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Robert S.
Robert S., Antiques and Collectibles Researcher
Category: Antiques
Satisfied Customers: 5210
Experience:  Expert in decorative arts especially ceramics, silver, paintings, and furniture.
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This time i have a vase, i'm pretty sure it is Stuben, no

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Hi again. This time i have a vase, i'm pretty sure it is Stuben, no marks, just an etched Chinese character in the center of one side. About 9" high, 6.5" across the top and about 4" base. Thanks. Jim

Thanks, ***** ***** letting you know I got this one. Will have an answer for you in the AM.

Best wishes,
Robert

Hi Jim,

I've no idea who made this and I don't want to guess. Would you like to add another item instead?

It's highly unlikely to be Steuben, as it doesn't look hand blown enough and almost every piece of Steuben is signed.

That etched medallion is not the style any artist I know of who worked for Steuben.

It's a stylish piece of mid-century modern art glass, probably Scandinavian, but a total mystery without a signature, I'm afraid.

Best wishes,

Robert

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
well, maybe it's not Steuben..........my aunt bought it years ago, i'm pretty sure just because she liked it. She didn't buy much glass, but she stuck with the names she knew.....Steuben, Baccarat and Pairpoint. I can find no marks anyplace on it, but i thought for sure the design would have been a giveaway. thanks for trying.i have two pastel portraits of sisters from England who came to visit a cousin in Boston in the late 19th cent. They came with their parents, Joseph and Charlotte Bromley.........the sisters are Harriet and Caroline. The sisters portraits were done from tintypes or daguerrotypes ....i have Caroline's. My father's cousin's daughter has the one of Harriet as well as miniatures painted on wood of the parents. I have not spoken to the cousin in years and years and have offered to buy/trade/steal what she has. The cousin was born about 1856, was married and died about 1907....no surviving children. I have a picture of her and some silver that belonged to her but the silver is all another story. I don't think you can see it, but Harriet has quite a crease in her forehead.........she was kicked in the head by a horse when she was 4. the reflections cut down on some of the clarity of the pastels but they have quite a bit of detail. the both are wearing black satin which the artist picked up nicely. They measure, on the inside of the frame about 32 x 23. thanks.. jim
Customer: replied 2 months ago.
i hope these pics come thru....i did them a little differently.

Hi Jim,

Thanks for the photos. Three images of the sisters came through, plus a fourth image that was too out of focus to see what it was clearly, but it didn't seem to look like it had anything to do with two properly brought up young ladies from England.

These are very well executed portraits.

Do you happen to know how long after the daguerreotypes were made that the portraits were painted? And by whom? They are in 20th century-looking mats and frames, so there's no way for me to tell that, unless they are in still in their original frames.

Also, I assume that they are unsigned, correct?

Many thanks,
Robert.

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
I have no idea as to the dates of the daguerreotypes or portraits. The original frames were large oval oak leaf/cluster that disappeared shortly after my grandfather died and the portraits were left on an upstairs chaise upside down. :( my mother had them framed in the current gold frames about 1960. sometime in the 80's she noticed that they had mildew on the surface of the pastels. i had them fumigated and cleaned and the woman did some minor repair to some smudges from their "unframing". i had them remitted with museum quality (7 layers of matting) but know that they might look better with more appropriate frames. the pastels are unsigned as far as i know. i always thought it strange that the painted case caroline's daguerreotype is in has an almost eastern Indian appearance. i do not remember what harriet's case looks like.

Great, thanks for the extra information, Jim, that explains so much. 1960s frames and 1980s re-matting both make the artwork look a whole lot younger than it really is. Having said that, portraits in pastel were not a very common thing in America until the 1890s or later and so my guess is these were done quite a while after the daguerreotypes were made which we can date from the hairstyles and clothes to the 1860s or 1870s -with center part and hair pulled back into buns and or braids.

You don't say when Harriet & Caroline were born, but if you know, you'll be able to see if that tallies. If they were brought by their parents from England, chances were they were still in their late teens or early twenties at the time.

These are very well executed portraits. I can plainly see the terrible divot in Harriet's forehead where she was kicked. .

My sister was also kicked by a horse in the face when she was a toddler. She was only two years old and it's remarkable she wasn't killed outright. The hoof crushed her cheek bone but miraculously missed her nose, eye and ear. Even after years of plastic surgery, the shadow of the horseshoe is still plain to be seen.

Valuing family portraits is not an easy thing to do, because the portraits are of most interest only to a very small group of people, namely the family. But one has nonetheless to put a dollar value them on the basis of what they would fetch on the open market, absent of any emotional or ancestral ties. As such, the owners of said portraits are usually disappointed with the amounts. (So please don't shoot the messenger!)

That's because very few of them were done by society painters or by "easel artists" as they were called, and thus signed and listed. They were done by countless nameless professional artists in the same manner as professional portrait photographers operate nowadays.

The premium or credit given to the actual individual professional painter of these, is about the same as the premium or credit to the photographer who took that daguerreotype, in other words none at all.

They do, however, have a value as period pieces and to those interested in social history and collectors interested in preserving or recreating historic interiors.

Truth be told, the Victorian cameo brooches pinned to their lace collars would be worth about the same, if not a little more, than the entire painting. I do hope you still have at least Caroline's in the family jewelry box!

Looking at comparables, this similarly well-executed & sized and date, unsigned, pastel portrait of a Boston lady, but in a more desirable and period frame, sold at auction for $800.

I would give each of yours an auction estimate in the range of $700 - $1000.

Full retail/replacement/insurance value: $2000 for each and $4500 for the pair, on the basis that a pair is always worth a little more than the sum of the values if sold singly.

Hope this helps.

Best wishes,
Robert

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