Apollo Galleries

25 Bury Place, Bloomsbury, London WC1A 2JH

About Auction House

Founded by Dr. Ivan Bonchev in 2010, Apollo encompasses all aspects of collecting and appreciating ancient art, antiquities and coins. Our specialities include: Ancient Roman, Greek, Asian, Egyptian, Medieval, Viking and Neolithic.

Auction Previews & News

9 Results
  • Auction Industry
    Apollo’s Chariot at Versailles Restored to its Former Glory

    After spending 14 months in the Coubertin Foundry, the most famous fountain in the gardens of Versailles is back where it belongs in the Grande Perspective designed by André Le Nôtre. © Didier Saulnier Eager to pull the sun across the sky, Apollo, accompanied by a cherubic Cupid, drives his chariot hoisted out of the water by four spirited horses, with as many dolphins between them, with four tritons trumpeting his fame at the four cardinal directions. Each sculpture in this group by Jean-Baptiste Tuby (1629-1700) has its own vitality, giving the whole a lifelike energy. On February 15, Laurent Salomé, director of the National Museum of the Palaces of Versailles and Trianon, was moved at the sight of the gilded god on his stone base. “Jean-Baptiste Tuby is really the French Michelangelo,” he said. “He deserves to be as famous as Coysevox and Girardon.” Jacques Moulin, the head architect of historic monuments responsible for the park and gardens of Versailles, who was in charge of the restoration of Apollo's Chariot (or “Apollo on His Chariot”), shares that conviction. “Jean-Baptiste Tuby (né Giambattista Tubi), an Italian artist who worked with Bernini in Rome, was an odd character,” he says. “Little is known about him, other than that he was capable of executing the gigantic statuary group in Apollo’s Basin, which must be seen from 30 meters (nearly 100 feet away). In France, unlike in Italy, sculpture didn’t appear in gardens until the mid-17th century. Primaticcio’s 16th-century statues for Fontainebleau were a one-off.” © Didier Saulnier An Allegory of PowerEarly in Louis XIV's reign, Colbert authorized funding for one large fountain per year for the young king, who was passionate about his gardens at Versailles, already considered the most beautiful in Europe during his father's lifetime. Brothers Gaspard and Balthazar Marsy received the commission to create the Dragon Fountain at the bottom of the Water Walk in 1666 and the Latona Fountain in 1667. The following year, Tuby was asked to create the huge Apollo Fountain sculpture, which weighs about 30 tons, including two-and-a-half for each horse. Apollo alone weighs six-and-a-half tons and stands 2.7 meters, or almost nine feet, tall. The…

  • Auction Industry, Press Release
    Apollo Art Auctions presents aspects of The Prince Collection in Jan. 28 sale of antiquities with provenance from legendary 19th-century Egyptophiles

    Highlights of featured collection can be traced to such visionaries as Rev. William MacGregor, Joseph Althounian and Daniel Marie Fouquet, who all collected long before the discovery of King Tut’s tomb Two Large Egyptian Faience Foundation Tiles LONDON – Dr Ivan Bonchev, Director of Apollo Art Auctions, takes utmost pride in announcing a Sunday, January 28, 2024 live and online auction of 560 lots featuring aspects of The Prince Collection, one of the finest and most advanced assemblages of antiquities in the world. The London auction house also plans a separate Monday, January 29 online-only sale focusing specifically on fine Chinese and Islamic art. Formed from the 1990s through 2014, The Prince Collection traverses the entire scope of cultural evolution, with items of peerless provenance and great rarity from the Neolithic, Egyptian, Hittite, Greco-Roman, and Near Eastern civilizations. Many of the items previously passed through the hands of legendary antiquities collectors of the 19th/20th centuries. A selection of Egyptian faience and engraved fragments was once the property of Reverend William MacGregor (1848–1937), a famous Egyptophile who traveled to Egypt in the mid-1880s. While there, he avidly acquired Egyptian art and cultural objects, and upon his return to Britain, loaned his collection to an 1895 exhibition at the Burlington Fine Arts Club in London. It was England’s first non-permanent exhibition to characterize Egyptian antiquities as artworks, captivating London’s elite. In 1921, MacGregor sold his collection to Spink & Son, who later auctioned the items at Sotheby, Wilkinson & Hodge (Sotheby’s). Those same antiquities were then purchased by Joseph Altounian (1890-1954), a renowned 20th century dealer and grandee of the art world who counted amongst his friends Modigliani, Picasso and the writer Guillaume Apollinaire. Born in Armenia, Altounian moved to Paris and opened a gallery in 1906 which was subsequently known as Altounian-Lorbet. The firm specialized in Egyptian and Greek art as well as decorative and medieval works, and sold to many major American and European museums.  The Prince Collection’s remarkable array of Egyptian faience includes two large foundation tiles believed to have come from the Pi-Ramesses palace of King Ramesses II (New Kingdom,…

