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Sir Kyffin's Year

Top 20 Kyffins July 21 to July 22

It has been a stand-out 12 months for Sir Kyffin Williams at The Welsh Sale. Twelve months ago we recorded the highest ever auction price for a Kyffin oil painting. A few months later we could also boast the highest auction price for a work on paper by Kyffin and for a print too!

Sir Kyffin Williams RA 'Rhoscolyn'

£62,000

Sir Kyffin Williams RA Oil Sold 62000

Sir Kyffin Williams RA | ‘Rhoscolyn’ (The Welsh Sale, July 2021)

Sir Kyffin Williams RA oil on canvas sold in July 2021 for a record auction price of £62000 (+BP) exceeding the previous record set by us, of £60,000 in 2016.

Only a handful of works by Kyffin have made over £50,000 but the painting ticked many of the boxes for Kyffin collectors. The composition included a farmer, dog, chapel, and village in Ynys Mon (Anglesey). The hammer was knocked down to a private collector in the south of England who was determined to own the painting having been baptized in the chapel!

Sir Kyffin Williams RA 'Lleyn'

£52,000

1 Sir Kyffin Williams RA Oil Lleyn SOLD 52000

Sir Kyffin Williams RA | ‘Lleyn’

(The Welsh Sale, July 2022)

Twelve months later another oil by Kyffin made the voyage over the

£50,000 threshold as the coastal scene 'Lleyn' sold for £52000 (+BP).

The bidding fought between a local saleroom bidder and a bidder in the highlands of Scotland. The price was unexpected and doubled the pre-sale estimate of £25,000-30,000.

Sir Kyffin Williams RA 'Waves at Llangwyfan'

£48,000

Sir Kyffin Williams RA Oil Waves at Llangwyfan SOLD 48000

Sir Kyffin Williams RA | ‘Waves at Llangwyfan’

(The Welsh Sale, November 2021)

The third highest price for a work by Sir Kyffin Williams in the last twelve months was the £48,000 (+BP) realized for 'Waves at Llangwyfan', selling in our Welsh Sale in November 2021. Sir Kyffin’s sunsets are a big hit and when combined with unusually large squally waves, it is something truly special especially when it can also boast to have been exhibited at the 1987 Kyffin exhibition at the National Museum of Wales. Plenty of boxes ticked again!

Sir Kyffin Williams RA 'Storm at Penmon'

£40,000

Sir Kyffin Williams RA Oil Storm at Penmon SOLD 40000

Sir Kyffin Williams RA | ‘Storm at Penmon’

(The Welsh Sale, November 2021)

In the same auction and entered by the same London based vendor as ‘Waves, was the epically expansive 'Storm at Penmon' which saw the third highest price for Sir Kyffin’s paintings in the last twelve months at £40,000 (+BP). There is perhaps an interesting pattern emerging with three of the top four prices being for coastal scenes, rather than his perhaps more familiar mountain scenes.

Sir Kyffin Williams RA 'Gwastadnant'

£40,000

Sir Kyffin Williams RA Oil Gwastadnant SOLD 37000

Sir Kyffin Williams RA | ‘Gwastadnant’

(The Welsh Sale, November 2021)

Also, in the November 21 Welsh Sale was 'Gwastadnant' which sold for a hammer price of £37000 (+BP). Gwastadnant, located a few miles from the climber’s hub of Llanberis, was a location that Sir Kyffin returned to on many occasions. This example was a generous size at 121 x 90cms. The composition contained the dramatic contrast between nightfall and snow and it came with interesting provenance having been gifted to the artist to Witold Kay Korzeniewicz, a Polish architect who flew with the RAF in WWII and then taught with Sir Kyffin at Highgate School

Sir Kyffin Williams RA 'The Wave, Penmon'

£32,000

2 Sir Kyffin Williams RA Oil SOLD 32000

Sir Kyffin Williams RA | 'The Wave, Penmon’

(The Welsh Sale, July 2022)

In July 2022, another squally seascape was offered at The Welsh Sale.

‘The Wave, Penmon’ realized the sixth highest price of the last twelve months at a price of £32,000 (+BP). As with ‘Gwastadnant’ the painting was characterized by contrasting blacks, whites, and greys. Viewers commented that they could feel the power of the waves and could almost smell the sea air. The successful bidder, sat in the saleroom to bid, remaining calm as the bidding crept upwards through the ‘20s’ with strong bidding from the internet and the on the phone.

Sir Kyffin Williams RA 'Bryn Cader Faner'

£29,000

Sir Kyffin Williams RA Oil SOLD 29000

Sir Kyffin Williams RA | ‘Bryn Cader Faner’

(The Welsh Sale, July 2021)

And now for something completely different, as they say! This unusual composition is of Bryn Cader Faner near Harlech, a bronze age prince's burial cairn, of over four thousand years old. The drama of the painting excited many collectors and saw the most bids placed on a Kyffin in the last twelve months.

