Cottone to offer the Peter Tillou and Sy & Lorraine Merrall collections

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Cottone to offer the Peter Tillou and Sy & Lorraine Merrall collections
Dragonfly lamp with 17-inch shade. Estimate: $50,000-$80,000.

GENESEO, NY.- Cottone’s Fall Fine Art & Antiques auction on Saturday, September 28th in Geneseo will feature selections from the Peter Tillou collection out of Litchfield, Conn. Over the course of his 50-year career as a sought-after expert in a wide array of collecting categories, Mr. Tillou helped build some of the finest private collections of art and antiques in the United States.

The auction will also feature the impressive lifelong collection of Lorraine and the late Sy Merrall of Brighton, NY. Mr. Merrall, a former vice president at Bausch & Lomb, and his wife developed a passion for collecting Mid-Century Modern furniture and design objects, including Hans Wegner, Finn Juhl, Mogens Koch and Isamu Noguchi, to name a few.

The sale will be held online and in Cottone’s gallery at 120 Court Street in Geneseo, southwest of Rochester. The auction will begin at 12 noon Eastern. For those unable to attend the auction in person, online bidding will be facilitated by the Cottone website,, as well as, and Phone and absentee bids will be accepted.

More than 300 lots of fine art, Tiffany lamps, estate jewelry, automobiles, 20th century art and design, decorative arts, furniture, and Asian objects will come under the gavel. The complete catalog with photos and descriptions can be seen now online, at For phone and absentee bidding, call the Cottone gallery at (585) 243-1000.

Standout lots from the Peter Tillou collection include a ‘Maximillian’ suit of armour, important Japanese Meji mixed metal vases, rare watercolors by Amedeo Preziosi (Maltese, 1816-1882), a fine collection of Oriental rugs, European furniture and Tang pottery figures, among other items.

Notable items from the Lorraine and Sy Merrall Collection include the iconic Danish designed “Papa Bear” and “Chieftain” chairs by Hans Wegner and Finn Juhl (both est. $3,000-$5,000).

The auction is filled with tantalizing offerings, such as the life-size Roman marble head of Dionysos, after an early 4th century BC late Classical Greek archetype, dating to the Roman Imperial, Hadrianic period (est. $50,000-$80,000). Dionysos is depicted with an ivy wreath, an absent downward gaze and three-quarter turn. The marble was acquired by Clinton Gilbert (New York City, 1866-1924) from the Kalebdjian Frères in Paris, on May 1, 1923.

Mr. Gilbert was well-informed on Wall Street financial matters and was an expert on values. He was a prominent dealer in bank and trust company stocks and worked for Standard Oil, with offices at 2 Wall Street, and he maintained a residence on 5th avenue. The head descended in the family of the original owners to Mrs. Donna Gould.

The estate jewelry category will be led by a gorgeous Marcus & Company three-carat Asscher diamond and platinum ring estimated at $20,000-$30,000, along with several other pieces, many of which are Tiffany & Company and descended in the family of Donna Gould.

The many outstanding Tiffany Studios (N.Y.) lamps from various collections will include a “Dragonfly” lamp with 17-inch shade (est. $50,000-$80,000); a “Geranium” lamp with 17-inch shade (est. $60,000-$80,000); an “Arrowroot” lamp with 14-inch shade (est. $30,000-$50,000); a “Poppy” lamp with 20-inch shade (est. $45,000-$65,000); and others.

Automobiles from the estate of Lisle Hopkins in Bath, New York include a 1931 Packard Model 840 and a 1931 Cadillac 335 Fleetwood, both with estimates of $80,000-$120,000. From the Peter Tillou collection is a 1927 Hudson Super Six Sports Tourer, constructed in the early 1990’s in Australia by builder and master craftsman Wolfgang Rebien. Every aspect of the car is inspired by the factory racing Hudsons of its day and the finest coachbuilding traditions of the 1930s. The car is expected to speed off for $120,000-$160,000.

Modern paintings and sculptures include a screenprint by Andy Warhol (American, 1928-1987), titled Vegetarian Vegetable, from Campbell's Soup II (est. $15,000-$25,000); a modern sculpture by Dame Elisabeth Frink, R.A. (British, 1930-1993), titled Birdman IV (est. $15,000-$25,000); and an oil painting by Patrick Hennessey (British, 1915-1980), titled The Killarney Boy (est. $4,000-$6,000).

The auction will also feature fine paintings by John George Brown (British, 1831-1913) and Elizabeth O'Neill Verner (American, 1883-1979), as well as an array of furniture, decorative art objects and important Americana, including a fine and rare Shaker carrier with original yellow paint (est. $7,000-$10,000). Also offered will be an important stoneware churn by C.W. Braun (Buffalo, N.Y.); and a five-gallon star face by T. Harrington (Lyons, N.Y.), with estimates of $7,000-$10,000 and $5,000-$8,000, respectively.

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