Alan Schneider was the owner of an antiques shop called The Antique Traders on California Street in San Francisco for 50 years. I last visited many years ago. I tried to buy from him, but his prices were always too high for me. I also tried to sell to him, but apparently my prices were too high for him. So we did almost no business together that I can remember.
Alan passed away on July 15, 2020 at the age of 76. His estate was sold at John Moran Auctioneers in Monrovia, CA, a suburb of Los Angeles. Most of the items were medium quality, with very few standouts. I thought that Alan would have kept a few exceptional pieces for his personal collection, but if they existed, they weren’t in the sale.
Following are a few of the highlights.
In my opinion, lot #23, a Tiffany 20″ diameter Arrowroot table lamp was the best lamp in the sale, with very unusual reddish color in the background. I tried to buy it, but unfortunately I was the underbidder. It sold for $40,625, including buyer’s premium, against an estimate of $30,000 – $40,000. That’s a fine price for a collector to pay, but not a dealer. Too bad. I really wanted this one.
Part of the Schneider collection was a collection of Handel lamps. The best of the group was lot #118, a rare and beautiful bird lamp. It sold for $15,000, including buyer’s premium, against an estimate of $3,000 – $5,000. This is another lamp that I wanted to buy, but couldn’t because of the price.
Not everything in the sale was kosher. Lot #119 was a reproduction Gallé vase that was sold as authentic. It sold for $1,625, including buyer’s premium, against an estimate of $1,000 – $1,500. There also were quite a few other vases that were cut down and not mentioned in the condition reports. Looks like Moran can use a little outside professional help. (Hello! I’m available. I’m already the expert for many auction houses, but unfortunately I can’t name them here.)