Hard Times For Old Masters
TINTORETTOS AT £100 A DOZEN
The DAILY EXPRESS, 12th July 1913
LONDON — The Old Masters must have turned in their graves yesterday afternoon.
At the sale at Christie's of a number of pictures belonging to the Duke of Sutherland, the prices paid were so low that the dealers began to speculate mournfully on an approaching slump when Delaroches will be sold by the dozen and Correggios will be within reach of the man on the omnibus.
The expectation that stupendous sums would be realised brought a crowd to the salesrooms, but for the first hour nor one picture had inspired the dealers to a thousand-guinea bid.
The highest price paid was £2,310 for a pair of pictures by Murillo. Some of the prices paid for famous masters were surprisingly low. A picture attributed to Velasquez sold for £26 10s. Sir Joseph Reynolds's portrait of George III and Queen Charlotte went for £294. Three Correggios were knocked down for £33 12s.
A "Holy Family" by Carracci passed for £15 15s, the highest price in a group of pictures by Crespi, Domenichina, Ferrato and Ferri.
Niccolo Poussin's "Christ Healing the Blind" was bought for £147. Two Titians went for £23 2s each, and a Tintoretto was sold for £8 8s.
These prices make an interesting comparison with the prices paid this year for the painters of our own generation: £8,190 has been paid for a Millais, and at the same auction Orchardson's "Young Duke" realised £4,620.
Corot's "Orpheus and Eurydice" has climbed to the price of £15,040 since its first appearance in 1861, and Degas lived to see one of his pictures sold for £17,000 in December last.