Toomey & Co. Auctioneers

818 North Boulevard, Oak Park, Illinois 60301

About Auction House

Toomey & Co. Auctioneers based in Chicago is considered one of the premiere specialty auction houses in the country and has been conducting auctions since 1987.  We hold several carefully curated auctions each year. Our departments include: Fine Art, Early 20th Century Design, Modern Design, Fine Furniture & Decorative Arts, Silver & Objects of Vertu, and Fine Jewelry & Timepieces.

Auction Previews & News

14 Results
  • Auction Industry
    Color Me Beautiful: Heritage Auctions’ Pursuit of Beauty: Art Nouveau, Deco & Glass Event

    The Art Nouveau (circa 1890 - 1914) and Art Deco (circa 1919 - 1939) movements are responsible for many of the most coveted, iconic, and signature vintage to antique decorative art designs today. World-class manufacturers from those periods include Tiffany Studios, Lalique, Loetz, Wedgwood, Pairpoint, Daum, and others. The finest examples of these magnificently produced lamps, vases, statues, and other treasures are still in demand a hundred or more years onward and catch the world's attention when they appear at auction. Heritage Auctions of Dallas, TX is presenting its 462-lot Pursuit of Beauty: Art Nouveau, Deco & Glass sale on May 25, 2023. Here are some important highlights from this extraordinary event. Lot #79004, a Tiffany Studios Drophead Dragonfly table lamp, is estimated at $100,000 to $150,000. Image courtesy of Heritage Auctions. This curated auction offers nearly 40 century- and category-spanning lots of fine Tiffany Studios lamps, vases, and other household items. Tied for top lot in this sale is #79004, a leaded glass and gilt bronze Drophead Dragonfly table lamp, estimated at USD 100,000 to $150,000. This circa 1910 example is marked both on its shade and base. This stunning, fully provenanced example features a shade with nine descending dragonflies, each with an outstanding combination of body and eye color. Dragonfly light shades are a classic pattern for Tiffany. This general design was "invented" by Tiffany designer Clara Driscoll in 1898 and was first shown at the Grafton Galleries in London in 1899. Driscoll's vision would go on to win a bronze medal at the 1900 World's Fair in Paris, and the rest is history. In April 2022, Toomey & Co. Auctioneers of Chicago sold a jeweled Drophead Dragonfly table lamp for $562,500. Lot #79312, a glass cactus Lalique center table, is estimated at $20,000 to $30,000. Image courtesy of Heritage Auctions. This auction offers more than 40 gorgeous vases, plates, figurines, bottles, and other rarities made by the French company Lalique. Of special note is lot #79312, a marked, clear and frosted glass cactus center table, estimated at $20,000 to $30,000. Its circular, straight-edge top is supported by…

  • Auction Industry
    Artist to Know: Edward Penfield

    Rago and Toomey & Co. to Offer Over 100 Works by American Illustrator A significant figure in the history of poster and graphic design, Edward Penfield (1866 - 1925) was celebrated for his bold, abstract posters. A precocious talent, Penfield drew inspiration from Japanese ukiyo-e woodblock prints and early Egyptian sarcophagi paintings. He is often referred to as the father of the American poster movement. He worked for the prestigious Harper's Magazine from 1891 to 1900 and created distinctive graphic images. Over 100 works dedicated to Edward Penfield: American Illustrator will come to auction with Rago and Toomey & Co. on May 18, 2023. Bidding begins at 2:00 PM EDT. Before the auction starts, get to know Edward Penfield and his art. Edward Penfield in front of his Harper’s covers. Image courtesy of Rago. Born in Brooklyn, New York, Penfield was the son of Josiah B. Penfield and Ellen Lock Moore. He was the third of five children. His mother Ellen was a homemaker and his father Josiah was a bookkeeper and flour merchant. Reportedly, the artist’s health wasn’t strong in his childhood and youth. As a young child, he was influenced by his Uncle Henry Lewis Penfield (1825 - 1901), who owned a 'bureau of engraving,' or studio, in New York City. Penfield received his elementary education in Brooklyn. At 23, he studied under George de Forest Brush at the Art Students League of New York. Brush, an American figurative artist, was known for portraying romantic scenes of Native American life. Penfield joined the publishing house Harper and Brothers at the age of 25 as a staff artist and editor. Penfield quickly set his own style of basic figures with bold outlines devoid of irrelevant detailing. After his promotion to artistic director, Penfield created his first lithograph poster advertising for Harper's Magazine in 1893. The poster shows a man in a green coat engrossed in reading as he gets wet from rain. It was a runaway success, and he produced posters advertising each successive issue of the magazine for the next seven years. “It was unlike anything seen in…

  • Auction Preview
    Landscape & Seascape Paintings by American Artists Come to Sale with Toomey & Co.

