Contemporary Art Going Under The Hammer At Ewbank's
Pieces By George Rowlett And Street Artist ‘Cyclops’ Come To Auction

George Rowlett AuctionEwbank’s, Surrey’s leading auction house, is gearing up for its first auction of 2018, Contemporary Art And Modern British Paintings, which will be held on January 18 at 10am.

There is still time to consign items for sale before January 12. Valuers are always available to assist with valuations and advice between 9am and 5pm Monday to Friday at the Burnt Common Auction Rooms, just off the A3 North-East of Guildford.

Street Art AuctionThe team is expecting the sale to be well-attended, both with buyers in the room, on the phone and online, as contemporary art auctions in 2017 proved particularly popular.

The highest-value modern art piece sold in 2017 was an oil-on-board by British artist Alan Reynolds entitled ‘January Landscape’. It sold for over £39,000, exceeding its estimate. Other well-sold contemporary art sales last year included the sales ‘Art On A Postcard’ and ‘Art On A Ukulele’ which Ewbank’s ran in conjunction with The Hepatitis C Trust, raising a total of more than £84,000 for the charity.

Among the highlight lots already catalogued for sale on January 18 is an oil-on-canvas by the British artist George Rowlett, born in 1941. The work is called ‘Michael In His Fields’. It carries a pre-sale guide price of between £1,500 and £2,000, and comes with a copy of the original invoice showing it was purchased from The Gallery at John Jones in 1993.

Rowlett is a London-based artist renowned for his landscapes, often of London’s River Thames. He prefers to paint outside, rather than in his studio, weather permitting, and is often to be seen riding his trusty bike through London with huge canvases attached to the sides.

John Ridgewell AuctionA suite of ten screenprints on museum board, in the style of Andy Warhol, published by silk print experts Sunday B. Morning, entitled ‘Flowers Portfolio’ has been valued at between £1,000 and £1,500. Each measures 91.5cm square, and comes with a certificate of authenticity.

Three pieces by Lucas Price, aka Cyclops, who is a member of the renowned street artist collaboration, Burning Candy Crew, are also going under the hammer. Cyclops is one of the UK’s most prolific street artists, walking down any street in east London over the last few years, there is a good chance that you could come across one of his street paintings. They are often heavily layered and incorporating words and phrases.

All three examples of the artist’s work in this sale carry pre-sale estimates of between £600 and £800. One is an untitled comic strip in French, on board, overlaid with hands, measuring 42cm by 29cm. The others are both also on board; one in mixed media featuring wild-life and overlaid with Mickey Mouse hands, the other is an X-Men / Cyclops comic strip, also featuring Mickey Mouse hands.

Two oils by British surrealist artist John Ridgewell are going under the hammer on January 18. Essex-born Ridgewell studied at the Royal College of Art, aged just 21, alongside contemporaries including David Hockney and R.B. Kitaj. After graduating he moved north, to teach art at the Scarborough School of Art.

Sunday B Morning AuctionRidgewell developed his distinctive style while in Scarborough, inspired by the landscapes of the North including Halifax, Huddersfield, Whitby and Hebden Bridge. He left teaching to pursue art full-time, helped in no small part by the Austen Hayes gallery in ‘The Shambles’ in York, which staged several one-man exhibitions for him in the 1960s.

As a result, shows in London followed, earning him a loyal and discerning clientele. His time in Scarborough saw the emergence of his surrealistic side, with doors and staircases in landscapes appearing in his work, such as with these examples, although he did not describe himself a surrealist, just as a landscape artist.

A signed oil painting by Ridgewell, entitled ‘Blue Door’, has been valued at between £400 and £600. It measures 59cm by 44cm. Another signed oil, called ‘Tin Mine,’ has a pre-sale estimate of between £600 and £1,000.

Alfred Cohen AuctionOther pieces of note include a signed oil-on-paper by American artist Alfred Cohen (1920-2001). Entitled ‘Coaster leaving Wells harbour at Sunset’ it has a pre-sale estimate of between £200 to £300.

There is also a large oil-on-canvas by British artist Elinor Bellingham Smith (1906-1988) called ‘The Fens in Winter’ (measuring 50cm by 67cm) carries an estimate of between £200 to £300.

The Contemporary Art & Modern British Paintings Auction is accepting final entries until Friday 12 January and will be on view at Ewbank’s Surrey saleroom from Monday 15 January at 9am.

•      Ewbank’s: 01483 223101 or email valuations@ewbankauctions.co.uk.
•      Live internet bidding through www.theauctionroom.com and www.ewbankauctions.co.uk.