A Year of Auction Highs


As the 2022 auction calendar draws to a close it’s time to reflect on a successful year that saw no less than 162 auctions, over 32,900 lots and numerous auction records broken at McTear’s.

We are proud to be Scotland's favourite auction house, as found in a Nov/Dec 2022 ScotPulse survey. Our staff's dedication to first-class client care goes hand in hand with our continued drive to bring the very best auction lots under the hammer. Bidders were welcomed to our bespoke auction galleries in Glasgow, with national and international clients also joining us online from around the world. We continue to offer vendors access to a truly global audience with our ever-expanding databases and partner platforms, extensive auction promotion and presence on social media.                                                    


McTear’s has continued to strengthen its position as the premiere destination for collectors of Scottish Contemporary Art, with impressive works by the country’s leading artists drawing interest from buyers across the globe.   

A striking early oil by John Bellany lit up the saleroom in September, with a buyer from London paying a near record £100k for the work. The Finnon Smoker – one of the fabled ‘railings paintings’ from the mid 1960s – is considered one of the most important oils by the late Port Seaton artist.


The Finnon Smoker, a large oil on board by John Bellany


In the field of Scottish pictures, our much-anticipated biannual auction brought many highlights, including in April a stunning oil by the ‘Fifth Scottish Colourist’ John Maclauchlan Milne (1885-1957). The painting was the subject of intense bidding, eventually selling to a buyer in Kent for almost £26,000.


Garden, Paris, an oil by John Maclauchlan Milne 


McTear’s is proud to be the country’s longest-established auctioneer of whisky, offering clients an online audience as well as a traditional in house audience of buyers and collectors. The country’s most prestigious distilleries featured heavily in McTear’s monthly whisky sales, with impressive examples of Macallan, Springbank, Bowmore and many others underlining the investment potential of these rare drams.

In September, a full set of bottles from the Springbank Millennium Collection sold for £31,000, while several bottles of the exquisite Black Bowmore continued to defy estimates, with the much sought after single malt regularly selling for more than £10,000. 


Springbank - The Complete Millennium Collection



Since January, McTear’s acclaimed jewellery department has consigned over 1000 vintage and contemporary diamond lots. Stunning rings, bracelets, earrings and necklaces have dazzled buyers, with a hugely impressive Victorian turquoise, ruby and diamond serpent necklet selling for £13,500 – more than double its upper estimate.



A Very Impressive Victorian Turquoise, Ruby And Diamond Serpent Necklet



The world’s most prestigious watch brands - including no less than 58 Rolex timepieces - have featured regularly at McTear’s during 2022.  Pristine examples of the iconic Rolex Submariner, Daytona and GMT Master frequently outstripped estimates, illustrating the continued demand for these luxurious timepieces.

Over the past five or so years McTear’s has built an enviable reputation as the ‘go to’ auctioneer for rare sporting memorabilia.  The dedicated auctions are the only examples of their kind in Scotland, with rare medals, high-profile match worn jerseys and other sought after pieces of sporting heritage selling for impressive prices to UK and international buyers.

Amongst the top items in 2022 was Alfie Conn’s jersey from Rangers 1972 European Cup Winners Cup triumph.  The lot, which was the first shirt from that game to come to auction, was snapped up by a buyer from the United States for £19,000.



The Most Important Rangers Fc Shirt To Come To Auction - Alfie Conn's European Cup Winners Cup Shirt



McTear’s continues to lead the field in sales of Asian art in Scotland, with four auctions in 2022. In June, a small but fine collection of Chinese jades raised around £6,000, while exquisite Eastern carpets frequently reached prices well above estimate. In November, a Chinese bronze censer outstripped its pre-auction estimate to achieve £11,000 – testament to our dedication to specialist sales; placing relevant lots in front of exactly the right audience of buyers.


Two Chinese Carved Mutton Jade Roundels


A Large Chinese Polished Bronze Censer



A growing interest in 19th and 20th century design, and in particular the Glasgow Style, has resulted in increasing numbers of paintings, furniture and artworks in glass, ceramic and metal performing very well in our auction dedicated to these arts. In November, a stunning Bruce Hamilton replica of C.R. Mackintosh’s The House for an Art Lover dining suite sold for £4,900 - almost double its upper estimate - in the ‘Auction for an Art Lover: 19th & 20th Century Design’. 



 A 'House For An Art Lover' Dining Suite After C. R. Mackintosh By Bruce Hamilton Of Glasgow



It is fair to say that 2022 also saw some of the oldest artifacts ever to come to auction at McTear’s. Amongst the collection of fossils and other natural history specimens in August’s Cabinet of Curiosities auction was a remarkable 145 million year old perfectly preserved sea lily, which sold for £7,400. This auction was hugely successful and we are looking forward to the next instalment in February 2023. 


A Rare Fossilised Quadruple Sea Lily Crinoid



Advice on selling art and antiques is free and without obligation. Entries are invited for all our 2023 specialist auctions. To discuss consigning to a McTear's auction, make an appointment to visit our Glasgow Galleries or contact a specialist by clicking this link and completing the short form. 

From all at McTear’s, we wish our clients and friends and happy festive period and, until our first auction of 2023, the hammer’s up. 





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