and Jaguar Form Metate from the Guanacaste Nicoya Peninsula, 800-1200 A.D.. Other tools such as whorls and loom posts reveal less about the complexities of social life, but nonetheless broaden our understanding of everyday activities in the ancient world such as textile production.

Moreover, the 20th-century objects in this collection are unique, essentially blurring the boundaries between past and present. Modern indigenous Peruvians have recreated the decorative arts of their ancestors, creating Chancay type fabric dolls with textile fragments recovered from ancient tombs while modern Shipibo potters draw artistic inspiration from Pre-Columbian vessels. The collection as a whole represents the diversity of Pre-Columbian art, and includes both typical and unusual works from a range of cultures, time periods and geographical areas. Waddington's is pleased to offer these objects in a timed online auction through ending February 4, 2016.

Posted: 1/11/2016 12:00:00 AM
By: Sarah Carter

New Record Price for Canadian Silver

The Decorative Arts and International Art auction concluded our fall season on a high note with a well attended preview, much excitement and a new record price for a piece of Canadian silver sold at auction. The sale brought together a superb collection of decorative art, rugs and paintings, lending the showroom an air of elegance and warmth that welcomed those who attended the preview over the weekend. The opening segment of International Art witnessed Montague Dawson's spectacular painting, Dawn and a West Wind, bring its high estimate at $48,000. Decorative Arts began with a collection of chess sets, ranging in age from the ninth to the twentieth century, including two elaborately carved sets in ivory, which brought $25,200 each. The collection, shown together, represented various aesthetic traditions from around the world, with examples of nonrepresentational Islamic pieces, a set of Netsuke and some charming carvings of sea creatures.

Some unusual snuff boxes, Georgian silver and eighteenth-century examples of French silver followed an impressive assemblage of bronze sculptures, but the absolute highlight of the evening was undoubtedly Laurent Amiot's covered soup tureen bearing the arms of the Hertel de Rouville family. The tureen, which was estimated at $25,000 - $35,000, brought more than double its estimate after intense bidding on the phone, online and in the room, finally selling for a record $83,000. We were delighted to see the object purchased by The National Gallery of Canada, and we look forward to seeing this important piece of Canadian cultural heritage on public display in their upcoming exhibition of Amiot's work in 2017.

Other highlights included some excellent Russian silver: a finely engraved silver parcel-gilt beaker which brought well over its estimate of $1000 - $1,500 selling for $7,200 and a Fabergé silver mounted glass claret jug which sold for $6,600. The sale demonstrates once again that the decorative arts, with its diversity of objects and styles, continues to appeal to a broad audience. Waddington's is pleased to conclude yet another successful season.

View the Auction Results

Posted: 12/10/2015 9:00:00 AM
By: Bill Kime

Decorative Arts and International Art Auction

On December 7 2015 Waddington’s International and Decorative Arts Departments auction will be led by a fine selection of artworks from across the globe. Once again, we have selected the finest paintings, drawings and sculptures from numerous estates and private collections. The framework of this auction resists chronological or country order and instead, we present this offering to highlight the respective dynamism of these works by emphasizing their sameness or exalting their variations.

John Callcott Horsley’s At the Window (lot 25) is featured on the front cover of our catalogue. With the terrier looking eagerly into the distance, this work invites you to view the wonderful works of art contained in its pages following.
An impressive large canvas by an artist from the circle of Sir Anthony Van Dyke (lot 14), removed from the Collection of the Warwick House (London, UK) in 1906, will charm with its tender depiction of the three eldest children of King Charles I and their faithful King Charles spaniels poised at their feet.

We are pleased to continue to offer works consigned to us by the Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO) as part of their strategy to refine and improve its collection. This auction includes a number of Old Master and 19th Century drawings (lot 6 – lot 10 inclusive; lot 23).
The sale is complimented by technically superb portraits of Catholic cardinals, including the oversized work by Giuseppe Signorini (lot 45). A Toronto collector while in Rome, Italy commissioned this work directly from the artist in October 1929.

Likewise, we are privileged to present the historic canvas, Clipper Ship “Thermoplyae” by Montague Dawson (lot 34) in its original untouched condition. “Thermoplyae” features a single clipper ship as its protagonist. Here, Dawson has the composite vessel appearing to pitch and heel amidst a swelling sea under ominous storm clouds. This work retains the original gallery label from the Watson Art Galleries (Montreal, CA), a prominent Canadian purveyor of the most important European pictures sold in Canada. The work is accompanied by a photo-certificate from the Canadian photographic firm William Notman & Son Limited (Montreal, CA).

This Dawson oil on canvas is joined by a superb watercolour by the celebrated British artist. The beautiful coloration of Montague Dawson’s Close hauled (lot 35) additionally compliments the grandness of Charles Edward Dixon’s impressive, detailed historic watercolour scene The First Canadian Contingent Escorted by Princess Royal (lot 19).

A rare canvas by Denis Louis Bihan Niagara Falls, City of Buffalo in the Distance (lot 18) offers viewers a spectacular view of the falls from a lofty vantage point.

A heroic battle scene by Francesco Coleman offers a cavalry charge with richly costumed Bedouins (lot 42) bathed in brilliant daylight. Coleman’s clear command of pictorial spatial recession and atmospheric and tonal affects creates an exciting view for its spectator.
Assembling an auction of this scope imposes an enormous amount of commitment and energy.  These biannual events are accomplished with thorough consideration and a rigorous review of scholarship but can only be executed with great cooperation. I am fortunate and indebted to my colleagues for all their assistance.   
My final and most significant thank-you is to you, the collector, and your remarkable vision and enthusiasm in your acquisitions.
I look forward to greeting you at our previews dates.

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Posted: 12/3/2015 12:00:00 AM
By: Susan Robertson

A Canadian Treasure: Laurent Amiot's Soup Tureen with the Arms of the Hertel de Rouville Family, c.1790

Laurent Amiot (1764-1839) was a prominent figure in Canadian silversmithing in the late 1700s, a period that witnessed the convergence of diverse aesthetic programs. As a young and talented silversmith, he was awarded the opportunity to apprentice in Paris by the Roman Catholic Church. During the five years that Amiot spent in France, he was strongly influenced by the Louis XVI style, a branch of French Neoclassicism that was popular in Paris at that time. In 1787, Amiot returned to Quebec with exceptional technical skills and a high degree of respect for silversmithing, considering himself foremost an artist. Silversmiths were traditionally classed as craftsman, and among Amiot's contributions to Canadian decorative art was his progressive view of silversmithing as a serious artistic practice.

Throughout his career, he insisted on being referred to as Maître ès Art Orfèvre (master of the silversmithing art), and set himself apart from other Canadian silversmiths by drafting preliminary sketches. These preparatory drawings supported the idea that Amiot's work was intellectual and should be appreciated as fine art. Moreover, the sketches now provide a unique perspective on both Amiot as a creative individual and his silver in a historical context. Amiot led the industry in both quality and quantity, and was undoubtedly the most influential silversmith working in Quebec between 1790 and 1840.

Although Amiot's impact is most visible in the stylistic and decorative developments that he initiated in church silver, he also responded to the emerging market for domestic silver that was fuelled by the rising middle class and their desire for household objects. His domestic silver, including the present tureen, often borrowed motifs from English Neoclassicism or skillfully incorporated elements of both a Louis XVI style and designs derived from British imports. These stylistic choices reflected the broader cultural atmosphere of Quebec in the last decades of the eighteenth century. The Roman Catholic Church preferred traditional, French designs while the political and social spheres were predominately English and yielded English tastes for table silver. Amiot is most celebrated for his ability to incorporate and harmonize these different European styles in his original work.

Soup tureens are the largest and in many ways the most impressive of Amiot's domestic silverware. The Soup Tureen with the Arms of the Hertel de Rouville Family is one of only two that Amiot is known to have made during his career. It is significant both as an eighteenth-century example of Canadian colonial silver and for its importance in the context of Amiot's oeuvre. Both of Amiot's tureens incorporate a convex and elongated body supported on spherical clawed feet, a reference to the English Rococo movement, while the covers and ornamentation, specifically the chased laurel garlands on the girth and acanthus motifs on the covers draw inspiration from Neoclassicism. The Hertel de Rouville tureen, with its reeded serpentine silver handles, appears more complete and arguably more sophisticated than the example with wooden handles found in the Royal Ontario Museum's permanent collection.

Amiot encouraged the public to appreciate his fine work in silver for its artistic merits, and in elevating decorative silver above craft, he advanced the art of silversmithing in Canada. His innovative use of hybrid styles rippled in the waters of the silver industry throughout his career, and his artistic legacy now forms an integral part of our cultural heritage. The present soup tureen, a Canadian treasure, tells its part of the story of life in Lower Canada, reflecting the broad range of styles and high level of sophistication that characterized silversmithing in Canada at the end of the eighteenth century. Likewise, with its strong ties to both English and French stylistic traditions, it occupies a significant place in early Canadian history.

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Posted: 12/1/2015 12:00:00 AM
By: Bill Kime

Waddington’s Achieves Highest Price for Inuit Art at Auction in 2015.

A diminutive sculpture by legendary Inuit artist Joe Talirunili titled Joe’s Escape, sold for $163,500 at Waddington’s in Toronto on November 16. The highest price for Inuit Art achieved at auction in 2015, Joe’s Escape joins the ranks of numerous record-setting prices for Inuit Art set by Waddington’s over its 35 years in the Inuit Art market.

Christa Ouimet, Head of Inuit Art at Waddington’s, notes that "Works by Joe Talirunilli, specifically Joe’s boats, which are his most collectable subject matter, routinely sell for over $100,000, and have sold as high as our record price of $290,000 set in 2012.” Ouimet adds that, “Not only is Talirunili the ‘top seller’ of all Inuit artists, the prices his works achieve are at the same level of other well-known Canadian artists.” In the market Talirunili ranks second to Bill Reid, and outperforms most Canadian sculptors. Unlike most Canadian artists, Joe also enjoys a great deal of international interest.

Other highlights of the November auction include a major work in bone by Karoo Ashevak. The almost 20” drum dancer sold for $50,400, the second highest price for a work by the artist; the record price of $78,200 for a work by Karoo was also achieved by Waddington’s in 2004.

Waddington’s also set a record for Osuitok Ipeelee’s important 1959 stencil print, Eskimo Legend: Owl, Fox and Hare. The print was enthusiastically welcomed back to the market setting a record price of $28,800; it had been over a decade since last available to collectors. Recognized as one of Canada’s most important sculptors, Osuitok contributed only two prints to the annual Cape Dorset print collection and only in its inaugural year of 1959, making the print a rare and highly sought-after piece.

Waddington’s Fall 2015 auction of Important Inuit and First Nations Art included almost 300 works of sculpture, prints, textiles and paintings by the leading artists in the field.

Waddington’s holds biannual live auctions and monthly online auctions of Inuit Art and First Nations Art. The next opportunity to acquire a work of Inuit Art will be from Waddington’s online auction January 25 – 28, 2016.

Always a show stopper, Karoo Ashevak does it again with this superb Inuit drum dancer in whalebone. It fetched $50,400 at Monday evening’s auction.

One of Canada’s most talented sculptors, Osuitok Ipeelee, contributed two images to the 1959 Cape Dorset Collection. This stunning stencil of Osuitok's did not appear on the open market for more than a decade. It fetched $28,800 during Waddington’s live Inuit art auction on Monday.

This Robert Davidson bronze sculpture mounted on a stone base is said to be a portrait of the artist’s brother, Reg Davidson. Highlighting our selection of Northwest Coast art, it was met with much interest during the preview and was auctioned off at $11,400.

View from the front of the auction room, some of the artwork that was sold on November 16th, 2015.
Posted: 11/20/2015 12:00:00 AM
By: Christa Ouimet


Dear Wine Lovers,

Our online wine auction is underway! The auction features over 300 lots of superb Bordeaux, Grand and Premier Cru Burgundy, great cult California, Super Tuscan rarities, vintage Port and a host of other wonderful wines from around the world. The auction also features a stunning collection of wines by the famed producer Louis Jadot, all in magnum format!

The online auction site is live from November 23 at 9 am to 2 pm on November 26. If you haven’t bid online with us before, be sure to register at

As much as we have been busy with the online sale, we’ve also been working furiously at preparing the December 12th live Fine Wine Auction. This live sale will feature more than 300 lots of superb wines from the greatest wine producing regions of the world. We look forward to welcoming you to our King Street, Toronto gallery for this gathering of the fine wine community.

Our 2016 auction schedule will include four online auctions and a live auction as well as special events and tastings throughout the year. If you are interested in consigning to any of our upcoming auctions, please contact my colleague, Ryan Corrigan at

Our auctions are conducted under the authority of the LCBO, but are fully managed by Waddington’s. Please feel free to contact me directly if I can be of assistance with any wine related enquiry. My direct line is 416-847-6194 or email

We look forward to bringing the Fine Wine auction market back to Ontario.

Posted: 11/12/2015 9:00:00 AM
By: Stephen Ranger

Asian Art Fall Auction

We are delighted to present our Fall 2015 Asian Art Auction.

Bringing our auctions together is always a pleasure. We work carefully and thoughtfully to find the right balance of materials, always following our rigorous guidelines of quality and rarity. My trips to Taipei, New York, and across Canada from August to October resulted in an exciting variety of exceptional consignments. This fall we are pleased to offer over 330 lots from Vancouver, Montreal, Quebec City, New York, Taipei, and here at home in Toronto, covering Japanese, Korean, Himalayan, Southeast Asian, and of course, Chinese works of art.

On Vancouver Island, I was privileged to accept for consignment a collection of fine porcelain. It was mainly acquired in Hong Kong and Beijing prior to 1940, and some is from respected Asian art dealers, including Orientique Hong Kong.

This fall we are also delighted to introduce Waddington's first Asian Art Reference Books section, which includes selected lots from the estate of Yukman Lai (1949-2013), a Chinese-Canadian artist, calligrapher and seal engraver. He was born in China and raised in Hong Kong, eventually immigrating to Vancouver in 1991 where he became a prominent educator and artist of ink paintings and calligraphy. He was passionate about fostering an integration of eastern and western cultures. His works have been collected by art galleries and museums in Canada, Hong Kong and mainland China, and his paintings and calligraphy were selected by Canada Post to be issued as stamps in 1999 and 2001. A small sampling of his comprehensive library is included in this sale, and more will be offered in the future.

We are also thrilled to include another piece from the estate of Chen Zhaogong (1903-1996). You may recall the Qianlong blue and white Ming-style hu vase that we featured as our June 2014 catalogue cover, which realized an astounding 186,500 CAD. For this sale, we successfully secured another important porcelain piece from the Chen family: a blue and white bottle vase from the Guangxu period (lot 208). And in an astonishing and auspicious coincidence, our aforementioned clients from Vancouver Island consigned a matched mate! We are thrilled to offer these rare and exceptional pieces; and their cobalt blue certainly illuminates our porcelain section.

The Japanese works section features a massive and fine painting painting of Mori Tetsuzan (1775-1841), which depicts the rare tiger theme of this 18th Century master. It was consigned to us by an important Dutch-Canadian family, with provenance from Christie's Amsterdam, 1981.

With such a variety of extraordinary works, the cover lot must stand out as an exceptional item to represent the entire auction. This fall we are proud to present a turquoise-ground shaped box with a Qianlong mark and of the period (Lot 157) as our catalogue cover. It is from a renowned French diplomatic family in Montreal, with distinguished provenance including C. T Loo and Maison des Bambous, Paris. The only comparable piece, which was possibly the other half of a pair, is now in the GuanFu Museum Beijing.

It has been a privilege assembling this auction, and a true pleasure to work with numerous fine examples of Asian culture from our valued clients. Our heartfelt thanks to all our consignors, buyers and consultants for your continued support.

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Posted: 11/9/2015 12:00:00 AM
By: Chih En Chen

Major Fall Auction of Canadian Art

Our 2015 major fall auction of Canadian Art will be the fifth sale I have directed since returning to Waddington's. There have been myriad changes and improvements to the Canadian Art department since the summer of 2013. A new catalogue design, changes to the exhibition space, the introduction of didactic panels, augmented ancillary material both in the print and online versions of the catalogue and increased learning sessions hosted by Waddington's, specifically our WoW (Women of Waddington's) events. And I am happy to say we have done all of this without an increase in costs to either our buyers or sellers.

We continue to seek out the most interesting works we can find to include in our sales, and are not driven by dollar value alone. Rather, we have always aimed to find quality at all price levels and have been fortunate this season to discover, for your bidding competition, important watercolours by Fortin from the mid-1920s, one of the earliest Verner Indian encampments (based on a sketch in the collection of the National Gallery of Canada), a very large mid-1950s Riopelle watercolour and ink, sumptuous and insightful portraits by Florence Carlyle, Randolph Hewton and Paul Peel, and superb still lifes by Dallaire, FitzGerald and Goodridge Roberts. There are also wonderful works on paper by William Armstong and Washington Friend, by E.J. Hughes and Lawren Harris. From Krieghoff to Kim Dorland, the sale is replete with examples of Canadian Art at its best.

Finding, valuing, researching, cataloguing and, ultimately, selling works of art at our twice yearly catalogue sales and seasonal Select Online Sales is a team effort. In addition to our regular and part-time staff, we have been fortunate to avail ourselves of the writing expertise of Christine Boyanoski, PhD., Amy Korczynski, PhD., Melissa Alexander, M.A., and Elizabeth Johnston, M.A.

