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R.Lalique Sales Records Fall: Lalique Glass Shines At Christies South Kensington Lalique Sale

Rene Lalique Aiicante Vase in Cased Green GlassR. Lalique Glass chalked up another outstanding sales performance on May 26th at the mainstay semi-annual Lalique Sale held at Christies South Kensington in London. The sale has become a focal point for collectors and dealers around the world, and the last several showings have been quite strong, this rendition being no exception.

The sale featured 127 R. Lalique works. 19 of those 127 lots failed to sell, leaving a take-up rate of over 85%, a great result by any measurement. The R. Lalique sales totaled £585,620** including the buyers premium for the 108 sold lots, for an average price per lot of £5,422. Figuring an exchange rate of 1.63 dollars to the British Pound, the sale total was $954,561 and the average price per lot was $8,839.

Rene Lalique Formose Vase in Agate Colored GlassThe sale started out well enough with a good run of Lalique’s Formose Vases comprising 9 of the first 12 lots. Joy McCall, the knowledgable 20th Century Department Head at South Ken had a phone bidder who according to our man in the room bought 8 of those 9 vases! The prices on the 9 Formoses ranged from a low of £2,250 to a high of £12,500, with four of the Formoses making over £10,000. Lot 11, the agate colored Formose Vase (a cased somewhat gray opalescent shown here) was the high Formose seller and almost certainly a world record price for that color of this model vase.

This solid start set the tone for the rest of the session, with colored and other rare vases leading the way, but by no means the only strong sellers.

Rene Lalique Terpsichore Vase in Opalescent GlassHigh selling lot was tie between two vases, Lot 40 a good looking cased green Alicante Vase, and the final Lot 139, the opalescent Terpsichore Vase, both making £39,650. This is likely a world record price for the Terpsichore, this author knowing of no other example of this model having made over $60,000; this one hitting roughly $64,500.

Also breaking the £30,000 level was Lot 22, an amber Serpent Vase which made £34,850, just exceeding the former world record price for an Amber Serpent Vase set last December in New York City by Heritage Auctions of $56,673.

Rene Lalique Gui Vase in Blue GlassSurpassing the £20,000 mark were Lot 138, a frosted Bacchantes Vase on bronze stand which made £22,500 and was arguably the strongest result of the entire sale and at over $38,000 a possible world record price for a frosted Bacchantes Vase. In addition Lot 18 a black Lezards et Bluets Vase made £22,500, and the ever popular art deco frosted with black enamel combination drew £23,750 for Lot 20, the Oranges Vase, and a strong £22,500 for Lot 23, the Tourbillons Vase.

Among strong results of note was £7,500 for Lot 37, the opalescent Danaides Vase, £8,125 for Lot 46 the blue Gui Vase, £5,000 for Lot 78 the Inseparables Clock, and £7,500 for the opalescent Borromee Vase selling as Lot 127.

Also of note was Lot 85, the Armes D’Angleterre Seal that made £8,750 from an Internet bidder, who was up against a young woman in the room. This seldom seen seal graced the pages of the Lalique Auction Listings here at the website for several weeks prior to the sale.

Rene Lalique Serpent Vase in Dark Amber GlassWith the auctioneer taking bids from around the globe including South Africa, Hong Kong, Bahrain and elsewhere (thankfully he didn’t mention Arizona), the depth and expanse of interest left smiles on the faces of the entire Christie’s staff but also left much of the regular crowd in the audience scrambling mainly for plates and bowls.

Price wise, the trend has certainly been the friend of all enthusiasts of the great Lalique as of late, and this sale showcased the across the board strength that has been the hallmark of the market for RLalique for several years now. Further consistent with recent experience, there were not a bunch of lots making runaway prices. Rather, the general tone has been solid and steady strong prices with increases in many items, and high absorption rates for quality items at anything resembling recent market pricing. A word to the wise of course is that the trend is your friend, until it isn’t!

Finally, this R Lalique News would not be complete without recording the several comments from participants concerning the professionalism and competence of the Christies staff. On the phone for inquiries or bidding, in correspondence, or on site at the previews or on sale day, our man at the auction and other daily followers of this website have consistently reported a high quality experience at Christies South Ken.

** All totals, averages, and currency conversions are approximate.

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