- Associated Press - Tuesday, February 14, 2017

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) - Fans of famous Kansas artist Birger Sandzen, whose paintings, prints and watercolors hang in buildings across the state and world, will have a chance to bid on 10 of his paintings later this month.

Sandzen who lived and taught in Lindsborg from 1894 until he died in 1954, created more than 3,000 paintings, 328 prints and countless watercolors and drawings inspired by the French Impressionists of the late 19th century, The Wichita Eagle (https://bit.ly/2jUnPfG ) reported.

The 10 pieces are scheduled to be auctioned Saturday at the Woody Auction Gallery in Wichita. They include four oil paintings with a starting bid of $7,500 each, three lithographs with a starting bid at $250, one drypoint, one watercolor and one student oil. One of his paintings sold for $670,000 in May.

The pieces were owned by Emerson and Freda Moore of Wichita. Emerson Moore died last month and his daughter, Terry Moore, said she wanted to sell them to someone who would truly appreciate them.

“All of the starting bids are extremely low,” said Cori North, curator at the Birger Sandzen Memorial Gallery in Lindsborg. “We are a museum so we don’t follow all the auctions of his works although we do try to keep track. His work has become very popular with collectors in the past 10 years.”

Sandzen and other like-minded artists worked to ensure their art was displayed in several Kansas schools so students could appreciate art, North said.

Sandzen was an amazing model for getting art into the world and of having kids grow up on art,” North said. “I think he would appreciate the current auction trends. He was always selling things and was amazingly prolific.”

Other items in the auction include an unmarked Loetz Steifen und Flecken ruffled bowl, a signed La Verne Francais French cameo vase, a marked Zsolnay art pottery jardinière and a Rockwood pottery pitcher dated 1889.

Woody said interest in the artwork has been high, especially from out-of-state bidders.

“We have had some contacts from out-of-state bidders, and that is always encouraging, but it is the in-state people who are really needing to be informed. It would be nice to keep some of these pieces within the state of Kansas.”

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Information from: The Wichita (Kan.) Eagle, https://www.kansas.com


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