This weekend Los Angeles Modern Auctions held a sale of Modern Art and Design, featuring 453 lots, half of which had never traded on the open market before this.
Alongside Fine Art offerings such as prints and multiples by Lichtenstein, Man Ray, Rauschenberg, Ruscha, Picasso, Miro, and Warhol, there was a strong selection of Modern and Contemporary Design pieces, including works by Charles and Ray Eames, Mathieu Matégot, George Nelson and a collection of 26 William “Billy” Haines custom designs and decorations from late 1940s Hollywood.
As Peter Loughrey, Director of LAMA pointed out “Unique design originals are disappearing quickly from view in the market and will be increasingly hard to source in the near future."
The three Eames pieces on offer were a storage unit (1952) which was estimated at $8,000 - 12,000, a child's chair (1945) estimated at $7,00 - 9,000 and a lounge chair & ottoman (1956) estimated at $3,000 - $5,000. Of these, the first was bought in, but the latter two sold well, the child's chair going beyond the estimate at $13,750 and the lounge chair with ottoman realising $5,000.
There were three pieces on offer also from George Nelson; his 'Coconut Chair' (1955) estimated to reach $3,000 - 5,000 (above), 'Motion notion table clock' (1959) estimated at $6,000 - 8,000 and 'CSS unit' (1958) estimated at $4,000 - 5,000. The chair and clock sold comfortably within their estimates, realising $3,438 and $7,500 respectively. However, the CSS unit went far beyond expectations, reaching 3 times the estimate at $15,000
Mathieu Matégot's triangular coffee table (1956), doubled the estimate of $2,000 - 3,000, selling for $6,250. For further results and images see below.
For more information about the collectable design market subscribe to the DeTnk Market Report