  • Auction Industry, Press Release
    Apollo Art Auctions’ December 17 online-only event features expertly authenticated ancient art, artifacts and jewelry for every discerning collector

    Stellar provenance and in-house curation support a confident and pleasurable bidding experience for all who appreciate fine treasures of the past LONDON – Acquiring precious antiquities and cultural art is a year-round pursuit, not only for those who collect such objects, but also for interior designers who recognize the way in which an ancient artwork – whether a statue, tapestry or painted vessel – can elevate the tone of a room’s décor. Apollo Art Auctions serves as the trusted conduit connecting buyers with the rare and authentic pieces they desire. For the holiday season, the London-based firm is proud to present a December 17 online-only auction of expertly authenticated, well-provenanced artifacts from Classical Europe through Egypt and the Near East, as well as many art treasures of China, India and the Islamic world. The 540-lot sale has been thoughtfully curated to ensure buyers at every level can acquire pieces of outstanding quality. For holiday gift-givers, Apollo has included a fine selection of ancient jewelry that includes gold earrings, pendants and rings, many of them adorned with garnets, amethysts and other stones; as well as brooches, bracelets, colorful beaded necklaces, and substantial silver designs by Viking artisans. Nearly 60 lots of ancient Egyptian art will be auctioned, from faience ushabtis, beaded shrouds and other mysterious funerary objects to pottery and stoneware vessels. The Egyptian civilization’s advanced appreciation of aesthetics is well exemplified in a rimmed stone plate or tray whose surface displays a beautiful array of natural veins. Made circa 3000-2750 BC, it was formerly the property of a North London gentleman and, prior to that, was part of a private collection formed in Paris in the 1970s to 1990s. Its opening bid is set at £2,000 ($2,520). Applied arts were at the center of Classical Greek culture, as well. An Attic red-figure krater with an attractive inverted bell-shape body dates to around the late 4th-3rd century BC and measures 290mm by 290mm (11.4in x 11.4in). Its richly painted program consists of a winged figure of Hypnos holding a trident on Side A; and a robed female, probably representing the deceased,…

  • Auction Industry, Press Release
    Apollo Art Auctions celebrates luxe new venue with Nov. 5 gallery sale of premier Ancient Art and Antiquities

    First live auction at new West End saleroom features Cycladic marble figure; Roman bust of Homer; important Gandhara Bodhisattva; medieval, Knights Templar, Greek Corinthian armor LONDON – Apollo Art Auctions, led by Dr Ivan Bonchev (PhD, University of Oxford), has enjoyed tremendous success as the auction branch of Apollo Galleries, London’s renowned source for authentic ancient art and antiquities. Since its inception, Apollo Art Auctions has conducted its flourishing online-auction business from its parent company’s premises at 25 Bury Place in fashionable Bloomsbury. Now the auction division has its own upscale address. While Apollo Galleries will continue to trade from its prime location near the British Museum, Apollo Art Auctions will operate from a separate but equally stylish West End property. Located at prestigious 63-64 Margaret Street, close to Oxford Street and Bond Street stations, the new venue includes rooms that have been purpose-designed and outfitted for live auctions and previewing, paving the way for Apollo’s expansion into exciting new categories: Asian and Contemporary Art.  On Sunday, November 5, the Apollo family of companies will christen its newest location with a 501-lot, no-reserve Fine Ancient Art & Antiques Auction which Dr Bonchev describes as, “unquestionably our best sale to date.” All remote forms of bidding, including live online, will also be available for this and all future Apollo Art Auctions events. Overseeing the ancient art selection is a rare and fascinating marble Cycladic II female idol of the Chalandriani Type. It is a product of the Aegean Keros-Syros culture and dates to circa 2800-2300 BC. The figure’s head is rendered in the shape of an inverted triangle, and its body, with skillfully incised accent lines, follows a tapered shape. This curious survivor is similar to examples at Musee du Louvre, Paris; and the Archaeological Museum in Athens. Its line of provenance most recently includes a London ancient art gallery, a Paris private collection and Paris gallery JM Serres. The opening bid is set at £30,000/$36,510. Rare ancient marble Cycladic II female idol of Chalandriani Type, Keros-Syros culture, circa 2800-2300 BC. Size: 150mm x 60mm/5.9in x 2.4in. Similar to examples at…