The catalogue and the sale are born out of the fortitude, creativity and expertise of the core staff of the Canadian Art Department. I extend my gratitude to Anna Holmes, M.Litt., and Marina Dumont Gauthier, M.A. for their unfailing ability and willingness to do what it takes to get the job done. In particular, I would like to single out Erin Rutherford, M.A, and Mover of Mountains.

Thank you to all who take an interest in the work we do here at Waddington's. It continues to be our great pleasure to serve you.

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Posted: 11/5/2015 9:00:00 AM
By: Linda Rodeck

James and Jonny’s Great Adventure

“Where Antique and Unique Meet” is the motto of the village of Shakespeare. It could also be the motto for Jonny Kalisch and James Bisback, owners of Jonnys Antiques.

The partnership of Jonny Kalisch and James Bisback, and their eponymously named antiques store in the storybook town of Shakespeare Ontario, were legendary. Loyal attendees of our auction previews for decades, it was always a pleasure to see them at Waddington’s. Jonny – flamboyant and colourful, often bedecked in Navajo turquoise jewellery, or dressed in lederhosen, and the slightly reserved, more refined James – both immensely liked by all.

The partners came from distinctly different backgrounds: Bisback was from the small, quintessentially Ontario town of Seaforth, and Kalisch immigrated to Canada from Poland, via Germany, Switzerland and England. Their passion for antiques bringing them together in Toronto in 1964. Jonny opened his first shop on Wellesley Street in downtown Toronto; “actually, a bit of junk shop” one former client recalled. But even in the early days Jonny understood how to attract attention, and business. A signature sleigh that would later grace the Shakespeare shop was first placed on the roof of the bay window of his shop on Wellesley. Spotted from a distance, shoppers knew “they had to come in to investigate,” Jonny said. Perhaps that sleigh is what drew James in that day he first walked into Jonny’s shop. The rest, of course, is antiques history.

In 1969 Jonny and James moved to Shakespeare, Ontario, where they would create Canada’s most popular and well-regarded antiques business. In fact Jonny and James would transform Shakespeare itself into the “antiques mecca” of Ontario, drawing customers from across North America and Europe. At one point, Jonny and James owned shops in Shakespeare, Bayfield and Toronto. But it would be Jonnys in the village of Shakespeare, with a population of less than 1,000 people, that would become known as Canada’s great antiques destination.

Described as “a bit like salt and pepper”, Jonny was the entertainer and James was the quiet one who handled the business of buying and researching. Recognized as a connoisseur of 18th and 19th century ceramics, James possessed an astonishing range of interests, and his breadth of knowledge was extraordinary. An inquisitive, passionate and scholarly dealer, he was always generous with his knowledge, as noted by Rosalie Sharp in her 2007 autobiography: “We started collecting (ceramics) in earnest about 1986. It was then I met china maven James Bisback. We share affection for ceramics and for each other. He’s a sweetheart. In February of 1987, Issy and I went out to James’ antique shop in Shakespeare – Jonnys Antiques, named for his partner, Jonny Kalisch. We bought a pile of Spode tulips and James suggested that we might enjoy the Ceramics Fair and Seminar held in England every June. Since then, except for one year, the three of us have attended that fair… James and I prompt each other to buy selected items either for his shop or my collection.”

Avid collector and a Jonnys client since 1970, Clayton Shields recalls that Jonnys was not just a store, but also a place to hang out, perhaps even be treated to some of Jonny’s homemade tomato soup. Friends and collectors gathered when James would come back from a buying trip, everyone eager to see the new acquisitions, knowing there would be something for everyone, and always of the best of quality. (Clayton noted that items he purchased from Jonnys over the years have since been donated to the Winnipeg Art Gallery.) James’ keen eye later extended beyond antiques to discover Inuit art, honing in on the exquisite lines of Kavik, TikTak and others. Soon, Jonnys was also selling Inuit art; stone sculpture displayed in beautiful juxtaposition with the antiques.

A great example of James exacting nature was his quest and acquisition of pieces from two porcelain dessert services bearing views of the journey of Viscount Milton and Dr. Walter Cheadle across British territory in Canada in 1862-1863. Commemorated by the Minton china factory of England, the plates were based on drawings made and photographs taken en route, capturing their adventures of buffalo hunting and crossing the Rockies, the gold rush and Indian guides. It was the historical importance that fuelled James’ search for the plates, “It’s so important to Canada,” James said. “A private commission of the highest quality, this porcelain is probably the most significant ‘Canadian historical china’ in existence.” Following years of research, in 2004 Jonnys cordially invited collectors to an exhibition and sale of “Milton and Cheadle’s Great Adventure”. We have the privilege of offering five plates from the service in this auction.

We are honoured to say a public and very fond farewell to Jonny and James as we present an auction of some of their extraordinary collections.

Jonny Kalisch passed away in April of 2015, just over a year after James Bisback’s passing in 2014, leaving behind legions of fans, friends and clients, and many fond memories of a great Canadian adventure.

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Posted: 11/4/2015 12:00:00 AM
By: Tess McLean

Inuit Art Auction including First Nations Art - Catalogue Available

Waddington’s is pleased to present this extraordinary selection of Inuit art for our fall season.

We are fortunate to be handling the Jonny Kalisch and James Bisback Collection of Inuit art which comprises a large portion of the wonderful carvings from the Kivalliq region in this sale. It also includes exceptional works by major artists Andy Miki, John Pangnark and Lucy Tasseor Tutsweetok.

Another special collection that came to us from the United States includes the phenomenal Osuitok Ipeelee Owl whose feathers are incised to perfection and beak hollowed out and darkened to create a life-like effect. In this very same collection, we are privileged to have received the Joe Talirunili Boat that depicts another real-life aquatic escape for Joe and his son. We are equally excited to present it along with Joe's own handwritten and illustrated recollection of the event.

Also worthy of your attention is our outstanding collection of Pangnirtung weavings. Sometimes over-looked when offered through auction, these are true artistic achievements, with striking and complicated images that testify to the amount of effort and creativity involved in making them.

A collector that fascinated us once before is with us again. Arden Barnes, whose stories of her summers spent living in Joe Talirunili’s shed, sadly passed away last year. We are offering a number of carvings by Joe that Arden acquired from him directly, as well as a special work by Davidialuk Alasua Amittu.

Once again, we have a strong group of Small Wonders. It is a portion of our auction close to our hearts and has been since we began promoting small-scale carvings over a decade ago. The pieces that call out for recognition in this section include: the bust of a woman with perfectly plaited hair playing the accordion (lot 53); the tiny version of Kananginak's musk ox (lot 44); and a five inch Pauta Saila bear acquired by the consignor in 1979 from Pauta himself (lot 42).

I cannot conclude this introduction without mentioning the superb collection of graphics, thanks in part to a prominent Toronto collector with an impeccable eye for quality. Each print and drawing excites me more than the next, which makes it difficult to single out only a handful. From important drawings to early prints and images that don’t often become available, peruse the pages of our catalogue to enjoy them as much as we have.

As always, we look forward to having you at our preview and auction this November.

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Posted: 10/22/2015 9:00:00 AM
By: Christa Ouimet

Fine Prints and Photography Auction

Waddington’s is pleased to present our Fall 2015 Fine Prints and Photography Auction. This sale offers an exceptional group of works from celebrated Canadian and international artists that spans from the 15th to the 21st centuries.
We are also privileged to announce Waddington’s continued involvement in the sale of works deaccessioned from the Art Gallery of Ontario. This auction includes a number of fine prints that have been deaccessioned in anticipation of future acquisitions that will complement the existing collection of the Art Gallery.
We are honoured to present graphics gleaned from private collections, including those from the extraordinary collecting eye of Erica Rutherford (1923-2008).  A celebrated Canadian artist and undoubtedly astute collector, her extraordinary life adventures took her across the globe.  Proceeds from the sale of this collection will benefit The Erica Rutherford Memorial Scholarship.
Collectors will find masterworks by Zao Wou-ki, Jasper Johns, Helmut Newton, Jean-Paul Riopelle and full portfolios by Marino Marini, Foujita, and Paul Wunderlich.  Highlights include old master etchings by Rembrandt, Durer and their contemporaries; an impressive Canadian album circa 1866-1867 by William Notman; and M.C. Escher’s Platwormen (Flatworms), acquired directly from the artist.
This auction presents an opportunity to appreciate an array of works that showcases the extraordinary breadth and scope of the full histories of photography, fine prints, and multiples. Likewise, it offers collectors an appealing range of estimates and artworks.

More information concerning eligibility and selection regarding The Erica Rutherford Memorial Scholarship can be found by contacting:
The Erica Rutherford Memorial Scholarship
C/O The Prince Edward Island Council of the Arts 
115 Richmond Street Charlottetown, PEI
C1A 1H7
Tel: 902-368-4410

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Posted: 10/22/2015 12:00:00 AM
By: Susan Robertson

Asian Art Fall Auction preview now available to view

It has been a wonderful fall in the Asian art department. We're thrilled with the development of our November catalogue sale, with consignors contributing from near and far, all with stunning examples of Asian art. Our offering is diverse and of good provenance, featuring some rare pieces we are excited to share. This gallery features magnificent porcelain from a distinguished Toronto collector, as well as a piece from the Estates of James Bisback and Jonny Kalisch.

Also included is a rare and exceptional engraving entitled “La Victoire de Khorgos”, engraved by Le Bas in 1774. We hope this preview piques your interest. Our sincere thanks to our consignors and clients for your ongoing support.

View Lots from Our Upcoming Auction

Asian Art Specialist:
Chih-En Chen 陳之恩
Posted: 10/7/2015 12:00:00 AM
By: Chih En Chen

Fall Asian Art Auction

Another Waddington's auction season is underway, and we are delighted with the continued growth of the Asian art market. As it evolves and thrives, we are pleased to offer you the very best Asian collections that Canada presents.

We began the fall season with a successful online auction that concluded on September 17. The cover lot, a Celadon-Glazed Crackleware Vase, realized $6,240 CAD – significantly higher than its original estimate. This is a clear indication that the Asian market has exciting momentum.

Our June 2015 catalogue sale also yielded excellent results. An 18th Century Rare and Large Bronze Hexagonal Vase, Xuande Mark from the Estate of Elizabeth Helen Livingston realized $62,300 CAD, ten times over its estimate. The paintings of Zhao Shao’Ang (1905-1998) from the Estate of Darius Alain (1926-2013) were another highlight, and together realized $64,800 CAD. Strong results were also achieved by Chinese porcelain, jades, modern scroll paintings and Himalayan bronzes.

Preparations for our Fall 2015 auction are well underway, and we are pleased to accept consignments until Friday, October 2. I will be in Vancouver from September 29 to October 2, and am available for private appointments. If you are interested in arranging a meeting, or would like more information about consigning or our auctions in general, please contact Simone Ludlow at or 416 847 6195.

Please note that our fall auction catalogue will be bilingual, in English and Chinese, so that the originality of each valued lot can be fully expressed. Moreover, Waddington’s now has a Chinese name. Feel free to address us as 華汀頓

Chih-En Chen | Asian Art Specialist

Posted: 9/28/2015 12:00:00 AM
By: Chih En Chen

Concrete Contemporary Art Online Auction October 17 - 22

Seventy-seven exceptional prints, paintings, sculptures, drawings and mixed media works are to be offered in Concrete Contemporary’s online auction on October 22, representing the artistic diversity and broad range of talents of Canada’s contemporary artists. Works by luminaries such as David Bolduc, Brian Kipping, David Urban, Wanda Koop, Michael Adamson, Barbara Astman, Iain Baxter and many more are included in this sale. A highlight of the auction is a collage by Greg Curnoe (1936-1992) whose works in this medium are highly sought-after glimpses into the artist’s life during the 1960s.

Curoe’s Early Skin From Row Foto (I1964) is an assemblage of seemingly random ephemera arranged in a freeform shape resembling a puzzle piece. Included in the imagery is a vertical strip of semi-erotic magazine clippings, a pin-up photograph, a cigar label, a push pin, a newspaper fragment and a postage stamp from Spain. True to his penchant for using text in his work, Curnoe added torn and painted papers accented with stamped letters and numbers spelling “SWEATY” and “NOVEMBER 20.” All of these elements surround the central component of the collage, a parking ticket dated Feb. 18, 1964. According to the artist and close friend of Curnoe’s, Robert Fones, “Curnoe’s collages are straightforward records of his daily life, his comings and goings, the people with whom he was in contact, the items he bought, the buses he took and the things that fascinated him.” Curnoe’s connection to time and place was integral to his selection of materials…one person’s refuse is another’s inspiration. The mundane artifacts of daily existence most people would discard became visual documentation of his existence, and when combined with his keen sense of colour and design skills, became the very stuff that would comprise Curnoe’s important collages.

Robert Fones, Suspended Animation, Cutout: Greg Curnoe Shaped Collages 1965-1968, Museum London, 2011, p.47

Canadian Contemporary Art Online Auction
Concrete Contemporary Auctions and Projects
October 17-22, 2015

On View:
Saturday 17 October 2015 from 11:00 am to 5:00 pm
Sunday 18 October 2015 from 11:00 am to 5:00 pm
Monday 19 October 2015 from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm
Tuesday 20 October 2015 from 2:00 pm to 7:00 pm

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View the Auction Catalogue

Posted: 9/25/2015 12:00:00 AM
By: Kristin Vance

Launching Waddington's Fine Wine & Spirits Division!

Waddington’s is made up of several departments, each specializing in a particular genre of fine art and luxury goods.  Although there is a certain amount of cross over, the departments are for the most part distinct serving their particular clientele, be that Asian, Canadian or International Fine Art, Decorative Arts or Jewellery.

This fall that all changes. We are very pleased to announce the addition of a new department at Waddington’s, one that crosses all our departmental borders and complements everything we do: Waddington’s Fine Wines and Spirits. More importantly, Waddington’s will now be able to provide access to the enormous international wine-collecting market through live and online auctions, under the authority of the LCBO.

We are excited about this new venture – a first for an Ontario auction company – and we’re looking forward to providing all the services a wine collector might need to properly manage their cellars.

Waddington’s Vice President Stephen Ranger, Canada’s pre-eminent wine auctioneer, leads the new division, joined by the accomplished Ryan Corrigan, former Associate Winemaker with Pearl Morissette Estate Winery, Niagara and Sonoma California. “The popularity of collecting wine as an investment grows every year” notes Ranger. “Many wines offered at auction will appreciate in value, especially rare and acclaimed vintages, making auctions an excellent way to build a fine wine portfolio. It also gives Ontario collectors access to the world market when offering their wines as part of their cellar management.”

Our inaugural online fine wine auction will be held November 23 - 26 with the first live auction to be offered December 12. We’ll be hosting seminars, tastings and events throughout our auction season where you’ll have the opportunity to meet our wine specialists, and discover how we can help build, maintain or downsize your collection. 

Duncan McLean

“If you go back to the Greeks and Romans, they talk about all three - wine, food, and art - as a way of enhancing life.”
Robert Mondavi

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Posted: 9/18/2015 9:00:00 AM
By: Duncan McLean

Major Sale of Inuit Art

Waddington’s Inuit art Department is having a major sale of Inuit art this November 16th. We are so excited to present the many important works that have been entrusted to us already. If you would like to be a part of this auction, there is still plenty of time to consign your artwork to us. Works that are in great demand by our collectors include the following:

· Important carvings in stone by Pauta Saila, John Kavik, George Tataniq, Miriam Qiyuk, Francis Kaluraq and Tudlik.
· Bone and stone sculptures by Karoo Ashevak, Charlie Ugyuk and Nelson Takkiruq.
· Works on cloth and drawings by Jessie Oonark.
· Prints from 1959/1960 as well as from the experimental period.
· Early and interesting sculptures from the classic period.

Our consignment deadline is September 18th.

Contact Christa Ouimet at or 416-847-6184. We look forward to providing you with advice and guidance in handling your collection.

Artists included this season’s sale are Ennutsiak, Joe Talirunili, John Tiktak, Parr, Henry Evaluardjuk, Barnabus Arnasungaaq, Kenojuak Ashevak, Mathew Aqigaaq, Lukta Qiatsuq, Davidialuk Alasua Amittu, Elizabeth Nutaraluk, Niviaxie (Niviaksiak), Luke Anguhudluq and so many more.

Posted: 9/10/2015 9:30:00 AM
By: Christa Ouimet

Past Imperfect: The Collections of Helen Mary Cavalier Quinn

“I love rust. Perfect imperfection is what I seek.” The Collections of Helen Mary Cavalier Quinn were built following her heart and sense of artistry. If something appealed to her, she didn’t mind chips and cracks. In fact she loved old repairs. Arriving in post-war Canada, Helen was a passionate collector of objects that had sustained the people who had come before to make this country habitable. Each object had a story.  Hearing about the importance of a blanket box and what it held, was moving to Helen. She had an appreciation of the value of the utilitarian, the meaning of making things work again, even when they seemed not be useful anymore.  

Managing estates is a large part of the work Waddington’s does. Estates of the wealthy, famous, sometimes even notorious. Every estate has its own story to tell. The Collections of Helen Mary Cavalier Quinn come from the estate of a woman who was clearly much loved and admired, a woman whose passion for collecting inspired and brought pleasure to many. She was also a woman who found a new kind of beauty in things that might not be considered useful anymore, giving life to something that might be tossed away as broken.   

Helen explained during a talk she gave for the opening of a quilt exhibit held at the Northumberland Art Gallery how women put their artistry into the utilitarian objects they made that kept their families alive during Canada's harsh winters. That their work was essential to survival in an unforgiving climate, yet they made these things beautiful. Preservation was essential, yet with every thing they did to achieve that crucial goal, there was beauty. There was beauty in the things they stitched together or put back together in some creative way. There was beauty in their toil and beauty in the objects with the chips and cracks that happen in lives lived.

