“Exceptional” Pottery Sells for Tens of Thousands PLUS An AcStickley Arts & Crafts Auction

by Kate Nixon


This weekend, fall auctions continue with an Arts and Crafts auction in the California Bay Area, where the works of Dirk Van Erp, Gustav Stickley and others are up for bid. First, the results of Rago Arts’ Auction last weekend and the highly “exceptional” pottery up for bid. How did the gorgeous Newcomb College Calla Lilly Vase do? How about the George Ohr vase estimated to bring in $10,000 – $15,000? Or a vibrant Gustave Baumann color woodblock print of the Grand Canyon in perfect condition? Read on to find out!


Rago Arts’ Early 20th Century Design auction happened last weekend at Rago’s gallery in Lambertville, NJ; works by prominent Arts and Crafts style artisans were featured such as Stickley, Tiffany Studios, Grueby, George Ohr, Rookwood Pottery and more. Featuring a number of items from the Robert A. Ellison collection and a sizable number of items from the “Mad Potter of Biloxi” George Ohr, the auction highlights included an exceptional large Calla Lily vase from Newcomb College, which sold at a realized price of $21,250. Other highlights included a rare Grueby Cuerda Seca nineteen-tile collection which sold for more than twice its high estimate of $7,500, a glazed stoneware volcanic oxblood vase by Hugh Robertson went for $12,500 and a vibrant color woodblock print of the Grand Canyon by Gustave Baumnn sold for more than twice the high estimate of $10,000 at the final selling price of $27,500. Lastly, while Rago Arts had a separate auction dedicated to the works of the Martin Brothers from the Andrew Furer and Elle Douglas collection, a separate Martin Brothers tobacco jar coming from the Robert A. Ellison collection had a realized price of $27,500 – its estimates ranged from $25,000 – $30,000.

Additional items of note include:

  • Lot 117: A George Ohr fine ruffled vase, raspberry, pale blue, and indigo glaze out of Biloxi, MS, 1895-96. Stamped “BILOXI MISS. GEO. E. OHR.” It sold over its high estimate of $9,000 to the tune of $11,250.
  • Lot 138: A Grueby fine, large, and rare two-color vase with blossoms, Boston, MA, ca. 1905. With a Circular Pottery stamp and the remnants of a paper label, it was listed as having “crisp carving and beautifully fired.” This Grueby vase sold over its high estimate of $9,000 – the final realized price was $11,250.
  • Lot 171: A Saturday Evening Girls Fine large vase with landscape, circa 1922 Boston, Mass. Signed and dated, this lovely large vase sold over the high estimate of $7,500 at the realized price of $10,625.
  • lot 181: A Fulper rare Vasekraft boudoir lamp made of glazed earthenware, listed in excellent condition and by way of Robert A. Ellison’s collection. The Fulper lamp sold way past the high estimate of $3,000: its final selling price was $9,375.
  • Lot 234: A Rare experimental vase squeezebag-decorated with stylized roses, from Frederick H. Rhead and Roseville Pottery in Zanesville, OH. Listed in excellent condition, the vase has a White Pillars Museum sticker; Exhibited in Erie, PA’s Art Museum, the vase sold past the $3,000 high estimate. The final selling price was $6,250.


How did our picks do? See the realized prices of each lot below: (all prices listed are realized prices)


Lot 100:

Harriet Joor (1875 – 1965); Newcomb College Calla Lily vase

Exceptional large early vase with calla lilies, New Orleans, LA, 1904
Signed, dated, and numbered ‘NC/HJ/VV37’
Measures 11″ x 5 1/4″
Provenance: Rago Auctions, a Private collection from New York State

Rago’s Condition Report: Perhaps the prettiest piece of Newcomb College we have seen. Tight opposing 1 1/2″ hairlines from rim.

Estimate: $15,000 – $20,000

Sale Price: $21,250


Lot 116:

George Ohr (1857 – 1918); Stamped Vase with Ear Handles

Exceptional large vase with ear handles and serrated rim, ochre and gunmetal speckled glaze, Biloxi, MS, 1897-1900
Stamped G. E. OHR, Biloxi, Miss.
Measures 9″ x 5 1/4″ x 4″
Provenance: Rago Auctions, Early 20th, June 2011, lot 122, Private collection, New York

Rago’s Condition Report: Excellent condition.

Estimate: $10,000 – $15,000

Sale Price: $10,625


Lot 210:

Carl Schmidt (1875 – 1959); Rookwood large vase

Exceptional and large Iris Glaze vase with winter landscape (uncrazed), Cincinnati, OH, 1910
Flame mark/X/907A/artist cipher/seconded mark
19 3/4″ x 8″

Estimate: $12,500 – $17,500

Sale Price: $8,125


Lot 280:

Robert W. Martin (1843 – 1923); Martin Brothers

Grotesque creature tobacco jar, England, 1888
Salt-glazed stoneware
Head and base incised ‘R.W. Martin & Bros. London & Southall 9-1888’
9″ x 6″ x 4 1/2″
Provenance: Sotheby’s New York, The Harriman Judd Collection Part Two, 6 October 2001, lot 140
Collection of Robert A. Ellison, New York

Rago’s Condition Report: Overall very good to excellent condition. One short, minor 1/4″ hairline or firing line to rim of base, possibly in the making.

Estimate: $25,000 – $30,000

Sale Price: $27,500


The AcStickley Arts & Crafts Auction

This weekend, the AcStickley Arts & Crafts Auction will start this Saturday, September 28th 11am PST at California Historical Design in Alameda, CA. This auction will feature works by Gustav Stickley and Newcomb College, Limbert, Mathews Furniture Shop, Bernard Maybeck, Roycroft, the Stickley Brothers, Fulper Pottery and more. A preview will be available at California Historical Design from 10am to 5pm this Friday, September 27th.

Interested bidders can bid in person or online at liveauctioneers.com.

The auction, put on by Gus Bostrom and California Historical Design, will offer free shipping within the lower 48 states on orders of $5,000 or more.

Saturday, September 28th , 2019 Starts at 11am PST
(Preview on Friday Sept 27th 10AM-5PM)
California Historical Design
1901 Broadway
Alameda, CA 94501

tel: (510) 647-3621


Here are our picks for the AcStickley Arts & Crafts Auction this Saturday:


Lot 43:

Gustav Stickley Bentarm Spindled Morris Chair c1907-1910.

Unsigned. Excellent original finish.

Measures 39″h x 33″w x 37.75″d

Estimate: $5,000 – $7,000



Lot 55:

Newcomb College scenic vase decorated with tall pine trees decorated by Anna Frances Simpson 1917.

Invisible professional restoration to two very small grinding chips to base, otherwise perfect condition.

Measures 6.25″h x 3.25″d

Estimate: $2,500 – $3,500



Lot 58:

Dirk van Erp hammered copper coal bucket c1913-1914.

Signed twice with open-box mark. Excellent original patina.

Measures 18.5″h with handle x 21″ x 14″w

Estimate: $4,000 – $5,000



Lot 67:

California Arts & Crafts Douglas Fir China Cabinet Hutch c1910.

Unsigned. Excellent original finish. This piece was built as a free-standing built-in.

Measures 67.25″h x 58″w x 19.75″d

Estimate: $2,500 – $3,500



Lot 153:

Heintz sterling on bronze lamp with cutout grape leaves in shade c1910.

Signed. Excellent new patina. New mica.

Measures 15.5″h x 12″d

Estimate: $1,800 – $2,200




The full catalog of items is available at liveauctioneers.com or acstickley.com