    Artist David Mann is famous for painting Native American subjects in scenes of everyday life. His depictions are particularly noteworthy for their attire and background. He portrayed the Indigenous peoples of the Great Plains in the 19th century, before they were moved to reservations. One such untitled work by Mann is a key highlight of the upcoming sale from Toomey & Co. It depicts a Native person on horseback, guiding his herd. Mann’s paintings often emphasized the role of horses in the lives of Native Americans. Another noteworthy lot in the sale is a painting by Robert Kipniss, titled Landscape. The composition portrays trees and a row of houses in a field, evoking a feeling of solitude. It also exemplifies the American painter’s use of a subtle color palette, mostly comprising black and white hues.  The Shoreline by Wesley Willis also leads the catalog. The artist used colorful marker pens to illustrate an urban scene with intricate detailing. The musician and visual artist from Chicago suffered from schizophrenia yet immersed himself in his art. Equally striking is Abraham Jacob Bogdanove’s Norton's Ledge (Monhegan Island, ME). He is celebrated for his seascape paintings of Monhegan Island. Visit Toomey & Co. to view the complete catalog and register to bid in the upcoming Fine Art sale.

  • Auction Preview
    Timeless Furniture Designs by Gustav Stickley Are Up for Sale at Toomey & Co.

    Furniture designer and maker Gustav Stickley was one of the most prominent figures of the American Arts and Crafts movement. As well as disseminating Arts and Crafts ideals, Stickley helped shape American taste and influence design in the United States by marketing his furniture and home plans. Since 1900, with his pioneering “mission” or “craftsman” furniture, he demonstrated how every home deserves solid, honest furniture that is crafted with uncompromising workmanship and provides real functionality. A Spindle Morris chair made by Gustav Stickley is a key highlight of the upcoming sale from Toomey & Co. Incorporating exposed joinery and oak, accompanied by Gustav Stickley’s trademark Flemish phrase Als Ik Kan, this Morris chair is a classic example of American furniture design. The sale will also feature a woodblock print by Gustave Baumann. A painter and printmaker, Gustave Baumann was known primarily for his striking polychrome woodblock prints depicting scenes from the American Southwest. The artist created an impressive collection of color woodblock prints that combined his woodcarving skills with painting sensibilities. The available print shows two boats moored at a dock on a creek, set against an autumnal field and trees in the background. Explore more items and register to bid by visiting Toomey & Co.

  • Auction Industry, Press Release
    Toomey & Co. Auctioneers To Hold Modern Design + Post-war & Contemporary Art Sale On August 24