A graduate of the Cleveland School of Art who worked in advertising in the 1940s, Helen was a creative woman of many talents who possessed a great sense of style and intricate knowledge of antiques. It was the character and history of the objects that she collected that mattered the most. “I don’t collect a period” she said in an interview with The Upper Canadian in 1998. “I collect colour and form. Pure form, form that is perfect in its simplicity.”
Larry Thompson (The Upper Canadian) described stepping into her home was “like walking into the pages of a glossy interior design magazine.” Everything meticulously placed to create the right effect. Different styles shoulder to shoulder with the valuable and perhaps not so valuable. As she said, “I don't have a lot of the best. I have things that I enjoy.”

A family member shares a story that seems to sum up Helen Mary Cavalier Quinn’s appreciation for beauty: “When living in New York, I took her through the Metropolitan Museum of Art. I had only so much time and wanted her to see this Cezanne that I knew she would know but had not seen in the flesh. I got her there and she stood there looking at it (it is amazing) and finally she turned to look at me with tears in her eyes and said, "I guess you get to see this whenever you want ". I loved her at that moment like crazy, even if there was some kind of jealousy in her response. I wish she could have stayed for a year and I could have tons more stories like that.”

Past Imperfect: The Collections of Helen Mary Cavalier Quinn will be offered as an online auction September 14 – 17, with a public preview September 15. The auction includes: Iroquois Beadwork Pin Cushions and Whimseys, Reverse Painted Glass, Tinsel Backed Pictures, Make-Dos, Ceramics, Canadian and American Glass, 19th Century Sewing Accessories and Cow and Sheep Bells.

View the Auction Gallery

Our sincere thanks to all who contributed their memories.
Posted: 9/10/2015 9:00:00 AM
By: Sean Quinn

A New Season of Asian Art at Waddington’s

Our fall auction season brings a few changes to our Asian Art Department.  We’re delighted that Chih En Chen assumes the lead of the department with support from Simone Ludlow as the department’s administrator.  Mr. Chen has diverse experience in Asia and Canada including his role as Associate Project Executive with acclaimed Taiwanese-based art dealer Blue Dragon Art, and as a contributing member of one of Taiwan’s most important collector associations: the Chinese Culture and Fine Art Association. In Taiwan, Mr. Chen was also responsible for curating several major exhibitions, such as Art Taipei (2010-2011) as well as at the Taiwan Pavilion in Venice Biennale, and exhibitions in the National Palace Museum.  His excellent networks in the Asian art and antiques market will open new opportunities for both consignors and buyers. 

Mr. Chen is fluent in traditional and simplified Chinese (Mandarin and Taiwanese), Classical Chinese and English.  He achieved his Masters in Art History from the University of Toronto, interned with Christie’s Canada, and has worked with Waddington’s since 2014. Mr. Chen will be familiar to many of our clients and looks forward to continuing to work closely with you with Ms Ludlow’s support. Ms Ludlow also holds a Masters in Art History from the University of Toronto, and brings her significant client service and entrepreneurial expertise to Waddington’s.

We thank Anthony Wu and Yvonne Li for all of their past contribution to Waddington’s and the development of the Asian art market in Canada.  Mr. Wu is exploring new areas of interest and Ms Li returns to school this fall. We wish them all the very best in their new ventures.

Our Asian art fall season launches with an online auction September 15 and our major fall auction November 30, 2015. Mr. Chen will be in Montreal September 21 - 23, and in Vancouver, September 29 - October 3.

Please contact Simone Ludlow to arrange an appointment.

To find out more about the auctions and consignment deadlines, please visit

Posted: 8/25/2015 12:00:00 AM
By: Duncan McLean

Spring 2015 Live Auction Recap

Our Spring 2015 Auction of Canadian Fine Art filled the Waddington's salesroom with colour in an array of artworks that captured the imagination of our visitors. Lots ranged in value from just $650 to $120,000 and were sourced primarily from private collections throughout North America and the United Kingdom.

In particular works by Quebec artists performed well. For example, a 1949 Stanley Cosgrove Still Life realized $42,480 and our cover lot, a contemplative 1976 Yves Gaucher hard-edge abstraction, soared past its pre-sale estimate to fetch $47,200. Three works by Léon Bellefleur were spirited away by eager purchasers, including a diminutive work from 1951 that more than quadrupled its estimate, finally selling for $14,160. A rare and important Louis-Philippe Hébert bronze entitled Coeur qui chant, charmed a number of suitors and realized $35,400, while others were drawn to Maurice Cullen's delicate Impressionist canvas, Moonlit Landscape, which realized $75,700.

Our Senior Canadian Art Specialist, Linda Rodeck, will be in the Montreal area in mid-August to meet with clients considering a consignment to our forthcoming major Fall Auction of Canadian Art. If you, or anyone you know, have paintings under consideration for sale, and would like to meet with Linda, please contact Erin Rutherford our Fine Art Administrator to discuss an appointment or 416-504-5100.

Posted: 7/16/2015 3:30:00 PM
By: Erin Rutherford

"Off the Wall" Art Auction - June 22-25, 2015

As always, our "Off the Wall" art auction offered an eclectic assemblage of artwork from a variety of artists. Enter: Ronald William Bolt, Gershon Iskowitz, Roy Lichtenstein and Dorothy Knowles.

This season’s June sale featured a wide variety of Canadian and International artists on scales large and small. As the current market for collecting has shifted to a more modern taste, our monthly online auctions offer many works of abstraction that would benefit any contemporary art enthusias. Side by side with works of the classic tradition, including esteemed Canadian artists Frederick Stanley Haines and Paul Rodrik, bidding online has never been so fun… and rewarding.

Our "Off the Wall" art auctions continue to exceed our expectations here at Waddington’s. With art coming in all the time, fine art specialist Doug Payne, together with his remarkable eye for detail, selects and supplies the demand for abstraction and mixed media works that attract so many collectors. With this our monthly online auctions continue to appeal to a vast audience, with art that ranges in style, subject matter, palette and is easy on the wallet.

We hope you enjoyed the selection of artwork featured in our "Off the Wall" art auctions throughout the season.

View the Auction Gallery

View the PDF Catalogue

Posted: 6/15/2015 12:00:00 AM
By: Tess McLean

Spring International Art Auction - Catalogue Available

In the spirit of Daniel O’Neill’s Old Time Dance gracing the cover of our Spring 2015 International Art catalogue, we invite you to share a dance with us after a long cold winter and bring to the podium this carefully chosen grouping of paintings, drawings and sculptures.

It is with great pleasure that we announce the whereabouts of a portrait by Pre-Raphaelite master Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema, having been previously recorded as “present location unknown.”  Ernest Gambart, a preeminent member of London society and great patron of Alma-Tadema, commissioned the work in 1870. It is speculated that the sitter is Gambart’s illegitimate child. The portrait travelled from London, England to Montreal sometime after 1913. Following its arrival in Canada, the Watson Galleries sold it to a private collector.  A more detailed account of the provenance for this rediscovered work can be found in the following pages.

Waddington’s is also pleased to feature an impressive landscape painting by famed Russian/American artist Abraham Manievich.  This work was acquired directly from the artist as a result of a friendship forged between the artist and the collector.  On his visits to Canada, Manievich regularly took up residence and painted at the collector’s Montreal home.  Only selected and privileged friends and family invited to the collector’s home were able to view the landscape following its 1937 execution.  This Manievich oil on canvas comes to the market having passed by descent to the collector’s grandson.

The above works are offered alongside Berthe Morisot’s drawing Portrait of Alice Gamby, a watercolour by Andre Derain, two bronzes by Sir Jacob Epstein, and an Old Master work from the School of Canaletto. Our Spring 2015 catalogue brings to the fore some of the most significant international art works gleaned largely from private collections.

These works have been a delight to research and continue to surprise me.  This journey is the ingredient that has captivated my interest for some thirty-odd years. 

View the Auction Gallery
(International Art Lots - 350-396)

View the PDF Catalogue

View the Virtual Catalogue

Posted: 5/29/2015 2:00:00 PM
By: Susan Robertson

Spring Decorative Arts Auction - Catalogue Available

We are anticipating great results for our sale of Decorative Arts this season. You will find in this catalogue the fine quality that you have come to expect from Waddington's, including silver spanning the early Georgian period through the 20th century. A very large setting of 'Cactus' pattern flatware by Gundorph Albertus for Georg Jensen (lot 64) and an exceptional vase by Carl Poul Petersen from his early days in Denmark (lot 65) are just a couple of stand-outs. A carefully selected section of glass includes the large and luminous Amalric Walter pheasant vide-poche (lot 76). The porcelain selection spans the eighteenth to twentieth centuries with many makers represented. A Derby Mansion House Dwarf (lot 117) will bring a smile to your face, as will the little Staffordshire figures of cats (lots 88 - 91) and a pair of Dresden nodding jugglers (lot 154). We are pleased to offer as well a rare Meissen pug's head snuff box (lot 148) in excellent condition - what a face!

Night two starts off with more good chess sets from the private collection we have been offering over the course of the last few sales. Particularly interesting is a Soviet propaganda porcelain set (lot 217) with Death, Fortuna, Industry and Agriculture as monarchs ruling over prospering farmers and slave labourers as the pawns. Another of the highlights of our second night is a silver-gilt ‘Queen’s Messenger Badge’ (lot 219) issued to William Chalmers in 1844 by the Lord Chamberlain’s office identifying him as one Queen Victoria’s personal couriers. Remarkably, this medal is accompanied by the original and attractive signed, sealed and dated document of appointment. Lot 265 is an outstanding Greek ‘pelike’ - a vessel very similar to an amphora. This 4th century example is notable for its large size, excellent condition and fine decoration including cable fluting and a band of painted swans around the body. From the ancient to the contemporary: the variety that our Decorative Arts department encompasses could not be made clearer than by the juxtaposition of this Greek pot to a Frank Gehry ‘Fish Lamp’ (lot 289) and the quirky Meret Oppenheim ‘Traccia’ side table (lot 290) with its bird legs!

Of course, in addition to these lots there are many traditionally beautiful things too, but this season it seems the unusual finds have really captured our collective imaginations.

View the Auction Gallery (June 15th)

View the Auction Gallery (June 16th)

View the PDF Catalogue

View the Virtual Catalogue

Posted: 5/29/2015 2:00:00 PM
By: Bill Kime

Asian Art Auction - Addenda Lots Added

Included in the addenda for our upcoming June 8 Asian art auction are 11 choice lots representing various regions in Asia. These works come to us as late additions but we felt they would complement the existing items in the catalogue and enhance the visual experience for clients during exhibition.

Representing the Himalayas we have a large polychromed figure of Bhairava (lot 33a) from a private Nova Scotia collection. Depicting the fierce guardian wielding a large club, the splendid work was appraised by both Sotheby’s New York and Glenbow Museum in 2002. Also from the same region, we have a marvelous 18th century thangka featuring Palden Lhamo, the ultimate female protector of the Gelug School of Buddhism (lot 43a). Purchased in a Toronto thrift store by the consignor’s father during the 1950’s, the painting has been in the family ever since.

The additions to our Chinese portion of the sale are also of considerable note including one of our star pieces, lot 65a, a rare huanghuali recessed table from the late Qing dynasty. The table was consigned from the Estate of Mabel May, a Canadian nurse working and residing in China during the early 20th century. Waddington’s had the privilege of selling the majority of the estate’s collection in our June 18, 2010 auction and we are once again excited to provide another offering. We encourage gallery visitors attending our exhibition to appreciate the table’s beautiful wood graining, and to learn more about the provenance, and this work in particular, please visit our website for details.

Finally, Waddington’s is honoured to offer a collection of bronzes from the Estate of Elizabeth Helen Livingston from Oakville, Ontario. Acquired by her father and grandfather, owners of the Johan Philip Kessler Bank in Frankfurt Germany, throughout their travels in China during the late Qing dynasty, the collection represents an impressive standard of quality with its pinnacle being lot 263a, a large bronze vase from the early 18th century. Weighing just under 16 kilograms, the vase has large phoenix handles and a beautiful rectilinear four-character Xuande mark on the base. Due to its large size and expensive material, few examples of this type of bronze survive today.

We hope you enjoy reviewing our addenda lots, and please be sure to look at the 370 other works we have on offer. We hope to see you at the exhibition on Saturday June 6 and Sunday June 7 from 11am until 5pm, as well as at the sale on Monday June 8, commencing at 6pm.

View the PDF Addenda

Posted: 5/29/2015 12:00:00 AM
By: Anthony Wu

My Year One: Decorative Arts

It’s been nearly a year since I joined the Decorative Arts department. I can’t think of a better way to learn about silver, glass and ceramics (amongst many other things) than to dig in to these shelves of treasures and catalogue them for auctions. The stories that can be told by these objects are innumerable and so much fun to investigate. Beyond answering the question, ‘What is this?’ I can now piece together more parts of the story that the object has to tell, like; How old is it? Where was it made and by whom? Who sold it? Who bought it and why?

One of the most fascinating stories to tell was about Alexander III, his wife Marie and son Nicholas II of the Romanov Dynasty. Although just a small part of their epic story, the set of twelve dinner plates in the Raphael Service that were sold in the auction in December 2014 revealed small details about the family that I hadn’t known before. Such as the friction between Nicholas’ wife Alexandra and his mother. Upon researching where the plates were used this became apparent as the styles of Marie and Alexandra’s homes were very different. Royalty…just like us!

I am also fascinated by the many accoutrements related to activities of bygone eras; such as the multitude of instruments that were required for writing correspondence. Pounce pots, wax-jacks, inkwells, letter openers and writing slants are all sold in our auctions on a regular basis. It’s that intimate connection to the past that adds so much appeal to the items we sell.

I’m learning that there are eras of design that I enjoy more than others, and the Arts and Crafts movement of the later 19th century is one. The simple and refined designs on the Newcomb College vases in our last auction were some favourites of mine, and in June’s live auction there is a Rookwood vase. The finest Arts and Crafts example in our next live auction though, is the set of Minton plaques depicting the seven ages of man. Designed by Henry Stacy Marks and hand-painted with fondness and emotion at the Minton Art-Pottery Studio in 1873-74, they are truly exemplary of the uncomplicated rustic style of the era.

Whether it’s the stories that compel you to collect, the design of the objects, or the perfect intersection of both elements, we hope you’ll continue to explore what we have as our catalogue is just about ready for printing. See you at the previews!
Posted: 5/27/2015 12:00:00 AM
By: Ellie Muir

Asian Art Auction Monday June 8 Catalogue Available

This was clearly not an ideal winter for travel, but the time I spent criss-crossing North America in February and March resulted in sourcing some amazing materials for this spring's auction. One of the success stories (and highlights of the auction) is the 80+ superb scroll paintings from the Qing Dynasty and the 20th century consigned to us for this auction. The scrolls, from various prominent collections, discovered in Vancouver, Montreal, New York, and here at home in Toronto, form the focus of our auction.

Assembling our auctions is always a pleasure. We work carefully and thoughtfully to find the right balance of materials, following our guidelines of quality and rarity. This spring we are pleased to offer over 360 lots from various consignors, collectors and estates.

You may recall Part One from the estate of Darius Alain (1926-2013) offered in our December 2014 auction. Mr. Alain lived in Hong Kong during the early 1980's where he enjoyed collecting Chinese modern paintings. Following Part One's success in December, we are pleased to present Part Two of the estate this spring. Adding to our scroll theme, the collection includes a selection of modern scrolls paintings by artists such as Zhao Shao'Ang (1905-1998) and his circle.

The Estate of Yick-Ho Wong (1923-2011) is another outstanding collection we are pleased to offer this spring. This Hong Kong gentleman amassed a collection of late Qing Dynasty and 20th century paintings, calligraphy and rubbings; all featured in his Kowloon store "King Won Court" in the mid-1960's. Prize pieces include a group of large-format paintings by the 20th century modern painting master Ding Yanyong (1902-1978). Mr. Wong befriended Ding Yanyong in the 1950's, and supported the artist by providing him with art materials in exchange for art lessons.

Always a strong component of our auctions, the ceramics section features a massive Longquan charger from the 15th century, consigned to us from an important Montreal collection and a highlight of the Chinese ceramics section. A rare celadon Ru-type hu vase with Tongzhi Mark, period (1862-1874) from the estate of Barbara Fincham (1929-2014) adds further beauty. Also present is a miniature Guan-type hu vase from the early 18th Century that was probably used as a literati study item. This piece was consigned from a Hong Kong gentleman who purchased it during the 1960's.

Selecting the cover lot for our catalogues is both a challenging and exciting process. With so many extraordinary works to choose from, the cover lot must stand out as an exceptional item to become the face or introduction to the entire auction. This catalogue cover is perhaps the most prized item in this sale - a handsome, large, three-drawer huanghuali coffer table from the late Qing Dynasty. With immaculate wood graining on the table's surface, this finely crafted item exemplifies the importance of both form and material in Chinese furniture production.

Rounding out the auction, we are pleased to present a selection of exquisite items from Japan, India, and the Himalayas, including Satsuma, miniature paintings and religious bronzes. Proving once again that we truly have something for everyone.

View the Auction Gallery

View the PDF Catalogue

View the Virtual Catalogue

Posted: 5/15/2015 9:00:00 AM
By: Anthony Wu

Spring Fine Jewellery Auction

In all forms of collecting, one of the most important factors in determining the value of an item is its rarity. For over a century, manufacturers of fine watches have recognized this and periodically they have created special limited edition offerings whose small production runs guarantee rarity. The spring 2015 Fine Jewellery And Watch auction features numerous fine wrist and pocket watches including two very special examples of these limited edition watches.

