T H E L AT E S T FA I R S
GOING CRAZY FOR RETRO GAMING
100 YEARS OF ART DECO
COLLECTING POSTER BOY TOULOUSELAUTREC Discover his work on a budget
Valentine’s Day special
LOVE & MARRIAGE From lovespoons to chests, the antiques that celebrate romance
HOW THE KIMONO SHAPED THE WORLD
VOL 54 N0. 8 FEBRUARY 2020
Why there’s brass in pocket watches
A GUIDE TO COLLECTING SÈVRES PORCELAIN
Our expert predicts the next horological boom
ALSO INSIDE Memorabilia in 2030 • The year’s oddest lots • Exclusive book offers
ENGLISH & EUROPEAN CERAMICS & GLASS Tuesday 21st April 2020 Closing date for entries 4th March
A large and extremely rare Bow model of a lioness, c. 1750, 23cm long. Estimate Â£15,000 - 20,000*
ENQUIRIES Clare Durham +44 (0)1722 424507 | email@example.com
www. woo l l ey a nd w a l l i s .co .uk *Visit woolleyandwallis.co.uk/buying for additional charges on final hammer price
IN THIS ISSUE
Save for the occasional inspired Grand National win (Red Rum in both 1973 and ’74), I have never amounted to much in the predictions department. But it would take a social evolutionary Luddite not to recognise the current changes afoot in the world of sustainability. We no longer shop as we used to. And more importantly, neither do the millennials, Gen Z’ers, Net Gen, or whatever name one’s offspring currently goes by these days. They might queue round the block for the latest trainer but, when it comes to the environment, the mindset has definitely shifted. Fashion’s carbon footprint is well documented. Last year Zara announced all of its clothes will be made by sustainable fabrics by 2025 and, according to a recent survey, 52 per cent of us have changed our shopping habits for environmental benefits. But what has that got to do with the humble world of antiques? Well, a lot. New furniture has approximately 16 times the carbon footprint of antiques. So, if we can’t win the youngsters over with antiques’ elegance, style and charm, the chances are we can green shame them into it. Trust me, it’s the future. Talking of the future, in this line of work we are often asked for ‘the next big thing’. As we all know, only a fool would put their neck on the line. So here’s two for you: ‘90s Pokemon cards and antique pocket watches. On page 42, Paul Fraser reveals why, by 2030, collectors will be going nuts for Pokemon and, on page 16, Mark Littler coolly predicts a boom in the popularity of pocket watches. If the thought of an elegantly-worn watch chain doesn’t immediately reel you back to the roaring twenties, then the article on page 26 on the evergreen style of art deco definitely will. Elsewhere, on page 22, we put the posters of Toulouse-Lautrec (and his more affordable friends) in the spotlight; we have a guide to collecting Sèvres porcelain on page 44; and we preview some of the most unusual lots you will see this year on page 54. Enjoy the issue and do forward any tips for this year’s Grand National.
The art deco specialist considers the era’s lasting appeal, page 26
Explains why everyone should collect kimono, page 32
Discovers the collection of a legendary dealer, page 44
Georgina Wroe, Editor
Curates the wackiest sale of 2020, page 54
The Team KEEP IN TOUCH
Write to us at Antique Collecting, Sandy Lane, Old Martlesham, Woodbridge, Suffolk, IP12 4SD, or email magazine@accartbooks. com. Visit the website at www.antique-collecting.co.uk and follow us on Twitter and Instagram @AntiqueMag
This decoy of a feeding yellowleg, c. 1930, by A. Elmer Crowell (1862-1952) which has an estimate of $40.000-$60,000 at Copley Fine Art Auctions sale in South Carolina on February 15
Editor: Georgina Wroe, georgina. firstname.lastname@example.org Online Editor: Richard Ginger, email@example.com Design: Philp Design, firstname.lastname@example.org Advertising: Jo Lord 01394 389950, email@example.com Subscriptions: Sue Slee 01394 389957, firstname.lastname@example.org Antique Collecting subscription £32 for 10 issues annually, no refund is available. ISSN: 0003-584X
ANTIQUE COLLECTING 3
P. gif £6 De ou
Out of the Ordinary Including the Harry Diamond ‘Le Dark Fantastique’ Collection
Tuesday 11 February, 10am
email@example.com | 01279 817778 Folk Art | Fine Taxidermy | Witchcraft | Macabre | Tribal Art | Medical History Military Art | Space Travel | Grayson Perry | Waxworks | Magic | Erotica Mermaids | Punk | Devil Worship | Film Posters | Photography | Pictures Unusual Signs | Hammer Horror | Contemporary Art | Circus | Palmistry Freaks | Glamour | Arcade Machines | Contemporary Sculpture Marilyn Monroe | Travel History | Motoring Art
Cambridge Road | Stansted Mountfitchet | Essex | CM24 8GE
VOL 54 NO 8 FEB 2020
Editor’s Hello: Georgina Wroe introduces this month’s issue, including articles on art deco and pocket watches
52 Top of the Lots: A preview of lots going under the hammer in February, including a special sale devoted to the poet Lord Byron 54 Saleroom Spotlight: Mark Wilkinson lifts the lid on possibly the oddest sale of the year
Antique News: A guide to February’s goings on in the world of antiques and fine art, as well as three 56 Fair Play: Our round up of this exhibitions to see this month month’s fairs includes a guide to West Palm Beach in Florida 11 Subscription Offer: Save 33 per cent on the annual price and receive 60 Fairs Calendar: Keep abreast of a free book worth £65 all the upcoming events going on this month 12 Around the Houses: Discover the bestselling lots from leading 62 Auction Calendar: Our up-to auctioneers around the country and date guide guarantees you will across the world never miss another sale
6 T H E L AT E S T FA I R S
GOING CRAZY FOR RETRO GAMING
100 YEARS OF ART DECO
COLLECTING POSTER BOY TOULOUSELAUTREC Discover his work on a budget
LOVE & MARRIAGE From lovespoons to chests, the antiques that celebrate romance
HOW THE KIMONO SHAPED THE WORLD
VOL 54 N0. 8 FEBRUARY 2020
42 Cool and Collectable: Paul Fraser looks into his crystal ball to reveal how the memorabilia market will look in 2030
A GUIDE TO COLLECTING SÈVRES PORCELAIN
Our expert predicts the next horological boom
ALSO INSIDE Memorabilia in 2030 • The year’s oddest lots • Exclusive book offers
A wedding chest, Northern European, c. 1830, on sale from Robert Young Antiques, priced £3,000
30 Book Offers: Check out the latest savings on a number of titles from our sister publisher ACC Art Books 41 An Auctioneer’s Lot: Charles Hanson is bowled over by the latest piece of Chinese ceramics to grace his Derbyshire saleroom
Valentine’s Day special
Why there’s brass in pocket watches
21 Your Letters: A selection of your mail, including one reader’s memories of a View Master
51 Market Report: James Mettam looks at the booming market for retro gaming ahead of an upcoming sale
FOLLOW US @AntiqueMag
66 Marc My Words: Antiques Roadshow expert Marc Allum starts 2020 with a severe case of buyer’s remorse
FEATURES 16 Pocket Rockets: Mark Littler predicts a boom in undervalued and overlooked pocket watches 22 Poster Boy: Iconic posters by Henri Toulouse-Lautrec go on show this month 26 Tides of Change: A century on from the roaring twenties, art deco is back in the spotlight 32 Turning Japanese: How the kimono has influenced fashion from the 16th century to today 36 All You Need is Love: To mark Valentine’s Day, Antique Collecting puts lovers’ furniture into focus 44 China Girl: Ivan Macquisten talks to the daughter of the collector Charlotte Howard before her Sèvres porcelain collection is sold
48 The Magnificent Seven: The textile collections of seven women are unveiled this month, including that of the well-known designer and illustrator Enid Marx
TO SUBSCRIBE PLEASE CALL OUR SUBSCRIPTION HOTLINE ON 01394 389957 ANTIQUE COLLECTING 5
NEWS All the latest Burghley House was home to Sir William Cecil, all images courtesy of Burghley House
BAG for LIFE Details of a major exhibition with the focus on bags have been revealed by the V&A. From designer handbags to despatch boxes, vanity cases to military rucksacks Bags: Inside Out, will be dedicated to the ultimate accessory. Opening on April 25, the exhibition will include statement accessories from the 16th century to the iconic handbags of Margaret Thatcher. Highlights range from an embroidered cloth case, or burse, used to protect the silver matrix of Elizabeth I’s great seal, to Winston Churchill’s red despatch box. Also on show will be Vivien Leigh’s attaché case and a Louis Vuitton trunk from the early 1900s.
WHAT’S GOING ON IN FEBRUARY
Below Margaret Thatcher
outside 10 Downing Street with her Asprey handbag, 1987. Photo credit John Redman AP
Our round-up of the pick of the events taking place this month
HURLY BURGHLEY Plans to celebrate the 500th-anniversary of the birth of Sir William Cecil have been unveiled at Burghley House in Lincolnshire – the country house he commissioned. One of the UK’s most impressive Elizabethan homes, it was built and mostly designed by Cecil, Lord High Treasurer to Queen Elizabeth I, between 1555 and 1587. Cecil was one of the most powerful men in the court of Elizabeth I. The house, near Stamford, houses the impressive collections of John, 5th Earl of Exeter (1648-1700) who made four extended Grand Tours of Italy, and Brownlow, 9th Earl (1725-1793). The calendar of celebratory events for 2020 includes a lecture series focusing on the life, times and legacy of William Cecil. Guest speakers include Professor Stephen Alford, Dr Anna Keay, David Starkey, Dr Simon Thurley and Professor Jennifer Alexander.
6 ANTIQUE COLLECTING
Did you know?
Above Queen Elizabeth’s bedroom in Burghley House, the state bed dates from the mid-17th century; the curtains and counterpane are 20th century Above right The Bow Room,
decorated by Louis Laguerre in 1697
The house’s original floor plan was in the shape of a letter 'E', to honour Queen Elizabeth I. Although the Tudor monarch never stayed there, a bedroom has been named after her for more than 300 years.
Top Despatch box number
seven, by John Peck & Son, London
Above Chancellor of the Exchequer Winston Churchill carrying the despatch box
Left Nicolaes Maes, Young Mother with her Children, c. 1656, © Museo Nacional Thyssen-Bornemisza. Madrid Right James Abbott McNeill Whistler, Peacock Room. Freer Gallery of Art, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC
This month sees the unveiling of the UK’s first exhibition devoted to Nicolaes Maes (1634-1693), one of Rembrandt’s most talented artistic pupils. Nicolaes Maes: Dutch Master of the Golden Age, at the National Gallery from February 22 to May 31, brings together paintings and drawings from a range of private and public collections. Maes started as a painter of historical and biblical scenes, but soon moved on to depictions of everyday life for which he is today best known. The exhibition includes three paintings of what is, perhaps, his most famous theme – the eavesdropper.
Far right Darren Waterston, Filthy Lucre. Photo by Amber Gray Right James Abbott
McNeill Whistler, Peacock Room. Freer Gallery of Art, Smithsonian Institution, Washington DC
to see in
February Above left Nicolaes Maes, Portrait of Jacob Trip (c.1576-1661), 1665, © Mauritshuis, The Hague / Photo: Margareta Svensson Left Nicolaes Maes, The Eavesdropper, c. 1656. The Wellington Collection, Apsley House © Historic England Photo Library
A reinterpretation of James Abbott McNeill Whistler’s decorative masterpiece the Peacock Room – currently in the Smithsonian in Washington – has gone on show. Filthy Lucre by the contemporary American artist Darren Waterston is displayed at the V&A – a stone’s throw from the original location of Whistler’s controversial interior. Whistler took over the redesign of the British shipping magnate Frederick Leyland’s dining room (at 49 Prince’s Gate) after Thomas Jeckyll fell ill. But the artist and patron fell out so badly that, when Leyland refused to pay, Whistler broke in and painted two fighting peacocks intended to represent the pair at loggerheads When Whistler was declared bankrupt in 1879, creditors discovered a caricature of Leyland as a peacock entitled The Gold Scab: Eruption in Filthy Lucre, from which today’s work takes its name.
Right Adrian Heath (1920-1992)
The role the Cornish town of St Ives played in 20th-century art is examined at a new exhibition in The Midlands. The transformation of the fishing port into an artists’ hub began when Ben Nicholson (1894-1982) and Christopher Wood (1901-1930) holidayed there in 1928 and ‘discovered’ a retired fisherman and selftaught painter, Alfred Wallis (1855-1942). In 1939, Nicholson and his wife, the sculptor Barbara Hepworth (1903-1975) relocated from London soon to be joined by their friend, the Russian sculptor Naum Gabo (1890-1977).Cornwall as Crucible is on at The Barber Institute of Fine Arts, part of the University of Birmingham, from February 19 to May 17.
Composition: Red, Black and Grey, 1958, Jerwood Collection © Estate of Adrian Heath. All rights reserved DACS 2020
Below Alfred Wallis (1855-1942)
Two Boats, c. 1930, Jerwood Collection
Dame Barbara Hepworth (1903-1975) Study for Lisa (Hands to Face) 1949, © Bowness
ANTIQUE COLLECTING 7
NEWS All the latest HEAD CASE A perfectly-preserved 3,000-year-old mummy’s head was the highlight of a Spanish antiques and antiquities fair. The female head dated from the 18th Dynasty (1550 to 1295 BCE) – the height of the ancient civilisation and a period in which women played a prominent role, as evidenced by the reigns of the female pharoahs Hatshepsut and Nefertiti. The face included preserved pieces of linen bandages with which it was mummified, as well as visible pieces of skin, eyelids, teeth and blonde hair. The cervical vertebrae, also present, demonstrated it had been separated from the body with the utmost care. Although the mummy’s true identity is unknown, it is believed that she may have been a noblewoman who died young. The antiquity was displayed by the Malaga gallery Ifergan at this year’s Feriarte fair priced €550,000 (£470,000). Below The female head dates
Going for a gong The V&A Dundee has joined the National Museum of Scotland in Edinburgh and St Fagan’s National Museum of History in Wales as the three UK nominations for the European Museum of the Year Award. Other nominees include Anne Frank House in the Netherlands and the Athletic Bilbao Museum in Spain. Scotland’s first design museum opened in September 2018 and in its first 12 months welcomed more than 830,000 visitors. The prize winner will be announced at a ceremony hosted by National Museum Cardiff on May 2. Former UK winners include the Design Museum in London in 2018; Riverside Museum in Glasgow which won in 2013; and the V&A London in 2003. Left The V&A Dundee is in the running for a prize
Just when you think you’ve reached peak antiques shows on the telly – another heaves into view. This month sees the filming of The Bidding Room, hosted by Nigel Havers, due to appear on BBC1 later in the year. Set in an emporium in the Yorkshire countryside, a group of expert dealers attempt to outbid each other to buy items brought in by the public. Contestants with something to sell are introduced to valuation experts who give them the information to drive a hard bargain. The BBC’s Carla-Maria Lawson said: “Each of the bidders are at the top in their individual fields. They’ll be daunting opponents – not just for the sellers – but for their own peers.”
RAT PACK While Scots celebrated Burns Night on January 25, China welcomed the Year of the Rat, the first sign of the Chinese zodiac. The cycle of 12 animal signs derives from Chinese folklore which sees the rat, ox, tiger, rabbit, dragon, snake, horse, sheep, monkey, rooster, dog and pig celebrated for their different characteristics which are thought to be present in those born in certain years. People born in the Year of the Rat are ambitious and work hard to achieve their goals. In China the New Year is an important time for families to gather, with a dinner held on New Year’s Eve to start the festivities. At the end of the holiday, the lantern festival heralds the hanging of lanterns in homes, towns and cities as a wish for a bright future.
In Chinese culture the colour red symbolises good fortune, while gold stands for wealth and prosperity. Below The lantern festival follows the Chinese New
Year, image courtesy of Shimu
from the 18th Dynasty
Material world The 50-year history of Designers Guild is celebrated this month at the Fashion and Textile Museum in Bermondsey. Founded by Tricia Guild OBE, the guild started in 1970 as a section of a shop on the Kings Road and has since grown to exert an influence on pattern and texture in interior design. Out of the Blue, from February 14 to June 14, shows how the guild has changed over the years collaborating with artists such as Howard Hodgkin and the American textile designer Kaffe Fassett.
