Sunday 15 February 2015

Dogs' art New York calling

Sunday, February 15, 2015 - The annual auction, Dogs in Show & Field - the world's premier venue for fine art dedicated to dogs - will be held on 18 February at Bonhams New York. Timed to coincide with the prestigious Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show, this will be the 34th sale in the category for Bonhams, and the 16th in the US.

 Lot 49 John Emms (British, 1843-1912)
Waiting for master 28 x 36in. (71 x 91.5cm.) unframed

Known for having works for collectors at all levels, the sale will feature lots from in variety of media, including paintings, prints, bronzes, ceramics, and 'Dogiania,' such as collars, jewelry, books and other related ephemera. Works by noted dog and sporting artists from the UK - such as John Emms, Arthur Wardle, and Thomas Blinks - and from the US - such as John Martin Tracy and Percival Rosseau - will be featured, along with a strong selection of sculptures by Richard Fath.

The artworks in the sale will feature dogs from all of the American Kennel Club acknowledged groups: Sporting, Herding, Working, Terrier, Hounds, Toys, and Non-Sporting. Leading the way for paintings is a recently-discovered canvas by the renowned sporting artist, Arthur Fitzwilliam Tait. Recorded in his 1878 inventories, Steady: Quail Shooting, estimated at $30,000-50,000, depicts two dogs spying a couple of quail scurrying behind a rock. This is a quintessential work for the artist, and remains in near-pristine condition.
Also included is the John Emms painting, Waiting for Master, which is estimated at $30,000-50,000. Emms, the acknowledged master painter of Foxhounds and Terriers, is often referred to as the Guardi of dog painting for his commanding use of the brush. The painting displays an active kennel where three Hounds and a Terrier clamor for the attention of an approaching master.

Contemporary dog painting will be represented by In the Surf, estimated at $4,000-6,000, by the celebrated portraitist, Christine Merrill, and the ever-popular blue dog by George Rodrigue, which appears in I Wish I had a Polka Dot Bikini, and is estimated at $20,000-30,000.

Once again, Bonhams will present the joyous and much-anticipated annual 'Barkfest' Brunch on Sunday 15 February, between 10am and 12 noon. The pet-friendly auction preview benefits the American Kennel Club Humane Fund, which provides grants to domestic violence shelters and breed rescue organizations throughout the country. Guests will be served a light brunch while they browse the collection. Meanwhile, Shark Tank entrepreneur, Ryan Kelly, will be on hand to serve tasty treats from his company Ry's Ruffery for the event's four-legged attendees. Tickets are $50 in advance online or by calling 212-696-8306, and $60 at the door. Barkfest sponsor Motorola will provide Digital Pet Monitors to the first 200 pre-paid guests.

The auction will preview at the Madison Avenue galleries of Bonhams New York, 14-17 February. A complete catalog for the sale is available online here. 

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