The first is a Montblanc wristwatch produced just a few years ago … the Montblanc Star Nicolas Rieussec Mono-Pusher Chronograph. This line of watches pays homage to Nicolas Rieussec, who in 1821 patented the world’s first chronograph. Rieussec’s “Time Writer” was a box with spinning discs, and was created to track the running times of multiple horses in an 1821 Parisian horse race, to an accuracy of a quarter of a second. Montblanc’s design of the watch reflects the spinning discs of Rieussec’s Time Writer, and this 18k white gold and diamond watch had only 15 examples created, of which we are proud to offer #10.

The second limited edition watch comes from almost a century earlier …. a Gruen 50th Anniversary pocket watch celebrating Dietrich Gruen’s 1874 patent for a new watch pinion. The extravagant watch was issued in 1924, and retailed for $500. Gruen made 600 examples, representing the 600 months in 50 years of watch production, and each featured a hand-made and engraved 23 jewel movement created entirely of 12k rose gold. Watch #72 of 600 will be part of our Spring Fine Jewellery And Watch Auction, along with fine wrist and pocket watches by Rolex, Cartier, Tiffany, Chopard, Vacheron & Constantin, Patek Philippe, Le Roy, August Ericsson, IWC and Piaget.

View the Auction Gallery

View the PDF Catalogue

View the Virtual Catalogue

Posted: 5/10/2015 12:00:00 AM
By: Donald McLean

Spring Inuit Art Auction Monday June 1

In our 37th year of presenting Inuit Art auctions, we are particularly pleased with this spring’s offering of exceptional art. It’s an auction of extremes, variety and quality. A comprehensive representation of works from across all regions of the Canadian Arctic, spanning all periods, from what we have termed the ‘classic period’ of the 1950s to mid-1960s, to the contemporary.

View the Preview Gallery
Posted: 4/29/2015 12:00:00 AM
By: Christa Ouimet

Waddington's Spring 2015 Auction of Canadian Fine Art

It is a pleasure to present our Spring 2015 Auction of Canadian Fine Art.

This sale transports us through many landscapes: the rocky shorelines of Georgian Bay, the prairie highways of Saskatchewan, the windows of Québec, The Narrows in St. John’s, the Seine in Paris, the subconscious of Bellefleur, Lake O’Hara, and St. Sauveur.

Through its pages, we have many companions: award-winning schooners, canadien ponies, a theosophist, a rebel, a centipede, Charlotte Corday and a mango.

Its colours are, at times vibrant – zips and pops – at times delicate and downy. The crimson of Cosgrove, the mint in FitzGerald and Burton, Brownell’s sapphire, Letendre’s gold, Meredith orange, the yellow in Curnoe, the unforgettable stripes of Gaucher.

It is an exciting journey – on which we are accompanied by our clients. In addition to our Canadian consignors, collectors and estates from the United States and abroad have entrusted us with their property. We welcome the curious, the art lovers and prospective buyers to peruse our offerings, to meet us (and to view works ‘in the flesh’) at our preview, and to join us on 25 May 2015 for the excitement – the colours, the companions and the landscapes – of our major Spring Sale.

Download the Catalogue PDF

Linda Rodeck   416.847.6176

Fine Art Administrator:
Erin Rutherford   416.504.5100

Posted: 4/24/2015 12:00:00 AM
By: Erin Rutherford

Results of our April Contemporary Canadian Art Auction

With over 70% of lots sold, the April 2015 Concrete Contemporary auction was a great success. Thank you to all who attended, consigned and purchased work from this fantastic event!

We're pleased that by extending the preview for the auction for a full two weeks, many more people were able to see the collection - the feedback was overwhelmingly positive. We plan to continue these extended previews in the future.

We're specifically proud of setting new auction records for a number of artists including Gerald Ferguson, Angela Leach, Melanie Authier, Joe Fleming and Susanna Heller. It is also gratifying to have sold works by many other artists on the secondary market for the very first time. Our gallery was standing-room-only for the auction, and the competitive bidding in the room, on the phone and over the internet tells us Concrete continues to build momentum and popularity.

To further enhance our contemporary art offerings, we are pleased to announce the launch of Waddington's Contemporary Art Index. This comprehensive database includes auction records, biographies, exhibition news and articles on hundreds of Canadian contemporary artists. The database will be regularly updated.

Once again, thanks to all who participated in this edition of Concrete Contemporary. We really value your feedback and if you would like to send comments regarding the auctions, please send me an email at We look forward to presenting another tightly focused, curated event in the fall of 2015. More to come.

Results Gallery

Posted: 4/16/2015 9:00:00 AM
By: Stephen Ranger

International Art - Final Call for Consignment

Waddington's Spring International Art auction on June 16 showcases significant oil paintings from many Private Collections that have been in Canada for well over half a century. One of the earlier works entrusted to us for this sale is Man Seated by the Sea by Ukrainian artist Alexis Gritchenko (1883-1977). With its rich palette of vivid and binary colours employed using passionate brushwork, it is sure to captivate the attention of the most discernible collectors.

From this auspicious start began a four month process of selecting the finest works to showcase, followed by the detailed research that each and every work undergoes when offered in our live bi-annual International Art auctions. We are delighted to feature two oils by Irish artist Daniel (Dan) O'Neill (1920-1974): Old Time Dance and Convad. The two paintings have not been on the market since their purchase from The Waddington Galleries Inc., (Montreal, QC) in the 1960s. Alongside these works is a most appealing portrait of a woman by the Russian-born set and costume designer Sergei Yurevich Sudeikin (1883-1946). A diminutive watercolour, Tete Antique by Andre Derain (1880-1954), co-founder of the Fauvist movement characterized by its rich red colouration and sure brushstrokes is also sure to delight.

To arrange for a complimentary consultation to discuss consigning to this important auction, please contact:

Susan Robertson
1-877-504-5700 ext. 6179

Deadline for consignments is May 11.

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Posted: 4/16/2015 12:00:00 AM
By: Susan Robertson

Charles Bronfman's Claridge Collection Auction - April 21 2015

Probably the most distinctive corporate collection of Canadian art and design, the Claridge Collection was the passion of Charles Bronfman and his late wife Andrea, whose vision was to fill the office space of Claridge Inc. in Montreal with new Canadian art and crafts. The collection was an eclectic mixture of fun and colourful, the best and the brightest; but not always the best known. For every work by a 'name' – which included paintings by Toni Onley, Allen Sapp, David Bolduc and Denyse Thomasos; photographs from Edward Burtynsky and George Zimbel; ceramics by Vic Cicansky, Robin Hopper, Greg Payce and Walter Ostrom - the collection included works by artists with little or no wide recognition in Canada. Visionary and almost egalitarian, the collection was a true representation of what was being produced by artists and craftsmen from across the country at that time. We can only imagine how much fun the approval process was, as the Bronfmans gave every piece presented to them by curator Franklin Silverstone for their consideration their personal yay or nay.

We applaud Mr. Bronfman's decision to direct the proceeds of the sale of the Collection to benefit Historica Canada (formerly the Historica Dominion Institute), for which Mr. Bronfman has been a long-time patron. And we admire that Mr. Bronfman's son Stephen, current executive chair of Claridge, is creating a new Claridge Collection, representing today's Canadian artists, both stars and emerging stars.

Stephen Ranger was quoted in the Globe and Mail in November 2013 just prior to the first auction saying, "The outgoing Claridge Collection is distinguished by 'superb taste and respect for artists.' " Just prior to these final auctions in April 2015, we are proud to say that it has been an honour and privilege to conduct the Claridge Collection auctions on behalf of the Bronfman family.

Part V: Decorative Arts at 1:00 pm
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Part VI: Fine Art at 7:00 pm
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Artist Biographies
View the Artist Biographies Catalogue (PDF)

Posted: 4/14/2015 9:00:00 AM
By: Duncan McLean

Concrete Contemporary Auctions and Projects - Contemporary Art Auction Monday 13 April 2015 at 7:00 pm

The spring 2015 Concrete Contemporary auction is our most diverse offering to date. From monumental canvases like our cover lot, John Kissick’s No. 5 (The Order of the Phrases Make...), to Tim Zuck’s small gem, Wing, the sale highlights the eclectic vision of our
country’s most dynamic contemporary artists.

Part of what makes putting together the Concrete auctions so
interesting and such a fulfilling experience, both professionally and personally, is having the chance to live with the work prior to the auction. Our offices have come to life with three meticulously and beautifully rendered works by Toronto’s Angela Leach, known for her optical masterworks. The intense explosion of colours, shapes and lines of Kissick’s commanding canvas has brightened our gallery through this dreary winter, as has the spirited and extreme colours of Melanie Authier’s Catapult of Standby.

Another aspect of this auction is the generosity of notable
photographers Lynne Cohen, Max Dean, Suzy Lake and Ken Lum, whose donated works will be sold to benefit the Scotiabank
CONTACT Photography Festival. All proceeds will go to support the 1500 artists who will participate in the 2015 festival and the public programming associated with the festival.

In appreciation of your continued support of Concrete’s vision, we are pleased to add some special programming to enhance your
experience, starting with a significantly extended preview schedule. The final Sunday of the preview will feature guest speaker Sky
Goodden, one of Canada’s leading contemporary art critics and MOMUS journal founder, as well as a personally guided walkthrough of the gallery. To continue the conversation, the auction itself will be preceded by a wine reception at 6 pm with the sale starting promptly at 7 pm.

We look forward to seeing you – and sincerely hope you enjoy this exceptional offering of art.

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Posted: 3/23/2015 12:00:00 AM
By: Stephen Ranger


From Rembrandt to Warhol and Mapplethorpe, highlights from Waddington’s Fine Prints and Photography Auction on March 10 tell an international success story.

Stepping down from the podium at the end of the evening March 10, Waddington’s auctioneer and Vice President, Business Development, Stephen Ranger immediately commented how exciting it had been “to sell such a diverse collection of material – to such a diverse audience.” Over the course of some three hours, over 300 works dating from 1645 to the present day were sold to a full house and numerous bidders over the telephone and online. Ranger added: “It’s particularly gratifying to see international prices achieved here in Canada. It shows how truly global the market has become and our ability to sell well beyond our borders.”

Highlights of the auction included Andy Warhol’s Liz selling for $57,600, Robert Mapplethorpe’s Ken Moody with Orchid reaching $14,400, and a rare Rembrandt toned etching, Old Man in Meditation, dating from 1645 soaring above its presale estimate of $3000/5000 to realize $19,200 (all prices include buyer’s premium).

Ranger, who heads up Waddington’s Concrete Contemporary art department, also commented on the overall strength of contemporary art. Included in the auction were a number of works donated by artists sold to benefit the Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival, the highlight – Sebastio Salgada’s Upper Xingu Region Brazil – sold for well above its presale estimate of $10,000/12,000 to realize $19,200. Funds raised from the sale of these works go towards programming for the 2015 CONTACT festival and to support the over 1,500 artists who participate.

Attracting new and young collectors, Fine Prints and Photography continues to be a dynamic and growing category and we plan to conduct a second auction for this year in the fall of 2015.

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Posted: 3/17/2015 12:00:00 AM
By: Susan Robertson

"...everything at once all the time..."

Born in The Netherlands in 1943, Harold Klunder immigrated to Canada with his parents in 1952. He studied art at Central Technical School in Toronto under Doris McCarthy, Charles Goldhammer and Virginia Luz. Klunder developed a diverse practice, working across a range of media including painting, photography, printmaking and performance.

When assessing the pervading influences on Klunder’s artwork, scholars often allude to other artists of Dutch heritage such as Willem de Kooning and Karel Appel. Yet Klunder himself defies rigid comparisons. He paints according to feeling: creating charged surfaces intuitively and freely – removing himself from the formal aspects of painting.

Through Klunder’s process, texture accumulates slowly and in abundance. The sculptural forms created by his thick impastos carry as much life as the subject matter of the works themselves. Heavy paint pulsates with a buoyancy of colour. These are not works resulting from a quick slather; these are works that accumulate momentously, like geological formations.

Klunder’s paintings give a taste of the surreal despite being rooted firmly in real life. They are bohemian, musical and abstract, chunky. Working on a single painting for years at a time, Klunder’s canvases gestate. They form over a duration as vivid and living, weighty with the human experience.

"I am influenced by everything; what I find on the street, what I see in stores, on TV, etc. I love the look of things and what the look hides. I love the idiosyncratic, the boring, banal everyday stuff, the things that fill our every moment, moment-to-moment...everything at once all the time..."1

In recent years, Klunder has increasingly explored self-portraiture. One of these self-portraits, The Geometry of Pain (Self Portrait I), 1989, will be offered in our upcoming Canadian Fine Art Auction on 25 May 2015.

1 30 March 1998 letter to Cliff Eyland, author of Harold Klunder: Prints and Paintings (exhibition catalogue), Art Gallery of Newfoundland and Labrador, St-John's, Newfoundland, 1999.

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Posted: 3/16/2015 10:00:00 AM
By: Erin Rutherford

The FXSMITH Studio Collection Auction

An auction that really takes you behind the scenes at the movies – The FXSMITH Studio Collection Auction is an exploration of the magic and the imagination of some of Hollywood’s most popular and provocative movies.

Another unusual auction for Waddington’s (the collection is part of the William (Billy) Jamieson Estate, which we sold last year), the artistry of the work is extraordinary. The FXSMITH team, led by Canadian Gordon Smith, was comprised of 13 hand-selected Canadian artists, including one of Canada’s best sculptors, Evan Penny. Many of you will have seen Penny’s work in the Art Gallery of Ontario and featured in our contemporary art auctions.

FXSMITH was perhaps best known for bringing the mutants from X-Men to life. Mystique, Wolverine, Sabretooth, Toad, Nightcrawler, Senator Kelly and Lady Deathstrike all appear in one shape or another: Mystique’s silicone costume on a life sized figure; the bust, prosthetic hands and arms of Wolverine played by Hugh Jackman; as well as various prosthetic tails, feet, ears, clawed hands and retracting blades of the other main characters.

The special effects for movies like X-Men and Jacob’s Ladder were based on sci-fi and fantasy and drew on the creative ability of the artists. In fact, ‘Meat, Francis Bacon and chaos’ were the only three requirements dictated by Jacob’s Ladder director Adrian Lyne. With those parameters in mind, the crew set out to sculpt and create effects never before seen in movies. According to Smith, his art department “Created a variety of possibilities with abandon.”

On the other side of the artistic coin, movies like Oliver Stone’s Nixon, and Edward Zwick’s Legends of the Fall involved the exacting skill of creating life-like effects. Life-size models of eviscerated zebra and antelopes and charred, skeletal battlefield corpses from Legends of Fall are both jarring and a testament to the talent of the artists. The cast plaster life masks of characters from Oliver Stone’s Nixon, including Anthony Hopkins as Nixon, Paul Sorvino as Kissinger; and John F. Kennedy from Stone’s 1991 JFK are museum quality.

We are an auction house renown for our broad range and depth. Like the macabre yet beautiful items from the Jamieson Estate Collection, it’s been fascinating to see the mutant bat heads and cockroach wings, the busts of Hugh Jackman, Brad Pitt and Genna Davis, and the exquisite Mystique find their niche amidst the fine and decorative arts of our gallery.

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Posted: 3/11/2015 12:00:00 AM
By: Sean Quinn

Hope Springs Eternal at Waddington’s

The bright beautiful colours and bold images featured in our first auction of 2015 helped to take the chill off a frigid February and we hope everyone has been keeping warm through this seemingly endless winter. Even though the cold weather feels unrelenting, we hold out hope that spring is around the corner – or at least that’s what our calendars tell us. We’ve been keeping a careful eye on the calendar lately, not only to count down to warmer days, but also to keep track of the exciting events here at Waddington’s. With the flurry of activity happening we’re sure that the next few weeks will pass by quickly, and before we know it, winter will be but a distant memory.

We’ve had a great start to the year so far with the February 26 online auction marking the beginning of the 2015 auction season. Featuring nearly 250 lots representing works from China, Japan, India, and South East Asia the February online auction reflected the diversity and depth available in the Asian art market and offered works for both novice and seasoned collectors. With the success of our February sale behind us, we now turn our sights to the next online, which will be held on April 30, 2015 and of course to our live catalogue sale on Monday June 8, 2015 at 6pm.

The live catalogue auction is always a pleasure to assemble and we already have several promising works lined up for the June 8 auction. We have a strong focus on modern Chinese paintings including the second part of the Estate of Darius Alain. This collection features a selection of scroll paintings by Zhao Shao'Ang (1905-1998), and a group of paintings featuring the collaboration with Zhao Shao'Ang (1905-1998) and his student Chen Jiaxun (1937- ). We are also proud to present a collection of early, large-format paintings by Ding Yanyong (1902-1978). These were acquired directly from a Taiwanese gentleman living in Hong Kong during the 1950's and 60's, before his family moved to Canada. In the porcelain section, we are featuring a massive Longquan charger from the 15th century, consigned by an important Montreal collection. Also, we have a rare celadon Ru-type hu vase with Tongzhi Mark and period (1862-1874). This vase was acquired in the 1950's in Los Angeles, and was appraised by Sotheby's during the 1970's.

In preparation for the June auction, our senior Asian arts specialist Anthony Wu will be traveling to Montreal, Ottawa, Calgary, Vancouver, and Victoria to seek consignments. To schedule a confidential appointment with Anthony, please contact Yvonne Li by email or telephone at 416-847-6195.