8 ANTIQUE COLLECTING
Right Howard Hodgkin
for Designers Guild Collection 2011 © Designers Guild
Below Orginal artwork
from the Village collection, 1975 © Designers Guild
New affair The ninth Cotswolds Art and Antiques Dealers’ Association (CADA) Fair has revealed a new date and new location. The 2020 fair has moved from Blenheim Palace in Oxfordshire to Compton Verney Art Gallery and Park in Warwickshire, with the date shifting from February to October 15-18. CADA chairman, Alex Puddy, said: “We were unable to book Blenheim Palace this year as the roof at the Orangery is scheduled for repair
during 2020. With its long association with art and antiques, Compton Verney is a perfect new location.” The Grade I-listed Georgian mansion of Compton Verney, set in 120 acres of Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown parkland, boasts six permanent collections including European Art 1450-1650 and British Folk Art. For more details visit www.thecada.org Above Compton Verney © John Kippin Left The Naples Gallery at Compton Verney
Top Cast members in the studio in 1961 Above The Archers at home in the fictitious village of Ambridge
FOUR SIGHT The long-running radio soap The Archers is to be celebrated at a new exhibition this year. The everyday tale of farming folk, which has been broadcast on BBC Radio 4 since 1951, opens at Palace House in Newmarket, Suffolk in June. Using unseen archive photographs and props, it will explore how the series has shaped, and been shaped by, British culture and identity over the past seven decades. The exhibition has been developed jointly with the BBC to celebrate the 70th-anniversary of the broadcasting of the pilots (1950) and first series (1951) of the Ambridge-based drama. After showing at Palace House it will tour nationally.
Devilled eggs, pickled mackerel, kedgeree and mutton stew are among the recipes in a new cookbook from Sotheby’s. To celebrate its 275th anniversary, the London auctioneer’s head chef Myles Fensom is sharing some its favourite dishes, including its famous lobster club sandwich. The Art of Cooking: A Contemporary Twist on Georgian Fare explores the food revolution of a period that would forever transform the landscape of British cuisine. The launch of book follows the reopening of Sotheby’s restaurant, at 34-35 New Bond Street. It is available to buy from the eaterie priced £40.
Above A chicken and pork knuckle pie is one of the recipes
Holy water One of only 24 known copies of the first bible translated into Welsh has gone on show at Tŷ Mawr Wybrnant near Betws-yCoed in Snowdonia. The 16th-century farmhouse was the birthplace of Bishop William Morgan, whose translation of the text, published in 1588, was a major step in ensuring the survival of the Welsh language today.
It is one of more than 200 bibles in different languages on show at the property all of which are protected from damp using a turbine generated by hydroelectric power. Above Ty Mawr Wybrnant, near Betws-y-Coed, is home to the first bible translated into Welsh, National Trust Images Left One of the 24 known copies of the first bible translated into Welsh, National Trust Images
ANTIQUE COLLECTING 9
Antique & Collectorsâ€™ inc. Silver: 19 February Militaria, Stamps, Books & Maps: 20 February The W.E Berry Poster Artwork Collection: 28 February Jewellery & Watches: 18 March Silver & Fine Art: 19 March Antiques. Clocks & Antique Furniture: 20 March
• SUBSCRIBE TODAY • SUBSCRIBE TODAY • SUBSCRIBE TODAY • SUBSCRIBE TODAY • SUBSCRIBE TODAY ❄
% 33 Y! V E DA SA TO
T H E L AT E S T FA I R S
GOING CRAZY FOR RETRO GAMING
100 YEARS OF ART DECO
COLLECTING POSTER BOY TOULOUSELAUTREC Discover his work on a budget
Valentine’s Day special
LOVE & MARRIAGE From lovespoons to chests, the antiques that celebrate romance
HOW THE KIMONO SHAPED THE WORLD
VOL 54 N0. 8 FEBRUARY 2020
Why there’s brass in pocket watches
A GUIDE TO COLLECTING SÈVRES PORCELAIN
SAVE 33 PER CENT AND GET 10 ISSUES A YEAR FOR JUST £25* PLUS a FREE BOOK when you subscribe to Antique Collecting
• • • •
SAVE 33% on an annual subscription to Antique Collecting Free copy of Chiparus Master of Art Deco worth £65 Antique Collecting delivered direct to your door Subscriber-only savings on antiques, art and design books
Our expert predicts the next horological boom
ALSO INSIDE Memorabilia in 2030 • The year’s oddest lots • Exclusive book offers
Subscribe today and pay JUST £25 for your first 10 issues rather than £38. Plus receive a FREE copy of our fully-illustrated hardback book Chiparus Master of Art Deco worth £65.* Each copy is packed with collecting guides and specialist advice. Don’t delay, this offer ends on February 29. The offer applies to new subscribers and new gift subscriptions only.
Only £2.50 per issue! Offer applies to new UK subscribers only
Subscribe at www.antique-collecting.co.uk/subscribe and enter code: ACFEB20 or
call our order hotline on
01394 389957 quoting code: ACFEB20
• SUBSCRIBE TODAY • SUBSCRIBE TODAY • SUBSCRIBE TODAY • SUBSCRIBE TODAY • SUBSCRIBE TODAY ANTIQUE COLLECTING 11
ANTIQUE COLLECTING MAGAZINE
AUCTION Round up
AROUND the HOUSES
A review of some of the more unusual sales of recent weeks. Keep up to date at www.antique-collecting.com
CHARTERHOUSE, SHERBORNE An oil painting of a pointer by the Britishborn American artist Maud Earl (1864The 1943) fetched £3,400 at the Dorset Victorian artist auctioneer’s recent sale, against a low Maud Earl studied at the Royal Female estimate of £700. School of Art in The painting, which was unframed London and discovered in a local cottage, sparked a bidding war between six phone bidders. Earl’s portraits of dogs, executed in a sketchy yet realistic style, were popular among royals, including Queen Victoria of England and Queen Alexandra of Denmark.
TENNANTS AUCTIONEERS, LEYBURN
The Regency chairs, with raised sabre legs, made £7,000
ROSEBERY’S AUCTIONS, LONDON Four 19th-century Dutch Delft vases sold for £1,300, double their estimate, at the London auctioneer’s sale of furniture belonging to a French noble family from south-eastern France. Two of the smaller vases had Chinese dog finials, while the larger pair of Dutch baluster octagonal vases in were decorated with courting couples and barging scenes. A set of 16 Regency mahogany dining chairs, the top rails carved with drapery, fetched £7,000 almost three times their low estimate of £2,500, at the The same 700-lot sale, which included a private ceramics came collection of Georgian tea caddies. from collections bought by the owner in the Loire valley
An early 19th-century Tasmanian sampler measuring just 15cm across sold for £9,200 at the North Yorkshire auctioneers. Estimated at £600-£800, the sampler was the subject of a heated bidding war between buyers across the world. The needlework was completed by a girl from the Queen’s Orphan School, New Town, Tasmania (then called Van Diemen’s Land) in 1838. The The Van orphanage was established in 1833 Diemen’s Land to house the neglected children of sampler sold for convicts. Run as part of the convict £9,200 system, the orphanage was described at the time in a newspaper article as ‘cold and comfortless’. The sampler extols the virtues of meekness and mildness and wishes ‘may she in paths of flowers stray’. It is further decorated with delicately stitched motifs of hearts, crowns, flowering trees and stars.
WILKINSON’S, DONCASTER A saucy 18th-century nutmeg grater was one of the top lots at the South Yorkshire auction house’s recent sale when it sold for more than seven times its low estimate. The grater, which fetched The grater £5,800, was worked by an featured the articulated man, whose bending figure of a man action caused his trousers to drop poised to reveal and expose his backside. The his backside grater measured 27cm tall and 4cm wide.
HERITAGE AUCTIONS, DALLAS An ‘Enigma’ encryption machine, one of only 250 in existence, used by Nazi German forces to send secret messages, made more than four times its opening bid to sell for $106,250 (£81,000) at the American auctioneers. The devices were used from 1934 until the end of the war. The threecipher rotor “M3,” was thought to have been beyond human error. Alan Turing But it was cracked by cracked the Alan Turing whose attempts to ‘Enigma’ code at unscramble the 17,576 encryption Bletchley combinations was helped by the fact many users signed their communications 'Heil Hitler'.
The ring may have been one of the famed Marlborough gems
A cornelian intaglio ring, probably Roman, which may have been one of the Marlborough gems, made £36,000 at the Cambridge auctioneer’s recent sale. The ring was sold with the hardback Christie’s catalogue from June 1899 of the sale of the famous gems at which, by family tradition, this ring was bought. The Marlborough gems was a collection of 800 jewels belonging to George Spencer, 4th Earl of Marlborough. It was sold at auction in 1875 by The ring featured in John Winston Spencer-Churchill to repair the the 1899 auction ancestral home of catalogue of the Blenheim Palace. collection The gems were eventually sold by David Bromilow of Bitteswell Hall in Leicestershire, at auction in London in 1899. Currently, only about a quarter of the gems have been accounted for.
The lantern clock was made by the watch and clockmaker to Charles I
The sideboard came from the collection of the brewer Arthur Mitchell
The watch was valued by the auctioneer’s in-house experts
CANTERBURY AUCTION GALLERIES
A lantern clock, engraved “Eduardus East Londini” for Edward East (1602–1696) – the watch and clockmaker to Charles I – sold for £8,200 making it one of the top sellers at the Kent auction house’s recent sale. At the same sale an 18k gold Jaeger-Le Coultre watch, consigned by its owner after one of the saleroom’s Friday morning valuation sessions, sold to a local private buyer for £4,600.
A walnut sideboard designed by Ernest Gimson (1864-1919), the English arts and crafts furniture designer and architect, sold for £17,000 at the Oxford auctioneers. Day two of the design and modern art sale saw an oil painting by Geoffrey Key (b.1941) entitled The Horse Race, dated 1996, spark a bidding war before being sold for £5,600.
The artist Geoffrey Key was elected to the Manchester Academy of Fine Arts in 1968
ANTIQUE COLLECTING 13
THOMAS DEL MAR, OLYMPIA AUCTIONS An Imperial Russian sword led the London auctioneer’s sale when it made £85,000 – more than double its estimate. The ornately-decorated and carved 19th-century sabre featured gold inlay and ivory mounting. Other distinguishing features included the maker’s mark, translated as ‘Work of Abdullah’ and an ivory panel at the top of the scabbard with the Imperial cypher of Nicholas II of Russia. It originated in the town of Kubachi in Dagestan, a Russian republic to the west of the Caspian sea, which has a long history of arms production having supplied Tamerlane, the TurcoMongol Persianate conqueror, The sword with weapons in the 15th was made in century, though the town the Russian is now best known for the republic of deluxe weapons produced Dagestan during the second half of the 19th century, such as this example of an Imperial Russian sword.
Mark Cavoto A Harry Potter and some of book signed by his Harry Potter books JK Rowling and bought for just one penny sold for £2,300 at the Derbyshire auction house’s sale at Bishton Hall in Staffordshire. When Derbyshire collector Mark Cavoto bought the 1998 first edition of Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets he had no idea it had been signed by the author. Mr Cavoto started collecting the famous series 10 years ago and now has 1,100 Harry Potter books in a warehouse and another 400 at home. He said: “They have taken over my office. But this isn’t just about money. The whole thing has been a bit of fun for me and my wife.” In 2019 Hansons sold two rare first editions of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, for £28,500 and £57,040. This signed copy of the famous book was estimated at £1,800-£2,500
14 ANTIQUE COLLECTING
A 1962 poster for Dr No, from the Andy Johnson collection sold for £10,000 at the Surrey auctioneer’s recent sale. Andy Johnson built up his collection over 35 years, catching The 1962 the collecting bug as he worked on film sale poster for the catalogues as a photographer at Christie’s in first James Bond the 1980s. film Dr No took The sale marked an outstanding year for £10,000 entertainment memorabilia at the auction house which, in 2019, took £1.25m from posters, memorabilia and props. Specialist, Alastair McCrea, said: “There is great strength in areas like horror, especially Hammer Horror and Hitchcock, because they have crossover appeal to film buffs, interior decorators and anyone who loves retro.”
JOHN NICHOLSON’S, HASLEMERE
The ‘waiter’ silver salver sold for £4,000 in Surrey
A George II silver salver sold for £4,000 at the Surrey auctioneers. The quatrefoil shaped piece had the maker’s mark of Edward Cornock and was dated 1727. The salver, which had an estimate of £4,000, was made for Charles Coote of Co. Limerick, Ireland. With a diameter of 12cm (5in), the dainty size is often known as a waiter, perfect for standing a wine bottle or glass.
BINOCHE AND GIQUELLO, PARIS A pair of Napoleon’s leather riding boots worn by the exiled French emperor on the island of St Helena sold for almost £80,000 at a recent Paris auction. Auctioneers Binoche et Giquello at Drouot offered the 48cm tall boots, which were given to the sculptor Carlo Marochetti (1805-1867) after Napoleon’s death to make an statue for the emperor’s tomb. Marochetti’s son, the Baron Marochetti, later gave the boots to senator Paul Le Roux, whose family has kept them until recently consigning them for sale.
The boots belonged to Napoleon and made £80,000
Watches and Wristwatches Thinking of selling? Speak to a specialist to discover the value of your watch.
UPCOMING SALES Knightsbridge, London New York Knightsbridge, London Hong Kong New Bond Street, London
18 February 22 April 19 May 25 May 17 June
ENQUIRIES +44(0)207 393 3869 firstname.lastname@example.org bonhams.com/watches @bonhamswatches
MUDGE AND DUTTON WITH ENAMEL BY MOSER. A FINE GOLD QUARTER REPEATING CYLINDER PAIR CASE POCKET WATCH, CIRCA 1770 Sold for Â£32,562.50
COLLECTING GUIDE Pocket watches
his not so humble timepiece was first developed in the 1500s and has, thanks to the innovations of a number of makers, been continuously improved for more than half a millennia, culminating in 2015 when the Patek Philippe Supercomplication sold for $24m. Its owner was New York-based American businessman Mr. Henry Graves, who commissioned Patek Philippe to produce “the world’s most complicated timepiece” – no matter the cost. Long after it was completed, the Supercomplication was the world’s most complicated timepiece with a total of 24 different “complications” (or functions). While few collectors could afford such a masterpiece of craftsmanship, prices at auction for pocket watches are relatively affordable – especially when compared to the vintage wristwatch.
Above Gylis Van Gheelle, 1589, the oval case has Charity engraved on the front cover and Justice on the back
Below right John Carte,
London, probably made around 1705.
POCKET ROCKETS Ever wished you’d started collecting vintage watches before prices exploded? Pocket watches could be the next big thing in horology, writes Mark Littler 16 ANTIQUE COLLECTING
The earliest watches date to the mid-1500s and are single-hand, drum-shaped watches that would have been hung proudly about the neck as a statement of the owner’s wealth and access to technological advancements. These early ‘pocket-watches’ were of the verge (or crown wheel) escapement - the earliest known type of mechanical escapement, that controls its rate by allowing the gear train to advance at regular intervals or ‘ticks’. Verge watches with a few improvements dominated the watch world for more than 300 years. Early watches had one hand and their accuracy may have varied by as much as 15 to 30 minutes per day – an error that did not have too much impact until the development of rail and extensive sea travel, which required greater accuracy for safety and navigation. By the 16th century, complications were included in pocket watches, such as day and moon phases and alarms.
PURITAN STYLE The first watches were not overly ornate as the watch itself was considered enough of a proclamation of wealth. As watches became more widespread decoration was added. This period of history was puritanical and watch decoration reflected the times. Early watches, often oval, appeared plain on the outside while bearing intricate engravings on the inner mechanisms. Early decoration was mostly in the form of gilding to the brass work – a feature that also helped protect the watch from corrosion – and decorative engraving. Piercing of the case of the clock was also
common as it added decoration and allowed the watch to be read while the case was closed. Hands remained relatively simple but did sometimes have raised pins that would allow the pocket watch to be read in the dark. In the 17th century, watches were being made in a variety of styles and shapes, all designed to be worn around the neck. Reflecting the importance of religion, cases in the shape of crosses and even skulls can be found from this period, as well as paintings of saints and religious scenes.