  • Auction Industry, Press Release
    London’s Apollo Art Auctions presents exceptional ancient art, antiquities and militaria, Sept. 24

    Featured: Roman and Gandharan sculptures; Viking swords, Montefortino Roman helmet (ex Guttmann); Egyptian, Classical & Chinese ceramics; spectacular ancient Roman jewelry LONDON – Discerning collectors of antiquities, ancient art and material culture know the Apollo Art Auctions name stands for uncompromising quality and authenticity. Their next fully curated event, an Ancient Art, Antiquities and Militaria Auction, will take place on Sunday, September 24 and features a wealth of exquisite and well-provenanced works spanning most of recorded history and chronicling many of the world’s most fascinating civilizations. The London firm, headed by Dr Ivan Bonchev (PhD, University of Oxford), conducts its business from a tastefully appointed showroom and gallery in Central London and presents its premier auction selections to an international clientele through LiveAuctioneers’ online-bidding platform. Throughout the ages, artists have been drawn to forms, whether of humans, animals, deities or mythological figures. The September 24 auction offers an outstanding selection of sculpted forms as seen through the eyes of ancient creators of visual art.  A top prize is the circa 200AD Roman marble figure of Cupid (Eros) holding a large bunch of harvested grapes. Finely carved in the round and in extremely high relief, it showcases the artist’s great skill at translating human anatomy to stone. On its stand, the figure’s height is 700mm (28in), with a weight of 37.35kg (82lbs 5oz). Provenance includes several British and Continental galleries and collections, including that of R. Sorge (1980s, Germany). The pre-sale estimate is £10,000 -£15,000 ($12,490-$18,735). The long-admired Chinese Tang Dynasty aesthetic is captured with exceptional elegance and vitality in a circa 618-907 AD terracotta rider on horse. Standing 440mm by 380mm (17.3in by 15in), the earthenware mingqi has been precisely dated via TL analysis at the independent German laboratory Ralf Kotalla. A certificate and full lab report will convey to the winning bidder. Estimate: £4,000-£6,000 ($4,995-$7,490). Gandharan carved schist figure of standing Buddha with halo, dressed in monastic robe. Circa 200-300 AD, Kushan period. Well-defined facial features and wavy hair culminating in an ushnisha. Height: 790mm (31.1in). Weight: 33.40kg (73lbs 10oz). Similar to example in collection of Metropolitan Museum of…

  • Auction Industry, Press Release
    London’s Apollo Art Auctions presents Timeless Treasures: Ancient Art and Coins, Aug. 27

    Featured: Circa 500-300 BC Greek Chalcidian helmet, jeweled Merovingian sword, ancient statuary, pottery, jewelry & gold coins; Bronze Age Chinese ritual vessel, Tang Dynasty camel LONDON – Apollo Art Auctions, internationally recognized for its sales of authentic, expertly vetted ancient art and antiquities, takes pleasure in announcing highlights of its August 27 Timeless Treasures: Ancient Art and Coins Auction. All forms of remote bidding are available, including live via the Internet through LiveAuctioneers.  “At this expertly curated auction we invite collectors to experience an exquisite array of artifacts from diverse cultures and epochs, ranging from ancient China through the Medieval period. Additionally, we are very pleased to offer wearable ancient jewelry and a fine collection of early Roman and Greek coins,” said Apollo Art Auctions’ director, Dr. Ivan Bonchev.  Stunning circa 500-300 BC Greek bronze Chalcidian helmet with domed crown, prominent front medial ridge, contoured double-curve above brow, teardrop nose guard, hinged crescentic cheek guards. Of a form also seen in several premier museums, including The British Museum, and in several scholarly books and publications. Provenance: Central London gallery; European collection; F. Breydel collection, Belgium, 1970s. Estimate: £12,000-£20,000 ($15,275-$25,460) Many forms of historical heavy metal will weigh in, starting with an incredible Greek Chalcidian bronze helmet dating to circa 500-300 BC. Its distinctive design incorporates such features as a domed crown, prominent front medial ridge, contoured double-curve above the brow, a teardrop nose guard, and hinged crescentic cheek guards. By the time of the Peloponnesian War (434-402 BC), the Chalcidian helmet was the most widely distributed head protection seen in Greek military ranks. The auction example is of a form also seen in the collections of several premier institutions, including The British Museum, and in several scholarly books and publications. Its line of provenance includes a Central London gallery, a European collection, and the F. Breydel collection (Belgium, 1970s). The pre-sale estimate is £12,000-£20,000 ($15,275-$25,460). Pre-dating the Chalcidian helmet by several centuries, a circa 800-700 BC Western Asiatic (Mesopotamia, Assyria) conical hammered sheet bronze helmet and torc draws comparison to armor seen in a chariot relief at The Louvre. The…

