New Edinburgh headquarters and saleroom for Bonhams

Bonhams will unveil its new headquarters and saleroom in Edinburgh this August, during the city’s Festival Fringe and International Festival, when the world of culture and arts looks to Scotland’s capital.

The new building, a five-storey double-fronted townhouse in Melville Crescent, New Town, will house the specialist departments and valuations team as well as a large new saleroom. A new exhibition space on the ground floor will host its debut show, spotlighting some of Bonhams most remarkable pieces that will be offered from across the globe.

The Best of Bonhams exhibition, which will mark the opening, draws on star lots from Bonhams forthcoming sales. It will celebrate the breadth of sales and specialisms across the international auction house, with works by Pierre-Auguste Renoir, including an oil on canvas painting, Deux femmes en promenade, from 1906 with an estimate of £200,000–£300,000 to the depiction of ‘A Cup Tie at Crystal Palace, Corinthians v Manchester City’ by the acclaimed English artist, Charles Cundall, noted for his topographical subjects and townscapes, estimated at £100,000–£150,000.

Pierre-Auguste Renoir, oil on canvas painting, Deux femmes en promenade, 1906.
Pierre-Auguste Renoir, oil on canvas painting, Deux femmes en promenade, 1906

Glamour, suave and sophistication will also be apparent, with the inclusion of one of Sir Roger Moore’s classic dinner suits with an estimate of £1,000–1,500. Sir Roger Moore played the spy, James Bond, in a total of seven films.  Sir Roger Moore: The Personal Collection will go under the hammer at Bonhams New Bond Street this October.


May Matthews, Managing Director of Bonhams Scotland, said: “This is an exceptionally exciting time for Bonhams Scotland. Our new saleroom at Melville Crescent in the heart of Edinburgh is a step-up in our ambitions to expand the opportunities for Scottish clients to offer their art and collectables to the world.  Combined with our new sales calendar, and a dynamic programme of exhibitions, we will be providing an unbeatable platform for Scotland.”

Highlights from Bonhams Scotland forthcoming sales calendar include:

The Scottish and Celtic Sale on September 14 which will feature what is believed to be one of the largest nuggets of gold found in Scotland. Discovered in a river on the Scottish Boarders, the nugget has an estimate of £5,000–£7,000.  Other fascinating lots include a Highlander’s silver mounted dress set from 1911, comprising a dirk, skean dhu and plaid brooch, belt buckle and sporran, with an estimate of £5,000–£7,000. Exquisite and rare examples of Jacobite glass will also be offered, including a Jacobite airtwist wine glass, engraved with rose and thistle blooms from a single stem circa 1750, and a Jacobite diamond point engraved Baluster goblet, circa 1720, both with an estimate of £3,000–£4,000. Highly collectable, Jacobite wine glasses and goblets were used to honour Bonnie Prince Charlie and his father James Francis Edward Stuart.

A rare, engraved Jacobite airtwist wine glass (crown thistle rose) circa 1750

The Scottish Art Sale on October 11 will have a particular focus on Scottish Art from the West Coast, featuring works by the Scottish Colourists (Samuel John Peploe, Francis Campbell Boileau Cadell, George Leslie Hunter and John Duncan Fergusson) who were active in the early twentieth century. The Scottish Colourists spent time in France and were influenced by the vibrant work of the French Fauvist artists, adopting their use of bold colour and free brushwork. Highlights in this sale include Yachts, an oil on canvas (1927), by John Duncan Fergusson RBA (1874 1961) with an estimate of £80,000–£120,000 and Corrie, Arran, an oil on canvas by John Maclauchlan Milne (1886-1957), often referred to as the ‘missing Colourist’, with an estimate of £20,000-30,000. Works by George Leslie Hunter, Anne Redpath and Joan Eardley will also be featured.

Yachts, oil on canvas (1927), by John Duncan Fergusson RBA

Other lots of particular interest will include the work of artist, May Reid, who embarked on a prolific academic career at The Glasgow School of Art, where she studied from 1914 to 1921.  Night and Day, dated 1920, is an oil on canvas, offered with an estimate of £7,000 – 10,000. Reid married the Scottish poet and writer Andrew Robert Tannahill and together they became members of the cultural elite of Glasgow from the 1920s to the 60s.

Corrie, Arran, oil on canvas by John Maclauchlan Milne
Corrie, Arran, oil on canvas by John Maclauchlan Milne. Estimate of £20,000-£30,000