Right Daniel Quare (1648-1724), an alarm watch of about 1685, the hours indicated by the pointer fixed to the revolving centre of the dial Below A pendant watch
by Edward East (16021696) gilt metal and rock crystal c.1650
COMMONWEALTH PERIOD As decoration of watchcases became more elaborate a second case became necessary to protect increasingly delicate filigree and enamel work. These cases were less elaborate but were still decorated with pique work, tortoiseshell and precious metals. The use of second cases, possibly alongside a change in tastes, led to less decoration on the case of the watch itself as it was unseen. A substantial reduction of the size of watches, both in width – often less than 30mm – and depth was achieved shortly before 1630. From 1630, glass was fitted to watches often in the form of carved rock crystal which protected the dial and allowed the watch to be read without opening the case. This allowed personal watches to be stored in the pocket rather than around the neck, and hence from around 1640 watches became more akin to the pocket watches we recognise today.
A number of innovations helped refine watches as we know them today
The balance spring
In the last quarter of the 17th century the balance spring was introduced. The innovation revolutionised watchmaking by limiting the effects of friction on the internal workings of the clocks. The advancements in precision that the balance spring allowed meant that personal watches could, at last, have two hands. When the balance spring was introduced and a minute hand added, the dial’s hour markers were represented with Roman numerals and minute markers were shown in Arabic numbers in a slightly smaller font than the hour markers.
Below left A Mudge and Dutton fine gold quarter repeating cylinder pair case pocket watch, sold for £32,562 (against an estimate of £7,000£9,000) at Bonhams in November Left The Mudge and Dutton pocket watch had a later shagreen and glass display case by John Paul Cooper c. 1770 Below right The back
shows an eagle on a pedestal in the centre with a vase of flowers above and the heads of an angel and two dolphins below
‘Repeaters’ (a watch that ‘repeats’ the striking of the hour and, later, shorter intervals) were developed in parallel by Daniel Quare (1648-1724) and Edward Barlow (1639-1719) between 1685 and 1688. Repeating was refined over the following 200 years to allow the time to be sounded at an accuracy of up to a minute – known as minute repeaters. Quarter repeaters, which sounded the hour and the nearest quarter hour were the most common.
18th-century verge watches
Verge watches with balance springs dominated the pocket watch world from around 1700 until the mid1800s, when the lever watch came to the forefront.
The lever watch
While the verge watch was adequate for personal use, more efficiency was required for precision which led to the development of a detached lever escapement. The Swiss lever escapement is used in almost all modern watches, having been refined in the 19th century, however the watch thought to be the oldest detached lever watch was created by the English watchmaker Thomas Mudge (1715-1794) and given to the then King George III.
Far right The top plate of the movement is signed and numbered ‘Daniel Quare London’, the case band is engraved with scrolling foliage
‘In the 17th century, watches were made in a variety of styles and shapes, all designed to be worn around the neck. Reflecting the importance of religion, cases in the shape of crosses and even skulls were common, as well as paintings of saints and religious scenes’ ANTIQUE COLLECTING 17
COLLECTING GUIDE Pocket watches Navigation at sea In 1714 the British Parliament set up the Board of Longitude to overcome the problems of navigating precisely at sea. The aim was simple: create a device that would not lose or gain more than two minutes over a two-month journey. The reward was £20,000 – a fortune by the standards of the time – and many clockmakers dedicated their lives to solving the problem. Similar rewards were offered by France, Spain and Holland, but it was John Harrison (1693-1776) who, having tried and failed three times with clocks, eventually won the prize for his watch number 4, known as H4. Harrison’s H4 overcame the issues caused by changing temperatures by using a bimetallic composition for the balance wheel. Two metals were used whose response to temperature change were such that they cancelled each other out and thus provided a constant response in the balance wheel during a two-month journey half-way around the world. While the verge escapement was subsequently replaced in future navigation watches, Harrison’s work on bimetallic composition was an important part of watch development.
PERPETUAL MOVEMENT The start of the 19th century saw the introduction of keyless winding, first with pump winding (via a lever and sometimes a cover) and eventually by the mid1800s with crown winding. At first the hands had to be set by pressing a separate button, but by 1860 that too was incorporated into the crown. Somewhat counter-intuitively, self-winding pocket watches had been invented some 70 years prior in 1770 by the Swiss horologist Abraham-Louis Perrelet (1729-1826) and developed from 1777-1780 by his namesake Abraham-Louis Breguet (1747-1823). The early perpetual watches were not popular, partly because the motion imparted when they were carried in the pocket was not sufficient for winding, and partly because they were not easily compatible with the fusee, which was still used particularly in England, until the late 1800s. In fact, self-winding did not gain popularity in watches until they were used in wristwatches in the early 20th century. Mark Littler provides an independent brokering service specialising in watches, antiques, art and whisky. For more details go to www.marklittler.com
18 ANTIQUE COLLECTING
European pocket watches
Above John Harrison & Son London, no. 2, hallmarked 1768-1769. The balance and spring are both steel and the compensation takes the form of two bimetallic strips Above right Two English
silver pocket watches, dated 1748 and 1795/99 sold for $500 in 2016 at Sotheby’s New York, less than their $600$800 estimate
Below Pocket watches
could be the next big thing in horology
From the 1800s we see a real split in English versus European pocket watch styles. English versions were largely handmade and retained an elegant, simple style with Roman numerals. 1850 saw the introduction of compulsory hallmarks in England, which makes dating English watches much simpler after this period. In Europe, styles were more ornate with painted decoration and Arabic numbers. Small, decorative watches came into fashion, as well as watches in rings and broaches. These were often made in gold and decorated in coloured enamel, precious gems, semiprecious stones and half pearls. Thin watches gained popularity in Europe in the 19th century thanks to improvements in the size of the fusee – or complete removal through other compensation. The use of gongs also allowed thinner repeaters, which remained popular. One of the most significant shifts we see between European and English watchmaking in the 19th century is the use of machine-made parts on the continent. As a result, watchmakers in France and Switzerland were able to produce watches more cheaply than those handmade in England. It can be argued that the refusal of English watchmakers to adapt to the desire for thinner, cheaper, machine-made watches was the start of the shift of watchmaking from England to France and eventually to Switzerland.
A Comfortable Corner (The Blue Kimono), oil painting, by William Merritt Chase, about 1888, US. © Parrish Museum, Littlejohn Collection
Pocket watches’ elegance makes them very collectable
POCKET WATCHES: WHAT TO LOOK FOR
Pocket watches have fascinated collectors for centuries due, in large part, to the number of potential collecting fields and areas of research. The scope for collecting is seemingly endless, including time periods, makers, types of movement, complications and case decoration. It is the complex nature of collecting and desirability that makes it hard to give a brief overview of values. However, as a starting point these are the six things to be considered when looking at the value of a pocket watch: 1. Case material With the exception of watches with ‘out of the ordinary’ movements or features (chronometers, etc) the case material can have a significant bearing on the value of the watch. The most obvious example of this can be seen with gold hunter cased watches. Two seemingly identical watches with identical Waltham movements could be several thousand pounds different in value depending on the case material, i.e. gold plated vs. 9ct gold vs. 18ct gold. 2. Complications Some collectors focus specifically on the complications featured in pocket watches and there can be no better example than Henry Graves Supercomplication, which sold at auction to an anonymous bidder for $24m in 2014. The watch was commissioned in 1925 and took three years to design and five to make. Broadly speaking, the greater the number of complications the greater the value of the watch. Some of the most sought-after complications include tourbillon, split-seconds chronograph (or rattrapante), minute repeaters, chronometers, perpetual calendar and phases of the moon. 3. Condition/originality The condition and originality of a watch has the greatest bearing on its value. What could outwardly appear to be a very rare 17th-century verge, may have been cannibalised over the years (replacement dial, etc). These changes might only be known to a watchmaker or collector so ensure you get a guarantee of originality. The outward condition of the watch is easier to assess yourself. Cracks to the dial, worn cases or erased presentation engravings can negatively impact the value of a pocket watch.
Below Tomas Fridl,
Salzburg. A large silver quarter striking clock coach watch with alarm, c. 1750, sold for £13,812 at Bonhams
Above A silver repoussé pocket watch, c. 1730, has a low estimate of £1,000 at Bonhams’ sale on February
4. Manufacturer In alphabetical order here is a list of some manufacturers that command a significant premium: Audemars Piguet Breguet Harrison IWC Massey Mudge Omega Patek Phillipe Perrelet Rolex Tiffany Tompion Vacheron Constantin Zenith
• • • • • • • • • • • • • •
5. Age While the price of the 57-complication, Vacheron Constantin Reference 57260 was
Above An Jacquemart quarter repeating pocket watch, c. 1810, sold for £3,187 at Bonhams in November
never released when it was introduced in 2015, it is fair to say it is the most expensive pocket watch ever produced. But the most expensive pocket watch sold at auction (the Henry Graves Supercomplication) was only made in 1933. So, the age of a watch does not necessarily denote value. For example, pair cased silver verge watches from the reign of George III can be sold for as little as £100 at auction (condition dependant) yet an Edwardian minute repeater can easily sell for more than £1,000. 6. Provenance Provenance can add a significant amount of value to a watch. In fact, provenance may be of more value than the watch itself (for instance, a watch that could be proven to have been worn on the Titanic). The original chronometer certificate can also add significant value to a watch.
ANTIQUE COLLECTING 19
THE WATCH SALE 10 FEBRUARY 2020 AT 11AM Viewing Days Birmingham 8 February 11am – 4pm 10 February 8.30am – 11am London 4 February 12pm – 7pm
Head Office & Saleroom Augusta House 19 Augusta Street Birmingham B18 6JA T. 0121 212 2131 London Office 29 Charles Street, Mayfair London W1J 5DT T. 020 7127 4198
Photo ID required for viewings Free, no-obligation valuations available www.fellows.co.uk
LETTERS Have your say
Your Letters We delve into the first mailbag of 2020
I enjoyed the article on the festive food of earlier days (Repast Pleasures, December/January issue) but, having researched my ancestry back to farm hands from Suffolk I doubt my Christmas fare in those days would have been so luxurious. I also discovered an ancestor called Mary who stole a lamb and served 12 months in prison – now the nursery rhyme “Mary had a little lamb” has an entirely different meaning. Barry Anderson, Las Vegas, by email
Our star letter
receives a copy of 20th Century British Glass by Charles R. Hajdamach, worth £49.50. Write to us at Antique Collecting, Sandy Lane, Old Martlesham, Woodbridge, Suffolk, IP12 4SD or email magazine@ accartbooks.com
Left Barry’s ancestors’ Christmas dinner might not have been as grand Right The View Master was the height of ‘60s sophistication
Star letter Left Brian’s tipple was a more modest variety
I raised a dram to the magazine this New Year, thanking you for another year of fascinating stuff. Sad thing was the whisky came from a £9.99 bottle and not a £1.5m bottle of Macallan as per your report (Liquid Gold, December/January issue). Cheers all the same. Brian Lewis, by email I was delighted to take a trip down memory lane when reading about Christmas presents of years gone by (Stocking Thrillers, December/January issue). In fact I was so transported I got my treasured View Master down from the loft to show my daughter. Needless to say her eyes hardly flickered from her iPad. Innocent times. M. Couchman, by email
Be part of the conversation on Twitter and Instagram @antiquemag
Auction Dates 2020 Weekend Auction Revival All Auctions to be Held on Saturdays and Sundays All Commencing at 11am Each Day 8th & 9th February, 4th & 5th April, 6th & 7th June 1st & 2nd August, 3rd & 4th October, 28th & 29th November Viewing Times Prior to Sales: Thursdays 10am - 7pm, Fridays 3pm - 7pm, Sale Days from 9am Visit Our Website for More Details thecanterburyauctiongalleries.com
Pair of George I “Irish” silver sauceboats, Dublin 1726 Sold to a Specialist Dealer for £57,000
COLLECTING GUIDES Iconic posters who died at 36 after a brief, raucous life spent holding court at the Moulin Rouge and the brothels of Montmartre. In 1899, suffering from the effects of syphilis and alcoholism, he was institutionalised and, following a stroke, died in 1901 at his mother’s house in the Gironde. In many ways, as the invalid son of aristocratic parents, a less likely chronicler would be hard to imagine, but Lautrec had the sympathetic eye of an outsider and, as such, provided a searing insight into 19th-century Paris and its characters. He also had an eye on commerce and adapted his work to the new mediums of colour lithographic poster reproduction and photography and the idea that the newly-opened clubs of Montmatre and their stars needed publicity. The exhibition, including posters on show for the first time, will be displayed in giant format from floor to ceiling, recreating how they were originally seen on the streets of Paris. Lautrec’s prints often display dazzling technical effects, as new innovations in lithography during the late 19th century permitted larger prints, more varied colours, and nuanced textures. The artist frequently employed the spattered-ink technique known as crachis, creating a dusting of colour like airbrushing. Using simplified silhouettes, and flat areas of pure colour, he created bold and vivid lithographs of Montmartre’s most celebrated performers. In many ways the ubiquitous nature of his posters – adorning millions of walls from student digs to bistros, has meant that Lautrec has nearly become a victim of a process of which he was, himself, an early proponent.
Above Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec (1864-1901) Ambassadeurs: Aristide Bruant, 1892, 133 x 91.2cm, lithograph in brush and crachis on two sheets of parchment, all images © Musée d’Ixelles-Bruxelles / Courtesy of Institut für Kulturaustausch, Tübingen
Poster Boy Iconic works by Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec go on show this month, while a sale of the artist’s work is unveiled in New York
o other images quite sum up the demimonde of Belle Époque Paris as the work of Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec (18641901). He was the archetype of the fin-desiècle libertine artist — a syphilitic spendthrift drunk, stunted and crippled by two accidents in adolescence,
22 ANTIQUE COLLECTING
Above A portrait of Lautrec in the 1880s
HIS MUSES The singer Jane Avril (1868-1943) was quick to see the potential of using posters to advertise her personal brand and it was her alliances with artists, notably Lautrec, that set her on the path to fame, commencing with the Moulin Rouge – which was her favourite venue. Nicknamed La Mélinite, after the explosive powder, she became known for her alluring style and exotic persona. Her lasting fame was assured by a series of dazzlingly inventive posters designed by Lautrec. In contrast to the well-born artist, Avril was the daughter of a courtesan. Born Jeanne Beaudon, she suffered an abusive childhood and, aged 13, ran away from home. The following year she was treated for a nervous disorder known as St Vitus’ Dance. Aged 20 she was taken on as a professional dancer by the Moulin Rouge. Yvette Guilbert (1865-1944) was another of Lautrec’s favourite stars. Known as a diseuse, for the way she half-sung, half-spoke during performances, like Avril, she dressed in bright yellow with trademark long black gloves. She appeared more than any other performer in Lautrec’s work.
Early days Born to an aristocratic and eccentric French family, Lautrec’s life has become as iconic as his art. He began drawing at a young age, when frequent illnesses (portending more serious health problems to come) kept him bedridden at the family estate in Albi in southern France. In 1882, Lautrec moved from Albi to Paris, where he studied art in the ateliers of two academic painters, Léon Bonnat (1833–1922) and Fernand Cormon (1845–1924), who also taught Émile Bernard (1868–1941) and Vincent van Gogh (1853– 1890). Lautrec soon began painting en plein air in the manner of the Impressionists, and often posed sitters in the Montmartre garden of his neighbour, Père Forest, a retired photographer. It was during the mid-1880s that the twentysomething artist began his lifelong association with the bohemian life of Montmartre. The cafés, cabarets, entertainers, and artists of this area of Paris fascinated him and led to his first taste of public recognition. He focused his attention on depicting popular entertainers such as Aristide Bruant, Jane Avril, Loie Fuller, May Belfort, May Milton and Valentin le Désossé.