  • Auction Industry, Press Release
    London’s Apollo Art Auctions to host July 23 sale of expertly curated ancient art, antiquities, coins and jewelry

    Featured: Egyptian mummy mask from Late Ptolemaic period, ornamental Hellenistic gilt silver bowl, Babylonian cuneiform tablet, Gandharan panel with Buddha & Bodhisattvas LONDON – Apollo Art Auctions, internationally known as the most-trusted source for authentic, expertly vetted ancient art and antiquities, will present a July 23rd online auction whose quality would please even the most discerning and sophisticated collector. In addition to highly important cultural art and artifacts, the 535-lot sale is enhanced by precious coins, and fine gold and gems from a sumptuous selection of wearable ancient jewelry. Absentee and Internet live bidding is available online through LiveAuctioneers. Greek Chalcidian hammered bronze helmet, circa 500-300 BC, contoured double curve above brow; hinged, articulated cheek guards. By the time of the Peloponnesian War (434-402 BC), the Chalcidian design was the most widely used type of helmet within Greek ranks. Provenance: London private collection; acquired in European art market pre-2000. Estimate £15,000-£20,000 ($19,380-$25,840) Many forms of historical heavy metal will weigh in, starting with an incredible Greek Chalcidian hammered bronze helmet dating to circa 500-300 BC. Its unusual design incorporates a contoured double curve above the brow, and hinged, articulated cheek guards. By the time of the Peloponnesian War (434-402 BC), the Chalcidian helmet was the most widely distributed head protection seen in Greek military ranks. The auction example exhibits beautiful natural verdigris that only enhances its presentation. Coming from a London private collection, it could pass to its next owner for a winning bid in the range of £15,000-£20,000 ($19,380-$25,840). Another highlight from the broad selection of ancient weaponry is a circa-1100 AD Norman iron sword – classified as an Oakeshott Type A with a blade that is most probably an Oakeshott Category XI – whose design includes a distinctive “Brazil nut” pommel. The hilt is short, a feature copied by Norman swordsmiths from their Viking and Saxon predecessors. Formerly the property of a European collector and before that, part of a German collection, it comes to auction with an estimate of £2,500-£4,500 ($3,230-$5,815) Metal of a very different kind is seen in a Hellenistic gilt silver bowl dating to…

  • Auction Industry, Press Release
    UK’s Apollo Art Auctions to offer connoisseur’s selection of antiquities, Islamic art and militaria, June 10-11