Please keep checking the website as well will be uploading new items onto the Asian Art preview gallery every couple of weeks. We look forward to the coming weeks as we meet with everyone and put together the rest of our spring auctions.

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Important Dates

Calgary – Monday March 24

Vancouver/Victoria – Tuesday March 25 – Friday March 27

Ottawa/ Montreal – Wednesday April 1- Saturday April 4

Consignment Deadline – Friday March 27, 2015

Posted: 3/4/2015 12:00:00 AM
By: Anthony Wu

Entrust Waddington’s with your Artwork

Our highly successful Fall 2014 Inuit Art Auction realized phenomenal results for works by Davidialuk Alasua Amittu, John Kavik, Parr, Karoo Ashevak, Kenojuak Ashevak and Pauta Saila. Following their success, we are seeking works by these artists and other examples of fine Inuit Art for our Spring 2015 auction.

We are particularly interested in works such as textiles and drawings by Jessie Oonark, early graphics from Cape Dorset and Baker Lake, sculptures by Akeeaktashuk, Ennutsiak, Kananginak, Francis Kaluraq, Osuitok Ipeelie, Miriam Qiyuk, Sheokjuk Oqutaq, Davie Atchealuk, Charlie Ugyuk, Judas Ullulaq, Joe Talirunili, George Tataniq, Andy Miki, Henry Evaluardjuk, Josiah Nuilalik, Mathew Aqigaaq and Tudlik. And, as proven in our past auctions, works from the classic period are always highly sought after and do not necessarily have to be attributed to an artist.

If you are unsure what you have, simply send us digital images with dimensions and we’ll be pleased to provide guidance.  

We are equipped to handle all aspects of your Inuit art collection - our auctions run the gamut from attainably priced works to the top end of the market.  

We are also pleased to announce that we are planning a First Nations auction this year in addition to our biannual live Inuit art auctions and online Inuit art auctions.

Auction and Consignment Dates:

Spring Auction of Important Inuit Art - June 1st, 2015
Deadline - Early April - Consignments accepted ASAP

Auction of Important First Nations Art - Fall 2015
Christa Ouimet,
Inuit Art Specialist
Posted: 3/3/2015 12:00:00 AM
By: Christa Ouimet


Here is a solution for those of us struggling to make it through another cold winter. No, it’s not ‘move to Palm Springs’, although that does sound appealing. The answer is, get out and see some great contemporary art! There is so much going on in the art world this winter with Douglas Coupland’s major exhibition on at the ROM and MOCCA, Basquiat at the AGO,and dozens of great shows at contemporary galleries all over the city. Of course, if you are really keen, head to New York for the Armory Show.

Even better, acquire a new work for your winter nest.

The coming months offer great opportunities to acquire inspiring contemporary works in a number of auctions. This week’s Concrete Contemporary online auction features 58 works priced under $5000 by Canadian artists of exceptional accomplishment and stature. The following week Waddington’s annual Fine Prints and Photography auction is packed with over 300 works by major Canadian and international artists. Finally, April 13 is Concrete Contemporary’s live auction of important Canadian Contemporary Art. We are very excited as this auction features major work by luminaries such as John Kissick, Barbara Astman, Angela Leach, Melanie Authier, Tom Hodgson, Wanda Koop, Suzy Lake, Marcel Dzama, Ken Lum, Lynne Cohen, John Scott, Thrush Holmes, General Idea, Kim Dorland, Michael Adamson, Max Dean, Carol Wainio and Micah Lexier, among many others. We think it is our best offering to date and look forward to seeing all this work exhibited together in our gallery.

We are also delighted to announce a partnership with the Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival. Works donated to the festival by artists Sebastio Selgado, Lynne Cohen, Martin Parr, Max Dean, Andrew Wright, Philippe Chancel, Ken Lum and Suzy Lake will be offered in the Fine Prints and Photography auction and in Concrete Contemporary Auctions and Projects live auctions with proceeds going to the festival. CONTACT is the largest photography event in the world, and features over 1500 photographers in over 175 venues throughout the month of May.

Finally, we invite you to attend a guided walkthrough of the Concrete Contemporary collection on Sunday, April 12 at 2pm followed by a discussion with Sky Goodden, one of Canada’s leading art critics and editor of cutting edge art journal MOMUS.

More to come. Stay warm.


Contemporary Art Online Auction, March 2-5, 2015

Contemporary Art Live Auction, Tuesday 13 April, 2015

Posted: 3/2/2015 12:00:00 AM
By: Stephen Ranger

Spring 2015 Fine Prints and Photography auction

It is a great pleasure to present Waddington’s Spring 2015 Fine Prints and Photography auction.

Using outstanding quality and rarity as our guiding principles, we have assembled this sale of fine prints, multiples and photographs tailored to the tastes of both our emerging and experienced collectors. The result is over 300 lots of the most renowned Canadian and international artists that illustrate the multitude of artistic movements that can be found over the course of 500 years of printmaking.

Highlights of this auction include many fine graphics by Canadian printmakers represented by a roster of major works from coast to coast. From Western Canada, we are thrilled to offer the important colour woodcut by Walter J. Phillips, Mamalilicoola, British Columbia, 1928, which graces our inside cover (Lot 155). From Eastern Canada, Alexander Colville’s two silkscreens: Raven, 1990 (Lot 159) and Cat on the Fence, 1959 (Lot 160) convey a realist style similar to that of his paintings. In addition, we are extremely privileged to offer a rare series of five states of House at Path End, 1977 by Christopher Pratt (Lot 156); from Ontario, two early monoprints by Harold Town (Lots 142A and 142B) and The Skates, 1972 by Ken Danby (Lot 211); from Quebec, Claude Tousignant’s Sans Titre (Series of Six Abstracts), 1975 (Lot 180). This suite has not appeared on the market as a set in decades – its optic vibrations will captivate you.

Works by American Pop artist Andy Warhol are also included: graphics from Warhol’s most famous series, Campbell's Soup Cans (Lots 92 and 93); Liz, 1965 (Lot 90); and three unsigned acrylic panels attributed to The Factory (Lot 95). These are testaments to Warhol’s preoccupation with mass production, consumerism and the pleasure of repetition.

Prints and complete folios by the most significant international masters such as Henry Moore (Lots 116-120), Pablo Picasso (Lots 297-302), and Marc Chagall (Lot 260-264) present a most powerful offering. Also featured is a Rembrandt van Rijn etching, Old Man in Meditation, Leaning on a Book, c. 1965 – a poignant print filled with pathos (Lot 216). Here the viewer glances into the private world of a scholar leaning on his book.

Works by contemporary photographers Robert Mapplethorpe (Lots 86-89), Saul Leiter (Lot 84), and Richard Harrington (Lots 7-9) are featured alongside classic black and white prints by influential artists of the past. William Notman’s photographs of 19th Century Canada will astound you with faces frozen in time (Lots 15-20)

Please note that works from the Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival and Charles Bronfman’s Claridge Collection are offered in this sale. Proceeds will benefit the Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival & Historica Canada, respectively.

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Posted: 3/2/2015 12:00:00 AM
By: Susan Robertson

As one auction season ends, another is soon underway…

2014 was extremely busy at Waddington’s with 21 live auctions, 43 online auctions, several selling exhibitions and numerous fundraising events. Across our various departments we brought together 4,219 successful bidders with over 12,000 lots consigned by 3,039 vendors. And our Canadian art department set 12 new artist’s auction records this year!

Our success in 2014 was in great part due to our diversity of knowledge and experience, and our broad market networks. Waddington’s is well equipped to handle your items not only through our traditional departments, but anything you can challenge us with no matter how unique.

For me, the stand-out items are not always the most valuable ones. In 2014, what I found the most intriguing was The Billy Jamieson Collection of everything macabre, magical and outrageous – including a wooden New Guinea cannibal fork, a 19th c human tooth necklace, a pair of Houdini’s handcuffs and a commemorative slice of Jumbo the Elephant’s tusk originally presented to Mrs. P.T. Barnum.

Other 2014 auction highlights were a 16th c gilt bronze Buddha, a stone sculpture by Inuit artist Davidialuk depicting the story of Katyutayuuq, a rare set of 12 Imperial Russian dinner plates, a 19th c Napoleonic chess set depicting the Battle of Algiers, Sir Isaac Brock's Knighthood Commission document, an Elizabethan (1580) silver-mounted Tigerware jug, an Andy Warhol portrait of Karen Kain, and an important J.E.H MacDonald oil sketch for a major AGO collection canvas.  Now how’s that for diversity!

Spring 2015 will see Waddington’s offer yet another unique collection to complement our traditional department offerings: 250 pieces from the ‘FXSMITH Studio Collection’ including movie costumes and props from films like The X Men series and The Curious Case of Benjamin Button. 

We invite you to be part of our Spring 2015 season and to consider a consignment opportunity with us. Whether live, online or through private sale, we can provide the best forum to buy or sell.

Winter 2015 Newsletter (PDF)

Spring 2015 Auction and Consignment Schedule (PDF)

— Duncan McLean

Posted: 1/26/2015 12:00:00 AM
By: Duncan McLean


(1949 – 2015)

Toller Cranston lived in a grand Victorian home on Pembroke Street in downtown Toronto in the 1980s. Waddington’s was on Queen Street East at that time – on the other side of Moss Park, a short walk away. Toller was a regular at all our auctions, which in those days included twice-weekly estate auctions offering anything and everything to be found in a home. Toller was always on the hunt for the wild, the colourful, the outrageous, the beautiful and anything over the top. His favourite expression when he saw something he had to have was: “It’s beyond the beyond!” Pieces Toller had to have included an Italian Murano green glass indoor fountain that was destined for his bay window (where it actually worked once installed); a huge black metal sculpture of a flying raven; as well as every antique, carved wood cherub he could find.

One evening, I was hanging out with Toller and Bill Kime, another friend from Waddington’s, at his home. In our conversation Toller declared that it was time for him to start selling a few pieces to help spark a change in his life. This was during a difficult period for Toller, in the twilight of his skating career, and feeling unappreciated by the art world. (I remember a large canvas he had recently painted of classically Victorian dressed skaters on a frozen outdoor pond. On a hill next to the pond, a sinister-looking tree with another skater hanging by the neck from a branch over the frozen pond. That was Toller – dramatic and dark-humoured.)

Bill suggested that the best way to sell his pieces was not a few at a time, but all at once as a big event that would generate excitement; create a buzz in Toller’s world of art and entertainment. Toller loved the theatre of big events – and he was immediately excited by the prospect. In June 1991, after many days of working closely with Toller to catalogue the collection and produce a catalogue, Waddington’s offered the contents of his three-story house over a three-session auction. Invitations to the preview party were highly sought. Fans, collectors, voyeurs and media spilled out our front doors the evening of the first auction. And as predicted, the sale of his home and its contents allowed him to “reinvent himself”. Toller bought a magnificent estate in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico’s artist colony, where many ex-pat Canadians including Leonard Brooks and Toller’s good friend Gary Slipper were already settled. A new chapter of his life.

The reality is, Toller had already reinvented himself several times – from virtuoso world-champion skater, to caustic commentator to devoted coach – Toller had pushed the limits of a restrictive sport at every leap and turn. As a painter, Toller’s work was like his artistry on ice. Graceful, sensual, provocative, at times dark, or exploding with colour and energy. Defying tradition and eschewing conformity.

Toller lived large. He craved attention and appreciation, but he also spoke the truth as he saw it – which often landed him on the wrong side of the establishment. He had a wicked sense of humour and could slay his critics with a mere word or two. Toller was brilliant. He should be honoured as one of Canada’s most remarkable creative forces for changing the Canadian landscape in so many ways. Toller was a friend. He was generous, he was fun, he was both a social animal and a solitary man, a mercurial temperament who would disappear for months and then return with bravado.

Toller will be missed. By me, by those who had the chance to enter his magical life, and everyone else who will be touched by his creative legacy.

Duncan McLean

This photograph of Toller’s main floor living room was taken by Joy von Tiedemann and used as the auction catalogue cover. It’s a wonderfully mad room that is all Toller.

These images of Toller and his home were simply taken down off his wall to be used in the auction catalogue.

These images are of the auction preview displaying Toller’s immense and diverse collection. Waddington’s gallery had never looked so vibrant, so colourful or so fantastic!

Posted: 1/26/2015 12:00:00 AM
By: Duncan McLean

Fine Prints & Photography Auction - March 10, 2015

The beginning of another auction year is always exciting, especially as it brings one of our most popular events, the Fine Print and Photography auction. This year’s auction will once again feature many of the most desirable international and Canadian artists. As we approach the deadline we encourage you to contact us as soon as possible to enter your prints and photography into the sale.

The auction will feature an exciting selection of original prints by top international artists such as Alberto Giacometti, Andy Warhol, Joan Miro, Pablo Picasso, Marc Chagall, Roy Lichtenstein, Henry Moore, Grant Wood, Alexander Calder, Jim Dine, Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, Tamara de Lempicka, Mary Cassat, Lovis Corinth, Marino Marini, Rembrandt van Rijn and many others.

Collectors will also have the opportunity to bid on original works by important Canadian artists such as Marion Florence MacKay Nicoll, Guido Molinari, Alex Colville and Jean Paul Riopelle. Highlights of our photography selection include works by Robert Mapplethorpe, Saul Leiter, Ralph Gibson and Andre Kertesz, as well as renowned Canadian photographers Richard Harrington and John Reeves.

The 2015 Fine Print and Photography auction will also showcase a special collection of prints and drawings from the collection of the Art Gallery of Ontario as part of their de-accessioning program. The collection will feature old master prints by Rembrandt, Adriaen van Ostade, Hans Beham and many others.

Waddington’s is the leading auctioneer in Canada conducting specialized print and photography auctions featuring original graphics by important Canadian and international artists. Exceedingly popular, our auctions consistently achieve top results within the international market.

The deadline for submissions is Friday, January 30, 2015. For more information about Print and Photography auction please contact us today:

Susan Robertson (Specialist) (416-847-6179)
Emma Frank (Administrator) (416-847-6182)

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Posted: 1/14/2015 12:00:00 AM
By: Emma Frank (Assistant)

Outline and Equilibrium: Release of the Thistledown

Blending the brushstrokes of Van Gogh and the colour of the Fauves with bold outlines and distinctly Canadian compositions, the works of Clark McDougall emit equilibrium, light and rhythm.

In 1950, at the age of 29, Clark McDougall drove with a group of friends to Quebec City and to Montreal. It was during this trip that he first encountered works by John Lyman, J.W. Morrice and Henri Matisse; works that would have a great effect on McDougall and profoundly influence his ideas on colour and outline:

“It struck me,” he said in reflecting on the trip, “that there was another point of painting that I’d never thought about… By using the outline, you establish the form; you establish the location of all your objects, so… this is your composition and your design. Now you start to think of your colour as a separate item. You put it in flat. You can work flatter and purer and the colour will give you more impact and you don’t have to think about traditional painting, which is to say a gradation to get the change from light to dark. You can allow more for your line to do that.” 1

According to Paddy O’Brien, McDougall’s ‘substantial breakthrough’ 2 came eight years later in the painting of Release of the Thistledown. Concerned with composition and design, McDougall made a drawing in the exact size of the eventual painting. After the right balance had been achieved, he traced the work several times onto semi-opaque paper and eventually onto a prepared masonite panel. The outlines were next – a paint mixture of ultramarine blue and alizarin crimson that created changeable and moody black bands. Once the black was dry, the colours could be filled in: Shapes and patterns vibrating between their outlines like stained-glass. The effect was vibrant, bold and impactful.

We are excited to feature Release of the Thistledown, the first painting executed in what was to become Clark McDougall’s signature style in our Canadian Art Online Auction, March 2-5, 2015.

1. Taped interview with Alvin Balkin. December 2, 1979.
2. Paddy O’Brien. John Street is a one-way street: Clark McDougall Retrospective, 1921-1980 (exhibition catalogue), London Regional Art Gallery, London, Ontario, page 18. Release of the Thistledown (1958), cat. 38, reproduced, page 18 and in colour, page 46.

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Posted: 1/12/2015 12:00:00 AM
By: Erin Rutherford

“Our best-ever Decorative Arts Auction”

Our final Decorative Art auctions of 2014 spanned two evenings, and like the ‘Grand Tour’ adventurers of the 18th and 19th century, collectors were presented with an array of exquisite works to return home with.

The first session of Decorative Arts on December 9th was described as “superb”, by Bill Kime, Senior Specialist. Solid performances for Georgian and Victorian silver included works by Royal silversmiths Robert Garrard and Paul Storr, as well as a charming George II silver coffee pot by Elizabeth Godfrey. Determined bidding resulted in an astonishing price for a rare Sèvres bleu celeste box. Kime acknowledged that the piece almost didn’t make it into the auction due to its damaged condition and missing cover. However, the decision to include the 4.3” porcelain boîte was validated by its $18,000 selling price.

Having generated much buzz before the auction (including a visit by members of the American Ceramic Circle) the rare set of 12 Russian Imperial porcelain dinner plates from the famed Raphael Service did not disappoint. Inspiring interest from overseas, online and in the auction room, the exquisite plates sold for $163,500.

The second session of Decorative Arts also generated heated competition for several key lots, including a carved ivory chess set, ‘Battle of Algiers’. Finely detailed, the set features Louis-Philippe and Maria Amalia de Bourbon as white King and Queen, Abdelkader El Djezairi as red King, and Napoleon’s columns and obelisks as rooks. Final sale price was $24,000. Indeed, emperors ruled the evening, as Napoleonic and Grand Tour items were also popular, as was the bust of a handsome Roman Emperor sculpted in marble and bronze, which fetched $18,000. Italian elegance was highly sought and found in the handsome 19th century, Italian Parcel Gilt Ebony and Ebonized Pietra Dura and Ormolu Mounted Cabinet. Estimated at $5,000 – 7,000, enthusiastic bidding drove the price up to $25,200. For more information about auction results, please visit:

As we close out our 2014 auction season, we’re delighted to wrap up our year with such a beautiful bow and look forward to discovering more treasures for you in the new year.

