Masters and maps

MASTERS and maps are all the rage this season for Leon Gallery’s Magnificent September Auction, happening live at 2 p.m. on Sept. 19 at the gallery’s salesrooms in Legazpi Village.

The word “Magnificent” isn’t an exaggeration in this case. Dominating the lots is Jose Joya’s “Angeles,” with an initial bid of the princely sum of P10 million (plus a buyer’s premium of 15%). The catalog says, “Angeles is a stunning work that captures the master in the pinnacle of his artistic practice.” The piece (Lot 156) comes with certification from Alexander Richard Joya Baldovino, a member of the artist’s family.

As for the maps, a prized possession-to-be would be the Ramusio-Gastaldi Map of 1563 (initial bid of P2 million), an antique map that calls this group of islands “Filipina” for the first time in a European document (Lot 96). Another document, the “Historia de la Provincia de Philipinas,” an early history of the colony up to 1716, is also up for grabs for the same price (Lot 98). Another historically important item will also be up on the block: a gold neck ornament from the 10th-13th century, a pre-Hispanic artifact, has an initial bid of P3 million (Lot 110). Meanwhile, Juan Luna’s “View of Mariquina” circa 1895 (Lot 116), is also in the catalog, and has an initial price of P2.4 million. Antiques are also up for sale: a chair from the collection of artist Felix Resureccion Hidalgo (Lot 113) has an initial price of P120,000; and a grand matrimonial Ah Tay bed (Lot 115) has a tag of P1.4 million.

Several other items pass the million mark (or even the five million mark). Lee Aguinaldo’s “Linear 98 and 99” (signed and dated 1969), depicting what appear to be windows, have an initial price of P4.2 million each (Lots 41 and 42). Ang Kiukok’s “Mother and Child,” signed and dated 1968 and accompanied by a certificate, is tagged at P6 million (Lot 46). Fernando Zobel’s elegant interpretation of “Seville” (Lot 74), meanwhile, is up for auction with an initial price of P5 million, and an Amorsolo half-nude, “The Offering,” signed, dated, and with a certificate, is also on the block at the initial price of P5.5 million (Lot 126). Other prominent items that pass the million mark and more are works by Mark Justiniani, Jose John Santos, Jigger Cruz, H.R Ocampo, Malang Santos, and Anita Magsaysay-Ho. More works by National Artists Jose Joya, Amorsolo, Vicente Manansala, Benedicto “BenCab” Cabrera, and Arturo Luz round out the catalog.

The catalog can be viewed in full at Absentee bids are accepted for auction day on the 19th; the works can be viewed by appointment from Sept. 12 to 18, Saturday to Friday at Leon Gallery, G/F Eurovilla I, Legazpi corner Rufino Streets, Legazpi Village, Makati. Log on to for more information. — JLG

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