by Sarah Haberkern
Despite a relatively quiet preview it became an exciting auction day at Nagel’s 19 March 2013, because many German, Persian and some Turkish, American and Italian dealers and collectors attended this auction.
A total of 163 carpet lots were auctioned, starting with Caucasian carpets, of which lot 1, a Khirgdagyd Chichi, achieved a hammerprice of 4,500 €. Lot 2, a Chelaberd was auctioned for € 4,000. Lot 7, a swastika Kazak with Muska motifs and animal figures, was sold for € 7,500.
A Star Kazak lot 8, acquired by Bausback in 1992, brought – probably due to the lack of border and repiled area – “only” € 3,000.
A beautiful Abruzzo woven coverlet (lot 22) with animal figures and vase motifs reached € 2,200 and lot 23, a very colourful South Anatolian Reyhanli slit weave kilim, achieved € 5,000.
The highlight of the auction was certainly lot 34, for which auction house Nagel could have done more research. Estimated to € 20,000 this Ottoman silk carpet from an Islamic collection from Alsace turned out to be one of the most important sepulchral carpets in art trade since the Karlsruher carpet. This carpet was sold for € 130,000 to a foreign telephone bidder and we will probably not have seen this carpet for the last time.
Among the Persian carpets most pictural carpets scored their requisite price, lot 54, a signed pictural Kashan carpet achieved € 5,500, while lot 69, a 1930 Amogli Meshed, which surely would have brought twice as much for 10 years ago, was sold for € 5500. These results reflect again the politically induced market situation for Persian carpets.
Lot 78, a small 18th century Caucasian dragon carpet of transitional type, reached despite numerous restorations and its general poor condition € 7,500. And lot 79, a Karachoph Kasak achieved, despite its somewhat weak colors and a € 5,000 estimate € 15,000 at the end. Lot 80, a beautifully drawn Fachralo Kasak, estimated to € 15,000 remained unsold, and lot 81, a gorgeous Sevan Kazak, jumped from an estimate of 5,000 to 16,000 €. A large white-ground Shahsavan kilim, lot 113 from the Moghan area reached the expected € 3,800.
The Turkmen rugs at this auction left no real joy though an interesting Tekke Mafrash panel lot 142 achieved € 1,500 and a beautiful, but worn, Dyrnak Göl main carpet, lot 149, with “boat-border” and Gapyrga elements achieved € 1,500. The collectors were compensated by the Suzanis, lot 155, a fine Nurata Suzani with small representations of birds achieved, probably due to the unusual design and age, € 11,500, while lot 156, a Nurati Suzani, slightly younger and in better condition, but with an overcrowded pattern “only” brought € 8,000.
The 8 book lots should please the Hali collector and lot 164, a complete set of Hali issues 1 to 157 reached the required € 2,600. After the books followed 113 lots of Islamica and Etnologica.
With a total of 312 lots, the auction brought € 499,260 + 33% in commission, thus confirming the trend in the carpet market: top pieces are selling well and nice and ordinary pieces remain unsold.
Sarah Haberkern, Art & Antik