    Oak Park, IL — On Wednesday, August 24, 2022, Toomey & Co. Auctioneers will hold a Modern Design + Post-War & Contemporary Art sale with over 350 lots by influential figures from the mid-20th century to the present. Items on offer include paintings, prints, sculptures, furniture, lighting, metalwork, pottery, glassware, and more. Along with examples by artists and designers from Chicago and the Midwest, the sale features works by a range of American and global innovators. Preview details and bidding instructions follow the auction highlights below. Highlights of Modern Design + Post-War & Contemporary Art on August 24 Sorcerer’s Village, 1972Estimate $4,000-6,000 Paintings, Drawings, Prints & Sculptures One of the standout works on August 24 is an oil on canvas by celebrated Mexican painter Rodolfo Morales, Plaza in Four Parts (estimate $20,000-30,000), which combines elements of magic realism and surrealism to portray a traditional village scene. Robert Lostutter also draws on fantasy and the sale includes three of his watercolor and pencil drawings and an etching with unusual creatures (highest $3,000-5,000). Other illustrations of note are Patrick Nagel's drawing for COQ magazine and Bernar Vernet's conceptual, geometric work (each $4,000-6,000). Black artists with examples in the auction include Romare Bearden, Jacob Lawrence, and Margaret Burroughs (highest $4,000-6,000). Two figural ceramic plaques will be up for bid by Marcello Fantoni and Clyde Burt and several steel sculptures by James Bearden will be offered (highest $7,000-9,000). The auction also has works by many other notable artists, such as: Marc Chagall, Alex Katz, Robert Rauschenberg, Sol LeWitt, Andy Warhol, Keith Haring, Peter Max, LeRoy Neiman, and Banksy (highest $1,500-2,500). Modern American Design American design features two pine display tables by Donald Judd selected by architect John Pawson for Calvin Klein NYC (each $10,000-20,000). Another statement-making form is Vladimir Kagan’s Cloud sofa for Directional ($6,000-8,000). Several classic, mid-century furniture lines are available from Edward Wormley and Paul McCobb (highest $5,000-7,000). Iconic examples from Herman Miller and Knoll will likewise highlight the sale. From George Nelson, the auction includes a Home Office desk, X-Leg dining table, and CSS wall unit (highest $4,000-6,000). Charles and Ray Eames are well represented with four DKW-2 chairs, a 670 / 671 lounge chair and ottoman, and a Compact sofa (highest $2,500-3,500). Various seating options from Bauhaus architect Mies van der Rohe are part of the sale, in particular, two Barcelona lounge chairs and two ottomans offered together and a custom, four-seat…

  • Auction Industry, Press Release
    Toomey & Co. Auctioneers Will Hold Back-to-back Sales On June 8-9

    Oak Park, IL — On June 8 and 9, Toomey & Co. Auctioneers will offer over 700 lots total by esteemed artists and makers who were largely active in the early 20th century. Fine Art + Furniture & Decorative Arts on Wednesday, June 8 will be followed by Keramics & Rookwood: American & European Art Pottery — Curated by Riley Humler on Thursday, June 9. The June 8 sale includes paintings, prints, sculpture, furniture, lighting, glassware, silver, jewelry, and more. The June 9 sale features art pottery, with vases, bowls, plates, jardinieres, wall plaques, and other forms. Preview and bidding details follow the highlights below. Highlights of Fine Art + Furniture & Decorative Arts on June 8 Paintings, Drawings, and Prints Hermann David Salomon Corrodi (Italian, 1844-1905) Landscape with Ruins, Roma, circa 1880 oil on canvas signed lower right 57" x 93" Two impressive oil on canvas works stand out within the fine art section on June 8: Italian painter Hermann David Salomon Corrodi’s Landscape with Ruins, Roma, circa 1880 (estimate $40,000-60,000) and American realist John Sloan’s Fireguard, 1925 ($15,000-25,000). The sale also has seven paintings by Milwaukee artist Francesco Spicuzza and a forest landscape by Impressionist Carl Krafft (highest $1,500-2,500). Further highlights consist of a pencil drawing by Midwestern Regionalist John Steuart Curry, two color woodcuts and a watercolor and pencil work by Margaret Jordan Patterson, and prints by Martin Lewis, Reginald Marsh, Howard Norton Cook, and others (highest $2,000-3,000). Decorative Arts, Furniture, Jewelry, and Silver Bridging the fine and decorative arts is a rare sextile tableau by Dutch artist Adolf LeComte for De Porceleyne Fles Delft ($10,000-20,000). Important glasswork includes an Émile Gallé marquetrie de verres ou cristaux vase and a Louis Comfort Tiffany monumental vase with elaborate pulled designs (higher $30,000-50,000). The auction has a light fixture attributed to Frank Lloyd Wright, possibly from Browne’s Bookstore in Chicago, and three building elements from Dankmar Adler and Louis Sullivan projects (highest $10,000-20,000). Several American Arts and Crafts furniture designs will be up for bid, such as an inlaid shoefoot armchair attributed to Gustav Stickley, a rare bookcase from The Roycrofters, and a Charles P. Limbert Co. table lamp (highest $10,000-20,000). The sale…

  • Auction Industry
    Art From the Edges: Folk, Outsider & Self-Taught Art + Americana With Toomey & Co.’s Aron Packer