    Event will break new ground with the introduction of post-16th-century productions to Apollo’s long-established ancient arms and armor category LONDON – Apollo Art Auctions, the premier choice for authentic, expertly vetted ancient art and antiquities, takes pleasure in announcing highlights of its June 10-11 gallery auction, with all forms of remote bidding available, including live via the Internet through LiveAuctioneers. In addition to exquisite, professionally vetted cultural art, artifacts and jewelry, the 702-lot auction will broaden the buying horizons for collectors of ancient arms and armor with the inclusion of a fine selection of post-16th-century weaponry.  Timurid silver-inlaid bronze plate, circa early 14th century AD, the recess (or well) adorned with the image of a seated figure flanked by birds, and encircled by a decorative band depicting various animals in motion. Size: 220mm x 20mm (8.7in x 0.79in). Weight: 355g (12.52oz). Provenance: Collection of a London gentleman; formerly in the collection of A Kotlar since the 1970s. Estimate: £12,000-£24,000 ($14,810-$25,620) “We have always included fine examples of ancient militaria in our auctions. That stands to reason, because history’s turning points are largely associated with wars and conflicts. But over the past year we’ve noted an increased interest in militaria and felt it was time to expand the category to incorporate post-16th-century weaponry,” said Dr Ivan Bonchev (PhD, University of Oxford).  In launching the new initiative, the June 10 session has been enhanced to include a broader selection of arms and armaments, perhaps none more distinctive than a Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth Saxony lobster-tail hussar’s helmet with wings. Created around the 17th-18th century AD during the reign of August II the Strong, its design consists of a round skull with six vertical ridges, a horizontal visor with an attached narrow face guard, and the pièce de résistance: a pair of riveted, “fanned” wings adorned with openwork heart shapes. An astonishing survivor, this helmet was previously held in consecutive European collections and now comes to auction with an estimate of £4,500-£9,000 ($5,555-$11,110). The time-tested skill and artistry of Viking metalsmiths can be seen in a pair of rare circa-9th-century AD hand-forged silver stirrups. The…

  • Auction Industry, Press Release
    Apollo Art Auctions to host April 22-23 sale of expertly curated ancient art, antiquities & coins

    Featured: Roman legionary bronze helmet with ‘Jupiter’s Thunderbolt’ wings; Egyptian dagger with elaborate handle, Byzantine marble reliquary, wearable ancient jewelry, fine pottery LONDON – Apollo Art Auctions, Europe’s most trusted source for expertly authenticated ancient artifacts, takes pleasure in announcing highlights of their April 22-23 sale of ancient art, antiquities and coins. More than 800 museum-worthy lots will be offered, representing the finest relics, wearable jewelry and weaponry available for private ownership. The selection traverses many historical periods, embracing the unique cultures of Classical Europe, Egypt, the Near East, India and China. As always, an abundance of Islamic treasures has been included, as well as medieval and Viking jewelry, swords and knives. Each and every artwork or object has been personally curated by Apollo Art Auctions’ experts under the supervision of gallery director Dr Ivan Bonchev, PhD, University of Oxford. Roman legionary bronze helmet with wings of Jupiter’s Thunderbolt (a motif symbolizing power), hinged C-shape cutouts for ears, flared neck guard, circa 100 BC-100 AD. Weight: 905g (2lbs). Provenance: European private collection; formerly in F. Breydel collection, Belgium, 1970s. Estimate £12,000-£24,000 ($15,032-$30,064) The diverse array of highlights begins with an extremely rare weapon from Egypt’s New Kingdom and 18th Dynasty, a fearsome circa 1550-1292 BC bronze dagger. Measuring 16.5 inches long, its distinctive design features a tapering pointed blade and a separately cast, riveted hilt. The hilt itself has an arched guard that tapers along the sides of the blade, while the openwork pommel flares to secure the oval openwork bone terminal. This incredible weapon is similar to an example in the collection of The Brooklyn Museum and comes to auction with an estimate of £12,000-£24,000 ($15,032-$30,064). Apollo Art Auctions has had the privilege of handling many magnificent helmets in the past, and this month’s auction adds yet another extraordinary example to the list. Lot 417, a circa 100 BC-100 AD Roman legionary bronze helmet must be seen to be fully appreciated. It easily qualifies as a work of art, with its rich verdigris finish and unusual design that includes wings of “Jupiter’s thunderbolt,” a flared neck guard and hinged…

  • Auction Industry, Press Release
    London’s Apollo Art Auctions to host March 12 and 15 sales of expertly curated ancient and cultural art, antiquities, coins and Islamic art

