Archant’s art collection to go under the hammer
PUBLISHED: 16:21 04 October 2020 | UPDATED: 16:21 04 October 2020
One of the most important corporate art collections to come onto the market in recent times is to go under the hammer.
The 126 paintings amassed by media company Archant - the owner of this newspaper - come up for sale at a special event hosted by Keys Auctioneers and Valuers of Aylsham on October 10.
The Archant Collection of Modern and Contemporary Art, which includes works by Gwyneth Johnstone, Mary Newcomb, Tessa Newcomb, James Dodds, Derrick Greaves, John Bellamy, Maggi Hambling and Gerard Stamp, was started in the 1960s by Sir Timothy Colman. The Norfolk-based organisation was co-founded by the Colman family in 1845.
Highlights of the sale include: ‘Figures in extensive landscapes’, a pair of oils on board by Gwyneth Johnstone, which have a pre-sale estimate of £20,000-£30,000; ‘Passage from Hull’ by Mary Newcomb (£8,000-£10,000) and ‘Sunset in France’ by Mary Fedden (estimate £7,000-£10,000).
Among the other important works are ‘Self-portrait with nude’ by John Bellamy (estimate £3,000-£5,000), ‘Utensils 2001’ by Derrick Greaves (estimate £3,000-£4,000) and ‘Small yellow boat’ by James Dodds (estimate £2,000-£3,000).
Kevin Lines, Keys’ director and head of fine art, said: “Archant, which was formerly known as Eastern Counties Newspapers, is a firm with a long heritage in East Anglia, and remains a leading national player in the media world.
“This fine collection of works by modern and contemporary artists was amassed over nearly two centuries by the families which owned the company for most of its existence.
“Many generations of those families had a really good eye for the best contemporary painters, and the quality of the works on offer reflect this.
“Such an important corporate collection coming to the market will elicit interest from art-lovers right across the UK and beyond.”
The collection has been on display at Archant’s Norwich headquarters for many years, with a number of pieces lent to major exhibitions. Several works formed part of a landmark Masterpieces exhibition at the Sainsbury Centre in 2013.
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