    Toomey & Co. will present its inaugural Folk, Outsider & Self-Taught Art + Americana auction on August 12th, 2021 at 1:00 PM EDT. The sale signals a growing industry awareness of Outsider Art and its place in the broader artistic canon. Auction Daily recently sat down with Aron Packer, Toomey & Co.’s Senior Specialist for Contemporary & Outsider Art, to learn more about this event. Anna Pottery/Wallace & Cornwall Kirkpatrick, Centennial snake jug, 1876. Image from Toomey & Co. Auction Daily: Please give us a brief overview of Toomey & Co.’s upcoming Folk, Outsider & Self-Taught Art + Americana auction. Toomey & Co.: The auction on August 12th starts with Folk Art, which includes a range of offerings, such as: important, late 19th-century stoneware from Anna Pottery / Wallace & Cornwall Kirkpatrick in Southern Illinois; woodcarvings by Carl Hallsthammar, Emil Janel, and others; patriotic/military items from different eras; 19th and early 20th-century Folk paintings; needlework by Samuel Folwell/Anna Greer and others; American quilts from various traditions; Tramp Art woodworking and decorative items; fish decoys; circus-themed material and a Snap Wyatt sideshow banner; gaming-related objects; tattoo flash drawings; and O.P. Lodmell stamp collages from the 1920s. Mostly post-war, artist-driven Folk/Outsider works follow. Within Outsider Art, there are many lots by Chicago artists like Lee Godie, Wesley Willis, Mr. Imagination, Wilbur Rouson, and William Dawson. African-American Folk/Outsider artists from the South and elsewhere in the Midwest in the sale include: Clementine Hunter, James “Son Ford” Thomas, Elijah Pierce, David Butler, Sulton Rogers, Prophet Royal Robertson, Jimmy Lee Sudduth, Willie White, Purvis Young, and Mose Tolliver. White Southern Folk/Outsider artists consist of Howard Finster, Jesse Howard, S.L. Jones, Carl McKenzie, and R.A. Miller. To close the sale, we will offer assorted works by artists who were largely or entirely self-taught: Chicago’s Tony Fitzpatrick, Charles Steffen, Lee Groban, and Bruno Sowa; Illinois artists Stephen Warde Anderson, Eileen Doman, and George Colin; Milwaukee’s Bernard Gilardi; Georgia’s St. EOM; and Swedish artist Mana Lagerholm. Wilbur Rouson, Memory Assemblage, 1999. Image from Toomey & Co. Auction Daily: Some readers may be unfamiliar with Outsider and Folk Art.…

  • Auction Result
    Toomey & Co. Auctioneers sees intense bidding and elevated prices in first two sales of 2021

    Charles and Ray Eames for Herman Miller, ESU-421-C storage unit. Sold for $13,750. OAK PARK, IL.-Toomey & Co. Auctioneers has started 2021 with two high performing sales. Modern Design + Post-War & Contemporary Art on February 25 and Fine Art + Furniture & Decorative Arts on March 14 combined for a 98% sell-through rate and $1.72 million in total prices realized. With people spending considerable time at home and unable to travel freely to art and design conferences, shows, and exhibits during the pandemic, participation in the auction industry has surged and increasingly gone virtual, continuing a trend that had already been underway. Although Toomey & Co. Auctioneers has been based in Oak Park since 1982 and holding auctions since 1987, the current level of bidder interest and robust prices have not been seen in some time. “Our loyal base of consignors and buyers has allowed us to conduct successful auctions for well over three decades,” said President John Toomey, “but the strong results that we have been getting in all categories are driven by the fact that many new bidders are entering the market. With each sale, we have more and more people actively engaged online.” Highlights of Modern Design + Post-War & Contemporary Art on February 25 Among the notable art results on February 25 were two magic realist works: Austrian Arik Brauer’s watercolor, Fenster (Window), 1965, which sold for $17,500, nearly three times its high estimate, and former Disney animator Eyvind Earle’s fantasy landscape, which realized $9,750. Chicago artists were well represented, such as Ed Paschke, with a motorcycle engine detail painting, Speed Freak, 1969 ($10,000), and Outsider artist Wesley Willis, with multiple ballpoint drawings (highest $3,125). Various metal sculptures from Harry and Val Bertoia were auctioned (highest $12,350) as well as a multicolored silkscreen on PVC tower by Israeli artist Yaacov Agam ($8,450). Modern design included a pair of nickel-plated brass Man and Woman head sculptures by Franz Hagenauer that achieved $16,250 and a Sculpted Bronze console table and cabinet by Paul Evans that sold for $13,750. The sale also featured a large ESU storage cabinet ($13,750)…

