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It's always all about modern and contemporary art on the first sale of the season at Bernaerts. From March 9 till March 11, Bernaerts held three sessions on which there was strong bidding on paintings, sculptures, design and works on paper.
We give a short survey of some remarkable hammer prices, exc. commission. 

From the early 20th century there was some interesting Antwerp art for sale by artists such as Floris Jespers, Jozef Peeters and Jan Cockx. From the first a 'Flemish landscape' (lot 108), a behind glass painting from 1926 was sold for 7500 euros whereas a typical clown (lot 111) sold for 3200 euros. 
Jozef Peeters was present with two paintings from 1958 (lots 113 and 114), which sold for resp. 16000 and 12000 euros. The latter, Jan Cockx, the least known, was presented with a variety of works, a fine lady's portrait (lot 35), selling for 6200 euros and a still life with coffee can (lot 32), eventually selling for 5000 euros. In the 'Works on Paper' sale, the highly sought after portfolio '9 Houtsneden' (lot 1124), came off the block for no less than 4600 euros. 

A bronze  'Victoire' by Victor Rousseau (lot 43) was estimated 6/ 8000 euros but doubled that by climbing to 13000 euros. 

On the courtyard at Bernaerts stood an imposing sculpture by the Milanese artist Mario Negri (lot 115) with and estimate of also 6/8000 euros, eventually selling for a firm 15500 euros and this while and equally imposing 'Nikè' (lot 126) by Paul Wunderlich sold for 7600 euros. But it was the 'Chaise adulte' by Ivan Tovar from 1971 (lot 272) that took all the spotlights at the Design Sale. With a modest estimate of 2/3000 euros it sold after harsh bidding to a client oversees for a smashing 30000 euros. 

Some other prices: Guy Mees (lot 218), 12500 euros, a Lotez case (lot 42), 8000 euros, Sam Dillemans (lot 145), 7500 euros, an assemblage by André Bogaert (lot 266), 6200 euros, a set of eight LC7 armchairs by Charlotte Perriand (lot 259), 6000 euros, and two impressive 'Artichoke' chandeliers by Louis Poulsen (lots 216 and 217), resp. 4000 and 4200 euros. 

The final day of the sale brought almost 500 items of 'Works on Paper, Books & Editions'. In the first part, most of the attention was drawn to some highly coveted sheets by Belgian artists: a portrait of 'Deeske' (lot 1166), one of Gustave van de Woestyne's most famous characters, sold for a smashing 32000 euros.

An ink drawing by Frits van den Berghe, a preparatory drawing for his famous painting 'De eeuwige vagebond' (lot 1200) took it's new owner to 11000 euros. A very nice and well balanced modernist drawing by Prosper De Troyer (lot 1198), sold for 2600 euros, whereas a drawing by the more classic artist Léon Frédéric (lot 1139) went down for 4400 euros.

Also for the works by René Guiette (lots 1203, 1215 and 1216) collectors showed some genuine interest, they sold for resp. 2400, 2000 and 4000 euros. 
On the side of Art Nouveau prints, eyes were turned to two volumes of 'Les Maîtres de l'Affiche' (lot 1097), selling for 6500 euros. Also the work by Henri Evenepoel, both prints and drawings, made remarkable results with, for example, a sheet full of signatures, little figures and scribbles (lot 1081) raising no less than 1900 euros. 

Another star lot was Francis Bacon's 'Study for a bullfight n°1', a colour lithograph from 1971 (lot 1353), making the lower estimate of 30000 euros. 
The sale drew to a close with a number of works the former MHKA founder Flor Bex received on his retirement in 2002. Some results: Guy Van Bossche's gouache (lot 1445) went to 1300 euros, whereas collectors bidded firmly for two drawings by Marc Vanderleenen (lot 1468), making 1300 euros. The sale was concluded by a work by Raoul De Keyser (lot 1492) and Lawrence Weiner (lot 1493) resp. selling for 1800 and 1400 euros. 

The biggest thrill of the sale however, were three late 19th century compiled photographic albums, two on Southern America and one on Oceania (lots 1086-87-88), of which the first held numerous prints by the infamous and legendary explorer Charles Kröhle. With an all together estimate of 7/9000 euros, the albums made a breathtaking total of 108000 euros.