Midland Park, New Jersey (PRWEB) September 24, 2012 (PRWEB) September 24, 2012
After accurately predicting that Sotheby's $80 million auction estimate for "The Scream" would be shattered (it sold for $120 million on May 2, 2012), New York Times bestselling authors Les and Sue Fox are sticking their neck out again with a forecast of $500,000 for a painting Potomack Auctions (The Potomack Company) in Alexandria, Virginia has estimated will sell for $75,000 to $100,000 in a few days.
The Foxes, authors of "The Art Hunters Handbook: How To Buy Art $5 And Sell It For $1,000,000", have researched a 5-1/2" x 9" oil painting by the famous French Impressionist Pierre -Auguste Renoir, and concluded that the painting is much more valuable than most people believe. Discovered at the Shenandoah Valley (VA) flea market in a bag containing toys, an anonymous woman brought the tiny gem to the auction house to see whether it just might be real. And it was.
Last sold in 1925 by Alphonsine Fournaise Papillon through the Bernheim-Jeune art gallery in Paris, "Paysage Bords De Seine" (Edges Of The Seine Landscape) is an extremely important work of art, say the Foxes. The painting was first declared genuine by Potomack's in-house art expert, Anne Craner, who has since received confirmation from the National Gallery of Art and a Renoir expert that this is indeed the same painting listed in the official Renoir Catalog Raisonne. Presumably given to Alphonsine Fournaise (a well known Renoir model believed to be shown in the painting) by Renoir as a gift in 1879, Ms. Fournaise, who appears in Renoir's priceless masterpiece "The Boating Party" (see close-up photo), kept the painting for 45 years. In 1926, it was purchased by Herbert May for his wife Sadie, a well known Maryland collector who donated many works to the Baltimore Museum of Art. How the May painting ended up in a box of junk at a Virginia Flea Market in 2011 is still a mystery.
"Paintings like this are often sold privately," said Les Fox, "But the new owner was smart to put it up at auction. We advise our readers and clients to consider public auction as the way to get the most money for a valuable painting. Competition will drive up the price. And there's no shortage of art collectors and rich folks dying to be the high bidder on this amazing Renoir. Remember, Le Moulin de la Goulette by Renoir sold for $78 million in 1990. And lots of other Renoirs have sold for millions of dollars."
"We found at least four small paintings sold at Sotheby's and Heritage Auctions in 2012 for $250,000 to $500,000," added Sue Fox. "None are as exciting as the Potomack painting. There is so much history and beauty behind this petite work of art. Renoir painted many river scenes along the Seine near the towns of Bougival and Chitou around 1879. Plus, he gave this painting to one of his best known models. Add to that, the story of its disappearance and accidental re-discovery and the scene has been set for an art auction frenzy!"
Hand-written notes on the back of the painting, still housed in its beautiful original frame, also increase desirability and monetary value.
Married in 1968, Les and Sue Fox call themselves The Art Hunters (tied to the title of their new book "The Art Hunters Handbook") and are hoping to launch a TV show with the same name in 2014. For nearly 45 years, the Foxes have been tracking down rare art and rare coins. They have written and published more than a dozen books and enjoy helping average people find items of great value for a fraction of their true worth. The Foxes offer free art appraisals and advice through their website. Their new book advises people on how to find valuable paintings by 240,000 different artists that often don't look like they are worth very much.
"We've seen just about everything in the past half century," brags Les, "but like Mike and Frank on American Pickers, we never get tired of finding or hearing about great new finds. This Renoir certainly falls into that category, and we can't wait to see if we're right about how much it will bring. As Sue said, it compares favorably to four small Renoirs sold in 2012 at prices ranging from $242,000 to $590,000. There is no reason why this painting can't bring that much, and maybe even more! Like the title of our book, this auction proves you really can find a painting at a garage sale or flea market for $5 and sell it for as much as $1,000,000. We tell another true story of that happening in our book, plus a lot more stories and art hunter tips. To all of our readers, we say: Happy Hunting!"