It Sold for What?! – Home & Travel
Hello! Welcome to the Magnusson Trivia Game, It Sold for WHAT?! – Home & Travel Edition
In this game of deduction, you are given 2 images of fine or decorative arts. Guess which item sold for what between the two options.
Ready? Set? Go!
QUESTION 1: WEATHERVANES
One of these weathervanes sold for $11,000. The other sold for $3,000. Which sold for $11,000?
A! Both weathervanes were made in the early 20th century out of copper. However, A is a rarer, gilded owl that shows greater dimension & detail. In 2014, the auction selling A gave it an estimate of only $2-3000. Bidding was competitive and it eventually sold for $11,000. In 2016, (with this sale information publicly available) another auction placed an estimate of $5-8000 on B. Few bidders were enticed to participate, and it sold for only $3000. Sometimes, a lower estimate will entice more bids. In the heat of a live auction, exciting things can happen!
QUESTION 2: PEARL NECKLACES
One of these pearl necklaces sold for $45,000. The other sold for $150. Which sold for $45,000?
A! Every woman has a pearl necklace, right? Maybe. Plastic beads, faux, natural or cultured, all look amazingly similar to the untrained eye. Which do you own? The tooth scratch test is still a legitimate test to discover what is real vs. fake.
A has 240 saltwater pearls & only ONE of them is cultured. Cultured pearls are farmed in order to make jewelry. The other pearls are all “natural” pearls, meaning they grew without human intervention. It is rare for a single necklace to have so many large natural pearls. In addition, the clasp is platinum, ruby and diamonds. A sold at auction before Christmas last year (perhaps a gift?) for $45,000. B is an example of cultured pearls, which are made by planting a nucleus (irritant) within a mollusk and harvesting them a few years later. Such necklaces can be found for more affordable sums. This strand of graduated cultured pearls sold for only $150.
QUESTION 3: ELEPHANT OBJETS D’ART
One of these elephant figurines sold for €12,500. The other sold for €100. Which sold for €12,500?
B! An object created by a well-respected artist will almost always sell for more than an object created by an anonymous craftsman employed at a studio. B was designed by Italian artist & director of Murano’s Museum of Glass, Napoleone Martinuzzi. The Venini & Company originally made this work in 1930. A few years ago, it sold at a European auction for €12,500. A is a finely painted porcelain figurine made by Hoeffner & Company, Dresden. Such objets d’art have fallen out of favor recently. It only sold for €100.
FINAL ROUND- QUESTION 4: FIREPLACE TOOL SETS
One of these fireplace sets sold for $2,700. The other sold for $41. Which sold for $2,700?
B! Many homes have indoor fireplaces and their requisite tool set. A is a vintage 1980s brass horse-head fireplace set. Goodwill sold the set on eBay for a cool $41. In contrast, B is an elegant, contemporary brushed chrome on iron & steel set from the 1970s. It was created by the designer Michael Taylor. B Sold in NJ for $2,700! Why? Architectural Digest named Taylor, who was known for his “California Look,” one of the “20 Greatest Designers of All Time.” Again, we see an example of designer attribution adding value.
How did you do? Did any of the answers surprise you?
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Co-Authors: Lynn Magnusson, ASA, AAA and Becky Lipnick, Communications Coordinator