Above Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec (18641901) Moulin Rouge, La Goulue, 1891, 195 x 120cm, lithograph Above left Henri de
Toulouse-Lautrec (18641901), Jane Avril at the Jardin de Paris 1893 Right Henri-Gabriel Ibels (1867-1936), Jane Debarry, 1895, 130 x 93cm, colour lithograph Left Henri de ToulouseLautrec (1864-1901) La Revue Blanche - avant la letter, 1895, 126 x 92 cm, lithograph in brush, chalk and crachis on two sheets of parchment
Moulin Rouge Opened in 1889 in Montmartre and directed by the gregarious Charles Zidler, the Moulin Rouge soon became Lautrec’s night-spot of choice. Commissioned to create a poster that was as vibrant as the club itself, the young Lautrec captured the cancan dancer Louise Weber (known as La Goulue “the Glutton”) in full swing. Moulin Rouge: La Goulue (1891), contrasts the seductive
‘A syphilitic spendthrift drunk, stunted and crippled by two accidents in adolescence, who died at 36 after a brief, raucous life spent holding court at the Moulin Rouge and the brothels of Montmartre’ ANTIQUE COLLECTING 23
COLLECTING GUIDES Iconic posters
COLLECTING TURN-OFTHE-CENTURY POSTERS
performance of the dancer with an anonymous, predominantly male audience identifiable as middle class by the ubiquitous top hat. Such sexually suggestive images—a direct result of the loosening of censorship laws in 1881—created a sensation with the Parisian public as they both assaulted bourgeois morals and transformed Montmartre’s working-class acts into celebrities. When 3,000 copies of the poster were put up in the streets of Paris in December 1891 it became an instant success, bringing Lautrec’s art to a broad audience for the first time.
Distinct style The style and content of Lautrec’s posters were heavily influenced by Japanese ukiyo-e prints. Areas of flat colour bound by strong outlines, silhouettes, cropped compositions, and oblique angles are all typical of woodblock prints by artists like Katsushika Hokusai (1760–1849) and Utagawa Hiroshige (1797–1858). Likewise, Lautrec’s promotion of individual performers is very similar to the depictions of famous actors, actresses and courtesans from Edo-period Japan.
Left ThéophileAlexandre Steinlen (1859-1923), Tournée du Chat Noir, 1896, 140 x 100cm colour lithograph
24 ANTIQUE COLLECTING
Above Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec (1864-1901) Couverture de L’Estampe originale, 1893, 55.5 x 65.5cm, lithograph in brush and crachis Above right A copy
of Lautrec’s Elles, 1896, goes under the hammer this month
Right Pal (Jean de Paleologue), Folies Bergère / La Loie Fuller, 1897, is estimated at $1,000-$1,500 (£760£1,145)
While owning a poster by Lautrec may be beyond the budget of many collectors there are other artists from the period whose work is more affordable. On February 13, Swann Auction Galleries in New York has work by Lautrec, Alphonse Mucha, Adrien Barrère and Jules Chéret up for sale. Lautrec is represented by his frontispiece to a series of erotic lithographs created in 1896. Elles was among more than 300 works produced in the final decade of the artist’s life which presented a sensitive portrayal of brothel life. Lautrec spent lengthy periods observing the actions and behaviour of prostitutes and their clients. The resulting 11 works, for the publisher Gustave Pellet, were highly original in their representation of mundane aspects of the prostitutes’ existence, particularly moments of intimacy and friendship. In the frontispiece, a prostitute loosens her hair in preparation for an unseen male client, whose doffed top hat rests on the clotheshorse in the foreground. The print has an estimate of $4,000-$6,000 (£3,050-£4,580). The Romanian-born artist, painter, and illustrator, Jean de Paléologue (1855-1942), known as Pal, created a total of five posters for the American dancer Loïe Fuller when she took Paris by storm following her debut at the Folies-Bergère on November 5, 1892. Her innovative act, which included her trademark ‘serpentine dance’, involved swathes of silk with wands sewn into the sleeves, allowing her to swirl the fabric creating spectacular sculptural forms. Fuller herself commissioned many lithographic posters for her performances, including this one (left). It goes on sale this month with an estimate of $1,000$1,500 (£760-£1,145). Toulouse-Lautrec and the Masters of Montmartre, runs at the Victoria Art Gallery, Bath, from February 15 to May 26. It features 80 works from celebrated poster artists of the day including Alphonse Mucha, Pierre Bonnard, Théophile-Alexandre Steinlen and Henri-Gabriel Ibels, as well as 32 by Lautrec. For more details visit www.victoriagal.org.uk. Details on Swann Auction Galleries’ sale of vintage posters can be found at www.swannauctiongalleries.com
The Poet, the Lover, and the Patriot: Lord Byron London 27th February 11am Enquiries email@example.com Visit chiswickauctions.co.uk +44 (0)20 8992 4442
THE EXPERT COLLECTOR Art deco
TIDES of CHANGE
A century on from the ‘roaring twenties’, art deco is once more in the spotlight proving why it will always be a favourite among collectors Aside from fine art, the coast acted as a creative spur to companies including Ekco Radios in Southendon-Sea, Poole Pottery in Dorset and Cryséde textiles in Newlyn and St Ives. Exhibition curator, Ghislaine Wood, said, “The exhibition will explore how art deco became the key style for pleasure and leisure, transforming coastal resorts and coming to symbolise new values for people experiencing new freedoms. Art deco had enormous appeal for its glamour and accessibility, which still attracts audiences today.”
POOLE POTTERY, DORSET
hen it comes to eras of design, nothing is more evergreen to collectors than art deco. This month, a new exhibition reveals the influence the coast had on the movement which defined the age. Art Deco by the Sea at the Sainsbury Centre in Norwich considers how art deco, with its twin inspirations of leisure and travel, transformed the British seaside in a new age of mass tourism. Sparked by the advent of the body beautiful, when sunbathing and swimming became fashionable, the influence of art deco can be seen everywhere from the Midland Hotel in Morecambe to the villas of Frinton-on-Sea. At the same time, the seaside was a magnet to artists from the Newlyn School of Art, to modernist painters.
Above Fairground scene, Willsons Printers, Leicester, 1930s © National Fairground and Circus Archive, University of Sheffield
Did you know? Art deco comes from the 1925 Exposition Internationale des Arts Decoratifs Industriels et Modernes, held in Paris. Left New Brighton Lido, postcard, 1930s. Lent by the Bruce Peter Collection Right Leaping Deer vase Carter, Stabler & Adams Ltd, Poole, painted by Eileen Prangnell c.1935, © John Clark Far right A pair of Carter, Stabler & Adams vases which sold for £3,400 and £2,800 respectively
26 ANTIQUE COLLECTING
It was Poole’s location, as well as the high-quality pottery production methods, that acted as the lure to several important artist potters to the town in the interwar years, including Vanessa Bell and Roger Fry from the Omega Workshops. Prior to that, the company, founded in 1873 on Poole quayside, had taken advantage of the abundance of red clay to the north of the town. Originally called Carter’s Industrial Tile Manufactory, in the 1920s Jesse Carter joined forces with designers Harold Stabler and Phoebie Stabler, and potters John Adams and Truda Adams (nee Carter) to form Carter Stabler & Adams, which went on to create some of the finest art deco designs in England. Much of the traditional range was based on the work of the chief designer in the 1920s, Truda Carter. These red earthenwares, covered in a white slip and then dipped in a semi-matt, clear glaze before decoration in a variety of floral and geometric patterns, drew high acclaim at the time and were retailed through
leading stores, including Liberty & Co. and Heal’s in London. Of all Poole’s output it is its deco designs that remain the most popular. In 2015, Woolley & Wallis sold a pair of rare New materials were also much in evidence, Carter, Stabler & Adams’ vases designed such as aluminum, stainless steel, plastics, by Truda Carter and painted by Ann lacquer and inlaid wood. While continuing the Hatchard, decorated in the LG pattern use of high-quality art nouveau materials, known to collectors as simply the such as moulded glass, horn, and ivory, art ‘Holly’ pattern, for £3,400 and £2,800 deco also introduced exotic items respectively. More subtle in their patterns like shark skin, and and colours than Clarice Cliff, Poole’s art zebra skin. deco designs capture the spirit of the jazzage well. The designers adapted their floral and animal designs to a more abstract, angular and geometric style that was all the rage.
ART DECO TRADEMARKS
CRYSÉDE COMPANY, NEWLYN, CORNWALL It was love, rather than the sea, that took Alec Walker the founder of Cryséde fabrics to Newlyn, Cornwall in 1920. By that time, Walker was already the owner of the Harrogate silk business Vigil Silk when he placed an ad for a commercial artist to join the business. The successful candidate, Kay Earle, lived and worked in the small Cornish fishing village of Newlyn which, by the 1800s, had become an artists’ colony, later known for the Newlyn School of Art. Walker visited the area and was soon as entranced by it as he was his bride-to-be. He discovered a creative hub where incoming artists schooled locals in enamel jewellery, textiles and repoussé metalwork. Walker was also encouraged to create his own art, later turning his naïve paintings into textile designs. He also purchased three derelict fishermen’s cottages for conversion into a factory and shop. Crepe-de-Chine was the main fabric printed, with
Right Richard Ernst Eurich, Round the Point, 1931 Oil on canvas. Lent by Laing Art Gallery © Bridgeman Images Below left Silk scarf by
Alec Walker, Cryséde textiles 1925 © Target Gallery, London
Below A Cryséde
playsuit labelled Pure silk Manufacturers Crysede, St Ives, Cornwall, is on sale from www.meg-andrews. com priced £750
georgette and velvet added later. By 1928, the plain dyed silks and made-up goods were known by the trade name Cryséde, whereas the printed silks were marketed as Cryséde Alec Walker Designs. Following his influential meeting with the French fauvist artist Raoul Dufy in Paris in 1923, Walker began a new range of wholly original designs which were at the heart of Cryséde’s subsequent success. These modern designs, based on his watercolour sketches, were immediately popular. Business expanded rapidly, and by the end of the year there were over 3,000 mail order clients and a number of retail shops were opened. In 1925, The Independent Gallery in Grafton Street, London held an exhibition of Walker’s dresses (designed by his wife, Kay), shawls and fabrics – they were favourably received as being as good as any French designs.
E.K. COLE & CO. LTD., SOUTHENDON-SEA, ESSEX One of Britain’s largest radio manufacturers, E.K. Cole & Co. Ltd. (or ‘Ekco’) of Southend-on-Sea adopted Bakelite, a new plastic created by Dr Leo Baekland in America as a synthetic material that lent itself to cheap mass production moulding. Rochford-born Eric Kirkham Cole (1904-1957) set up an electrical engineering business in a shed in Beedell Road, Westcliff, after completing his education at
‘Walker visited the area and was as entranced by it as he was his bride-to-be. He discovered a creative hub where incoming artists schooled locals in jewellery and repoussé metalwork’
Gerald Summers, armchair, 1934. Manufactured by Makers of Simple Furniture, moulded 13-ply birch plywood © Sainsbury Centre, University of East Anglia
ANTIQUE COLLECTING 27
THE EXPERT COLLECTOR Art deco
Southend Technical college. In 1926, he came up with the name Ekco and, four years later, became the first company to use plastic cabinets for its radios, which led to the installation of the first large-scale plastic presses, well suited to durable Bakelite. Cole invited modernist designers of the day to challenge the usual ‘wooden box’ approach to domestic radio design. The two most famous designers to be employed by Ekco in the 1930s were the Russian-born architect and industrial designer, Serge Chermayeff, and Wells Coates, the architect and furniture designer, born in Canada in 1895, who designed furniture for the British furniture manufacturer Pel. The iconic AD-65 radio was available in black, walnut, ivory and even green. It represented radical design and engineering in an everyday household object and spelled international success for the Essex-based company. The brown plastic version, made to simulate burr-walnut, was more popular than the more industrial black plastic version.
28 ANTIQUE COLLECTING
Above Dod Procter, Early Morning Newlyn, 1926, oil on canvas. Lent by Glynn Vivian Art Gallery, Swansea, Wales © The Estate of Dod Procter / Bridgeman Images
The severe geometric shape was to define the visual vocabulary of radio design for many years to come. The model is still highly collectable today. In 2018, the Scottish auction house Lyon & Turnbull sold a 1933 Ekco AC74 moulded Bakelite radio by Chermayeff for £225.
Above right The Midland
Art Deco by the Sea is at the Sainsbury Centre, Norwich from February 9 to June 14, before going to the Laing Art Gallery, Newcastle from July 11 to October 11.
Hotel, Morecombe, designed by Oliver Hill, 1933, postcard. Lent by the Bruce Peter Collection
Below left Ecko AD-76
circular radio Wells Coates Bakelite, 1935, © John Clark
Below The Ekco AC-74
moulded Bakelite radio sold for £225
Below right Tom
Purvis, The Four Streamliners, 1937 © National Railway Museum/Science & Society Picture
‘The two most famous Ecko designers in the 1930s were the Russian-born architect Serge Chermayeff and Wells Coates, the Canadian furniture designer’
Q& & &A Jeroen Markies has been dealing in art deco furniture and decorative arts since 2005
Thomas Martine Ronaldson, Summer, 1928, oil on canvas © Manchester Art Gallery, purchased from the artist in 1929
How do you explain art deco’s enduring appeal? Art deco continues to have an enduring popularity due to its clean lines and modern industrial style. With the often stunning use of exotic wood veneers on the furniture it adds to its gravity and appeal. Although the period uses inspiration from previous centuries, it was the first time that architecture, furniture, ornaments and design linked together in a genuinely modern style.
Is there an area you find particularly exciting? I am always particularly attracted to the stunning exotic veneers used in English art deco furniture, with its simple lines and modern taste it fits very well with other periods and styles. French 1920s and ‘30s art deco sculpture remains popular with prices consistently strong for original pieces.
Below Funhouse, Blackpool Pleasure Beach, Joseph
Emberton, 1935. Lent by the Bruce Peter Collection
Which designers particularly appeal? I like the work of the English designers and brothers Harry and Lou Epstein. Sons of a Russian immigrant cabinetmaker, all six brothers followed their father into the furniture trade - notably Harry and Louis (Lou), who went on to design and produce some of the most innovative furniture of the period. Most of their furniture items were special order and custom-made using the finest quality materials such as burr maple, sycamore or walnut veneer. The design of the famous ‘cloud’ furniture was used on their dining chairs, armchairs and sofa suites, which made them stand out from the crowd. I also admire the work of the French designer Jacques Ruhlmann, whose pieces epitomise the period. Despite having no formal training in furniture design or construction, his trademark style graced the most fashionable homes in Paris.
In your time as a dealer which elements of art deco have you seen ebb and flow?
Above An art deco, demi-lune cocktail cabinet by Harry and Lou Epstein, on sale from Jeroen Markies priced £8,900
There has been a shift in the market to the better quality 1930s art deco, with the later post-war pieces dropping in price and collectability.
What tips have you got for incorporating art deco into an interior? Art deco furniture is incredibly versatile, with cocktail bars, dining suites and lounge suites making a stylish statement to any period room. A sideboard or cocktail cabinet produced by, say, Epstein, not only looks good, its impressive quality will stand the test of time.
Any advice to a would-be collector? Buy the best that you can afford and where possible seek advice from specialist dealers.
Are there any undervalued styles or designers? English art deco furniture remains fantastic value compared to French furniture from the same period. Jeroen Markies Art Deco will be one of the exhibitors at next month’s The Open Art Fair at Duke of York Square, Chelsea from March 18-24.
The Art Deco Society UK, offers regular news, events and talks on the era, www.artdecosociety.uk Coleton Fishacre in Devon was built for Rupert and Dorothy D’Oyly Carte in 1926 and boasts a stunning art deco interior, www.nationaltrust.org.uk Eltham Palace near Greenwich was home to eccentric millionaires Stephen and Virginia Coutauld who transformed its interiors with flamboyant art deco styles, www.english-heritage.org.uk
ANTIQUE COLLECTING 29
Save more than a third on some of the best-selling titles from our sister publisher ACC Art Books
JANE AUSTEN’S ENGLAND THE GARDENER’S TRAVEL COMPANION TO ENGLAND What to see and where to stay Janelle McCulloch ISBN 9781864707571 RRP: £25 Special offer price £16.25
A Travel Guide Karin Quint
ISBN 9781788840354 RRP: £15 Special offer price £9.75
A great gift for any Austen fan - but will also be appreciated by ramblers, Anglophiles, and anyone with an interest in Regency England.
This garden lover’s guide to England is both a valuable travel resource and inspiring coffee-table book for those who adore exploring and strolling through charming garden destinations and horticulturally inspired hideaways.
A Working Life Helen Valentine and Annette Wickham ISBN 9781912520367 RRP: £12.95 Special offer price £8.42
Dame Laura Knight RA’s drawings from the Royal Academy’s collection confirm her exceptional gift for capturing life’s multiplicity and movement. This new study accompanies an exhibition in the RA’s Tennant Gallery running until 2nd February 2020.
