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HARES RAISING Following a boom in demand for garden sculptures in lockdown, a Hertfordshire-based company has launched a range of life-size animal models.

Nelson & Forbes in Hemel Hempstead creates bronze sculptures designed by some of the UK’s most talented contemporary artists, including Sue Maclaurin (b. 1948) and Jonathan Sanders (b.1958). Nelson & Forbes’ 2021 collection of 213 limited-edition pieces includes three life-sized animals – an otter, hare (both by Maclaurin) and a dog. The animal sculptures are all cast by hand in a British foundry using the ancient art of lost wax casting. Founder Deborah Foster said: “The recent lockdown saw an increased demand for garden sculptures among collectors, so we were happy to respond by creating several of their most popular pieces in a life size.” For more details go to www.nelsonandforbes.co.uk or call 01442 256290.

Above 46cm tall bronze, Garden Alert Hare by Sue Maclaurin, from a limited edition of 95, priced £2,500

Store punt Silver, jewellery and watches from Searle & Co. in London’s Royal Exchange have gone under the hammer following its closure earlier in the year.

The longrunning family business established in 1893 had offered bespoke pieces from premises described as “more like a cabinet of curiosities than a shop”.

The store relocated to the Royal Exchange in 1933 creating bespoke pieces including enamel and gem-set badges for livery companies.

Its owners chose Birmingham-based Fellows Auctioneers to sell the stock over a number of sales this autumn.

Above The historic retailers closed earlier in the year

High brow A Frida Kahlo self-portrait could become the second most expensive work by a female artist ever sold when it goes on sale this month.

The painting, titled Diego y yo (Diego and I), was completed in 1949 five years before her death in 1954, and depicts the Mexican artist’s face with an image of her husband the artist Diego Rivera, on her forehead.

It has an estimate of £30m when it goes on sale in New York on November 15. According to Artnet’s price database, the highest price ever paid for a Kahlo work at public auction was $8m at Christie’s in the spring of 2016. If Diego y yo were to meet its estimate, it would be the secondpriciest work by a female artist ever sold at auction. The current record is $44.4m paid for Georgia O’Keeffe’s Jimson Weed/White Flower No.1 (1932) in 2014.

Above Frida Kahlo’s 1949 painting Diego y yo (Diego and I), courtesy of Sotheby’s.

WHAT A GEM Iconic British jeweller Shaun Leane was one of 25 designers who helped raise £13,770 to support women in Afghanistan.

The collaboration, Jewellers for Afghanistan, with London auctioneers Roseberys, saw work by Solange,

Annoushka, Theo Fennell and Pippa Small go under the hammer.

Each designer donated a piece of jewellery retailing between £270 and £1,750 with all the proceeds going to Women for Afghan Women a grassroots women’s rights organisation.

The charity is helping to evacuate and provide urgent resources, shelter and care to vulnerable women, children and families during the ongoing crisis.

Above left The British jeweller Shaun Leane was among the jewellers donating work

Quiet please English Heritage has introduced an ‘hour of contemplation’ at its monasteries when visitors will be encouraged to turn off their mobile phones and keep schtum.

Mental health campaigner, actor and broadcaster, Stephen Fry, is backing the project which includes a downloadable recording of a reading from Saint Aelred, a 12th-century abbot from Rievaulx Abbey in Yorkshire.

The abbey is one of 16 taking part across England, including the Carthusian monastery Mount Grace Priory in North Yorkshire once home to a solitary order of monks, and Battle Abbey in East Sussex, founded by William the Conqueror following the Battle of Hastings.

Above right Rievaulx Abbey on the North York Moors, the ruins of one of England’s most powerful Cistercian monasteries, image English Heritage

ANTIQUE COLLECTING 9

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