    Highlights: Large Roman bronze Cupid, gold-handled Greek iron sword, Ancient Qurans, 18th C. book compilation featuring the works of 12th C. poet Jamal Al-Din Abu Muhammad Nizami LONDON – As any collector of fine objects would attest, you can never have too much of a good thing. London’s premier source for exquisite ancient and cultural art, Apollo Art Auctions, agrees with that sentiment, which is why they’ve organized two separate and distinct sales in mid-March to accommodate an abundance of recently consigned treasures.  Islamic gold ring with orange carnelian intaglio and turquoise inlays, Middle East, circa 1100-1500 AD. Engraved with rearing animal on underside of box bezel. Intact, beautiful example. XRF fluorescence analysis confirms metallurgical content suggesting its ancient origin and no modern trace elements. Weight: 14.38g. Estimate £2,000-£4,000 ($2,405-$4,810) The first sale, on March 12, is a 553-lot offering titled Ancient Art, Antiquities & Coins. Following closely on March 15 is a magnificent 339-lot selection of Islamic Art. Both sessions feature authentic antiquities, relics and artworks that have been personally curated by Apollo Art Auctions’ experts under the supervision of gallery director Dr Ivan Bonchev, PhD, University of Oxford.  The opening session encompasses a broad range of art and artifacts from Classical Europe, Egypt and the Near East, India and China. The catalogue is divided into sections specifically devoted to Classical and Egyptian antiquities; coins, medieval works of art, and Asian works of art.  Auction highlights will step into the spotlight with the introduction of the very first lot, a rare Greek Lucanian red-figure bell-shape krater dating to circa 500-400 BC. Its pictorial program includes a robed man and a youth holding a staff on the obverse; and on the reverse, two youths standing and conversing, one of them holding a staff. Standing 285mm/11.22 inches high, this handsome vessel has been TL-tested by the independent German laboratory Ralf Kotalla and found to be consistent with the period reflected in its style. The TL report will convey to the new owner. Estimate: £3,000-£6,000 ($3,605-$7,210) Several Greek and Roman bronze statuettes and figures are worthy of special note. Dominating the group…

  • Auction Industry, Press Release
    London’s Apollo Art Auctions to launch new season with Jan. 29 auction of expertly authenticated ancient artworks, antiquities and coins, plus NFTs

    In an industry-leading collaboration with Coinllectibles™, Apollo is including NFTs with the first five auction lots, which will transfer to winning bidders as both physical and digital assets LONDON - Apollo Art Auctions will launch its new season of gallery events with a January 29 sale generously laden with ancient fine art, antiquities and rare coins. Bidders who are unable to attend in person may bid remotely by phone, online or absentee, and everyone can enjoy the visually stunning auction catalogue online. With its exceptional photography and authoritative descriptions of rare art and artifacts, the auction book takes the reader on a virtual journey of the greatest civilizations of the world, traversing Classical Europe, Egypt and the Near East, and both southern Asia and the Far East. Attic black-figure on white-ground lekythos, circa 490-480 BC, attributed to the Athena painter. Depiction of scene from a centauromachy, showing hoplite soldier on one knee, thrusting point of spear into opponent’s midsection. Height: 238mm (9.37in). Similar example is held in the collection of the Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes, Havana. Long line of provenance tracing back to Spencer Joshua Alwyne Compton, Second Marquess of Northampton (1790-1851), Castle Ashby House. Vase will transfer with Coinllectibles™ NFT digital ownership token. Estimate £20,000-£40,000 ($24,430-$48,860) By means of a collaboration between Apollo Art Auctions and Coinllectibles™ – a blockchain-technology company that supports the collectibles industry through its focus on art and rare memorabilia – an exciting new feature will be introduced at the 491-lot auction. Each of the first five lots will convey with an NFT digital ownership token (DOT), meaning the winning bidder of each of those five items will receive transferable ownership of both the physical and digital assets of their particular auction acquisition. “Fine art NFTs are still in their earliest days. We are proud to be in the vanguard of this new asset category and believe collectors will embrace the opportunity to enter the space. The initial five lots to be auctioned with NFTs were specifically chosen because of their photogenic quality,” said Apollo Art Auctions’ director, Dr. Ivan Bonchev.   The January 29…

  • Auction Industry, Press Release
    London’s Apollo Art Auctions invites collectors and holiday gift-shoppers to a Dec. 11 Christmas ‘feast’ of ancient art, antiquities and coins

