Diving into the Magnificent

A Scandinavian auction house brings us several thousand remarkable lots to browse, dream about and bid on this spring.

Diving into the Magnificent

Bukowskis’ Important Spring Sale is taking place on 4 June in Stockholm with several thousand lots up for grabs. These exciting pieces are classified into eight different categories across two consecutive days of sales.

Within the remarkable selection are pieces by French, German and Scandinavean artist-designers, as well as those by international names, alongside jewellery, porcelain, furniture and much, much more. Let’s not waste any time and dive straight in!

Pierre Bonnard, ‘Esquisse pour deux baigneuses ou le printemps’, 1902. Photo: Bukowskis
Pierre Bonnard, ‘Esquisse pour deux baigneuses ou le printemps’, 1902. Photo: Bukowskis

Pierre Bonnard (1867-1947) was a French painter, illustrator and printmaker, known in particular for the stylised and decorative qualities of his paintings and his bold use of colour. However, alongside these methods, Bonnard was also a sculptor.

In this sculpture, Esquisse pour deux baigneuses ou le printemps (Study for two bathers or spring), you can see Bonnard’s impressive transition from impressionism to modernism. For the artist, style often took precedence over the subject, as is evident in this specific work. These figures are mere inspiration – it is the indentations, the shapes and the rhythms that are the most important facets here.

A new auction record was made for the artist last week when one of his 1912 oils on canvas, La Terrasse ou Une terrasse à Grasse, sold for £15.5 million: no doubt a sign of the increasing interest in his work.

After, Johann Heinrich von Dannecker, ‘Ariadne on the Panther’. Photo: Bukowskis
After, Johann Heinrich von Dannecker, ‘Ariadne on the Panther’. Photo: Bukowskis

Another sculpture within the sale is this work after German artist Johann Heinrich von Dannecker, Ariadne on the Panther. The sculpture depicts the Cretan princess Ariadne – wife of the god of wine, Dionysus – seated on a panther in a relaxed pose.

According to the motto Dannecker is said to have devised along with his brother-in-law Heinrich Rapp, this work expresses the idea of “wildness tamed by beauty”.

18K gold ring with purple spinel. Photo: Bukowskis
18K gold ring with purple spinel. Photo: Bukowskis

Beyond sculpture, Bukowskis sale also features delectable jewellery and gems, for instance this 18K gold ring set with a cushion-cut purple spinel of 6.15ct and old-cut diamonds, size 16.75/53, total weight 6 grams. The ring is accompanied by a certificate from the GCS for the spinel.

Other jewellery items – comprising hundreds of pieces – range from brooches, earrings, pendants, cufflinks, necklaces, bracelets and more, with pieces by such designers as Fabergé and Paloma Picasso for Tiffany.

Gustavian late 18th-century sofa. Photo: Bukowskis
Gustavian late 18th-century sofa. Photo: Bukowskis

And if you want to decorate more than just your fingers or wrists, the furniture and design pieces within the auction comprise several hundred lots in all styles and from many eras. The range of Gustavian pieces (totalling to more than 50) are particularly remarkable and outstanding.

Gustavian furniture is that related to the reign of the Swedish Kings named Gustavus, dating as far back as the 1780s. Specifically, Gustavian style was brought to Sweden by King Gustav III (a patron of the arts, founder of the Swedish Academy and commissioner of the Royal Opera House) after he visited the Palace of Versailles and was so impressed with what he saw that when he returned home he decided to create his own ‘Paris of the North’.  

For Brits, Gustavian-style furniture is a great compromise between intricate design, top craftsmanship and a high-quality finish – and all in a tasteful style. The Gustavian pieces available at Bukowskis, such as this late 18th-century sofa, are appropriate in both modern and antique-riddled homes, as the finish is light and many of the patterns feature fresh and beautifully-coloured designs.

As a reminder, Bukowskis’ Important Spring Sale is taking place on 4 June. Embrace the spring fever and decorate while the opportunity strikes!

Discover all items available at Bukowskis right here

Cover image: Gerhard Nordström, The Gardens of Monet. Photo: Bukowskis