Leski Auctions first Melbourne sale since resuming trading following the Mossgreen collapse, the July 15 Australian & Colonial History & Artworks auction, brought strong results for many items.
A 19th century album of 48 indigenous photographs assembled by Paul Heinrich Matthias Foelsche (1831-1914) was the top sale item bringing a hammer price of $34,000 – well above its $10,000-$20,000 catalogue estimate.
The Aboriginal Mother and Child in Landscape painting by Beatrix (Helen Beatrix) Colquhoun (1860-1959) was another strong performer (hammer price $17,000) from a similar estimate to the album.
Other notable items included “Victorian Rifle Club Challenge Cup” sterling silver trophy cup by master decorator William Edwards ($12,500), a 19th century set of three solid brass Imperial standard measures – bushel, half bushel and peck ($9000), and an early 19th century whalebone walking stick ($6000).
An Australian circa 1860 15-carat gold locket brooch decorated with a kangaroo and emu in a vines and grapes border – most likely made by Melbourne’s Edward Schafer, and a rare and early (circa 1859) Australian silver kilt pin by Ballarat firm Gerrard & Sleep (each with a hammer price of $6000) were other important sale items.
The kilt pin carries the inscription “Caledonian Society of Ballarat, Established 1858, Third Annual Gathering, 1st Jan. 1861, 1st Prize Awarded To ROBERT PATON Esq. For Members Race In Highland Costume” with G&S stamped under the pin.