    Auction features 500+ lots of carefully authenticated cultural art and artifacts, early hand-forged armor, and ancient jewelry; many items with distinguished provenance LONDON – Apollo Art Auctions hopes to make your Christmas merry and bright with unique antiquities, ancient artworks, coins and wearable jewelry chosen especially for their beautiful December 11, 2022 holiday sale. Whether you’re a collector or a gift-giver in search of something unforgettable, you’ll find it in this impeccably curated auction. The 500+ cataloged lots encompass a broad range of well-provenanced and expertly authenticated artifacts from Classical Europe, through Egypt and the Near East, as well as many treasures from India and China.  Circa 100 BC to 100 AD Roman gold and carnelian intaglio ring depicting an elephant in profile with long trunk and well-defined legs, tail, ears. Estimate £1,500-£3,000 ($1,840-$3,680) The peerless array of wearable ancient jewelry and decorative objects – created in gold, silver, bronze, pottery, stone and glass – outshines anything a Christmas shopper might see at the toniest of Fifth Avenue or Rodeo Drive jewelry stores. Just a few of the highlights are: a British medieval gold ring with a massive sapphire, a Viking gold twisted ring, and a rare and exceptional Roman silver bowl with an embossed, high-relief bust of Zeus. The exceptional ancient art selection includes many museum-worthy Greek pieces, such as a large Greek Apulian red-figure amphora painted with two scenes: Eros seated on a stack of rocks and holding a large pyxis (box for carriage of personal objects), and a “Lady of Fashion” adorned with a fancy headband known as a “stephane.” Dating to circa 340-320 BC, the tastefully decorated, double-handled vessel is estimated at £1,500-£3,000 ($1,840-$3,680). As marbles go, the 1000mm-tall Roman figure of Asclepius, son of Apollo and the god of medicine, is a showstopper. Standing on an integral base, the figure clutches his mantle to one side, revealing a muscular torso. The artwork is further enhanced by a staff entwined by a snake. Similar to an example in the National Museums Liverpool, the marble was previously in a French collection, a Paris gallery, and Binoche et…

  • Auction Industry, Press Release
    Apollo Art Auctions unveils magnificent trove of curated, fully authenticated ancient art and antiquities for November 13 sale

    Featured: Roman Imperial marble bust of Empress Julia Domna, very rare Apulian and Lucanian painted vessels, Chinese terracotta camel, Gandharan Buddha, and inlaid Viking sword LONDON – Apollo Art Auctions, the connoisseur’s choice for authentic, expertly vetted ancient art and antiquities, takes pleasure in announcing highlights of its November 13 gallery auction, with all forms of remote bidding available, including live via the Internet.  Roman Imperial marble bust likely depicting Empress Julia Domna, wife of Septimus Severus late 2nd century AD. Size: 320mm (12.6in) high; 2.45kg (5lbs. 6oz). Provenance: property of a London doctor; New York private collection; Gorny & Mocsch, Munich; an old Bavarian collection. Estimate: £15,000-£30,000 ($17,415-$34,830) The sale is divided into three sections encompassing a diverse range of premium-quality artifacts from Classical Europe, Egypt and the Near East, as well as many select items from India and China. The 455-lot auction includes such coveted rarities as a Roman Imperial marble bust of Empress Julia Domna, a Rodin painter Apulian krater, a Lucanian red-figure hydria and Attic black-figure oinochoe; as well as a Chinese terracotta camel, seated Gandharan Buddha, and inlaid Viking sword. From the Roman Imperial period, late 2nd century AD, a beautifully carved marble bust is likely a representation of Empress Julia Domna, wife of Septimus Severus and mother of Caracalla and Geta. She is depicted with a serene expression, wearing a draped peplos (tunic), her hair arranged in the distinctive plaited and twisted hairstyle that was favored by the empress. It stands 320mm (12.6in) high and has extensive provenance including collections in London, New York and Munich. The pre-sale estimate is £15,000-£30,000 ($17,415-$34,830). Several exceptional examples of painted pottery lead the impressive array of ceramics. A very rare Apulian red-figure column krater, executed by a Rodin painter, dates to circa 380-360 BC and is richly illustrated with a scene that includes warriors, an elegantly adorned woman holding a phiale and a wreath; and on the other side, three draped youths. The 460mm (18.1in) vessel is similar to an example held in The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s collection. It has been precisely TL-dated by Ralf Kotalla,…

  • Auction Industry, Press Release
    Apollo Art Auctions presents fresh-to-market ancient art and antiquities of extraordinary quality and beauty in Oct. 9 sale

