Lot 241, a work by Gwen Knight did very well. The Goldfish Pond was a gouache on paper work, measuring 42 x 55 cm. It was estimated at $1,500.
Knight was born in 1888 in Wellington and in 1929 at age 41 went to Europe to study art. A chance encounter with Frances Hodgkins in St Tropez lead to a long and happy friendship and introduced her to many of the movers and shakers of the European art scene. Knight is the model in the work "Pinewoods", by Hodgkins in Te Papa's collection.
Hans Hoffman taught her painting in Munich. André Lhote showed her the Cubist craft in Paris. In London she spent time studying under Bissiére .
Such a world class arts education profoundly affected her painting.
Thrown into war, Europe would no longer be the exciting, thriving place to be for a 60 year old woman artist. Knight returned to New Zealand in 1948, where, together with Helen Stewart, she became an important element of the Wellington art scene throughout the 50s and 60s.
Gwen Knight died in 1974.
On the secondary market her prices have been varied. Works have been slow to the market with only one painting a year coming onto the market over the last 5 years.
However, perhaps bouyed by her adjacency to Francis Hodgkins (who is "having her time in the sun"), this work raced above the top estimate of $2,500 to $4,900 (+BP). I suspect this was an institutional buy and it hopefully represents a heightened interest in our much under-represented woman painters.
Excellent bio on Ferner Galleries website.