Note: All prices are in Canadian funds and include buyer’s premium.

Posted: 12/15/2014 12:00:00 AM
By: Bill Kime

International Art auction wraps up 2014 in grand fashion

A striking brunette was the decided favourite of our December International Art auction. Found in a basement, the lovely oil on canvas titled ‘Brunetta’ arrived at our office covered in cobwebs. The cobwebs were brushed aside and Brunetta, by 19th century British artist John Atkinson Grimshaw, sold for $94,500.

The vibrant colours of ‘Flags’ by American artist Alex Katz also inspired enthusiastic bidding resulting in a final price of $40,800.

Deaccessioned works from the Art of Gallery of Ontario (AGO) were also on offer, with the beautiful Building Sandcastles by Hague School artist Bernardus Johannes Blommers bringing $22,140. (Waddington’s is honoured to assist the AGO with its deaccessioning strategy in its efforts to refine the public, community and art historical value of its collection.*)

Many thanks to all our clients as we wrap up 2014 and all our best for a wonderful new year. We look forward to bringing you a very exciting year of International Art in 2015!

Note: All prices are in Canadian funds and include buyer’s premium.

AGO Deaccessioning Policy

View the Results Gallery

Posted: 12/12/2014 12:00:00 AM
By: Tess McLean

A Record Night

Expectations for Lot 53, John Graham Coughtry, Two Figure Series XIX, 1964, ran high before the eve of our November Sale of Canadian Fine Art. This oversized canvas, in museum-quality condition, attracted the attention of both astute collectors and other aficionados alike. Drawing comparison with the Two Figure Series XXI, 1964, from the collection of the National Gallery of Canada, the virtuosity of this work was indisputable.

Graham Coughtry his "Two Figure Series" between the years 1962-1964. In this series, Coughtry investigated the figure-ground relationship - creating artworks in which the figures at once integrate and emerge from the painted canvas. Coughtry aptly utilized the story of Ovid’s Metamorphoses as his inspiration. In the tale, the heroine, Salmacis, consummated her love for Hermaphroditus by uniting with him so closely that the two became one.

The atmosphere in the room was as charged as the painting itself when the Lot came up for sale. Paddles within the room quickly lifted, battling against multiple telephone and Internet bidders. Within mere moments, the estimate had been surpassed. When the Lot hammered down after sustained and energetic bidding, a Record Price for a work by Coughtry had been realized, $129,800 (including buyer’s premium) and a new home had been found for this tour de force.

Posted: 12/9/2014 12:00:00 AM
By: Erin Rutherford


The time is upon us to reflect back on a busy year for Concrete. Encouraged by a successful auction last March, we added a second in September but did so with an inspired approach. Thoughtfully curated by Stephen Ranger, this auction offered fewer than 60 lots, but the quality of work presented and the prices realized for works by artists such as Kim Dorland, Angela Leach, and Graham Gillmore indicated to us that we are on the right track in establishing a strong secondary market for Canadian contemporary art.

Now entering Concrete’s fourth year, we can look back and better assess our efforts in navigating the unchartered waters of contemporary art at auction in Canada. We know there is much work to be done, but with goals firmly in place and plenty of perseverance, we hope to echo the proven contemporary markets in cities such as New York and London. We know we have the artistic talent in Canada. We know we are attracting more and more collectors. We know we have the dedication to draw greater local, national, and international interest in Canadian contemporary art. So it is with great anticipation that we welcome 2015 with live and online auctions, informative programming, special events, and selling exhibitions.

After a short break for the holidays, we will be back in full swing in early January collecting consignments for our spring auction scheduled for Monday, April 13th. If you are interested in consigning to our upcoming auctions, please contact Kristin Vance at 416-504-9100 ex. 6178 or

Posted: 12/8/2014 12:00:00 AM
By: Kristin Vance

Napoleon and the ‘Grand Tour’ Highlight our December 10th Decorative Arts Auction

The Infamous Napoleon

Anne Savary, Napoleon Bonaparte’s commander of personal security, once asked him, “Do you want to be God?” To which, after some consideration Napoleon replied, “No, it is a dead end job.”

The appeal of Napoleon endures to this day and whether you consider him good or evil, he was definitely interesting. His drive for success was constant and strong. Starting as a young man in the army, it took only a few years to become the First Consul of France at the age of 31. He pushed his armies for more and became the Emperor of Europe, delving deep into the heart of Russia and fending off armies from all sides of France. A political and military genius, he led a part of the world at a time of great change and glory. Today he is a symbol of strong, unwavering leadership and confidence in the face of adversity.

Grand Tour Memorabilia

In the 17th Century, it was customary for young men of the Britain ruling class to take an extended trip through Europe in order to improve their knowledge of the arts, architecture, language, and politics. Generally they crossed the English Channel and began their trips in Paris before venturing on to the Mediterranean and the cities of Florence, Venice and Rome. These trips would last anywhere from one to four years. It was expected that these young gentlemen would arrive home with refined tastes and trunks full of souvenirs, such as paintings, sculptures, and literature. Many commissioned Italian portrait artists to paint them during this period of their enlightenment.

Some of the wealthiest travellers would also bring home the desire to build life-sized replicas of Roman architecture for their English properties. In so doing, the rise of Neo-Classical architecture began. Most travellers though, were happy with just the experience and would bring back mementos created by local artists, such as etchings of Roman views, or marble replicas of the ruins they had toured. With the advent of railway travel in the 1840’s travel became more affordable and accessible. The Grand Tour lost its aura of exclusivity, and the custom began to wane.

Posted: 12/5/2014 12:00:00 AM
By: Sean Quinn

Works from the AGO in International Art Auction

We arrive at our final auction of 2014 with great excitement following a hectic fall, which included three online auctions of exceptional International artworks (American, Continental and Russian) in October alone!

At the same time, we were also busy assembling a very special live auction to wrap up a successful year. Our December 10, 2014 International Art auction features a select collection of the highest quality, most compelling artworks that will appeal to all collector tastes.

A selection of paintings from the AGO is an exciting highlight of the auction. One of Canada’s most prestigious cultural institutions, the AGO was one of the first institutions to hold exhibitions of important European paintings in Canada in the early 20th Century. The deaccessioned paintings included in our auction by Blommers, Loudan and others have exceptional provenance. The history of these works is immediately visible, with old labels still affixed to their period frames. It was truly a pleasure to handle these paintings and we look forward to working further with the AGO.

For more information about the AGO’s Deaccessioning Policy visit:

Behind the Scenes

All of the paintings, sculpture and drawings offered in the international art auctions are diligently researched. This is one of the most challenging yet rewarding aspects of our work. For instance, the arrival of “Michaelangelo in His Studio, Visited by Pope Julius II,” (lot 478) presented an opportunity to delve into the history of this lost work. The original oil by French artist Alexandre Cabanel (1823-1889) has been untraced since its exhibition at the Salon of 1857, known only by a hand-coloured engraving executed by Pierre Castan. Was this the original painting or was it a copy? We searched the records for this work with the generous assistance from staff of the National Gallery of Canada, the Frick Reference Library in New York as well as the International Art and Antique Loss Register. As it turns out, all evidence concludes that it is in fact a copy executed in the late 19th century. Its decorative appeal is nonetheless undeniable; encompassed in its elaborate gilt frame it is impressive.

Works often come to us from unexpected avenues, as was the case with the beautiful portrait “Brunetta” (lot 504), by British artist John Atkinson Grimshaw (1836-1893). Discovered by a colleague in the basement of an estate, it was covered in cobwebs when it arrived on our premises. A neglected gem, this Pre-Raphaelite beauty will restore beautifully to its original splendour.

Yet more rare and interesting works are found in the sale including Otto Pankok’s large charcoal “Still Life with Flowers”, (lot 496) whose provenance can be traced from Holocaust era Germany. The original owner, Mr. Ludwig Leitz of the Leitz Camera firm, established a covert means of allowing Jews to leave Germany in the guise of employees of the Leitz Camera firm during the Second World War. Mr. Leitz gifted the drawing to his cousin who immigrated to Midland, Ontario, in the 1950s. (For further information see “The Greatest Invention of the Leitz family: the Leica Freedom Train” published by the American Photographic Historical Society, 2002).

Be sure to register early for online, telephone and absentee bidding. For those who will be attending the auction in Toronto, we look forward to seeing you at the auction on December 10th!

Next up: we are currently accepting consignments for our Fine Print and Photography Auction, Tuesday, March 10, 2015, featuring many top Canadian and International artists, including Warhol, Miro, Colville, Chagall and others.

We thank all of those who participated in our auctions and look forward to offering additional specialized sales in the New Year, including Old Masters and related works scheduled for March 2015.
Posted: 12/1/2014 12:00:00 AM
By: Susan Robertson

A Bear in a China Shop…

The Raphael Service was the most exquisite and expensive set ever produced by the Russian Imperial Porcelain Factory, made at a time when Tsar Alexander III had taken a strong interest in their creations. Production began in 1884, just as the factory had been furnished with new equipment and extensively trained painters. The head of the Imperial Art Workshops, Leonard Schaufelberger, worked closely with the Tsar, who felt that “the propagation of art is a matter of state importance”. He personally approved the design of the Raphael service in which he took great pride and interest.

Alexander enjoyed simple pursuits like hunting and fishing; he was religious, and very proud of his Russian heritage. He would wake in the morning to a simple breakfast and don regular working-class clothing while he performed his daily duties. He truly was a bear of a man, standing 6’4” tall. Perhaps his most heroic feat was in October 1888 when the Imperial family was targeted in an attack while travelling by train in the Ukraine, now known as the Borki Disaster. The family was in the dining car when the explosion derailed the train. Alexander was able to hold up the collapsed roof of the car for long enough to let his family escape unharmed.

Alexander’s wife Maria, was born Princess Dagmar of Denmark. They were very fond of each other. As Tsarina, Maria was popular and relished the opportunities to attend balls and galas. She loved her role of Tsarina. It is likely that Alexander had Maria in mind when the service was created. The design was based on the Raphael Loggia in the Vatican, also recreated in the Winter Palace Hermitage for Catherine the Great. Only fifty place settings in total were completed, which would actually make this quite a small setting, probably used for more intimate gatherings of the highest society of Russia and Europe.

When the set was not in use, it was stored at the Winter Palace. The family requested it when needed and it would have been transported by rail between the various residences of the Imperial family. It was most likely used quite often at Gatchina, where Alexander and Maria made their permanent home, or at The Anichkov Palace when they were in the city of St. Petersburg. Other residences, such as the Catherine Palace in Tsarkoye Selo had dining rooms that complemented the striking neo-classical design of the Raphael service. Perhaps the family used it for Christmas dinners, as they were presented with newly completed pieces every Christmas during the twenty-year production of the service.

After Alexander died of liver failure in 1894, his son Nicholas II, the last Tsar of All the Russias was crowned. Maria kept a very public presence alongside her son, as the Dowager Empress. It is probable that Maria continued to enjoy the service, as the new Tsar’s family resided at the Alexander Palace where they had redecorated in a much more modern Art Nouveau style. Upon completion of the Raphael service in 1903, it was permanently transported to Maria’s home, The Anichkov Palace, indicating that perhaps the service had always been intended for her.

A very rare set of twelve dinner plates from the Raphael service in their original mahogany box will be offered at auction on Tuesday, December 9th at 7pm.

Posted: 11/26/2014 12:00:00 AM
By: Bill Kime

The story behind Montreal’s Harry Handel and his collection of Asian Art

Throughout history, artists, intellectuals and philosophers have gathered together to discuss the world around them. At a coffee house, in someone’s home, or a bookstore; like Café Tortoni in Buenos Aires, Gertrude Stein’s Paris salon, and in Montreal in the 1930s and 40s, Harry Handel’s Everyman’s Bookstore. A second-hand bookstore in downtown Montreal that would become an intellectual centre for those fascinated with exploration, anthropology, religion and art.

Harry Handel (1916-1972) opened Everyman’s Bookstore during the 1930s. A self-educated man, he would become an authority on Canadian art and culture, and become close friends with the leading Canadian artists of the day, (Arthur Lismer, Sam Borenstein and A.Y. Jackson) as well as Alex Gurie, of Montreal’s famed Gurie Gallery. It was Gurie who would introduce Handel to Asian art and antiques. The collection in this auction was purchased from the Gurie Gallery in the 1950s and passed onto Handel’s family by descent.
Toward the end of Handel’s life, his second-hand bookshop had evolved into an estate buying and art-dealing business. Everyman’s Bookshop closed in 1970 when Handel died at the age of 55.

Waddington’s is proud to offer Harry Handel’s Collection of Asian Art as part of our December 1, 2014 auction of Asian Art, including exquisite Chinese and Himalayan bronzes, Chinese jades and ivory carvings.

Posted: 11/25/2014 12:00:00 AM
By: Anthony Wu

Waddington's Inuit Art Auction Results

A record for Povungnituk artist Davidialuk Alasua Amittu was one of several highlights of Waddington's Inuit Art Auction held in Toronto November 17. "Sleeping Platform", an impressive sculpture in dark stone, reached $45,600 beating a previous record for a work by the artist, also set by Waddington's in 2013. An exquisite bone sculpture by Karoo Ashevak of a bird defending its nest of eggs was also hugely popular, fetching $36,000, and a stonecut print by consummate favourite Kenojuak Ashevak brought $20,400.

The three top lots were clearly representative of the best of the diversity of Inuit art. Works by the great storyteller Davidialuk, while always an intriguing depiction of an Inuit myth, legend, story or custom – is rarely described as beautiful. In contrast, Karoo's work is prized for its whimsy, beautiful execution and creative brilliance. Kenojuak's "Bird Humans", a striking crimson blend of Inuit people and birds, is emblematic of the late, iconic artist's sense of design and use of colour.

Waddington's Inuit Art Specialist Christa Ouimet also noted that the prices obtained for original drawings in the auction indicated a growth in their popularity; three drawings by Parr sold for a total of $27,000. An extraordinary artist who began his art career at the age of 68, Parr's drawings are considered to be a record of the traditional hunting and nomadic lifestyle of the Inuit for future generations.

Note: prices quoted are in Canadian dollars and are comprised of hammer price and buyers' commission.

To consign to our Spring Inuit Art Auction
please contact:
Christa Ouimet 416.847.6184

View Highlights from this Auction

Posted: 11/20/2014 12:00:00 AM
By: Christa Ouimet


It’s sometimes hard not to be Toronto-Montreal-Vancouver-centric in the art world in Canada, but I had the opportunity to be in Calgary this past weekend to conduct the auction for Calgary Contemporary, the ambitious new project to merge three contemporary art spaces into what was the old Science Centre and Planetarium. I can only say I was incredibly impressed by the energy and commitment to contemporary art, as evidenced by the sold-out event and the strength of the prices achieved at the live auction.

One of the things that most impressed me was the diverse nature of the buyers at the auction. There were certainly some established collectors (it’s always good to see old friends on their home turf), but in many instances they were getting outbid by younger collectors, who despite the steep prices, stayed in the game, determined to acquire the work.

Needless to say, this is Canada and no one overpays for Canadian art, but our national pricing modesty notwithstanding, retail prices and above were paid for works by Douglas Coupland, Kent Monkman, Fred Herzog, Adad Hannah, Ryan Slugett, Tim Zuck and Ed Burtynsky among other notable artists.

While it may seem cliché to say that Calgary is booming, it actually couldn’t be more true. There is a huge commitment to public art and art education; more galleries are opening as are leading-edge private art institutions like the Esker Foundation. Oil money is fueling great new buildings (pun intended) such as the Foster-designed Bow Centre and the recently completed Peace Bridge by Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava. Even the New York Times is taking notice, describing a “creative transformation” of the city in a recent laudatory article. Richard Florida was on hand for the gala on Saturday promoting his new book and speaking about the rise of the “creative class” in Calgary and the transformation of its cultural economy.

It was inspiring to be a part of this “can do” spirit, if only for a weekend. I look forward to reporting more on future art safaris to Calgary. I am sure next time I visit, it will have transformed once again.

Posted: 11/4/2014 12:00:00 AM
By: Stephen Ranger

Special Event Celebrating Inuit Art & Arctic Life November 16

Sunday 16 November 2014, 3 p.m.

Waddington’s and Adventure Canada invite you to a celebration of Inuit Art and Arctic Life.

In our tradition of exploring the heart and soul of Inuit art and culture, we are pleased to present an insightful presentation from Dr. Anna Hudson: "Where does Inuit Tradition Live Today?” Former Associate Curator of Canadian Art at the Art Gallery of Ontario, Dr. Hudson is currently leading a major Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada Partnership Grant project titled “Mobilizing Inuit Cultural Heritage: a multi-media/multi-platform re-engagement of voice in visual art and performance”.

"Where does Inuit Tradition Live Today?” - 3:00 p.m.
Dr. Anna Hudson, Associate Professor, Department of Visual Art & Art History, Faculty of Fine Arts, York University.

Special guests Heidi Langille and Lynda Brown of the Ottawa Inuit Children’s Centre will lend their voices to the discussion through the shared joy of throat singing.

Special feature: Discover the spirit and beauty of the Arctic in person. Bid via silent auction on Adventure Canada’s extraordinary journey to the ‘Heart of the Arctic’.