  • Auction Industry
    Artists of Black History Month: Sam Gilliam

    Signed Monoprint by Color Field Painter Offered at Toomey & Co. Sam Gilliam’s work set a new tone for American art in the 20th century. He rose to fame during the 1960s and early 70s with his “Drape” paintings. These colorful works discarded stretcher bars in favor of dramatic installations. Gilliam always leaned into abstraction, even when his Black contemporaries embraced figural works that documented history and struggle. He instead joined the ranks of Color Field painters in Washington, D.C. to challenge and expand the boundaries of modern art.  “There are few artists who change the course of possibilities in painting,” said Pace Gallery’s Arne Glimcher to The New York Times, “and [Gilliam is] one of them.”  Toomey & Co. Auctioneers will present a signed monoprint from Sam Gilliam’s mid-career on February 25th, 2021. Live bidding will begin at 11:00 AM EST. Read on to learn more about Sam Gilliam and his place in American art history. Portrait of Sam Gilliam in 1980. Photo by Anthony Barboza via Getty Images. Born in Mississippi during the Great Depression, Sam Gilliam is the seventh of eight children. He pursued art through his 20s before serving in the U.S. Army for two years. When Gilliam returned to civilian life, he settled in Washington, D.C. Gilliam intentionally avoided New York in his early career. He disliked the city’s competitive climate and refused to fit his art into the local market’s expectations.  Gilliam began making his iconic Drape paintings around 1965. He painted vast pieces of canvas with stain and splatter techniques. The artist hung the loose canvases from walls and ceilings in defiance of traditional painting. Critics still discuss the meaning and inspiration of these abstract works. Gilliam has pointed out some connections for the viewer to consider. The paintings resemble laundry hanging from a clothesline and contain nods toward Black American jazz. They also carry undertones of political subversion, reflecting the upheaval of the civil rights movement. Despite their similarities, the Drape paintings are never displayed the same way. “Depending on the space and the place and the moment, they need to be…

  • Auction Industry
    Toomey & Co. Auctioneers will close 2020 with two impressive sales

    [left] LOT 20: Frank Lloyd Wright, table lamp. Estimate $80,000-120,000. Tradition & Innovation, December 3, 2020. Toomey & Co. Auctioneers, Oak Park, Illinois[right] LOT 32: Poul Kjærholm for E. Kold Christensen, PK 11 dining chairs, set of eight. Estimate $30,000-50,000. Tradition & Innovation, December 3, 2020. Toomey & Co. Auctioneers, Oak Park, Illinois. OAK PARK, IL.-Toomey & Co. Auctioneers will conclude its 2020 auction schedule with two upcoming sales featuring a wide variety of material, including several rare and important items. On Thursday, December 3, the third annual Tradition & Innovation will feature a limited, expertly curated range of works from painters, sculptors, ceramicists, furniture designers, architects, and jewelry makers who have helped define their respective fields for more than a century. On Sunday, December 6, Art & Design will offer a few hundred carefully selected lots of fine and decorative artworks, early 20th century and modern furniture, art pottery, lighting, metalwork, and more. In 2018 and 2019, the total of all prices realized for these December sales averaged over $2 million. Bidding in Tradition & Innovation on December 3 and Art & Design on December 6 Tradition & Innovation on Thursday, December 3 will start at 6:00 p.m. CST and Art & Design on Sunday, December 6 will start at 10:00 a.m. CST. Both sales will take place at Toomey & Co. Auctioneers, 818 North Boulevard, Oak Park, Illinois. However, in light of COVID-19, neither sale will be open to the public. Bidders may participate by phone (708-383-5234) or leave absentee bids ([email protected]). The auction catalogs are available online at and early registration is recommended. In addition, bids may be placed via two real-time, third-party digital platforms (LiveAuctioneers and Invaluable). Prior to the sales, preview is available virtually and by appointment. Those interested should contact [email protected] to request further condition information or schedule a preview time. Highlights of Tradition & Innovation on December 3 Two oil paintings by American Impressionists will be auctioned in Tradition & Innovation on December 3: Edward Willis Redfield’s Overlook at Boothbay Harbor, Maine, circa 1930 ($70,000-90,000 estimate) and Joseph Kleitsch’s Artist’s Paradise, showing Laguna…