    Featured: Viking silver horse’s head armor with stunning hand-decoration, Egyptian painted and gilded mummy mask cartonnage, Chinese Tang Dynasty set of 12 zodiac figures Rare Viking Silver Horse Chamfron - Full Report LONDON – With each successive sale, London’s Apollo Art Auctions delights collectors of ancient art and antiquities with a fresh selection of fully authenticated treasures from bygone civilizations. Each rare object – whether valued for its great beauty, historical significance, or both – is offered with the assurance that it has been vetted by top experts working under the direction of Apollo’s founder, Dr. Ivan Bonchev (Ph.D., University of Oxford). On October 9th, the London-based firm will conduct yet another outstanding gallery auction of ancient art and antiquities, with worldwide bidding available online through LiveAuctioneers. The beautifully illustrated catalogue features 499 lots divided into three sections: Classical and Egyptian, Masterpieces of Ancient Asia, and Medieval Antiquities and Ancient Weaponry. The well-provenanced artifacts represent cultures of many significant eras and geographic regions, including Classical Europe, Egypt, the Near East, India and China. Ancient Egypt is endlessly fascinating, with its gods, its rituals and its reverence to those who had passed to the afterlife. A prime example of the latter is seen in the auction’s opening lot: an Egyptian mummy mask cartonnage from the Ptolemaic Period, circa 332-30 BC. Made from layers of plaster-covered linen, it presents an idealized portrait of the deceased, with pleasing facial features and voluminous tripartite wig. It is polychrome painted in peacock blue, red and white with generous gilding that has weathered many centuries to emerge in fine condition. Most recently it was held in the collection of an Oxfordshire (England) medical doctor. Estimate: £20,000-£40,000 ($22,938-$45,876) A number of highlights grace the Ancient Roman section, including a life-size marble head of youthful female from the Antonine Period, circa 200 AD. With a height of 380mm (15in) and a weight of 18.6kg (41lb), this substantial and masterfully sculpted artwork has a long line of provenance that includes a London art gallery, Brummer Gallery (New York), and a reference to having been purchased from “Pascal” in the…

  • Auction Industry, Press Release
    Apollo Art Auctions presents connoisseur’s selection of expertly vetted ancient and Islamic art, August 28

    Featured: Stellar circa 500-300 BC Chalcidian tin bronze helmet with nearly 100% of original tin plating intact LONDON – An extraordinary selection of ancient and oriental art, including early Islamic treasures, will be offered by Apollo Art Auctions on Sunday, August 28, starting at 12 noon BST (7 a.m. US Eastern Time). The 417-lot sale, with beautiful and interesting objects to please even the most sophisticated collector, will be conducted live at Apollo’s elegant central London gallery, with international participation cordially welcomed by phone, absentee bid, or live online through LiveAuctioneers.  Magnificent circa 500-300 BC Greek Chalcidian tin bronze helmet. Bowl forged in one piece with high-arched eyebrows, teardrop-shape nose guard, articulated crescentic cheek-pieces formed for anatomic fit. Nearly 100% of tin plating preserved. Provenance: Important London collection of ancient art; previously acquired on the European art market; prior acquisition in Leipzig, Germany from E. Muller in the 1960s. Estimate: £10,000-£20,000 ($12,050-$24,100) The generously illustrated catalogue is divided in two parts. The Islamic section, which opens the sale, includes early pottery, glass and bronze works, as well as textiles, manuscripts and paintings that reflect Nishapur, Seljuk, Mamluk, Safavid and other Middle Eastern origins. The Ancient Art section features an enviable array of rare Greek, Etruscan, Roman and Medieval art and weaponry, as well as Chinese and Indus Valley ceramics. To the delight of those who collect wearable ancient jewellery, there is a trove of 50 tempting pieces from which to choose, including earrings, pendants, necklaces, and rings set with precious and semiprecious stones. A top highlight of the Islamic art category is a Mamluk or earlier (possibly Ayyubid or Fatimid) wooden panel carved in high relief. Traces of multicolor floral decoration in original pigments mare seen on its frame. The 390mm by 134mm (15.4in by 5.28in) piece, whose provenance includes a pre-2000 purchase from Oliver Hoare, will convey to its new owners will convey to its new owner with its Art Loss Register Certificate and a radiocarbon dating report. Estimate: £10,000-£15,000 ($12,050-$18,070) Adorned with Nasta’liq script in cartouches and face-in-sun symbols that link to the mythical shah Jamshid, a circa…