PLAINFIELD, N.H. — The salesroom was packed but the top lot of William Smith’s two-day Memorial Day weekend auction sold to a phone bidder. A large, colorful still life by R.S. Dunning (American, 1856–1921) sold for $109,250.
Dunning, whose work was displayed at the National Academy of Design in the 1850s, founded a school for still life artists in Fall River, Mass. This painting had a strong connection to Fall River, having descended in the family of one of the attorneys who defended Lizzie Borden on the charge of killing both her parents here in 1892.
Smith did well with some country furniture, a Mission bookcase, silver, a 92-inch narwhal tusk, estate jewelry and other paintings, including a Shapleigh and a gouache by Frederick Remington.
A full report on the auction will follow in an upcoming edition.