Gorilla Sculpture and Scottish Frieze are top lots in a week dominated by the sale of Banksy's Chimpanzee Parliament and Frieze Week
It may be pure coincidence, but the art news in the first week in October was very much dominated by Frieze Week and the sale of Banksy's Chimpanzee Parliament. So it should be no surprise that the top lots in Summers Place Auctions' October sale turned out to be an important aluminium frieze commissioned for Clydesdale Bank and an impressive Silverback Gorilla bronze by John Cox.
The frieze was designed by J. A. Halliday and sculpted by Philip Bentham in 1963 when it was commissioned for the Clydesdale Bank in Lombard Street in the City of London. Almost 19 metres long, it consists of 7 panels and is a wonderfully comprehensive pictorial record of Scotland's rich history, incorporating all aspects of Scottish life and identity. The panels were recently discovered, hidden behind later marble cladding, when the bank was demolished and the frieze sold for £25,000 (including buyer's premium/ £20,000 hammer price) to a UK collector.
John Cox is famous for his magnificent depiction of animals and The Silverback Gorilla bronze is particularly impressive at 182 cm high and 107 cm wide. It sold for £16,875 (£13,500) to a private US buyer against an estimate of £8,000-10,000.
Garden furniture and decorations did unusually well for this time of year, with an extremely rare Georgian circular lead cistern selling for three times its low estimate to an international collector for £15,000 (£12,000) and a fabulous cast iron arbour selling for £12,500 (£10,000, estimate £5,000-8,000). A pair of rare Fiske foundry cast iron seats sold for £4,750 (£3,800, estimate £1,500-2,500) and two carved granite Kasuge lanterns, each estimated at £1,200-1,800 sold to two different buyers for £ £5,50