  • Auction Industry
    Toomey & Co. Auctioneers To Hold Two September Sales: Modern Design + Post-war & Contemporary Art (9/2) And Fine Art + Furniture & Decorative Arts (9/13)

    Toomey & Co. Auctioneers will kick off its busy season with two September sales that together comprise nearly 800 lots. First up, on Wednesday, September 2, will be Modern Design + Post-War & Contemporary Art, followed by Fine Art + Furniture & Decorative Arts on Sunday, September 13. LOT 202: Kaare Klint for Rud. Rasmussens Snedkerier sofa, #KK 5011. Estimate $10,000-20,000. Modern Design + Post-War & Contemporary Art Wednesday, September 2, 2020Toomey & Co. Auctioneers The auctions on September 2 and 13 will each start at 10:00 a.m. CDT at Toomey & Co. Auctioneers, 818 North Boulevard, Oak Park, Illinois. In light of COVID-19, neither sale will be open to the public, but bidders may participate by phone (708-383-5234) or leave absentee bids ([email protected]). Full auction catalogs are available online at Early registration with Toomey & Co. is strongly recommended. In addition, bids may be placed via two real-time, third-party digital platforms (LiveAuctioneers and Invaluable). Prior to both sales, preview is available virtually and by appointment. Those interested may contact [email protected] to request further condition information or schedule a preview time. Toomey & Co. will conduct four additional auctions this fall: Interiors on October 15; Jewelry, Silver & Objects of Vertu on November 12; Tradition & Innovation on December 3; and Art & Design on December 6. LOT 21: Armando Morales Año I, 1964. Estimate $10,000-20,000. Modern Design + Post-War & Contemporary Art Wednesday, September 2, 2020.Toomey & Co. Auctioneers Modern Design + Post-War & Contemporary Art on September 2, 2020 The auction on September 2 contains a variety of material by modern design innovators. From Denmark, a Kaare Klint eight-leg sofa ($10,000-20,000 estimate) will be up for bid as well as furniture by Finn Juhl and Arne Jacobsen. Italian design is also strongly represented, with Shiro Kuramata’s Ritz desk for Memphis Milano ($10,000-20,000) and items by Angelo Lelii, Oreste Bogliardi, and Carlo Scarpa. Frenchman Max Ingrand’s wall sconce ($5,000-7,000) is another highlight along with furniture from Jean Prouvé. Multiple notable American designers have lots in the sale, such as Gene Summers with a bronze side table ($5,000-7,000), Charles & Ray Eames with an ESU desk ($3,000-5,000), and Edward Wormley with a rare settee ($2,500-3,500). Mid-century design also features pottery from Gertrud & Otto Natzler, Edwin & Mary Scheier, and Rose Cabat plus jewelry from Sam Kramer and Paul Lobel. LOT 878: Tiffany Studios table lamp: Geometric…

