Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Barton's Beauty


It is not often that we collectors encounter an unusual or eye-popping, jaw-dropping meerschaum pipe, but, occasionally, we do. There are not enough descriptive adjectives in the English language to assign to this monumental meerschaum pipe. It is a carver's liberal interpretation of the mythical Poseidon (Neptune), God of the seas. This statuesque carving is 8-½" in height.







 

It once belonged to an exceptionally devoted antique pipe collector, J. Trevor Barton of England, who passed away in 2008. 






It was in the auction in London at Christie's in September 2010, described as "Carved with a figure of Poseidon, nereids, and sea horses, gilt silver and coral mounted, inscribed ST. FRENZEL, Wien, the finial of Poseidon at rest in a grotto, amber mouthpiece." 






In our opinion, the catalog description did not give this exquisite sculpture its due respect. It is an absolute marvel in balance, detail, and finesse, with in-the-round carving throughout. 






Not surprisingly, a successful bidder appreciated this fine specimen. The House estimate was $2,300 - $3,800. The lucky bidder purchased it for $13,606!


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