THE LITTLE BOOK OF ROSES Michel Beauvais
ISBN 9782379640810 RRP: £10.95 Special offer price £7.12
This little book, beautifully illustrated with antique prints, tells the story of roses of all colours from the perspective of botany, history, literature, poetry and songs, among others.
All orders plus £4 p&p in the UK, overseas rates available on request. To order a copy call 01394 389977 or email firstname.lastname@example.org 30 ANTIQUE COLLECTING
HENRY WALLIS (1830-1916) From Pre-Raphaelite Painter to Collector/Connoisseur Dennis T. Lanigan & Ronald Lessens ISBN 9781788840279 RRP: £45 Special offer price £29.25
The first comprehensive study of Henry Wallis, celebrated Pre-Raphaelite painter and art collector/connoisseur.
TIFFANY LAMPS AND METALWARE Alastair Duncan
ISBN 9781788840309 RRP: £75 Special offer price £48.75
New edition of the original encyclopaedic visual record, featuring over 2,000 Tiffany lamp and metalware models.
ANTIQUE COLLECTING 31
THE EXPERT COLLECTOR Kimono
Japanese Antique Collecting goes behind the scenes of a new exhibition on the influence of the kimono from the 1600s to the present day in both Japan and the West
o other Eastern garment has exerted the enduring influence on Western aesthetics as the kimono. From the Parisian salons of the 1930s, to the art nouveau posters of Alphonse Mucha, the flowing style has been represented in a myriad of art forms. But their history in the West began as early as the 17th century, when the Dutch East India Company traders brought padded versions of the jacket with them when they returned to Holland. While the rest of the world was effectively banned from the country, the Dutch East India Company was permitted to trade in Japan and, to thank the shogun, once a year a small Dutch delegation would make its way to Tokyo to present gifts. Dutch atlases and globes were a particular source of fascination in Japan while the Dutch enjoyed the Japanese lightweight and warm dressing gowns called Japonse rok modelled on the Japanese kosode. So few arrived each year that their rarity made them desirable
32 ANTIQUE COLLECTING
Did you know? In the middle of the 19th century, chrysanthemums brought from Japan to Europe inspired a number of chrysanthemum associations. Pierre Loti’s Madame Chrysanthème, established the flower as the symbol of Japan. Above Fashionable brocade patterns of the Imperial Palace, woodblock print, made by Utagawa Kunisada, 1847-1852, Japan © Victoria and Albert Museum, London Right John Hayls (16001679) portrait of the diarist Samuel Pepys, 1666, showing him wearing a banyan
and they signified elevated status. The aristocrat, Jan Six (1618–1700) stated that “June 1689 was so cold we had to don our winter underwear with braziers at table and Japanese dress coats.” They grew to be extremely popular, a painting by the French artist Louis Ferdinand Elle from 1685 shows a young man wearing a boldly-patterned kimono-like brocade robe. In a diary entry dated 1661 Samuel Pepys refers to an ‘Indian gown’ or banyan. By the 1660s English tailors were making kimonostyle banyans from fashionable European silks. While only a few kimono reached Europe during the Edo period, the situation changed rapidly in the mid-19th century with the opening of Japan to the West.
Left Kimono for a young woman (furisode), 1905–20, probably Kyoto, Japan. © Khalili Collection Right A Japanese couple in traditional dress, image courtesy of Moore Allen & Innocent Below Kaidan (staircase) by Kobayakawa Kiyoshi (1899-1948), hanging scroll, ink and colours on paper
OPEN TO TRADE After Japanese ports ropened to trade with the West in 1854, a tidal wave of foreign imports flooded European shores. On the crest of that wave were woodcut prints by masters of the ukiyo-e school, which transformed Impressionist and Post-Impressionist art. Parisians saw their first formal exhibition of Japanese arts and crafts when Japan took a pavilion at the World’s Fair of 1867. But already, shiploads of Oriental bric-à-brac—including fans, kimono and silks—had begun pouring into England and France. While the influence of ukiyo-e on impressionist painters is well documented, less well known is the influence the kimono had on fashion. V&A Asian textile expert, Anna Jackson, said: “In the late 19th century, Japan was viewed as an ideal ancient society whose people were innately artistic and lived in harmony with nature while respecting the laws of social deference. The West was seen as rational and masculine whereas Japan was regarded as childlike and feminine. The kimono was central to this alluring vision of Japanese women and the fantasy of the geisha.” In addition to which, turn-of-the-century women’s fashion was breaking away from its restrictive past, the freedom of movement and simple form of the kimono had a profound impact on fashion. Kimono bought from department stores such as Liberty & Co. in London were worn by those wishing to
‘Kimono bought from department stores such as Liberty & Co. were worn by those wishing to express their artistic flair. Japan responded by making boldly embroidered ‘kimono for foreigners’, while the domestic market was transformed by the use of European textile technology and chemical dyes’
KIMONO: A HISTORY
Meaning ‘the thing worn’, the term kimono was first adopted in the mid-19th century. Prior to that, the garment was known as a kosode, which means ‘small sleeve’, a reference to the opening at the wrist. Originally worn by commoners, or as an undergarment by the aristocracy, from the 16th century the kosode, or kimono, had become the principal item of dress for all classes and both sexes. It was during the Edo period (1615–1868) that kimono flourished – despite the bans on luxurious living imposed by the Tokugawa shogunate. This was a period of unprecedented political stability, economic growth, and urban expansion in Japan. No longer belligerent the Samurai ruling military class put its wealth into other areas, including sumptuous women’s kimono. Yet it was the merchant and artisan classes, or chōnin, who benefited most from the peace and prosperity of the period. Unable to use their wealth to improve their social status, they had to find different outlets for their money, such as buying beautiful clothes. The kimono developed into a highly expressive means of personal display. All this was despite the shogunate issuing a raft of laws to control behaviour and reinforce appropriate class display. Seven such edicts were issued in 1683 alone, with the greatest emphasis on clothing – prohibiting particular fabrics, techniques and dyes. Well-known courtesans were major public figures in the 17th century and the trend setters of the day, with their taste celebrated in woodblock prints. Prints of the women wearing the most fashionable kimono served as publicity for brothel owners and clothing merchants alike. The highest-ranking courtesans, known as oiran, would dress in the most sumptuous garments given to them by their clients.
ANTIQUE COLLECTING 33
THE EXPERT COLLECTOR Kimono Understanding kimono The apparent simplicity of the design belies a complex tradition that governs how, when and where it is worn, and by whom. The length of the sleeves, the colours, motifs, lining, family crests and the material from which it is made all reflect the status of its wearer. When a young girl from a good family married, a complete set of kimono and sashes to be worn at different stages of her life would be prepared in advance by her relatives. The magnificence of the garment, and the knot with which the obi was tied, stood in place of jewellery, which Japanese women do not wear. Personal adornment was limited to hair combs, or a precious object such as an obidome sash ornament, an uchiwa fan, or a hakoseko case, slipped into the opening of the robe. Because of this apparent simplicity, craftsmen competed to outdo each other in the decoration of accessories, which were designed as though they were pieces of jewellery.
Above Night gown (rok) Japan, 17001750. Image courtesy of the collection of the Gemeentemuseum Den Haag Above right Kimono for
export, probably Kyoto, Japan, 1905-1915 © Victoria and Albert Museum, London
Left Outer kimono for a young woman, probably Kyoto, 1800-1830. Image courtesy of the Joshibi Art Museum Below Parading
courtesan, woodblock print, Katsukawa Shunsen, 1804-18, Edo (Tokyo), Japan © Victoria and Albert Museum, London
express their artistic flair. Japan responded by making boldly embroidered ‘kimono for foreigners’, while the domestic market was transformed by the use of European textile technology and chemical dyes. The kimono’s biggest impact on Western fashion came in the early 20th century, when designers such as Paul Poiret, Mariano Fortuny and Madeleine Vionnet abandoned tightly-corseted styles in favour of loose layers of fabric that draped the body. Poiret opened his store in Paris in 1903. He presented a dress without a corset in 1906 and later introduced a series of works influenced by the avantgarde Ballets Russes that incorporated motifs from Egypt and Eastern Europe, among other sources. By
34 ANTIQUE COLLECTING
breaking away from restrictive 19th-century clothing, he created a straight cut and gentle drape in his dresses, drawing on clothing features from Japan. This dress was tailored to suggest a black woven haori, or short coat, worn over a grey kimono. He called his loose-fitting silhouette coats ‘kimono coats.’ While the early 20th century had witnessed a general decline in the vogue for Japanese art and design, as it was no longer a novelty, these garments reveal that, in fashion the influence of Japan was undeniable. And the style has continued to dominate from Chanel to Ziggy Stardust. With Japan back on the sporting and cultural agenda in 2020, the style could be set for an even bigger comeback. Kimono: Kyoto to Catwalk, featuring 315 works from museums and private collections around the world, is on at Gallery 39, V&A, from February 29 to June 21.
Kimono for a woman, (kosode) crepe silk. Probably Kyoto, 171040. Image courtesy of Joshibi Art Museum
NETSUKE: A GUIDE
No discussion of kimono would be complete from a collecting perspective without mention of netsuke and inrō, both of which are fundamental to the wearing of kimono. For the wearer to carry small items such as tobacco, medicine, and seals, ingeniously constructed sagemono (a collective term for ‘hanging things’) were suspended on cords that hung from the obi sash. Stacked, nested containers, known as inrō, were specifically designed to hold medicine or seals. Netsuke served as anchors or counterweights for inrō and sagemono. A single cord was threaded onto the container, through two holes (himotoshi) in the netsuke, then through the other side of the container, and knotted on the underside. A decorative bead, or ojime, slid along the cord between the netsuke and sagemono, allowed the user to open and close the container During the late 19th century, netsuke transitioned from functional and fashionable accessories to objets d’art favoured by westerners who appreciated the exquisite craftsmanship and diminutive size. When the country’s ports opened to foreign trade in 1854, the introduction of western-style clothes meant the kimono receded into the confines of the private sphere. Once the carvings ceased to be necessary accoutrements for everyday male dress, demand for netsuke as a fashion accessory declined as well. But with the increasing number of foreigners residing in Japan, the market for netsuke as a collector’s item expanded. Compact and portable by design, netsuke were exported in large numbers. The Russian jeweller Peter Carl Fabergé (1846–1920), was an avid collector. More recently the British author and ceramicist Edmund de Waal’s netsuke collection, which was at the heart of his memoir The Hare with Amber Eyes, has gone on permanent loan to the Jewish Museum in Vienna.
Many netsuke feature zodiac animals which were given as New Year gifts and could be worn for the following 12 months, image courtesy of Bonhams
Q& & &A Collecting kimono
After collecting vintage Japanese kimono, Ceri Oldham started selling them from her online shop www.wafuku.co.uk
Why are kimono collectable? Japanese clothing is not only beautiful when worn, it is also fabulous for interior design and makes, among other things, stunning wall hangings. Men’s haori jackets, with their highly decorative linings; men’s and boys’ jubans; children’s ceremonial kimono and many nagajubans can be equally striking as a woman’s kimono but make smaller displays, if space is limited. An obi, while beautiful worn on a kimono, also makes an exquisite runner when placed at the centre of a dining table. Or it can be used as a colourful addition when placed across a bedspread. If you want to use the pieces for display, use a long piece of thickish bamboo or a wooden pole (about the thickness of a broom handle), with a string or cord loop attached to the centre to hang them from. Kimono are usually displayed with the front edges of the garment pulled out to the sides, with either the back or the front displayed.
Are they easy to come by? In Japan, the practice of wearing a kimono is dying out – it’s certainly extremely rare to see them worn on a daily basis. Their demise began in earnest in the 1920s when western fashions came to the fore. They are worn now mostly on special occasions, with people owning perhaps only one or two – they might even hire them out on the occasions for which they are needed. The exception is geisha and maiko (apprentice geisha) who still make an art of dressing in kimono and wear them all the time. When it was common to wear a kimono every day people tended to build up sizeable collections. But the Japanese have long since started to part with these collections, many of which were also lost during the
Tokyo earthquake in the 1920s. With the style giving way to western clothing, it means now is a good time to buy a vintage kimono. There are still so many beautiful designs in Japan, but with fewer people wearing them or amassing collections. On the other hand, it also means the supply in Japan is not being maintained as well as it was in earlier times, meaning there won’t always be the fabulous variation of kimono available that there is today.
What might you expect to pay? Even the plainest silk kimono can cost well over £1,000, with many valued at several thousand pounds. In fact, kimono can greatly exceed couture western clothing in price, which isn’t surprising when you consider the quality and quantity of silk involved in creating them. Above Masayo Long, aged 20, sold her 140-strong collection of kimono at Moore Allen & Innocent in 2019 Below A Meiji period embroidered silk kimono
decorated with cranes, pine trees, red peonies, prune flowers and bamboo trees, sold for £5,250 at Lyon & Turnbull in 2019
ANTIQUE COLLECTING 35
THE EXPERT COLLECTOR ‘Marriage’ antiques Left A large 50cm (20in) 19th-century four-bowl sycamore spoon inset with a mirror, possibly from Carmarthenshire in southwest Wales, image courtesy of Tim Bowen Antiques Below A large,
Norwegian sycamore lovespoon c. 1874, 31 x 9cm (12½ x 3½) on sale from Robert Young Antiques, poa. The style, though beautiful, is less ornate than the Welsh
For the lovelorn Welsh maiden nothing was as thrilling as the presentation of a carved spoon from a wouldbe suitor. Not only did it show a loving interest, it proved her potential husband was no slouch in the woodworking department. Lovespoons are not confined to Wales – they are also found in Celtic Breton and Scandinavia where their intention varied from ‘feeler’ spoons (sent to many girls to gauge who was the keenest) to ‘suitor’ spoons, carried in the carver’s breast pocket to show he was ‘going steady’ with a girl. (Swedes even gave out ‘jokespoons’ at weddings which were comically misshapen to make eating by inebriated guests very difficult). Compared to the elaborate decoration of their Welsh counterparts, Scandinavian spoons tended to be relatively conservative, although the heart was generally present somewhere in the design as it was universally recognised as the symbol of love and affection. In Welsh circles the acceptance of the spoon didn’t necessarily signal anything more than mutual interest, with a sizeable collection seen as an indication of a girl’s desirability.
WELSH VERSIONS The oldest Welsh lovespoon is in the collection of the National Museum of Wales and dates to 1667. Like their Scandanavian counterparts spoons were shaped with great care and devotion with the calibre of the spoons testimony to the makers’ skill and devotion. Welsh carvers used a wide range of of symbols in an eclectic range of styles. Styles, ranging from simple panel spoons to chainlink and balls-in-cages crowned by ornate swivels
All you need is LOVE Love and marriage have influenced antiques for centuries. To celebrate this month’s Valentine’s Day, Antique Collecting puts three designs in the spotlight 36 ANTIQUE COLLECTING
Symbolism of lovespoons Hearts
The heart is the universal symbol of love and is frequently seen on Welsh lovespoons. It is a sign of passion and strong emotion, proving the carver’s depth of feeling for his beloved. A lovespoon showing twin hearts might well indicate a mutual love between sender and recipient.
Occasionally, lovespoons are carved with two or more bowls, possibly to indicate the union of the souls when joined together, or perhaps the number of children desired.
Comma or paisley shapes
Often visible on historic Welsh lovespoons, this shape is said to represent the soul and deep affection.
Balls carved within cages are thought to represent the number of children desired by the carver, but could equally be a sign of a man held captive by love.
and anchors carved from close-grain woods, such as sycamore, box and fruit woods, were particularly popular. Welsh country furniture and folk art specialist Tim Bowen, said: “The balls-in-cages demonstrated the consummate skill of the maker as the balls had to be carved from the solid wood not just placed in the cage.” While few documented records exist, there is no evidence that the acceptance of a spoon constituted an engagement. More likely it gave the young man a green light to initiate a relationship.
Right A cassone c. 1480–1495, Italian. The gesso relief shows Ceres, Roman goddess of agriculture, accompanied by the underworld goddess Hecate, searching for Proserpina, the daughter of Ceres
The Italian Renaissance marriage chest
2 MARRIAGE CHESTS
One of the quintessential items of peasant furniture, especially in Europe, is the colourful folk-painted antique pine box, coffer, trunk or chest. While popular abroad, the style is less familiar in the UK. Dealer John Cornall said: “If highly decorated chests were not found in the British Isles it is partly because we had different marriage traditions from our European neighbours and also because of the iconoclasm, or anti-festive turn, that our visual traditions took from the time of the English Revolution in the 17th century.” In Wales and in the rest of British Isles, the custom for country people, was to present a dresser, or sideboard, for use and display in the front room or tidy
During the 14th to 16th centuries elaborately decorated wooden wedding chests known as cassoni (cassone in the singular) were an integral part of Italian marriage ceremonies. Commissioned in pairs and shaped like ancient sarcophagi, they were paraded from the bride’s house to her husband’s after the wedding.