  • Auction Industry
    Artist to Know: Eldzier Cortor

    Toomey & Co. to Offer Oil Painting from Chicago Black Renaissance Artist Speaking to the Art Institute of Chicago, Eldzier Cortor recalled the catalyst that prompted him to paint: “Once, there was a fellow. He was able to read minds! He said, ‘let me read your fortune.’ He says, ‘you’re going to be a famous painter one day… but you’re gonna have a hell of a time.’” Cortor’s career lasted over 70 years, and he participated in many influential artistic movements throughout the 20th century. However, his fortune teller was at least partially correct in his predictions: for the majority of his life, Cortor was underrepresented both in galleries and at auction. However, his work has recently drawn attention as collectors re-examine the African American artists of the Chicago Black Renaissance movement. One of Cortor’s paintings, titled Local Color, will be offered in Toomey & Co. Auctioneers’ upcoming Art & Design sale on June 28th, 2020. Get to know Eldzier Cortor before the bidding begins. Eldzier Cortor. Image from the Chicago Tribune. At an early age, Cortor’s family moved from Richmond, Virginia, to the South Side of Chicago. He would spend many of his working years in the city, starting his career during the Great Depression in the 1930s. Under the protection of the Works Progress Administration (WPA)’s Federal Art Project, Cortor found early work as a painter. His task was to “[depict] scenes of African American social life in the slums of Chicago’s South Side,” according to the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation. He would do more than capture the slums, however. Cortor helped found the South Side Community Art Center, the only African American art center opened under the WPA. It remains operational today after over 75 years. Cortor’s painting style also developed while working with the WPA. He traveled extensively, visiting the Gullah people of the Sea Islands and, later, areas of Jamaica, Cuba, and Haiti. These experiences prompted a deep interest in African heritage across the diaspora, something he began working to preserve in his paintings. Cortor especially focused on Black women for the subjects of…

  • Auction Industry
    Toomey & Co. Auctioneers to present ‘Art & Design’ sale on June 28

    Lot 420: George Nakashima, splayed leg dining table. Estimate $8,000-12,000 OAK PARK, IL.-Toomey & Co. Auctioneers will conduct its second Art & Design sale of 2020 on Sunday, June 28, showcasing nearly 600 lots of fine and decorative artworks, sculpture, early 20th century and modern furniture, art pottery, lighting, silver, jewelry, and more. Among the highlights of the auction will be works by notable Chicago and African-American artists and many fine examples from Art Nouveau and Arts & Crafts makers plus items by mid-century American and Danish designers. The auction on June 28 will start at 10:00 a.m. CDT. at Toomey & Co. Auctioneers, 818 North Boulevard, Oak Park, Illinois. In light of COVID-19, the sale will not be open to the public, but bidders may participate by phone (708-383-5234) or leave absentee bids ([email protected]). Early registration with Toomey & Co. is strongly recommended. In addition, bids may be placed via two real-time, third-party digital platforms (LiveAuctioneers and Invaluable). Leading up to the sale, auction preview will take place both virtually and by appointment, pending local shelter ordinances. Those interested may contact [email protected] to schedule an appointment. The full catalog for Art & Design on June 28 is online at Fine ArtTwo works by Chicago surrealist Gertrude Abercrombie will lead the sale, a witch-themed oil on masonite, 4 Ladies Switches #2, 1951 (estimate $6,000-8,000) and a linoleum cut ($1,000-2,000). Ruth Duckworth, who spent many years in Chicago, will have a pair of sculptures available ($5,000-7,000 and $1,000-2,000). Two portraits by local Jewish artist Todros Geller will be offered ($10,000-20,000 and $5,000-7,000). In African-American art, an Aaron Douglas etching and aquatint ($3,000-5,000) plus works by Ernest Crichlow, Walter Sanford, and Wesley Willis will be featured. Early 20th century art includes landscapes from Carl Krafft ($6,000-8,000) and Gustave Baumann ($3,000-5,000). Other major artists featured are: Grant Wood, Roy Lichtenstein, Andy Warhol, Peter Max, and Joe Coleman. Early 20th Century DesignStunning Art Nouveau lighting from Tiffany Studios will grace the auction, such as a Moorish four-light chandelier ($15,000-25,000), a pair of Moorish pendant lights ($7,000-9,000), two Moorish table lamps ($6,000-8,000 each), plus Lemon…

  • Auction Industry
    Toomey & Co. to offer 17 Oak Park Art League paintings in ‘Interiors’ auction on May 6

