Five For Friday: Treadway’s June and Larry Greenwald Collection Sales Event

Rebekah Kaufman
Published on
Pieces available in Treadway's upcoming auction. Photo courtesy of Treadway.
Pieces available in Treadway’s upcoming auction. Photo courtesy of Treadway.

Auction Daily: Thanks so much for speaking with us today. Your March 22nd, 2020 Greenwald Collection auction features almost 300 lots of the most appealing and desirable antiques to come to market in recent memory. It is very encouraging that you’ve promoted how accessible – and generally affordable – many of the lots will be. Can you tell the Auction Daily readers how to spot a good value at auction and in this sale? 

Don Treadway: This auction will offer collectors great selections of bronzes, lamps, glass, Asian, and French objects at reasonable to wholesale prices. In terms of value, all buyers searching for quality antiques at attractive prices need to educate themselves on the state of the current marketplace. Without that knowledge, any purchase is a bit of a gamble. 

Personally, I feel this is a great time to consider purchasing quality items from a broad range of fine and decorative art categories. There are good buys to be had everywhere, bidders just need to be prepared, educated, and willing to look in many different places.

Auction Daily: One of the interesting details about this sale is that it features a one-owner collection of fine and decorative art – including examples from the world’s most desirable manufacturers and categories, including Gallé, Tiffany, Daum, G. Argy-Rousseau, and Satsuma. In your experience, do one-owner sales differ from those representing many consignors? In handing her materials, were you able to learn anything about June Greenwald based on themes running throughout her collection?

Don Treadway: Yes, one-owner sales can seem more appealing from the point that their objects are generally curated and cohesive, with common themes. Multi-consignor sales can be a bit more transactional, and often feature merchandise from dealers who are simply looking to move it along efficiently. 

I’ve known June Greenwald for many years; we met 35 years ago at the annual Miami Beach Antique Show. This event continues to be one of the premier shows in the country for a wide range of objects. June was a dealer there. Professionally, she was known for her great taste and ability to recognize inherent beauty and quality independent of an object’s price tag. June handled a great many treasures over time. She didn’t add them to her personal collection because of their “value” but because they appealed to her. That is perfectly evident here based on her items available through this upcoming sale. 

Tiffany Studios Peony table lamp available in this auction. Photo courtesy of Treadway.

Auction Daily: Tiffany lamps feature prominently in this upcoming sale. In 2018, Christies sold a c. 1903 Tiffany Studios ‘Pond Lily’ table lamp for a record price of nearly $3.4 million dollars. As a decorative arts specialist, why do you think they continue to catch the eye of collectors and to garner six and seven figure results? 

Don Treadway: I think that’s because they were expensive and unique when they were made and the name “Tiffany” has always related to quality. That is timeless. The work and craftsmanship required to produce them makes them what they are. Blown glass and ceramics from the turn of last century have always amazed me. If you consider what it required to produce those things at that “low tech” period, it’s hard to not be amazed.

Auction Daily: In your professional opinion, what are some of the “hidden gems” in the Greenwald collection? And by “hidden gems” we mean those with quiet – but extraordinary – design, craftsmanship, materials, and/or appeal. For example, as a foo dog and rock crystal fan, lot #233, the Chinese wax seal, really calls to me.

Don Treadway: I think that there are too many to single out in this sale! There are great finds in all the categories, including lamps, glass, Asian ceramics, bronzes, French enamels, etc. 

Arthur J. Elsley painting available in this auction. Photo courtesy of Treadway.

Auction Daily: And finally, some buyers are hesitant to purchase items at auction without seeing or inspecting them firsthand. Treadway offers customers a guarantee on their purchases. Can you tell us more about that, and how it works, and what it covers? 

Don Treadway: This is really important to the way we do business, and it is fully detailed on our website. We don’t sell some objects because we don’t know enough about them to guarantee what the buyer is getting. Some things have a history of being faked and we avoid them. Auctions today are fair game for many people looking to sell inferior, damaged, or subpar items so we avoid many consignments unless we know the merchandise. After 40 years in the business, we have learned a lot but there seems to be some new scam out there almost daily. We do our best to keep on top of everything and provide our consignors, dealers, customers, and prospects the best auction experience possible. 

Treadway’s June and Larry Greenwald Collection auction will be held on March 22, 2020 starting at 11:00 am EDT at the company’s gallery, located at 2029 Madison Road, Cincinnati, OH 45208. Lots can be previewed from Monday, March 16th through Saturday, March 21st from 10:00 am -5:00 pm EDT. Bidding is available in person, on the phone, via absentee bids, and online at Liveauctioneers and Invaluable. For more information, please see www.treadwaygallery.com