‘While few documented records exist, there is no evidence that the acceptance of a spoon constituted an engagement. More likely it gave the young man a green light to initiate a relationship’
Generally considered to indicate loyalty and faithfulness. Chain links might also symbolise a couple bound together in love and loyalty.
Diamonds are believed to represent a wish for prosperity and good fortune and a promise to provide well for a partner.
Throughout the marriage, the chests were used for storage and seating and were among the most prestigious furnishings in the home. In an era when homes, even those of the elite, were comparatively sparsely furnished, the marriage chest would have been the most splendid and distinctive piece in the newly-weds’ room or camera, a semi-private domestic space which was not only where the couple slept, but was also used for entertaining. They were, therefore, important vehicles for display, reminders of family alliances and family wealth. As well as being practical, the chest also depicted edifying marriage ‘lessons’ based on the the 14th-century writings of poets such as Boccaccio, Dante and Petrarch.
Left A Welsh lovespoon with hearts, wheels and ‘commas’, image courtesy of Tim Bowen Antiques Right A marriage cupboard with field and floral panels, pine, Austrian Empire, c.1840, on sale from Robert Young Antiques priced £4,800
Keys and keyholes
In addition to the house images that sometimes appear on Welsh lovespoons appearing to represent domestic contentment, key and keyhole carvings are also used frequently, perhaps symbolising security or, more romantically, the key to one’s heart.
Wheels are thought to represent a vow by the carver to work hard and provide for his spouse and family.
ANTIQUE COLLECTING 37
THE EXPERT COLLECTOR ‘Marriage’ antiques with the same colours, flowers and patterns woven into the bride and groom’s clothing, so, too, the blankets that bedecked the wagon.”
WHAT TO LOOK FOR Some of the best wedding chest come from Germany and Sweden, which were finely made and well crafted with bold mouldings and panels. Mostly made of widely available pine, the humbleness of the wood was often disguised with a wood grain effect to imitate darker more expensive wood. Each area or region boasted its own style, patterns, colour and symbols, ranging from religious symbols promoting piety and fidelity to flowers and birds each of which had a different significance. Hungarians often call marriage chests ‘tulip boxes’ because of their flower motif borrowed from Eastern Europe and the tulip mania of the Netherlands. While the flower found its way into painting and decorative art of the Baroque, in the multi-ethnic outlands of the Hapsburg Empire, it came to represent tribal identity and solidarity. John said: “When I put the boxes on the internet I am sometimes contacted by people in Eastern Europe who recognise the style and even know the workshops they came from.” Boxes from Scandinavia are much sought after by collectors as being well built, although Swedish and Norwegian boxes were invariably made with domed lids that is a deterrent to buyers as it limits use in the home, he added.
room. The dresser would then display the home's best crockery, with a set of rarely used silver cutlery in the drawer, both of which had been wedding gifts. Growing in popularity today, the boxes are especially sought after by interior designers, modern art galleries and textile collectors, as the designs were often based on traditional bridal dress. When originally presented, the boxes were often accompanied by other similarly decorated pieces of furniture, whose role was similar, such as an armoire, or a chest of drawers, or a painted dresser and also by smaller items like a spoon or plate rack. Often made in local workshops, the marriage chests were ornate affairs designed to be on show during the wedding procession. Many were inscribed with a date and the couple’s initials and it is not uncommon for one box to be painted over when it was handed down to the next generation. John continued: “In the Harta region of Hungary and in the Kaloteszeg (now in Romania) a set of furniture was painted in the region’s typical colours,
Above left A marriage chest, Austrian Empire, c. 1872, pine, inscribed Anno. Eliza Barbara Sauaura. 1782, on sale from Robert Young Antiques, priced £3,500 Left A marriage cupboard, Austrian Empire, c.1825, pine, on sale from Robert Young Antiques, priced £5,000 Above right A post-
modern love seat, by the Dutch designer Frank Tjepkema, made from cedar wood and aluminum
38 ANTIQUE COLLECTING
3 LOVE SEATS
Another furniture style with distinct romantic connotations is the ‘love seat’ – provoking images of seated young lovers whispering sweet nothings to one another at country house gatherings. It can, however, be more widely used to describe a broader variety of seating styles, encompassing everything from S-shaped
sofas, upholstered in deeplybuttoned leather; to simple benches constructed in wood, as well as the familiar twoseater sofa commonly found in homes today. The origins of the design reach back to the 17th century when the voluminous fashions worn by women, incorporating layers of petticoats, underskirts and hoops, meant that the standard one-seat chair failed to offer the necessary width. As such, ladies would often be seated in wider, un-upholstered wooden seats.
BARD WOOD CHAIR The era also saw chairs that celebrated the marital union of a well-to-do couple. One such celebrated example was offered at auction in a Christie’s sale during 2002, engraved with the coat of arms of William Shakespeare and bearing the initials ‘WAS’ (supposedly denoting William and Anne Shakespeare). Bought by the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust for £1,800, the alleged ‘Shakespeare’s courting chair’ is now on display in Anne Hathaway’s Cottage in Stratford-Upon-Avon, Warwickshire. Over the next two centuries, as female fashions evolved to favour more form-fitting gowns, wider seats still retained favour due to the extra space they offered sitters. Two-seater and three-seater settees also grew in popularity during the 18th century, popularised by the designs of such figures as the eminent architect and furniture designer, William Kent. Sir Robert Walpole commissioned Kent to design a settee as part of a suite, constructed in mahogany and 24-carat gilding, for his salon at Houghton Hall.
Above A 19thcentury French giltwood chair in ivory linen Below right An extra-
wide tête-à-tête after the mid-century designs of Edward Wormley
Left The chair bears the initials ‘WAS’, image courtesy of Shakespeare Birthplace Trust/ Andrew Thomas
A tête-à-tête refers to a unique piece of opulent French furniture which emerged in the 19th century, with the name (which translates as head-to-head) accurately describing the early functionality of these seats during the Victorian era. The traditional tête-à-tête seat features chairs with S-shaped, curved backs facing opposite directions and sharing a centre armrest. Also known as a courting bench, a kissing bench, a vis-a-vis, conversation bench, or a gossip’s chair, early tête-àtêtes were designed to inspire intimate conversations (hence the name ‘courting bench’). Similar to the classic head-to-head chair style, tête-à-tête sofas feature backrests which are curved to face one another. Think of it as a modern chaise lounge but with a backrest on each side instead of a single backrest. This allows both individuals to have a backrest but still engage face-to-face. The tête-à-tête concept evolved from its Victorian beginnings to effectively become a settee chair. Although the majority of pieces feature the standard S-shaped backrest, there is seemingly no end to the variety of designs. The style was revived by a number of mid-century designers, including the American modernist Edward Wormley.
These two-seater ‘chairs’ were also deemed acceptable meeting places for budding lovers who had to adhere to the strict moral codes of the period. Seated in such close proximity, they could engage in quiet conversation and courtship, without incurring the disapprobation of their elders for indecency. By the beginning of the 19th century, chairs of this width and style were being crafted and given the romanticised name of love seats or courting chairs. However, many examples were still constructed with two sections to symbolically emphasise their duality of purpose. Meanwhile in France, by the middle of the century, another version of the love seat gained popularity: the boudeuse. A small, upholstered sofa, the boudeuse was constructed in such a way that the two sitters faced in opposite directions, leaning against a shared central back. This type of seat was also referred to as the dos-àdos, which translates as ‘back-to-back’. By the late 19th century, as the Industrial Revolution changed the social landscape of Britain, upholstered two-seater chairs and sofas were increasingly common in homes of all classes. ANTIQUE COLLECTING 39
ac ad dec.indd 1
02/01/2020 05:03:16 PM
EXPERT COMMENT Chinese ceramics Left Charles Hanson with the Emperor Yongzheng bowl, photo Emma Errington
An Auctioneer’s Lot Charles Hanson was bowled over by a 300-year-old Chinese bowl sparking wordwide interest
bjects like this humble blue and white Chinese bowl stop me in my tracks. It’s tiny and may seem innocuous at first sight but look a little closer because this simple object could set the saleroom alight. Though it measures only around 14cm in diameter and can fit in the palm of my hand, it’s expected to fetch in excess of £25,000 when it goes to auction at Hansons this month.
CHANCE DISCOVERY It only came to light after we spied it in a box of general items a client brought along to the saleroom for valuation and sale. It was among a mixture of inherited heirlooms. Instinctively, thanks to the quality of the paste and the delicacy of the painting, I knew it was something special. Its six-character script mark confirmed it was from the reign of Emperor Yongzheng who ruled from 1722-35 during the Qing Dynasty. It’s a rare Eight Immortals bowl in underglaze blue within a double circle from the period 1723-1735. That means it is nearly 300 years old. Its exterior is finely decorated with the Eight Daoist Immortals shown with their attributes standing atop a wave border. Meanwhile the ‘Three Star’ gods: Shoulao, Fuxing and Luxing, are depicted in a garden beneath an arched pine tree within a circular roundel in the centre of the bowl.
Far right The bowl’s exterior is decorated with the Eight Daoist Immortals
TRACK RECORD It is beautiful in its simplicity and elegance and is sure to spark major interest. Ancient Chinese ceramics are fiercely sought after by wealthy collectors keen to repatriate precious historical objects like this to their homeland. Every now and then, we uncover something spectacular that sends the Chinese or Oriental market into a frenzy. I’ll never forget the Chinese vase a couple brought along for free valuation in 2011, hoping to get £25. It turned out to be Quing Dynasty with the daoguang period mark (1821-1850). It sold for £192,000. Then, in 2016, a large Emperor Qianlong (1735-1799) Chinese vase, used as a doorstop, was contested to £650,000. Fast forward to 2017 when an Emperor Yongzheng Chinese plate, c.1723-1735 – the same time period as our recent find – was discovered in a Derbyshire kitchen cupboard. It sold for £230,000.
YONGZHENG EMPEROR The Yongzheng Emperor, who lived from 1678 to 1735, was the fifth emperor of the Qing dynasty, and the third Qing emperor to rule over China. A hard-working ruler, his main goal was to create an effective government at minimal expense. Like his father, the Kangxi Emperor, the Yongzheng Emperor used military force to preserve the dynasty’s position. Although Yongzheng’s reign was much shorter than that of his father (and his son, the Qianlong Emperor), the Yongzheng era was a period of peace and prosperity – and wonderful ceramics. I very much hope to uncover more objects to delight Chinese collectors in 2020. Assisting me will be our Chinese and Oriental art consultant Dr Eldon Worrall who, two years ago, discovered an Imperial porcelain incense burner from the Jiajing period in an art gallery basement worth an eye-watering £2m. Dr Worrall will be holding a Chinese and Oriental ceramic valuation at Hansons, Heage Lane, Etwall, Derbyshire DE65 6LS, on February 27 from 10am-4pm. The Eight Immortals bowl goes under the hammer on February 22 at Hansons London.
Right Its six-character
script mark confirms the bowl is from the reign of Emperor Yongzheng
Below right The ‘Three
Star’ gods: Shoulao, Fuxing and Luxing are depicted beneath a pine tree in the centre of the bowl
‘Every now and then, we uncover something spectacular that sends the Chinese or Oriental market into a frenzy’ ANTIQUE COLLECTING 41
MEMORABILIA Collecting in 2030 ROLLING STONES MEMORABILIA IS FINALLY VALUABLE
The Rolling Stones had a great innings. Astonishing when you consider their infamously debauched lifestyles. But now, fin ally, the band has hung up their leather trousers for the last time. Before the 2020s, the Stones were undervalued. That’s partly because they kept a tight hold on their memorabilia, rarely parting with iconic instruments or stage wear. They also played live regularly. You could get an autograph well into the ‘20s. In time the band’s estate may open up and some of those classic guitars, outfits and props may come to auction. We can expect some tremendous results if they ever do. Above This Rolling Stones’ acetate recording from 1963 sold for $20,000 in 2018, image courtesy of RR Auction
THE FIRST MILLION DOLLAR VIDEO GAME SALE
Cool & Collectable
Bored with the inevitable 2020 predictions? Memorabilia expert Paul Fraser reveals how collecting will look in the future
he year is 2030. And the world is a very different place. Flying cars. Tinfoil jumpsuits. Ray guns. Just as Arthur C Clarke, Aldous Huxley and The Jetsons predicted. Of course, over the past decade the collecting world has changed. From my lofty vantage point here in the future, the 2020s seem like a distant dream. I have a while before catching the pneumatic tube to Neo Tokyo. Here’s how the market looks now.
42 ANTIQUE COLLECTING
Above Millennials’ nostalgia has brought a boom in Pokemon Right In 2019, a sealed copy of Super Mario Bros sold for $100,100, image courtesy of Heritage Auctions
In the late 2010s, gaming quietly became the most profitable sector of the entertainment industry. Today it’s worth hundreds of billions of dollars around double the movie industry. As gaming became a central pillar of the economy, prices for classic video games started to rise. Back in the 1970s, a hard core of committed hobbyists made up the nascent industry. Games only started to gain real commercial appeal in the 1980s, but most saw them as toys. Few recognised their inherent worth. But they had all the hallmarks of a valuable item. Produced by small, independent studios, they’re profoundly rare in mint condition. In 2018, enthusiasts founded specialist authentication house Wata Games. This injected a new confidence into the industry, with buyers now able to rely on the opinion of a trusted expert. In 2019, one buyer paid $100,100 for a sealed copy of Super Mario Bros.
TOYS FROM THE 90S ARE HUGE
By 2030, most millennials have entered middle age. Few enjoy the financial security of previous generations. But like past cohorts, they’re still interested in owning pieces from their past. Some of the most popular collectors’ items are toys from the 1990s the age of the playground craze. By 2020, buyers were paying thousands for mint condition Game Boys, Jurassic Park figurines and, of course, Tamagotchis. Millennials kept a special place in their hearts for Pokemon. Back in the 90s, bemused parents were emptying their wallets for these foil-wrapped Japanese trading cards. A mint original set of the Americanedition made $107,000 in 2019, proving the viability of this unusual investment.
Right Singers like Elton John shaped an entire era Below left A mint original set of the American-edition cards made $107,000 in 2019, image courtesy of Goldin Auctions Below right The lyrics to Elton John’s Your Song realised £180,000 in 2017, image courtesy of Bonhams
IT’S ALL ABOUT THE ‘80S
Memorabilia from the counterculture icons of the 1960s - The Beatles, Bob Dylan and the like - remains the gold standard. These artists were so influential, and their stories so compelling, that demand has never dropped. Each generation discovers these figures anew. But here in the 2030s, the 1980s are the decade that has shown the most growth. Figures like Queen, Elton John and Madonna shaped their era in more ways than one. They were pioneering songwriters, LGBT activists and icons in their own right. This growth has been a long time coming. The first figure to reach these heights was Prince, following his death in 2016. Demand for his memorabilia spiked overnight, climaxing in the sale of his blue Cloud guitar for $700,000 in 2017. In 2019, the lyrics to Elton John’s Your Song realised £180,000. It’s incredible to think it’s been half a century since the 1980s. Who knows what the next decade will bring?
LOOK OUT FOR OTHER TRADING CARDS
Baseball cards have been popular collectors’ items for decades. Legendary treasures like the T206 Honus Wagner and the 1952 Topps Mickey Mantle sell for millions. It took a while for collectors to bite on modern trading cards. But when they did, they went big. In the late 2010s, values for modern variants jumped. In 2019, a unique Mint 9 2000 Tom Brady-signed Playoff Contenders Championship Ticket rookie card sold for $400,100 on eBay. A 1997-1998 Metal Universe PMG Green Michael Jordan sold for $350,000 that same year. These ultra rare cards often include signatures from players or cuttings of game-worn jerseys. Collectors were willing to speculate on future hall of famers. Many were rewarded.