A private collector won the day at £29,000 (+BP)

Sir Kyffin Williams RA 'Cemaes Bay'

£28,000

Sir Kyffin Williams RA Oil Cemaes Bay SOLD 28000

Sir Kyffin Williams RA | ‘Cemaes Bay’

(The Welsh Sale, July 2021)

It is true that most of the works on this list were from Kyffin’s most commercial period, between 1970 onwards. But Sir Kyffin Williams 'Cemaes Bay' was painted in his earlier days – a period that can be overlooked on occasions,

so it was most pleasing to see it realise a strong price of £28000 (+BP)

Sir Kyffin Williams RA 'Penmynydd'

£26,000

3 Sir Kyffin Williams RA Oil 26000

Sir Kyffin Williams RA | ‘Penmynydd’

(The Welsh Sale, July 2022)

It is not uncommon to find that Sir Kyffin Williams has painted something else on the back of the canvas. This was the case with this picture. On the front was a lovely rich landscape with buildings at Penmynydd, Ynys Mon. On the back was another entirely different composition of Llanddwyn Island, a favourite beach destination of many. The back of the painting was as interesting as the front was lovely. This one, or should we say two, realised £26000 (+BP)

Sir Kyffin Williams RA 'Cottages, Snowdonia'

£20,000

01 Sir Kyffin Williams RA Oil SOLD 20000

Sir Kyffin Williams RA | ‘Cottages, Snowdonia’

(The Welsh Sale, March 2022)

Two oil paintings by Sir Kyffin Williams hit home at £20,000 (+BP) in the last 12 months. The first was simply named ‘Cottages, Snowdonia’ and was from the 1950s. It sold in our March ’22 Welsh Sale and came with excellent provenance having been entered by the artist’s Godson.

Sir Kyffin Williams RA 'Clouds off South Stack II'

£20,000

4 Sir Kyffin Williams RA Oil SOLD 20000

Sir Kyffin Williams RA 'Penrhyn Du Farm'

£19,200

02 Sir Kyffin Williams RA Oil SOLD 19200

Sir Kyffin Williams RA 'Village Landscape'

£19,000

5 Sir Kyffin Williams RA Oil SOLD 19000

Sir Kyffin Williams RA | ‘Village Landscape’

(The Welsh Sale, July 2022)

In July this year, a village scene, as Kyffin as they come, sold for £19,000 (+BP). The greens and slate greys were unmistakably Kyffin . This one sold online to one of our local clients benefitting from our free transport service between offices for purchased lots.

Sir Kyffin Williams RA 'Mrs Money'

£19,000

Sir Kyffin Williams RA Oil Portrait of Mrs Money SOLD 19000

Sir Kyffin Williams RA | ‘Mrs Money’

(The Welsh Sale, November 2021)

Also for £19,000 (+BP) was this very interesting 'Portrait of Mrs Money'

The painting, from the 1950s was of Mrs Money who lived at a residential

home for the elderly in St John's Wood, London, opposite the artist's

home during this period.

Sir Kyffin Williams RA ‘Cottages Cesarea’

£18,000

Sir Kyffin Williams RA Oil Cottages at Cesarea SOLD 18000

Sir Kyffin Williams RA | ‘Cottages Cesarea’

(The Welsh Sale, November 2021)

Another location which Sir Kyffin Williams returned to on many occasions was the hamlet of Cesarea. 'Cottages at Cesarea' with its timeless drystone walls and distant farmhouse sold for £18000 (+BP).

Sir Kyffin Williams RA 'Farm'

£18,000

03 Sir Kyffin Williams RA Oil SOLD 18000

Sir Kyffin Williams RA | ‘Farm’

(The Welsh Sale, March 2022)

At the same hammer price of £18000 (+BP) and selling in The Welsh Sale on March 12th 2022, was this charming farm scene featuring a figure viewing the land over the enclosing wall. Dating from the 1960s, it also came with a painting on the back of the canvas by the artist.

Sir Kyffin Williams RA 'Horses in the Snow'

£18,000

5 Sir Kyffin Williams RA Pencil Watercolour SOLD 18000

Sir Kyffin Williams RA | ‘Horses in the Snow’

(The Welsh Sale, November 2021)

The biggest surprise of the year was ‘Horses in Snow’ which also realized £18,000 (+BP) in November 2021. The surprise was not that we didn’t think

it was a special painting, it clearly was, but this was heady price for a watercolour not an oil. It is by far the highest auction price for a work on paper by Sir Kyffin Williams. It sold on the phone to a Wales based collector after a good old fashioned and fierce two way phone bidding battle.

Sir Kyffin Williams RA 'Crib Goch'

£18,000

7 Sir Kyffin Williams RA Oil Crib Goch Eryri SOLD 18000

Sir Kyffin Williams RA | ‘Crib Goch, Eryri’

(The Welsh Sale, July 2022)

Also at a hammer price of £18,000 (+BP) was 'Crib Goch, Eryri’. A typical moody example from Kyffin’s pallet with stormy clouds hitting the mountain ridge famous with climbers. It is all about the power of the weather colliding with the powerful mountains in these compositions. Sir Kyffin was

the master in this respect. A London collector won the day on this one.

Sir Kyffin Williams 'Gwastadnant'

£18,000

6 Sir Kyffin Williams RA Oil Gwastadnant Nant Peris SOLD 18000

Sir Kyffin Williams RA | ‘Gwastadnant’

(The Welsh Sale, July 2022)

In the same auction in July 2022 another version of 'Gwastadnant, Nant Peris' also selling for £18000 (+BP). The lot saw an entertaining bidding battle between phone, room and live on the net. The online bidder based in the west of England, went home with the prize.

Sir Kyffin Williams 'Willie'

£15,000

Sir Kyffin Williams RA Oil Willie SOLD 15000

Sir Kyffin Williams RA | ‘Willie’

(The Welsh Sale, July 2021)

Taking the final spot in this Top 20 of Kyffin prices in the last twelve months is a portrait. Sir Kyffin was a hugely competent portrait artist who endeavored to capture the character of the person just as he would capture the character of the land and sea. The sitter in this portrait was a young lad called ‘Willie’ who, like the artist, suffered from epilepsy. As a mark of respect to Sir Kyffin and Willie we donated a proportion of the commission from the sale of this picture to Epilepsy Research UK. It realized £15,000 (+BP).

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