When: Inuit Art Auction - November 16, 2014, 3 p.m.

Where: Waddington's, 275 King St East, Second Floor, Toronto, ON, M5A 1K2

Kate Godin
Posted: 11/3/2014 12:00:00 AM
By: Christa Ouimet

Concrete Contemporary Art Auction Results

It began with a champagne reception, set amidst 54 amazing lots on our gallery walls, and ended with a full house of enthusiastic collectors. September 23rd marked the highly anticipated second Concrete Contemporary live auction of the year and was highlighted by the inclusion of major Canadian artists such as Michael Adamson, James Lahey, Kim Dorland, whose Dripping Dream #2 realized $18,000 and Tim Zuck, whose Untitled #72 sold for $16,800. Immediately following the Concrete auction we transformed the gallery space for the 21st annual Art With Heart auction preview and reception. Benefiting Toronto’s Casey House, this auction raised a stunning $700,000 on October 7th with all 86 lots selling.

We are eagerly anticipating this fall’s art fairs in Toronto, specifically Feature Contemporary Art Fair (October 23-26 at the Joey & Toby Tanenbaum Opera Centre) and the Art Toronto International Art Fair (October 24-27 at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre). Exclusively comprised of contemporary art, the Feature art fair promises to be an exciting mix of established and new artists’ work represented by many of Toronto’s foremost contemporary art galleries. The fair will host tours and numerous talks with distinguished panelists who will address a variety of topics on contemporary art. Our own Stephen Ranger, along with consummate collectors Marshall Webb, Jacques Bernier, and moderator Sara Angel, will discuss the North American contemporary art market at the “The Ever-Evolving Art Market” talk on October 26th at 3 pm. The Art Toronto International Art Fair, celebrating its 15th anniversary this year, will no doubt excite, entice and entertain attendees with fabulous traditional and new media art as well guided tours and discussions led by leading art experts. We will certainly be visiting the fairs, likely more than once!

Looking forward, we are beginning preparations for our spring 2015 Concrete Contemporary Art auction which will feature works by Wanda Koop, James Lahey, Angela Leach, Kim Dorland and many others. We will keep you updated as we continue to accept consignments!

Kristin Vance
Concrete Contemporary
Posted: 10/23/2014 12:00:00 AM
By: Kristin Vance

Inuit Art Auction
Catalogue Available

Much like some Inuit artists release an image from a piece of stone or other material, assembling an auction comes together organically. Even with all the planning and campaigning we do leading up to our auction, it can still remain a mystery up to the consignment deadline as to what the final product will end up being. We are very happy to reveal the collection of works that comprise our fall auction of Important Inuit Art.

This season we are thrilled to offer works by favoured artists such as Osuitok Ipeelee and Karoo Ashevak, as well as sculptures from artists who have remained anonymous but are certainly no less admired. Our graphics selection is representative of the unique vision each artist expresses in their work. We're thrilled once again to offer you three powerful little prints from the Kinngait experimental collection released in 1958. You will find several of Kenojuak Ashevak's marvelous images from the early 1960's and many other striking works on paper from Kinngait and Qamani'tuaq.

From the masterful large scale work by Davidialuk to the charming little Jessie Oonark textile, we are thrilled with how the auction has taken shape and confident there is something for every collector within the pages of this catalogue.

We welcome you to join us this fall in celebrating Inuit art.

View the Inuit Art Auction Gallery

View the Catalogue (PDF)

— Christa Ouimet
Specialist, Inuit Art
Posted: 10/20/2014 12:00:00 AM
By: Christa Ouimet

The Little Pictures Selling Exhibition
Wednesday 22 October 2014

The art world has two primary homes.

The stark gallery space – with its whitewashed walls, sparse décor and often intense silences.


The auction house – a bustling place with numbered paddles, a high-paced auctioneer and the fear of movement, lest one want to bid. There is the energy of a sale, the competitive buzz of the room, eager anticipation and soaring prices.

While the atmospheres could not be more different, both spaces are often equally intimidating to a person finding themselves on unfamiliar grounds. For someone looking to begin or to grow an art collection, both scenarios may leave them too confused to even begin.

The Little Pictures Selling Exhibition serves as an entry point to the emerging collector. In taking an accessible and empathetic approach, we encourage new collectors to wet their feet, get into the game, to start and to grow their own collections. Here, there is no fear of reproach for asking questions, no intimidation tactic for being unfamiliar with established or relatively obscure Canadian artists.

Little Pictures provides an exciting opportunity to acquaint oneself with the people and processes of the auction business: Ask the questions you’ve always wanted to ask, learn about artists and stylistic periods, browse and purchase at the auction house without the anxiety of having to lift a paddle.

Rather than pay premium prices for reproductions, Little Pictures is a chance to affordably furnish/infuse your home with unique works of Canadian Art.

We look forward to welcoming you on October 22nd, 2014 from 6:00 pm - 9:00 pm.

To register for the event, please contact
Erin Rutherford, 416-504-5100,
Posted: 10/17/2014 12:00:00 AM
By: Erin Rutherford

Online auction features elegant Ovilu Tunnillie work

The late Ovilu Tunnillie was an accomplished artist from the community of Kinngait (Cape Dorset). Born in 1949 to artists, Sheojuk and Toonoo, she spent time in the south at a young age for tuberculosis treatment, an experience which had a strong impact on her. Her subjects range from the traditional to the contemporary with a focus on portraying women's stories. Many of her works were autobiographical and conveyed great emotion. Her sculpture displays a remarkable sensuality and modernity in form. Ovilu took pride in the fact that she could carve stone which was a skill mostly dominated by men. She was also one of the few Inuit sculptors to explore the female nude. Her work has been widely exhibited throughout Canada and is collected internationally.

"Ovilu Tunnillie uses her art to represent myths, tales and customs from her culture, such as the stories about the shaman and the sea goddess." An Ovilu sedna or taleelayu can be described as "… a marvel of voluptuousness thanks to its powerful volumes and the sensual charm of the sculpted curves."

- Inuit Women Artists, Odette Leroux, Marion E. Jackson, Minnie Aodla Freeman, The Canadian Museum of Civilization, 1994

"I was nine when I returned from hospital in the south and I saw my dad carving. I really liked rocks and stones and I thought, gee, rock can be made into art! …It was hard at first, but now I enjoy it. Other women inspired me - I saw we could do this too. When I started, women were not seen as being as important as men, but now women get a lot of recognition."

- Ovilu Tunnillie, Northern Rock, Contemporary Inuit Stone Sculpture, Susan Gustavison, McMichael Canadian Art Collection, 1999

Bid online:

Posted: 10/15/2014 12:00:00 AM
By: Christa Ouimet

Appraisal Day at the MIA

The event "Identifying Inuit art" on Friday Sept. 26 at the MIA was another great success. Thanks to everyone who came out and participated. If you couldn't make it this year this is what you missed:

-An opportunity to view the current exhibitions at the Museum of Inuit Art.

-A chance to meet with representatives from several aspects of the Inuit art industry: a curator, a gallery director, an auction specialist and a wholesale manager, all at the same table together!

-Art experts examining and discussing YOUR treasures, providing opinions on historical significance, dating of when the work was executed, providing artist attributions and access to artist databases, assisting with repairs, identifying the purpose of artifacts, reading syllabics inscribed in sculpture, identifying the geographical region or settlement of origin for your artwork.

-Verbal appraisals reflecting the three different Inuit art markets, plus the advice of an art curator about the benefits of donation.

We had a great time together discussing our shared passion for Inuit art and I can speak for myself when I say it is very rewarding working with all three of the panelists even if for only one day a year. Blandina's in-depth knowledge of the art and culture of the Inuit across Canada was a huge benefit to the panel this year. RJ's determination and willingness to go the extra mile for the collector was hugely evident again this year and I know for a fact he's already followed up on a couple of mysteries from that day. It was evident to me that the MIA has a fan base in large part due to curator Alysa's warm and welcoming nature. She recognizes that the smallest detail in a work can be indicative of important pieces to the puzzle when identifying Inuit art, which made her expertise essential to the panel. I was happy to be in the company of these fine specialists and look forward to doing it again next time.
Posted: 10/10/2014 12:00:00 AM
By: Christa Ouimet

Fall Jewellery Auctions

The Jewellery department is closing 2014 with a series of three auctions. First up will be another of our popular online auctions of Silver And Costume Jewellery, October 27 - 30. As always, the auction is composed of an eclectic mix of antique to modern pieces by well-known designers, international artisans and lesser-known craftsmen. Among the names represented in this auction are Tiffany, Jensen, Cartier, Sherman, Levin, Vidal, Hardy, Wanamaker, Haskell, Dior, Sigi, Morris, Chanel, Coro, Forstner and Birks.

Our online auction will be followed closely by our Quarterly Jewellery And Numismatic Auctions, on November 5. This will be a large auction combining the coins, bank notes and stamps of several numismatic collections with silver and gold jewellery and watches from numerous estates and consignors.

Our final auction of this year is the December 2 Fine Jewellery Auction. As well as a fine selection of jewellery, the auction will include a number of desirable wrist and pocket watches, and features examples from different eras in the history of Rolex. A circa 1915 Rolex “Trench” watch, so called due to its design for use in the trenches of World War I, represents the earliest years of the firm. Its flip-up silver cover over the dial is called a shrapnel guard, designed to protect the watch from flying debris. Inside the case is the hallmark of the firm Wilsdorf & Davis, the original name for the Rolex company, and the case back is engraved for a Lieutenant of the 66th battery of the Canadian Field Artillery and the Canadian Expeditionary Forces.

From the 1920’s, we have a rare Rolex pocket watch. Pocket watch sales world-wide were already waning with the post World War I use of wristwatches so Rolex never produced very many, instead focusing on their development of the wristwatch features they became famous for, such as the waterproof “Oyster” case and perpetual movements. From the 1950’s we have a two fine Rolex examples. The first is a gold-cased “Bubbleback” Oyster, a nick-name derived from the bulbous back of the watch which houses the rotor of the automatic wind movement, and the second is an early steel cased Oyster Perpetual in perfect original condition. Finally, there is a beautiful 1960’s example of a Rolex Tudor Oyster Perpetual Submariner. In 1946, Rolex opened a second line of watches, naming them “Tudor” in recognition of Rolex’s English origin, and this Submariner represents one of the most collectible watches sold under the Tudor name.

The consignment deadlines for these exciting auctions are only weeks away, so please don’t hesitate to contact our department if you are considering the sale of any jewellery, watches or numismatics.

View the auction galleries.
Posted: 10/10/2014 12:00:00 AM
By: Donald McLean


A record-breaking season ahead!

It’s amazing to think of the amount of beauty that will be pouring out our front doors onto King Street East in the next few months. While we’re really looking forward to our live auction in December, there are seven online auctions in October that will keep us all busy. SEVEN – the highest number of online auctions offered in one month by one department at Waddington’s. October is going to be rich with opportunity to acquire something for your collection – or to start one. We’ve been carefully selecting and building these auctions for some time and are now ready to unleash a tidal wave of interesting and beautiful decorative art!

For the first set of online auctions, October 13 – 16, Decorative Arts Specialist Sean Quinn has been working on a Maps, Militaria and Arms and a Science, Technology, and Medical Equipment auction which both contain many intriguing conversation pieces for the curiosity collector – from a Victorian replica suit of armor, to an écorché anatomical model for medical study. There is also a wonderful collection of Toronto-specific books and pamphlets. Great source material for anyone interested in first-hand accounts of our hometown.

Charles Bronfman’s Claridge Collection will also be on offer as Waddington’s continues to sell the collection in benefit of Historica Canada. This collection has many wonderful whimsical items from Canadian craftspeople; it’s a great auction to find something unique from both up-and-coming and established artists.

And then there’s our traditional Decorative Arts online auction – where you’ll find the pieces you’re most accustomed to seeing from our department. Bronzes, clocks, sculptures, glass, silver (so much silver!), and porcelain. The items that really stand out for me are the small bronze sculpture ‘Rhinocéros Habillé en Dentelles’, after Salvador Dali, and a set of six Russian silver vodka goblets and matching carafe that each depict a dancing man as the stem and finial. A very playful figure, which I think is a good indication of what the set is used for!

The second series of October online auctions, October 27 – 30, includes the ever-popular Vintage Wine Accessories. Interest in this auction in years past will only increase with the addition of the Kevin Shanahan Collection of Wine Labels, the best collection to ever be offered at auction in Canada. Shanahan was a lifelong collector and a very active member of the Wine Label Circle.

From an entirely different medium and era comes the Modern Studio Glass auction. Decorative Arts Specialist Bill Kime has assembled a range of colourful, sculptural glass from Canadian and American makers as well as Venini and other Murano artists.

In a joint effort with the International Art department, we are pleased to offer a selection of Russian artworks in ceramics, silver, and paintings, as well as lacquer boxes and icons. A colourful history inspires colourful art, and this sale proves just that.

A great time to join Waddington’s Decorative Arts department? I’ll say! With more auctions than ever it’s been the best way to become acquainted with the department – by jumping in with both feet at full speed. I’m looking forward to meeting you at the previews for our October online auctions, please plan to visit and say hello!

Interested in consigning to our December 9, 2014 Decorative Arts auction? Don’t hesitate to contact us by our October 17 deadline.

View the Preview Gallery of our Live Decorative Arts Auction.

Ellie Muir
Decorative Arts Department Assistant
Posted: 10/3/2014 12:00:00 AM
By: Ellie Muir

Invitation to Consign to our Fall International Art Auctions

It’s a Full Fall of International Art

Fall 2014 – busier than ever! With preparations well underway for our December 10th auction of International Art, we thought we’d tease you with a few of the favourites recently consigned to us: “Blowing Hard” a fine oil painting by renowned British Maritime artist Montague Dawson (1890-1973); a brilliant colour pastel by Barbizon artist Leon Augustin L’Hermitte (1844-1925); an exquisite romantic genre by French/Italian artist Frederic Soulacroix (1858-1933); and yet another “untraced” painting commissioned by Adolphe Goupil in Paris in the early 1850’s and exhibited in the Salon of 1857 by French artist Alexander Cabanel (1823-1889) – our appetite for discovery is thoroughly whetted. Finally, we are most excited about another discovery - with more research underway – a collection of five extremely rare, marvelously detailed, vibrantly coloured watercolour portraits of North American Indians, studies from life, that were executed for the lithograph plates illustrated in Thomas L. McKenney & John Hall’s master work: “The History of the Indian Tribes of North America”. We promise to keep you posted on all our research and other new arrivals on our website as more paintings, drawings and sculpture continue to be consigned.
AU REVOIR (detail)

October is the month to be online!
Aiming to offer all the art we know you love, we’ve also pulled together an amazing October of online auctions, including: 19th Century Continental Paintings, Russian Paintings and Decorative Arts, and American and 20th Century Paintings.
One of a collection of five watercolour portraits of North American Indians, relating to Thomas L. McKenney & John Hall’s master work: “The History of the Indian Tribes of North America” (detail)

The 19th Century Continental Paintings online auction showcases many of the most popular artists from Continental Europe whom have been in high demand in Waddington’s catalogue sales. Wonderful genre paintings by collector favourites such as Bernard de Hoog, Arthur Heyer, Johan Scherrewitz, Leurs, Heyligers, and Huber and many more charming, elaborately framed works.

The Russian Art and Decorative Art online auction is presented in conjunction with our Decorative Arts department. It features a diverse collection of oils and watercolours by 19th and 20th Century Russian artists including: Irene Klestova’s “Roses”; a double sided oil by Abraham Manievich; portraits by Anatoly Zverev; and paintings by Nikolay Miliotti, Serge Chepik, Alexander Tyshler, Yuri Krasny, and Vasyl Myazin. We are also delighted to showcase a special collection of nine large oils by Latvian artist Janis Ferdinands Tidemanis. Acquired directly from the artist’s Toronto studio from his wife, nearly 25 years after his death in 1990, they represent Tidemanis’ best subjects dating from the 1930’s and 1940’s. These brilliantly coloured portraits of women and a still life have never been on the market and are expected, as in past sales, to set more records for Tidemanis.

Rounding out our October online auctions are American and 20th Century Paintings featuring a diverse collection of 19th to 21st Century paintings including notable American artists: Paul Jenkins, Andre Gisson, Leonardo Nierman, Michael Steiner, Claire Shuttleworth, Clark Greenwood Voorhees, and James Cafferty, and numerous works by 20th and 21st Century masters from all countries including Czech, Dutch, Polish, Romanian, Haitian, Israeli, and Japanese schools headed by mid 20th Century artists such as Suzanne Eisendieck, Dietz Edzard, Hugo Schieber, Francois Gall and Gerard Adolfs. The collection of captivating portraits direct from the estates of the artists’ studios, including rare works by Traian Biltiu Dancus and Jean Nitescu acquired through descent from the artists in Romania, are sure to command your attention.

Fine Prints & Photography in Early 2015
Back by popular demand, we’ll be offering our Fine Print and Photography Auction in the early months of 2015, including a most impressive roster of the top printmakers in the world. We have already amassed fine prints, entire folios by major graphic artists and photographs for the upcoming auction including by Warhol, Picasso, Miro, Chagall, Dali, Marino Marini, Henry Moore and many more.

We also look forward to offering more specialized online auctions in the new year including Old Master (for the first time) and British Paintings.

Still Time to Consign!
If you’ve been thinking about finding out who painted that old panel on your wall that needs to be identified or selling your fine European painting collection and wish to take advantage of this opportunity to consign to the fall International Art auctions, there’s still time to consign to the online sales (consignment deadline October 3). We are also pleased to accept consignments of your most important paintings and sculpture for our prestigious December 10th live auction of International Art (consignment deadline October 17).