Paul Fraser is the founder of Paul Fraser Collectibles, for more details go to www. paulfrasercollectibles.com ANTIQUE COLLECTING 43
COLLECTING GUIDE Sèvres porcelain
Left A Sèvres pot pourri
‘Pompadour’ vase and cover. Estimated at £2,000-£3,000
When the esteemed dealer Judith Howard died last year she left a formidable collection of Sèvres porcelain which goes under the hammer this month. Ivan Macquisten spoke to her daughter Charlotte about her mother’s passion
iltshire-based garden designer Charlotte Howard has inherited the collecting bug – she has a passion for anything connected to the French Revolution. It is an understandable obsession, given her mother was Judith Howard, the well-liked and hugely respected scholar, dealer and collector, who died in January 2019 aged 73. She said: “My mother caught the antiques bug early. When she was about six, an antiques dealer saw she was enthusiastic and said if she could guess what factory a cup was from she could keep it; she cleverly spotted it as Caughley.” Her early talent developed into a lifelong obsession, which resulted in a 1,000-piece collection of porcelain, two pieces of which were of such quality they have gone to the Rothschild Collection at Waddesdon.
44 ANTIQUE COLLECTING
Above A Sèvres plate from a service made for Madame du Barry, c.1770-75. Madame du Barry, the mistress of Louis XV, followed her predecessor’s appreciation of Sèvres porcelain and had various pieces in her collection. Estimated at £5,000-£8,000 Right A Vincennes circular serving dish from the bleu celeste service of Louis XV, c.1755. Estimated at £20,000-£25,000
Charlotte said: “The Waddesdon connection, especially, would have struck a chord with my mother. She used to say that if her life had been different, she would have ended up running the Wallace Collection, but she was no diplomat. She loved people who were fun and eccentric, but couldn’t stand bores.”
THE YOUNG COLLECTOR A pupil at North London Collegiate, Judith (nee Bolingbroke) was a very bright child, although rather laid back academically. But while she may have had a lacklustre approach to her studies, when it came to her professional ambition, she had a steely focus. The V&A was the only place she wanted to work and, eschewing university, she applied for a job in the textiles department aged 18.
While textiles gave her a start she always wanted to work in porcelain and soon transferred to the ceramics department where she helped Svend Eriksen with his research, leading to a life-long passion for Sèvres. Colleagues at the time included Aileen Dawson, late of the British Museum; Gaye Blake Roberts, long time curator of the Wedgwood Museum and archive, and finally Rosalind Saville DBE, late of the Wallace Collection and a fellow specialist in all things Sèvres.
GOING FOR A SONG Promoted to research assistant, it fell to Judith to act as guide to Sir Geoffrey de Bellaigue (Surveyor of the Queen’s Works of Art) while he inspected the V&A’s collection for his book about Sèvres. She also developed a passion for collecting, which inevitably led to dealing as she scoured the markets at Portobello, Grays, Alfies and Antiquarius, where she struck up a friendship with Simon Wilson of Butler and Wilson. Continental porcelain was her passion and she was soon recognised as an authority on antiques. Leaving the V&A to conduct research and try her hand at dealing, she found herself as an expert on the popular TV programme Going for a Song with Arthur Negus. She later became the curator at Bowood House in Wiltshire and lectured at Christie’s and Southampton College, as well as on a freelance basis across the south of England.
Above A Sèvres plate from the service of the Archduke Ferdinand of Austria, date code for 1785. This service was given to the Archduke by his brother-in-law, Louis XVI in honour of his visit to France. Estimated at £2,000£3,000 Above right A Sèvres
gobelet ‘litron’ can and saucer, painted with figural scenes on a bleu de roi ground. Estimated at £1,000£1,500
Below right A Sèvres ice
cup or tasse a glace of blue ribbon decoration, possibly made for Madame du Barry. Estimated at £1,000£1,500
In 1971, she married Alvin Howard and moved to Wiltshire. He worked as an architect, while she dabbled in antique dealing. Charlotte said: “She didn’t have a lot of money, so she would have to sell to buy and that’s really how she first developed as a dealer. If she saw a beautiful opal ring she wanted, she would sell a couple of cameo brooches to buy it. Then she started dealing properly and that’s where her obsession came from.” And it was an obsession, in the end her collection numbered nearly a thousand pieces of Sèvres. Charlotte continued: “Her collection was incredibly varied. She didn’t have a massive budget, but she did have a sixth sense when it came to finding the gems among the dross. She was a magnet for rare antiques where you would least expect to find them. For instance, she once found a Josephine sugar bowl from the Egyptian service in a junk shop and a Louis XV Sèvres plate, mislabelled as Minton, in another junk shop in Marlborough.”
FEMME FORMIDABLE Ceramics expert Eric Knowles met Judith at Bonhams in 1984. He said: “She was without question the veritable femme formidable in so far as being a
‘Leaving the V&A to conduct research and try her hand at dealing, she found herself as an expert on the popular TV programme Going for a Song with Arthur Negus’ ANTIQUE COLLECTING 45
COLLECTING GUIDE Sèvres porcelain Left Just room for the television, but even that was surrounded by pictures and other collectables Below left A Sèvres
biscuit figure of a lady at a dressing table having her hair done, Charlotte Howard’s favourite piece from her mother’s collection
no-nonsense type, incredibly opinionated whilst wickedly funny and well up on the most recent social gossip to such an extent that, had they known, both Nigel Dempster and William Hickey would have had sleepless nights. “I was soon to discover that here was a young woman with a truly encyclopedic knowledge, not just regarding ceramics and glass but so much more as this auction catalogue is a firm testament to.” Clare Durham from Woolley & Wallis’, which is selling the collection, said: “Judith’s collection is not just a labour of love, it is a labour of passion, almost verging on obsession. Sèvres porcelain held a very special place for her almost her whole life, and her collection is both aesthetic and academic – combining her extensive knowledge with her love of colour and pattern. “There are real rarities which you will struggle to find outside royal collections and museums, but similarly a good number of more everyday items, which you could describe as ‘study’ pieces. It is very rare for a collection this extensive and varied to come onto the market.”
The Judith Howard Collection of Sèvres Porcelain goes under the hammer at Woolley & Wallis on February 4 with a private charity view on January 31. Ceramics expert Errol Manners will present a lecture called A Particularly British Fascination: the Anglo-Sèvres Affair on January 31.
SÈVRES: A COLLECTING GUIDE
If you are inspired to start a collection, what do you need to know about the French manufactory?
lthough the first ‘true’ porcelain in Europe was made by Böttger in Germany, the French were swift to follow Dresden’s lead. Soft paste porcelain was produced at Chantilly, St Cloud and at Vincennes from 1738. From the beginning, the Vincennes factory enjoyed a privileged status among the porcelain factories as manufacture royale, with royal patronage and financial support from King Louis XV and his mistress Madame de Pompadour who was a devoted patroness of the factory, which moved to her village of Sèvres from Vincennes in the first year of The Seven Years War (1756-63). To protect his investment the king issued a royal edict restricting the activities of all the other porcelain factories in France, forbidding existing makers from using gold and certain colours in their decoration and preventing all workmen from joining any rival china works. In Sèvres, a closer eye could be kept on the royal factory (by 1759 Louis XV was the sole shareholder). Soon the expense of the war, however, took its toll and the king was forced to send all his gold and silver to the melting pot and encouraged his court to do the same. No longer able to use silver and gold for dining display, Versailles, which was the size of a small town, began to fill with Sèvres porcelain. To encourage its popularity, Louis XV held a sale at which the court was expected to buy. Otherwise purchases were made through merchand-merciers such as Lazare Duveaux.
FRENCH ROCOCO With its gentle feminine shapes, the porcelain of Vincennes and Sèvres captured the mood of the French rococo. Sèvres is famed for its coloured grounds and gilding. The early bleu lapis ground is particularly distinctive, with a beautiful wash-like or ‘mottled’ quality. The factory also was well-known for its brilliant bleu céleste, a sparkling turquoise that forms wonderful borders. It was one of the costliest colours to produce, and Louis XV famously ordered an entire service in the colour soon after its development. Pâté tendre continued to be made until the end of the 18th century, although hard paste – the so-called pâté dure – was made alongside soft paste at Sèvres
46 ANTIQUE COLLECTING
from 1769 which enabled the application of new types of gilding and ground colours. This was perfected in the 19th century, with a focus on the development of new glazes and colours (simulating hardstones and marble), as well as on the creation of complex shapes and forms. The ‘reticulated’ or pierced bodies developed in the 19th century were particularly hard to achieve. They involved creating and firing a double porcelain wall with an intricate lattice of openings to the outer wall.
KNOW YOUR MARKS Sèvres porcelain is very often marked with two blue-painted ‘interlaced’ Ls. This in turn often encloses a letter or double letter, which acts as a code for the year in which the piece was produced. Thus, a teabowl with the letter A on it would have a production date of c. 1754. Sèvres is, therefore, an easy factory to document in this respect, as painters and gilders were allowed to add their ‘mark’ on pieces they worked on in order to identify themselves. Many of these painters and the pieces they worked on are noted in factory records (now held in the archives at Sèvres) and are consequently identifiable. These craftsmen often passed their skills down through the generations and so several painters of the same name can be mentioned in the records across decades.
Right Three Sèvres pot-pourri vases in the shape of ships, 1761, Waddesdon Image Library Below Left Blue L marks
enclosing date letter F and crescent painter’s mark for Louis-Denis Armand l’aîné
Bottom right Detail of the base of a plate, later redecorated and showing the ring of ‘spit-back’ typical of redecorated wares
Discover more Waddesdon Manor in Buckinghamshire is home to a world-renowned collection of Sèvres porcelain, including three ship vases, of which only 10 exist in the world. It also houses a 235-piece dinner and dessert service, ordered by Marie-Antoinette in 1781 in bleu céleste designed for Louis XV. In the 1880s, Baron Edmond de Rothschild commissioned watercolours of the Sèvres dinner services. The Wallace Collection in London is another good place to see early Vincennes and Sèvres porcelain. The collection boasts examples of 18th-century soft-paste porcelain, including four icecream coolers from the Catherine the Great service.
‘Fake porcelain in the modern sense began in the 1820s when Sèvres was commanding high sums. Lavish wares made before the French Revolution, which were very valuable in England, were copied in London’
SPOTTING A FAKE
Just because a porcelain piece is marked as such does not necessarily mean it was produced at the Sèvres factory. The Sèvres mark has been frequently faked by other continental factories, most often in the 19th century. Sometimes inaccuracies are revealed by the confidence of the painted mark, other times by the quality of the piece and its decoration. Fake porcelain in the modern sense began in the 1820s when Sèvres was commanding high sums. Lavish wares made before the French Revolution were very valuable in England and were copied in London. Instead of trying to reproduce the soft paste of Sèvres, china dealers imported chests of old whiteglazed Sèvres porcelain that had been put into storage before the Revolution. Most had only slight faults but had been disregarded during manufacture. It was painted in London with careful copies of early Sèvres bird and flower painting and
sumptuous coloured grounds. A giveaway for these pieces is that they often have black specks in the white porcelain body, which happens sometimes when porcelain is re-fired. Another sign of a fake is the quality of the decoration: such as a vase with a badly painted scene, a tea bowl with a green ground colour which is too garish, or a gilded cartouche which is too bright and thickly painted. Vincennes and Sèvres gilding is often finely worked or ‘tooled’ with subtle patterns, producing a light touch that is very distinctive. All are a sign of blanks which were decorated at a later date. Colour is another giveaway. Rose (Rose Pompadour in England) and turquoise (bleu céleste) were 19th-century favourites, but finding them together is unlikely. Discrepancies between the date code and the painter’s mark are common in forged pieces. Highly flamboyant marks with considerable calligraphic thickening and thinning are also a warning sign.
Also look out for ‘spit-back’ – black speckling which usually appears around the rim but may appear anywhere, it is a strong warning sign.
ANTIQUE COLLECTING 47
THE EXPERT COLLECTOR Textiles Two Temple Place’s exhibition Unbound: Visionary Women Collecting Textiles celebrates seven women whose collections highlight the artistic, social and cultural importance of textiles. From the anthropological collections of traditional Balkan costume by Edith Durham, to the ground-breaking, contemporary South Asian collection of Nima PoovayaSmith, these women deﬁed the ‘traditional’ concept of collecting, forging the way for textiles to be seen as crucial documents of social history, as well as works of art in their own right. Assistant curator, Lotte Crawford, said: “Many of these women collectors were described as having a ‘selective’ eye. To me this is a gendered issue that points to the hierarchy of their collections and status of women in a wider cultural sense, as they were not perceived as professional collectors or curators. This exhibition challenges that perception and shines a light on their informed insight into the importance of textiles.” Running until April 19, the exhibition includes sculptural 18th-century costumes, intricately embroidered Balkan towels, headdresses and waistcoats, as well as the 1920s and 1930s blockprinted fabrics of Phyllis Barron and Dorothy Larcher.
‘Durham worked with a number of relief organisations and became a champion of the Albanian mountaineers whose lands were coveted by neighbouring nations’
Textiles from the collections of seven pioneering women continue on show this month, ranging from Balkan socks to an 18th-century clog
hile collections made by men are often described as erudite and intellectual, objects amassed by women have a tendency to be seen as quirky or eccentric: especially when it comes to collecting textiles, arguably the genre with the least cache. That viewpoint is set to be overturned by a new exhibition in London which tells the story of a band of trendsetting women who bucked the trend to create some of the most diverse collections in the UK today.
48 ANTIQUE COLLECTING
Above An Albanian giubba (shirt), from Edith Durham’s collection © Calderdale Museums Collection, Halifax
EDITH DURHAM (1863-1944) An artist and anthropologist, the intrepid Durham became a national hero in Albania, lauded by the Albanian people after only a few years’ travelling there. Durham first travelled to the Balkans in 1900, where she became enthralled by the people, their cultures and costume which she recorded in writings, photographs, sketches and by collecting traditional textiles. She worked for a number of relief organisations and became a champion of the Albanian mountaineers whose lands were coveted by neighbouring nations. Her studies of Balkan ethnography led to a series of books, of which High Albania is the best known, and still regarded as the best guide to the customs and society of the highlands of northern Albania. The material Durham acquired during her travels assumed even greater significance after the ethnic cleansing of Balkan museums during the conflict in the 1980s and 1990s. Durham donated her collection of textiles to Bankfield Museum, Halifax, in 1935.
LOUISA PESEL (1870-1947) An outstanding needlewoman and advocate of the art of embroidery, Pesel focused her life on teaching and encouraging others to stitch for employment, therapy and recreation. In 1918 Pesel was instrumental in starting the Khaki Handicrafts Club, which taught men in Bradford suffering from shellshock to sew and embroider as a form of therapy. She travelled in Greece, Turkey, Egypt and India between 1887 and 1914, collecting fabrics and embroidery dating back to the 17th century. While in India she went by camel through the Khyber Pass. In 1910 she visited Egypt, exploring the antiquities by donkey. In the early 1930s, at the invitation of the Bishop of Winchester, and aided by a fellow artist and designer, Sybil Blunt, Louisa was appointed to train volunteers to produce embroidered cushions, kneelers for the choir in Winchester Cathedral. Hundreds of volunteers worked on the project from 1931-36 which resulted in a total of 360 kneelers, 62 stall cushions, 34 long bench-cushions, and 96 alms. During WWII, she organised embroidery kits to be sent to allied prisoners of war in Europe via the Red Cross. An encourager of small groups, Pesel helped lay the foundations of the Embroiderers’ Guild and was its first president (19201922). Louisa Pesel also features in Tracy Chevalier’s novel, A Single Thread, which focuses on the Winchester Cathedral embroideries.
OLIVE MATTHEWS (1887-1979)
Above Greek, border fragment, 19th century, silk, linen and metallic yarn, from Louisa Pesel’s collection © Leeds University Library, University of Leeds Right Silk top, 1817-1819 © The Olive Matthews Collection, Chertsey Museum. Photograph John Chase Photography Far right Brocade shoe 1735-1745 © The Olive Matthews Collection, Chertsey Museum. Photograph John Chase Photography Below Robert Tanner,
Duplicate sample book 1970s part of Muriel Rose’s Collection © Crafts Study Centre
oversocks, date unknown from Edith Durham’s collection © Calderdale Museums Collection, Halifax. Photograph Paul Tucker
Below Edith Durham, object labels,
© Calderdale Museums Collection, Halifax. Photograph Paul Tucker
Encouraged by her father, Olive Matthews began to collect at the age of 12 using her pocket money to buy historic fashion and textiles. A London resident, one of her hunting grounds was the Caledonian Road Market before it closed in 1939. Olive snapped up textiles when they were hardly viewed as antiques, including a pair of 18th-century brocade shoes and a gentleman’s night cap dated to around 1600. Olive went on to buy at auction and was a frequent visitor to the costume department at the V&A. Her collecting reflected her love of technical accomplishment and decoration, all within a budget (she never spent more than £5 on an item). In the 1960s she set up a trust with Chertsey Museum to house her collection when she died.
