World history is a subject of endless fascination to collectors of antiquities and ethnographic art. Volumes have been written about how and why ancient cultures lived as they did, but no words can present the story of an early civilization quite as vividly as the art and relics they left behind. At the pinnacle of auction houses known for their expertise in antiquities is Artemis Gallery, owned and operated by internationally respected authorities Bob and Teresa Dodge. On many occasions in the past, the Dodges have been enlisted by eminent members of the antiques trade to authenticate important pieces.

Artemis Gallery’s sales are followed by every level of collector, from curious beginners to prestigious institutions with major collections. The next Artemis event, which will take place on Thursday, May 10, is a fully curated auction with fine-quality pieces available at all price points. As is the case with every Artemis Gallery auction, all items convey with a certificate of authenticity (COA) serving as an unconditional guarantee that they have been legally acquired, are legal to sell, and are exactly as described in the catalog.

circa 300 BCE to 300 CE. Ex Bruce Rogers collection, San Francisco. Estimate $6,500-$9,750.

The categories featured in the sale range from Ancient Egyptian, Greek and Roman to Near Eastern, Asian, Pre-Columbian, tribal/Oceanic and many more. With rare exception, the beautifully detailed catalog descriptions include notes about former provenance, often indicating prior sale at Christie’s or Sotheby’s, or ownership by a museum or pioneering collector.

The May 10 offering opens with Pre-Columbian art from various cultures of the Americas. A deep mint-green jade maskette, circa 1000-400 BCE, was hand-carved by an obviously talented member of the Olmec, one of the oldest major civilizations in Mexico. Presented on a custom stand, this striking figural piece is expected to make $6,000-$9,000 at auction.

Important Olmec Jade Maskette
Est. $6,000 – $9,000

The mysteries of Ancient Egypt come into focus with a connoisseur’s selection of art and objects from the region known as the “cradle of civilization.” A mesmerizing mummy mask of painted gesso over wood, circa 305-30 BCE, features the oversize face of the deceased wearing a mummiform wig and a large, multi-stranded pectoral known as a “weswkh” collar. Such masks were highly important to the Egyptians, Teresa Dodge explained. “Masking the dead was a millennia-old tradition in Egypt. By providing the departed with a mask, family members gave them the power to become an idealized form, like a god who had triumphed over death.” From the Ptolemaic period, the mask being auctioned is estimated at $15,000-$20,000.

circa 305-30 BCE, painted gesso over wood, 33.5in on included custom stand. Estimate $15,000-$20,000.

Absentee and Internet live bidding for Artemis Gallery’s Thursday, May 10 auction will be available through LiveAuctioneers.com. An Artemis Gallery COA will accompany each auction lot. For additional information, call Teresa Dodge at 720-890-7700 or email teresa@artemisgallery.com.

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