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Doris, Antiques Appraiser
Category: Antiques
Satisfied Customers: 9642
Experience:  Antiques store owner 10+yrs.Best of City Two Years. Collector 56+yrs.USPAP compliant. Member AOA.Founded part of antiques, silver & art collection at local museum.
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I have a butterfield water color of a clown that i purchased

Customer Question

i have a butterfield water color of a clown that i purchased many years ago i'm looking to see if there is value here
JA: I always love having an appraiser look at my stuff. Sometimes its turned out to be surprisingly valuable. Tell us what else you do know and the Antiques Appraiser will be able to better assist you.
Customer: it measures about 12 by 14 and is signed on the bottom right in black with the name butterfiewl
JA: Is there anything else the Antiques Appraiser should be aware of?
Customer: also it is signed by hand on the bottom left what looks to be C something Butterfield
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: Antiques
Expert:  Doris replied 10 months ago.

Hello and welcome! My name is Doris.
I have been an antiques collector, dealer and appraiser for over 56 years.
I will be pleased to help you.

Please send me at least one photo.

To send photos you may use the "reply to expert" or "add files" in the blue box link on your reply page or the "paper clip" found in the toolbar you see on your reply page.
Please do not send in ZIP format. The jpg or jpeg format works best.

An explanation of this method can be found here:

Kind regards,

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
i am stuck i cannot send a pic i am legally blind i have taken a pic sent it to my computer downloaded it found it but it will not go into your system you should have a system that allows us to drag a photo this has taken too much time i'm just mad that i paid and will not be able to get an answer thanks
Expert:  Doris replied 10 months ago.

I do not accept requests for phone calls. I give my best answers in thoughtful writing.

Besides, you will have an assessment to print out. I did not send you the pop-up.

Your photos came through just fine.

I will have your answer shortly.

Kind regards,


Expert:  Doris replied 10 months ago.

Biography from ***** ***** Fine Art

W Courtland Butterfield (1904-1977)

"Cortland Butterfield is perhaps best known as a figurative painter, though he also painted still lifes, florals, and marine subjects.

He was born in Newark, New Jersey, and studied at Cooper-Union Art School, the Art Students League, and the Ecole des Beaux Arts in Paris. He was a co-founder of the American Opera Repertory Company, a member of the Society of Independent Artists, and a teacher at the Art Students League, the Newark Academy of Arts and the Montclair School of Fine Art. Butterfield exhibited at the National Academy of Design, the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, Montclair Art Museum, and galleries in New York and New Hope, Pennsylvania. He died in New Hope in 1977.

His works are in the collections of the National Academy, the New Jersey Center for the Visual Arts, and the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts."

"Cortland Butterfield was one of the leading portrait artists of his time. Associated with the New Hope School of art, the subjects of his naturalistic works in watercolors and oils ranged from people he met in his daily life to performing artists, including luminaries such as Pablo Casals and Margot Fonteyn. Always fascinated by faces, he used the sketches he had made as an art student in Greenwich Village as the basis for his well-known paintings of rabbis. An outgoing individual, he was very generous in also helping other artists in the New Hope area. He also helped found the American Opera Repertory Company, and later donated his portrait of Pablo Casals to the music school. Family members served as a great inspiration to him. An uncle who performed as a clown in an English circus was the start of his many clown paintings. His aunt, Carrie Butterfield, was a landscape painter who sparked his interest in painting at the age of nine and encouraged his painting efforts throughout his youth. With a painting ttechnique rooted in the tradition of the Spanish Masters such as Velasquez, Goya, and El Greco, Cortland Butterfield established himself as a modern master of the portrait.""


When assessing an artist's work, appraisers must look at completed sales of works by the same artist. Art gallery sales prices are private.
We must then go to auction sales prices which are public. When using comparable work by the same artist, medium, subject matter and size are factors to be considered.
Appraisers most often use price per square inch of previously sold comparable works by the same artist as a measure of value.

Using this widely accepted standard of assessment, I was able to determine an estimated auction value of $200-250 assuming good condition and depending on sale geographic location.

I did fine one Butterfield painting currently for sale retail. The retail asking price is $1100 but it is twice the size of yours.

As for retail value of yours, I have seen art sell for 4 to 5 times auction values depending on the tastes of the art gallery owner as well as location of the gallery.

In general, a private seller to a dealer, via consignment or at auction can expect 30-60% of estimated retail value.

Insurance replacement values are usually about 10% more than retail values.

If you wish to sell, these are my suggestions -

The internet has your widest pool of buyers. To sell close to estimated retail try the following -

Try ads on sites such as

Some like where you can set up your store for free and the selling fees are small - 20 cents to list an item plus 3.5% of the final price.

Or list with no fees whatsoever:

I hope I have helped you.

If I can help you with further questions about this answer, please let me know before you rate me.

All my answers are quoted in USA dollars.

I endeavor to give realistic, honest answers in a timely manner.

Please take a little time to give me a POSITIVE RATING NOW SO THAT I AM CREDITED BY JA for my knowledge, time and effort.

Please do not rate me down because of system difficulty.

Please let me know if you have difficulty with the site's rating system. To rate me, you should see 5 stars near my answer. 5 stars gives me the best rating.

Kind regards.


If you would like to use me on any future questions, requesting me expires in a short time. If you put "For Doris Only" as the first of three words of the question, most professionals on the site will respect that request.

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Good Evening Doris
thank you so much for the information on Butterfield a five star ratting is very well deserved
thanks again
Expert:  Doris replied 10 months ago.

Thank you but the rating does not show.

Please use the five star system you see at the top of the page.

Kind regards,