As always, we I can hardly wait to see what gems you may have to tantalize the international art world.

IRENE KLESTOVA (1908-1989)
REUBEN TAM (1916-1991)
Posted: 9/25/2014 12:00:00 AM
By: Susan Robertson

Joseph Plaskett (1918 –2014)

Waddington’s is saddened to hear about the death of Joseph Plaskett Sunday, September 21st in England at the age of 96.

Joseph Plaskett was born in New Westminster, B.C. and studied art in Canada, the U.S. and Europe. He settled in Paris for many years but never forgot his home in Canada including founding The Plaskett Foundation in 2004 to aid and support Canadian visual artists.

Plaskett in his autobiography A Speaking Likeness says about the act of making art, “The process does not begin with putting brush to canvas, but much earlier, with the germination of an idea, or even before that with a need, like hunger, to create.”
Posted: 9/23/2014 12:00:00 AM
By: Eileen Reilly

Opportunity to Consign – Asian Fine Art

It’s hard to believe the summer is over! It truly seems like it’s only been a couple of weeks since Waddington’s finished up a very impressive and busy spring season of auctions.

Our June 9 Asian Art catalogue auction yielded another strong result with a sale total of 1.3 million CAD. That makes a total of 15 million CAD of Asian Art sold by Waddington’s over the past five years. The highlight of our June auction was a Blue and White Ming-Style Hu Vase with Qianlong Mark and of the Period (1736-1795) that realized 186,500 CAD. We also reached achieved excellent prices in Chinese porcelain, jades, modern scroll paintings and Himalayan bronzes.

Preparations for our Fall 2014 auction are well underway and we are pleased to accept consignments until Friday, October 3. I will be in Montreal September 22 - 24, and in Vancouver September 30 to October 3. If you would like to book a confidential appointment, or are interested in more information about consigning to our auctions, please contact Yvonne Li at or 416-847-6195.

Please note that this fall’s auction will be complemented by another outstanding event in our series of educational presentations. ‘Colour and Clay: An Exhibition of Chinese Qing Dynasty Porcelain from Toronto Collections’ will be on display during the Asian Art auction previews. This unique exhibition includes 32 carefully selected pieces of porcelain from four important Toronto collections. A full-illustrated exhibition catalogue will be available online and during the preview.

View the Preview Gallery

Posted: 9/10/2014 12:00:00 AM
By: Anthony Wu

Exciting things to come

September has begun and with that, everyone is gearing up for the fall auction season. We're at the height of our consignment period right now with less than a month to our deadline. If you've been waiting for the weather to cool down and the kids and grandkids to go back to school then it's time to hurry up and send your images with details, book your appointment or start getting your shipments underway. With all the exciting things we have in store for our loyal clients, you will definitely want to be a part of our fall Inuit Art auction.

A couple of extra reasons to put November 15, 16 & 17 in your calendar: Waddington's is partnering with Adventure Canada for an exclusive chance to bid on one of their amazing expeditions. We also welcome you to join us for a special presentation, refreshments and an early look at a selection of fine Canadian paintings on the Sunday preceding the auction. To learn more about Adventure Canada visit their website

Another date to add to your schedule is Friday, September 26. That’s when I will be joining fellow Inuit art experts Alysa Procida, RJ Ramrattan and Blandina Makkik for the Museum of Inuit Art's second annual "Identifying Inuit Art" event. For more information on this event and others at the Museum of Inuit art visit their website

Stay tuned for our next online Inuit art auction opening September 15 and closing September 18. As usual you’re invited to preview the works at Waddington’s, 275 King St. East from 2 to 7 pm on September 16. I've chosen some very collectible pieces for you, which will give you a chance to practice your bidding skills for our live November auction.

Looking forward to seeing you at one – or all of the events above!
Posted: 9/2/2014 12:00:00 AM
By: Christa Ouimet

Concrete - September 2014. Catalogue Available

Having said goodbye to August, everyone is talking about “the summer that wasn’t”. The usual indicators like 40 degree humidex, power outages and sunburns were replaced by rained-out cottage weekends, turning the furnace on and purchases of fleece hoodies. Did anyone recognize July and August as summer months this year? That said, regardless of the weather, summer is always a great time of year at Waddington’s, because that’s when we wrap up our spring season (note: our spring 2014 was amazing) and ramp up for our fall auctions. And fall 2014 takes off like Labour Day fireworks.

In fact – September and October are jam-packed. We’re involved in three major auctions all within a three-week period, starting with the Canadian Art Gallery Hop on September 18, followed by our Concrete Contemporary Art auction on September 23, and finishing with Casey House Art with Heart on October 7. All three auctions are very different in tone and style and we are delighted to be at the centre of it all. It seems like Canada finally now has a contemporary auction season all it’s own!

Before you know it, we’ll all be meeting again at the Toronto International Art Fair on October 23, the Introducing Suzy Lake show at the AGO on November 5, or at the opening of the Jack Bush retrospective at the National Gallery in Ottawa on November 12, then back of course to Waddington’s for our Canadian Art auction on November 24. In between, there are more openings at more galleries that you really must see than there are days in the week.

There truly is no end of things to do until the new year. So, all the energy you saved not golfing, camping or beaching this non-summer can be poured into exploring every aspect of an amazing fall art season. We look forward to running into you at one of the many events that make this city such a great and vibrant centre of culture!


Concrete Contemporary Auctions and Projects September catalogue is now available in print and online. If you wish to order a hard copy, contact Kristin Vance at
Posted: 8/28/2014 12:00:00 AM
By: Stephen Ranger

Great Canadian Art

Aqjangajuk Shaa with Lawren Harris (sold for $1.1 million)

Waddington’s role in the Inuit art market stretches back several remarkable decades. In fact, it’s hard to imagine that we celebrated our 36th year of Inuit art auctions this past June. Our presence in what is termed the 'Canadian art' market is only slightly longer — we offered our first auction dedicated to fine Canadian art in 1967.
We’ve done extremely well in both areas over these past years. That can be attributed to a simple formula of pairing the best professionals our industry has to offer (which in turn attracts the best works) with our unrelenting conviction that there is always room to improve and evolve. And our legacy in the industry means we’re fortunate to have the depth of experience to recognize changing trends and build new strategies as they’re needed.
Bringing all forms of Canadian art closer together – including Inuit and contemporary – is one such strategy. This past spring’s previews of Important Canadian Art and the Charles Bronfman Claridge Collection of Canadian Decorative Arts were complemented by significant works from our Inuit Art auction; contemporary Inuit sculpture was offered as part of our Concrete Contemporary Canadian Art auction with great success; and Inuit graphics were included in our Spring Auction of International prints and Photographs. Treating all our Canadian art clients to powerful Inuit art emphasized the strength and character of Inuit art within the broader Canadian art spectrum and brings these worlds of collecting a little closer together.

This is a direction Waddington’s will continue to forge. We know that accessing new client markets is essential to building the future of any art form and you can look forward to seeing much more cross over of great Canadian works at Waddington’s in future auction seasons.

We are now accepting consignments for the upcoming fall auction. To book your appointment or for more information contact Christa Ouimet our Inuit Art Specialist at

Duncan McLean
President, Waddington's

Roger Aksadjuak with Marc-Aurele Fortin
Judas Ooloolah, Abraham Etungat and Uriash Puqiqnak with Frank Gehry (fish), Joe Fafard (sculpture), David Bolduc, Henri Masson (still life), and Marc-Aurele Fortin
David Ruben Piqtoukun with Frank Hans Johnston

Osuitok Ipeelee with A. J. Casson
John Tiktak with William Ronald
Pauta Saila with Goodridge Roberts

Osuitok Ipeelee with Harold Town
Pauta Saila with Jean-Phillippe Dallaire

Joe’s boat
Posted: 8/14/2014 12:00:00 AM
By: Duncan McLean

"Perhaps it’s something Canadian."

In a passage from his autobiography, A.Y. Jackson recalls speaking to newspaper reporters at an exhibition of Canadian paintings at the Canadian Club in the Waldorf-Astoria in New York City:

“One of them said he had never seen any Canadian painting before. He had expected to find the influence of the British, he said, but could find none; he found instead much French influence and some American, and something he could not place. I said, “Perhaps it’s something Canadian.1”

Commanding superior prices, A.Y. Jackson’s oils on panel are certainly not accessible to everyone. However, a range of our offerings prove that emerging and established collectors alike can share in the delight of this quintessentially Canadian artist.

In our September Online Auction, a Lot of important books offers ample material to infuse your bookshelves with Canadian content. In our November Catalogue Sale, a charming double-sided pencil drawing from one of Jackson’s sketchbooks, will bring you closer to the artist’s process. And for those who seek something more robust, Leo Mol’s bronze of A.Y. Jackson – whose larger counterpart stands in the Sculpture Garden of Winnipeg’s Assiniboine Park – will prove a sturdy companion.

1  A.Y. Jackson, A Painter’s Country: The Autobiography of A.Y. Jackson, Clarke, Irwin & Company Limited, Toronto, 1967, page 167.

Canadian Art Online Auction
September 15-18, 2014

On View:
Tuesday 16 September 2014 from 2:00 pm to 7:00 pm

View the Gallery

Posted: 8/7/2014 12:00:00 AM
By: Erin Rutherford

Seeking Consignments for our Fall 2014 Inuit Art Auction

With the spring auction season behind us, our sights are set on finding new treasures to add to your collections or depending on your circumstances, help you divest your art while achieving the best possible results. Our spring auction demonstrated once again the benefits of working with Waddington's as we offered a wide selection of artwork from across the Canadian Arctic and Greenland. We recruited new buyers by coordinating our preview times with the Fine Canadian Art auction as we did with our Contemporary Decorative Arts auction last fall. We set record prices for artists and categories of work. Our auction attendance amounted to a full room of active bidders, along with our stable of pro phone and absentee bidders we noticed an increasing number of online bidders as well. We have had such great feedback after the sale and I'd like to personally thank the consigners I worked with last season who made the auction possible, along with the passionate collectors who keep coming back in support of Inuit art each season.

In case you missed the outcome of our spring auction, I've listed your favourite pieces along with their results from the auction in this blog.

We are now accepting consignments for the upcoming fall auction. Be a part of the tradition that is Inuit art at Waddington's by contacting me to book your appointment or for more information start by sending images directly to me at

We hope you'll mark your calendars for November 17th. We look forward to doing it all again with you in the fall.

Christa Ouimet

Our delightful cover piece encompassed the whimsy, balance and skill that we have become accustomed to seeing in Osuitok's greatest works. This piece now resides in one of the finest, private art collections and sold for $48,000.
The highest price achieved this season for a "Joe Boat". Waddington's has set numerous records for the field of Inuit art with Joe Talirunili's Migrations. This depiction of a packed umiak full of people desperate to reach land fetched a whopping $140,500.

There has not been a finer example of legendary artist David Ruben Piqtouken's work on the auction market in recent years. This piece appealed to everyone who viewed it during our exhibition in June, resulting in a final price of $13,300.

$28,800 was the price for this fabulous work on paper by Jessie Oonark. A new record achieved for the artist and Inuit drawings in general.
Posted: 7/23/2014 12:00:00 AM
By: Christa Ouimet


Waddington's Cobourg office will be closing for two weeks, August 11-22 inclusive. There will be no staff available for pickup or deliveries during these two weeks. We apologize in advance for any inconvenience.

Posted: 7/16/2014 12:00:00 AM
By: Paul Needham

Concrete Contemporary Art Auction September 23, 2014

Once a year is not enough! Promising to be one of our most interesting and diverse Concrete Contemporary auctions to date, our second live auction this year is slated for September 23rd and will include some of Canada’s most influential contemporary artists. Conceptual in nature, colourful in design and powerful in the national and international art markets, works by artists such as Michael Adamson, Douglas Coupland, James Lahey, Kelly Mark, and Kim Dorland will be on the block for seasoned collectors and for those who are just discovering the abundant talent emerging from studios across the country. September’s auction will feature approximately 50 lots covering the spectrum of contemporary media.

Here’s a sneak peek!

Mimicking the glow of a television screen, Kelly Mark’s lightbox entitled The Kiss was adapted from her installation by the same name and is selected for the cover of our September auction catalogue. The effects of digital technology on society has long been an inspiration for Mark’s multi media works. The image within the lightbox, two television screens “kissing,” comments on aspects of digital media in our lives and the human interaction it sometimes succeeds in replacing. Of course, the influence of Brancusi’s The Kiss cannot be denied. With each successive version he created of this subject, the forms became more abstracted until only the most basic and simplified concept of this most human of acts remained. Kelly Mark’s The Kiss will be the third artwork by the artist auctioned by Concrete Contemporary and we are thrilled to have this conceptually intriguing example of her digital explorations in our upcoming auction.

oil and acrylic gouache on canvas over wood panel signed, titled and dated 2013 on the reverse; signed, titled and dated on the overflap
60 ins x 72 ins;
152.4 cms x 182.9 cms
mixed media on canvas signed, titled, dated 2004 and inscribed “040824-04” on the reverse
72 ins x 48 ins;
182.9 cms x 121.9 cms

Kim Dorland’s Dripping Dream #3 was a highlight of Waddington’s Canadian Fine Art auction on May 26th and sold for a record $23,600, solidifying his standing as one of Canada’s preeminent contemporary artists. Another work in this series, Dripping Dream #2 is an electrifying display of colour and conceptual depth embedded in copious amounts of paint for which Dorland is known worldwide. Additionally, Dorland’s Sad Girl, a highly abstracted portrait of the artist’s wife, will be included in the auction showing his signature style as adapted to the portrait genre.

An estate consignment has yielded a remarkable James Lahey canvas for the auction, Orchid (2004). Standing in front of Lahey’s Orchid is a breathtaking experience. The hyper-realistic orchid seems to be floating in endless space in this large-scale and stunningly luminous painting. Lahey’s highly-detailed floral paintings are but one example of his broad interest in various subject matter. He is also known for his exquisite cloudscapes, landscapes and colour-rich abstractions.

We are currently accepting consignments to round out what is destined to be a stellar auction. If you would like to discuss a consignment or if you have any questions regarding the works offered in September, please call Stephen Ranger (Senior Specialist, Contemporary Art) at 416-504-6194 or or Kristin Vance (Contemporary Art Administrator) at 416-504-9100 ext. 6178 or

Concrete Contemporary Art Auction Schedule

Consignment Deadline: Friday 15 August

Auction Preview:
Saturday 20 September from 11:00 am to 5:00 pm
Sunday 21 September from 11:00 am to 5:00 pm
Monday 22 September from 10:00 am to 12 Noon

Auction: Tuesday 23 September 2014 at 7:00pm

Posted: 6/23/2014 12:00:00 AM
By: Kristin Vance


Henri Le Sidaner’s enchanting garden view “Fenetre de Trianon Sous-Bois”, lot 67, gracing the front cover of Waddington’s Spring 2014 International Art catalogue, sets the stage for the many fine paintings offered in this season’s auction. After so long a winter season, its warm sunlight, arched window and lush greenery is all the more inviting. Acquired by Dr. Ronald Osborne of Toronto in 1975, and now part of his Estate, it is a befitting ‘window’ to our sale offering over 100 of the finest paintings, sculptures and drawings from Canadian, American and International collections spanning over 5 centuries, 4 continents and a multitude of genres.

“Fertility”, lot 95, a rare canvas by Maqbool Fida Husain, whose works have led the booming South Asian art market, confronts you with its bold and powerful presence on our title page. This hitherto unseen canvas has belonged to a private collection in Montreal for over 30 years and encapsulates the artist’s unique approach to form and colour.

The American session is led by two large canvases by Russian-American artist Abraham Manievich, acquired by Dr. Joseph Stern of Montreal directly from the artist whom he befriended in Canada, prior to the 1950s. The double-sided “Still Life of Flowers in a Copper Vase”, lot 10, featured on the inside front cover, and the vividly coloured, “In a Summer Garden”, lot 9, are coveted examples of the artist’s dynamic Fauvist painting style.

Once again, we are pleased to offer you three oils by popular British artist Edward Seago, from Toronto Estates where they have been enjoyed some 50 years. Sir John Lavery’s elegant “Lady in Green” (Mrs. Cara H.), lot 52, held in the hands of Toronto families for over 100 years, was first exhibited in Toronto in 1909 at the newly formed Art Gallery of Ontario, then called the Art Museum of Toronto. The sale concludes with a Carlos Cruz-Diez kinetic art masterpiece “Physichromie No. 520”, lot 123, acquired by the present owners from the Pollock Gallery in the 1970s.

Our Spring 2014 auction offers a selection of visually superb works of art for every collector taste, whether you are a lover of Old Masters, Modern, traditional or contemporary art. We look forward to welcoming you at our preview where all the paintings in their old world frames are sure to impress and entice you.

View the Auction Online Catalogue

Download the Catalogue (PDF)

— Susan Robertson
Senior Specialist, International Art

Posted: 6/11/2014 12:00:00 AM
By: Bill Kime

Spring Decorative Arts Auction

Decorative Arts Auction – Spring 2014

By definition, decorative art is art that is meant to be useful as well as beautiful. Throughout the ages skilled artists have turned the most common objects into things of beauty – to be prized for both their utility and aesthetic quality.

Waddington’s Spring Auction of Decorative Arts is filled with such wondrous items. From Frank Gehry’s architectural ‘fish lamp’ to stylish Russian Imperial vodka cups and regal George II silver candlesticks, this auction includes decorative arts from across Europe, Russia, Canada and the United States from the 16th to t