    Linen Fold desk lamp: octagonal shade on a Graduate base, #558. Estimate $3,000-5,000. OAK PARK, IL.- During the Interiors auction on Wednesday, May 6, 2020, Toomey & Co. Auctioneers will offer over 600 lots of fine and decorative artwork, sculpture, early 20th century and modern furniture, art pottery, lighting, silver, jewelry, and more by famous names plus a selection of 17 paintings deaccessioned from the Oak Park Art League. While similar to Toomey & Co.’s signature quarterly Art & Design auction, material in the biannual Interiors sale is often available at more affordable price points. This allows collectors and decorators a greater opportunity to acquire a variety of art and design objects. Some of the notable artists and makers featured in Interiors on May 6 are: Marc Chagall, Dale Nichols, Robert Rauschenberg, Margaret Burroughs, Tiffany Studios, Gustav Stickley, Frank Lloyd Wright, Georg Jensen, Edward Wormley, Hans Wegner, and Michael & Frances Higgins. Interiors Auction Details and ConsignmentsOn Wednesday, May 6, the Interiors auction will start at 10:00 a.m. CDT at Toomey & Co. Auctioneers, 818 North Boulevard, Oak Park, Illinois. In light of COVID-19, the sale will not be open to the public and there will be no in-person preview, but individual preview appointments may be requested as well as additional condition information and photos to enhance virtual preview by emailing [email protected] Early registration for Interiors on May 6 is strongly recommended. The full catalog is currently online at In addition to placing absentee bids directly with Toomey & Co., clients may bid online via two real-time platforms, LiveAuctioneers and Invaluable. Consignments are now invited for upcoming auctions. Photographs of items may be submitted for estimates to [email protected] To learn about past or future sales, please visit Auctioning Works to Support the Oak Park Art LeagueTo begin the Interiors sale on May 6, a group of 17 paintings will be up for bid from the Collection of the Oak Park Art League (OPAL), which was founded in 1921 by artist Carl Krafft — whose two beautifully framed landscapes will start the sale (Lots 1 & 2). All of these works were…

  • Auction Industry
    Toomey & Co. Auctioneers To Offer Art & Design On March 8

    On Sunday, March 8, Toomey & Co. Auctioneers will begin its 2020 schedule with Art & Design, featuring over 600 lots of fine and decorative artworks, sculpture, early 20th century and modern furniture, art pottery, lighting, silver, jewelry, and more. LOT 54: Richard Diebenkorn. Blue from The Ocean Park Series, 1984. Estimate $20,000-30,000Toomey & Co. The public auction on March 8 will start at 10:00 a.m. CDT. Bidders may participate in person (Toomey & Co. Auctioneers, 818 North Boulevard, Oak Park, Illinois), by phone (708-383-5234), and via two live digital platforms (LiveAuctioneers and Invaluable). Early registration is strongly recommended. Auction preview begins March 2 and continues through March 7 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. CST daily, with extended hours on March 5 until 7 p.m. for an evening reception. The full catalog for Art & Design is online at Auction preview begins March 2 and continues through March 7 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. CST daily, with extended hours on March 5 until 7 p.m. for an evening reception. The full catalog for Art & Design is online at Fine Art Art & Design on March 8 will offer works by several important contemporary artists, including Richard Diebenkorn’s woodcut, Blue, 1984 (estimate $20,000-30,000), a David Hockney etching ($3,000-5,000), and Andy Warhol’s Campbell’s-themed The Souper Dress ($1,000-2,000). Many lots by Midwestern and Chicago artists will be up for bid, such as Eugene Von Bruenchenhein’s chicken bone chair ($7,000-9,000), a Zhou Brothers’ diptych ($5,000-7,000), and an Ed Paschke neon screenprint ($1,000-2,000). In modern art, the auction will proudly present Harlem Renaissance sculptor Augusta Savage’s bronze bust, Gamin, circa 1929 ($20,000-30,000), and an orotone by Native American chronicler Edward Sheriff Curtis ($2,500-3,500). LOT 102: The Roycrofters rare bookcase, similar to #83. Estimate $10,000-20,000 Early 20th Century Design Known for American Arts & Crafts, Toomey & Co. regularly offers important original designs. The March 8 sale includes a rare bookcase from The Roycrofters ($10,000-20,000) and an early two-door unit from Gustav Stickley ($3,000-5,000). Ceramic art pottery features vases from Teco and Grueby (each $4,000-6,000). Collectors of antique lighting will be drawn to a Tiffany Studios table lamp with Geometric shade ($10,000-20,000) and a Dirk van Erp hammered copper example ($6,000-8,000). Chicago metalwork up for bid includes Robert Riddle Jarvie’s bronze chamberstick ($2,500-3,500) and The Kalo Shop’s round copper tray ($1,500-2,500). Two Modernist necklaces by Art Smith (higher $2,000-3,000) and aGio…