Schenectady Civic Players’ weekend attic treasures appraisal draws ‘dribs and drabs’


SCHENECTADY – In an celebration qualified at attic treasures, the Schenectady Civic Players’ very first appraisers road show given that the pandemic began drew in city resident Bobby Alesio, who introduced in significantly less than a dozen paintings of late portrait artist Arthur Devey.

One particular of the paintings was of a smiling Mickey Mantle in Yankee pinstripes, whilst the other was of a pensive seeking mysterious Black woman, hand to her chin, as she wore a head wrap.

“The artist is quite fantastic, and unknown, and this guy’s from Schenectady,” Alesio said of the Devey, who died in 2009 at age 90.

Alesio said Devey’s widow gave him dozens of paintings out of worry that they would be thrown out upon her loss of life. Alesio claimed he gave some to family, but he however possesses about 50 of Devey’s paintings.

“I’ve had them for a number of years at my dwelling,” Alesio stated. “They have been just accumulating dust. I want to either promote them, or deliver them some position exactly where they can be noticed.”

Robert Meringolo, founder of the appraisers highway present and a previous Sotheby’s affiliate, held just one of the Devey paintings and said, “The guy could paint the lights out with this. But what he did not do was mark his paintings.”

As these, Meringolo gave Alesio some absolutely free suggestions.

Meringolo told him the only report of Devey’s get the job done was a displaying he the moment experienced in Amsterdam.

In 1999, Devey held a just one-male retrospective of 50 yrs of painting at the Walter Elwood Museum in Amsterdam, in accordance to his obituary.

Simply because there are no auction data attached to Devey, a seller wouldn’t most likely pay back a ton of dollars for particular person parts, or the entire assortment, Meringolo advised Alesio.

“The way persons buy art is, ‘What has this male brought at auction, and was he well known?’ ” Meringolo claimed.

The appraiser told Alesio it could be worthwhile to hire another person to publicize a demonstrating of Devey’s works, which include his biography, and set costs of every piece in accordance with their excellent.

“This 1 of the Black girl is lovely,” Meringolo said. “Would I place $650 on it? Indeed. But if you set it in an auction, it could convey $75,” simply because of the lack of auction records.

It was the 3rd appraiser’s street exhibit. There haven’t been any since the pandemic began in March 2020, Marcia Thomas, a Schenectady Civic Players volunteer, claimed.

“Two many years ago and a few many years back when we did this, the position was packed,” Thomas claimed. “Everybody in Schenectady introduced every little thing down. They had been huge, big shows.”

The very first day of the weekend occasion drew in “dribs and drabs,” she reported.

The value to display-goers was $5 per item.

Meantime, Schenectady Civic Gamers is making ready for its 1st exhibit of the pandemic on the most important stage of the 250-seat neighborhood theater in November. The exhibit is identified as, “This Random World” by Steven Dietz, and operates Nov. 12-14 and 17-21.

The price for attending a quartet of reveals happening via May perhaps of future year is $65, which Thomas identified as “the lowest priced factor in town.”

With an estimated 20,000 to 50,000 costumes that day to the 1920s, the all-volunteer firm of 75 to 90 customers is just one of the 5 oldest continuously-working theaters in the United States, courting to 1926.

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Types: Information, Schenectady County

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