Newcomb College and C.R. Ashbee Metalwork Impress at Treadway
by Kate Nixon
I spent four days in the Queen City reuniting with friends both known and brand new; the trip was pivotal as I took in Cincinnati’s legacy as an historic hot spot of art pottery activity. A tour of the Rookwood Factory (An in-depth piece is coming next week), the Cincinnati Art Museum, and stopping by Treadway Gallery kept me enthralled with all things ceramic before the Friday evening and Saturday shows.
On a warm Friday, I appeared on the footsteps of Cincinnati’s own Treadway Gallery – a gallery that has long been known for its selection of Arts and Crafts works. While the allure of the intricately carved and designed Henry Fry cupboard, the impressive amount of Grove Park Inn chairs, and the silver by C.R. Ashbee beckoned, I knew I was here to see first and foremost: the vase that survived. A large Newcomb College vase – carved by Henrietta Bailey recognizable her affinity for pine cones and pine trees – was grabbing attention for its impressive size and the level of detail in its design while I was there for another reason: the story behind the vase. This impressive vase in particular came to a woman in New Orleans from Newcomb College and was passed down to a daughter-in-law who lived in California. According to Treadway’s website, the vase had survived the horrible 2018 Camp Fire of Paradise, California with its owner. Don Treadway came to know about this large example after a fellow antiques dealer alerted him. “I called the woman and the vase, it was on the floor with fake flowers in it,” said Don. “I told her ‘take the vase off the floor and take the flowers out of the vase.’ I’ve got news for you.”
The vase was kept in excellent condition, the impressive and large Newcomb College vase sold for a realized price of $14,300: it is currently the second highest price for a Newcomb College vase so far this year. The highest price for a Newcomb College vase in 2022 was in Rago’s auction in January of this year: a large and early vase sold for a realized price of $24,000.
After admiring the other examples of Newcomb for bid (a gorgeous Sadie Irvine vase and a smaller creamer with great color and detail were also part of the sale), etchings and paintings from Mary Louise McLaughlin (a Mary Louise McLaughlin appreciation article coming soon!), and likewise the etching and paintings from E.T. Hurley, I bid the Treadways – and sweetheart granddaughter – goodbye and hurried back to Blue Ash in time for the preview night of the AAPA shows.
Here are a number of highlights from the auction:
- The large and impressive Newcomb College vase (9-12k) sold for $14,300 and other Newcomb examples would sell well like Sadie Irvine’s signed large vase ($3,500-$4,500) selling for $8,750 and her carved moon and hanging moss vase ($2,200-$2,700) selling for $3,900. The small but detailed creamer sold for $5,200 (within its estimates). A Frederick Rhead tile ($5,500 – $7,500) inscribed Mission Ridge and the Sea from Foot Hills in Mission Canyon in excellent condition sold for $10,625, a number of Rookwood items with their vintage boxes sold well, and a Grueby green vase with sharp detailing ($1,500 – $2,500) sold for $3,250.
- In metalwork, a number of works from Joseph Heinrichs – the German-American silversmith who created in copper and silver – sold above all their estimates at $800 mostly with the exception of a double inkwell ($750-$950) listed in excellent original condition, which sold for a realized price of $1,375. Notably, an english porringer by Charles Robert Ashbee made in 1901 and remains an important object in the field of Arts & Crafts silver sold for a realized price of $22,500.
- In furniture, leading the Arts & Crafts selection was a large group of eight Roycroft chairs, made specifically for the Grove Park Inn, known to our collectors as “GPI chairs.” While rare to see a large group of eight chairs, the chairs in original condition (and one with the front orb and cross) sold for a realized price of $18,750. Roycroft works sold well this past weekend with an armchair ($2,500 – $3,500) selling for $5,850, while a magazine stand, additional armchair and a rocker all sold within the estimates. The works of Gustav Stickley were represented in a chalet deck ($1,500-$2,500) which sold for $2,470 and a Stickley bookcase ($1,000-$2,000) which sold for $2,375. A chest of drawers from L & J.G. Stickley came in $1,690 and a Charles Stickley settle ($2,000-$3,000) came in at $2,730. The aforementioned cupboard by Henry Fry, impressive in its nature-inspired carved details and belonging to the estate of Mary Louise McLaughlin, sold for $3,380.
- Lastly, a number of watercolors and etchings from Mary Louise McLaughlin sold within their estimates and an Arthur Wesley Dow relief print ($500-$700) sold for 800.
Here’s how our picks did! All photos and descriptions courtesy of Treadway Gallery.
Newcomb College by Henrietta Bailey
New Orleans, LA
14″h x 10″w
Provenance: A California collection. The present owner from California acquired the vase in the early 1990’s from her mother in law, Ouida Barnes Rice from New Orleans. This vase survived the 2018 Camp Fire in Paradise, Ca.
Frederick Rhead tile
Santa Barbara, CA
3″h x 5.5″w
Inscribed on back, Mission Ridge and the Sea from Foot Hills in Mission Canyon. Excellent condition, very rare and beautifully detailed.
Estimate: $5,500 – $7,500
Sold for $10,625
signed with red decal
45.5″h x 24″w x 16.5″d