MURIEL ROSE (1897-1986) Pivotal in the development of modern crafts in the 20th century, Muriel Rose was the director of The Little Gallery, London from 19281939, a landmark venue promoting the work of numerous artists, printmakers and ceramicists including Phyllis Barron and Dorothy Larcher, Ethel Mairet, Bernard Leach, Lucie Rie and Hans Coper. She also sold textiles made by miners’ wives from Durham and Wales, providing money for impoverished communities. An expert needlewoman, she was commissioned by Claridge’s to make quilts for its new art deco wing. Rose was also a founding trustee of the Craft Study Centre where her archive now resides. Below Phyllis Barron and Dorothy Larcher, Large Basket
1920s-1930s. Block print on cotton © Crafts Study Centre 2004, from Muriel Rose’s collection
ANTIQUE COLLECTING 49
THE EXPERT COLLECTOR Textiles ENID MARX (1902-1998)
Below right Décollage,
Marx was part of the outstanding 1920s cohort of students at the Royal College of Art that Paul Nash described as ‘an outbreak of talent’. With Eric Ravilious and Edward Bawden as close friends, her modernist approach to print and patternmaking in textiles was groundbreaking. She designed the patterns of furnishing fabrics for the London Underground as well as postage stamps for the 1952 coronation. In 1932 Marx and her life-long friend and colleague Margaret Lambert started the Marx-Lambert collection of British Folk Art including print ephemera, scrapbooks, Valentines cards and children’s books, as well as ceramics, corn dollies and toys. In the aftermath of WWII, Marx and Lambert became increasingly fascinated by local craft traditions. Marx envied the contemporary interest in America and Scandinavia and lamented the absence of any similar awareness in Britain. She said: “The innocent eye is disappearing in England. As the countryside becomes more urbanised... the country craftsmen are dying out and with them the individuality in design and decoration that gave life to the old popular art.”
Below far left Enid Marx, curtain with jungle repeat, date unknown © Compton Verney. Photograph Harminder Judge
1958, mixed media on card
Below left Enid Marx,
ties c.1920-30. Printed silk © Compton Verney. Photograph Jamie Woodley
Right Unknown maker,
phulkari (ﬂoral work) early 20th century from Nima Poovaya-Smith’s collection © Bradford Museums and Galleries. Photograph Paul Tucker
NIMA POOVAYA-SMITH, Senior keeper of international arts, Cartwright Hall Art Gallery, Bradford, from 1985-1998 During her time at Cartwright Hall Art Gallery, Nima PoovayaSmith created an outstanding collection of textiles reflecting Bradford’s textile heritage. She specialised on examples of historic traditional textiles (many from the Indian subcontinent), as well as the work of leading contemporary artists. Under PoovayaSmith’s tenure the collection grew from a dozen objects to nearly 2,000 and now contains the largest collection of contemporary art by artists of South Asian descent, including Sarbjit Natt, Fahmida Shah and Sehyr Saigol. Unbound Visionary Women Collecting Textiles, runs at Two Temple Place, London WC2R 3BD from January 25 to April 19, for more details go to www.twotempleplace.org
JENNIFER HARRIS, curator of textiles at the Whitworth, University of Manchester from 1982-2016 Responsible for building a collection of art textiles of global significance, Harris’ work at the Whitworth coincided with the growth of textiles as a contemporary art form. She was influential in shaping thinking around textiles and, as a curator, commissioned work that questionned the role of textiles as art. She also explored issues of textiles and gender. The esteem in which she is held is reflected in the number of works donated to the Whitworth by leading artists, including Tadek Beutlich, and the continuing demand for her publications.
50 ANTIQUE COLLECTING
Below right Michael
Brennand-Wood, Babel 1992. Wood, paint, wire, embroidery © The Whitworth, The University of Manchester
Brennand-Wood, Hide and Seek 1992. Acrylic paint, wood, cloth © The Whitworth, The University of Manchester
EXPERT COMMENT Retro gaming ‘The technology may not have been as advanced but the thrill of rolling back the years is producing a fast-growing collectors’ market’ LOOK IN YOUR LOFT
A Gameboy is estimated at £50-£100 at the upcoming sale
MARKET Report Fifa 20, Call of Duty Modern Warfare and Nintendo Switch may be today’s players’ favourites, but less glamorous games from the ‘80s and ‘90s most excite collectors, writes James Mettam
lick, technologically advanced and sophisticated they may be, but when it comes to collecting you can’t beat a cranky old game based on table tennis. Why? Nostalgia. As the ‘gamers’ of the ‘80s and ‘90s grow older, they have an urge to collect the technology they grew up with. The technology may not have been as advanced, but the thrill of rolling back the years is producing a fast-growing collectors’ market. And the potential audience is huge. While rarity may drive the collecting market, Tetris – with its colourful tiles – sold more than 500m copies worldwide, with Minecraft a close runner up.
GAME GO So just how long ago did video games start? While the earliest computers date back to just after WWII, home video games were introduced in the mid ‘70s with ‘Home Pong’ by Atari, which was based on an arcade video game and imitated table tennis using simple, two-dimensional graphics. In Christmas 1975, Atari released a home version of Pong exclusively through Sears retail stores. It was a huge commercial success and led to numerous copies. Its cultural impact was so large Pong is part of the permanent collection of the Smithsonian
Institution in Washington. By the ‘80s, the advent of home computers in the form of systems such as the Spectrum ZX and Commodore 64 gave a platform for home video gaming and, by the ‘90s, video gaming had console systems of their own such as Sony Playstation, Nintendo 64 and Sega Megadrive. The world of the diehard gaming fanatic was well and truly born. Technology continued to evolve to today’s Playstation 4 and Nintendo Switch. But will any of these systems catch up with the biggest selling consoles of all time Playstation 2 and Nintendo DS? The consoles are only part of the story, the other half is the games themselves. From the early days of Pong, game developers took us to worlds of adventure, racing, puzzles, logic and sport and it is in these games that many a collector’s dreams are made of. Individual games can sell for in excess of £10,000 in the current collectors’ market.
Do you have a hidden, dust-covered copy of Air Raid for the ‘70s Atari 2600, or the 1990 Nintendo World Championship on the NES platform? If you are drawn to the world of retro technology there are a number of things to remember: •Try to ensure the items you buy are working and complete. •Buy with the original packaging intact, especially if considering investment rather than use. Cables and instructions are often missing which can affect value. •If the consideration is long-term investment, buy the items that no one else is buying. •Look out for promotional packaging or bundle deals that may have a short retail shelf life.
LOOK OUT FOR Games currently increasingly in value include Cool World on Super Nintendo, Tintin Destination Adventure on original Playstation and Amazing Penguin on Gameboy. My personal favourite is Goldeneye on the Nintendo 64. James Mettam is a specialist at Sheffield Auction Gallery which holds its first retro technology auction on February 20, where Super Mario, Grand Theft Auto, X-Box, Playstation, Atari, ZX Spectrum, Sega Game Gear and Super Mario will be among the games and consoles on sale. A Sinclair-ZX81 has an estimate of £40£60, while the Nintendo Game & Watch is expected to make £50-£100 at the sale on February 20
ANTIQUE COLLECTING 51
ANTIQUES UNDER THE HAMMER Upcoming lots
TOP of the LOTS
A collection of alabaster figures is one of the lots going under the hammer this month A 5th-century Greek ‘red-figure’ rhyton (drinking vessel), in the shape of a a bull’s head, has an estimate of £2,000-£3,000 at The Canterbury Auction Galleries’ new weekend sale on February 8-9. The 22.5cm (8½in) cup was presented at one of the Kent auctioneer’s valuation days by its owner – the grandson of an Italian builder who unearthed it when working in Ercolano, near Naples, once the Roman town of Herculaneum. The cup is one of the lots at the auction house’s new weekend sales set to take place on the first weekend of the month, with viewing on Thursdays and Fridays. The move is designed to make the sales more convenient to buyers and sellers. Right The drinking vessel was dug up near Naples
A set of seven exceptional alabaster figures goes under the hammer at Wilkinson’s on February 23. Depicting a number of religious scenes, from The Crucifixion to the Entombment of Christ, the 15th-century pieces came from the collection of a UK owner. Matt Gibson, from the Doncaster auction house, said: “Every serious early oak collector hopes to have at least one piece of Nottingham alabaster in their collection. The quality of the engraving is exceptional and we have already had interest from museums and overseas customers.” The pieces vary in height, averaging about 30cm (1ft), some with visible signs of the original paintwork. Below A 15th-century alabaster
depicting The Crucifixion
Above One of the
alabasters depicts The Entombment of Christ
52 ANTIQUE COLLECTING
A gold-plated automaton musical alarm pocket watch by Reuge has an estimate of £700£900 at Fellows’ watch sale on February 10. Called The Huntsman’s Rest, the pocket watch includes an alarm clock and mechanical music, as well as automatons, including the moving figures of a lady operating a water pump, a drinking horse and a huntsman holding a falcon. Swiss born Charles Reuge (1839-1887) was the first watchmaker to integrate a cylinder and comb arrangement from a music box into a pocket watch. Above A gold plated automaton musical pocket watch by Reuge has an
estimate of £700-£900 at Fellows’ watch sale on February 10.
Original hand-painted artwork from the Bradford firm of W.E. Berry, one of only three UK printers which specialised in large cinema posters, are up for sale at Ewbank’s on February 28. During the 1920s, W.E. Berry was introduced to Fred Martin at Paramount and the pair started a business relationship that cemented the firm’s position as one of the leading producers and distributors of film posters. Once the landscape “quad” was established as the standard British size for film posters, W. E. Berry expanded its market to include posters for Rank and Ealing Studios. Litho posters from the company’s early period of production included work for railways, as well as Bertram Mills Circus. Sale highlights include artwork for the 1954 film Creature from the Black Lagoon, (which is estimated to make £2000-£4000) and the original poster for the 1955 Ealing comedy The Ladykillers, starring Alec Guinness, which is expected to make £1,000-£1,500.
Above The poster
is expected to make up to £4,000. Left The
Ladykillers was an Ealing comedy classic
Above Bertram Mills
Circus, Olympia, featuring Amleto Sciplini’s chimpanzees (1953-1954) is estimated at £50-£100
Items once owned by the notorious romantic poet Lord Byron go under the hammer at Chiswick Auctions on February 27. The lots, which include a lock of the infamous adventurer’s hair and military medals awarded to him by Greece for his support of the country’s war of independence, come from the collection of a private European connoisseur and enthusiast. Byron was the ideal of the Romantic poet, gaining notoriety for his scandalous private life – once famously described by his lover, the novelist Lady Caroline Lamb, as “Mad, bad and dangerous to know.” The sale called The Poet, the Lover and the Patriot: Lord Byron draws from Byron’s life as a literary master, inveterate lover and his participation in the Greek War of Independence which cost him his life aged 36 at Missolonghi on April 19, 1824 (albeit from fever).
George Gordon Noel, sixth Baron Byron, was born on January 22, 1788. After his father died when he was three, the youngster inherited his title from his great uncle in 1798. In 1814, Byron’s half-sister Augusta gave birth to a daughter, almost certainly Byron’s. The following year to quell the outcry Byron married Annabella Milbanke, with whom he had a daughter, his only legitimate child. In 1816 he moved to Geneva, where he became involved with Claire Clairmont, the stepsister of Mary Wollstonecraft who was married to Percy Bysshe Shelley, who had his daughter Allegra. Having moved to Venice in 1819, the poet became involved in the cause of the independence of Greece (where he is still admired for oppostition to Lord Elgin’s removal of the Parthenon marbles). Chiswick Auctions’ Matthew Caddick, said: “The sale aims also to shed light on the interesting connection between the beloved Byronic hero and his patriotic contribution to the Greek War of Independence.” 1 Thomas Phillips (1770-1845) Lord Byron in Albanian dress, 1814, (not in sale) 2 An English
pocket watch by George Prior, late 18th early 19th-century, has an estimate of £4,000-£6,000 3 An enamelled and gold ring in the style of a mourning ring, 1823-1824, has an estimate of £600-£800 4 The inner cover of The Works of Lord Byron with the Life and Illustrations, 1850, contains a lock of Byron’s hair. The book and hair has an estimate of £80 5 A signed copy of the The Works of Lord Byron with the Life and Illustrations, 1850. Volumes one and two, has an estimate of £80 6 Francis Hargreaves (1804-1877) A portrait of Sir Thomas Tobin (1807-1881) wearing Lord Byron’s Albanian dress (after the 1814 portrait of Lord Byron by Thomas Phillips), has an estimate of £800-£1,200 7 A group of the Order of the Redeemer military decorations and a gold and enamel locket, 1825, has an estimate of £8,000-£10,000
ANTIQUE COLLECTING 53
ANTIQUES UNDER THE HAMMER Out of the Ordinary
Left-right A 19th-century French weathervane of a galleon has an estimate of £750-
£1,200, an early 20th-century French parade elephant is estimated to make £2,500£3,000, A Dutch late 19th-century zinc trade sign in the form of a giant bell is estimated to make £1,500-£2,000, a rare, articulated bronze complete doll mould, estimated at £1,200-£1,600, a folk art birdcage is estimated to make £300-£400
More than 500 weird and wonderful lots go under the hammer in Essex this month, ranging from a scold’s bridle to a skateboard featuring the Duchess of Cambridge
t last year’s inaugural Out of the Ordinary sale from the Essex auctioneers Sworders it was a five-foot whale’s penis stuffed with horsehair (which sold for £4,600) that stole the headlines. Mark Wilkinson, who curated the auction,
said: “It went everywhere – from the front of The New York Post to my daughter’s Facebook page.” And this year’s whale’s penis? “Nothing will ever be that good, but three North Korean propaganda posters from the collection of former Radio 1 broadcaster Andy Kershaw (each with an estimate of £3,000-£4,000) will be up there.” Kershaw, 60, visited the country four times, firstly in 1995, and was given 15 posters by a government minder who befriended him. The hand-painted contemporary designs, described as 'rare', were aimed at promoting the totalitarian anti-imperialist government of Kim Jong-un. One poster depicts a North Korean soldier with his finger on a red nuclear button. The text at the bottom of the page translates as Let’s always be in a state of emergency! While another graphic shows an American battleship being destroyed by the North Korean navy. The caption threatens the US with the warning: If the US Imperialist Aggressor recklessly attacks us, they will be severely punished! The final design features a woman holding a basket of fruit and veg. It reads: T he reinforcements are the true patriot. Let the parade of heroic supporters grow forever. While keeping 12, the DJ has decided to part with three in the upcoming sale.
EXPECT THE UNEXPECTED If collecting is increasingly going down the ‘quirky’ route, Sworders' upcoming sale is quirky to the max. Lots vary from a taxidermy Canadian polar bear to a self-portrait by the Libertines and Babyshambles singer Pete Doherty painted in his own blood. Doherty took great pride in his artworks’ ‘arterial splatter’, for which he cut his finger or filled a syringe with his own blood. But in order to make it into the 500-lot sale on February 11, a piece has to be more than just unusual. Mark said: “These days only the most unusual examples in the very best condition will sell.”
Right Pete Doherty (b.
1979) self-portrait, estimated to make £1,500-£2,000
Far right A taxidermy Canadian polar bear is expected to make between £20,000 and £30,000 Left Each of the three posters owned by Andy Kershaw has an estimate of £2,000£3,000
‘Lots vary from a taxidermy Canadian polar bear to a self portrait by the Libertines and Babyshambles singer Pete Doherty painted in his own blood’ 54 ANTIQUE COLLECTING
IN MY OPINION...
We asked Sworders’ specialist Mark Wilkinson for his sale highlights Have you got a favourite piece?
EASY RIDER Currently taking pride of place at the auctioneer’s Stansted Mountfitchet reception is a replica of the Panhead Harley-Davidson chopper Peter Fonda rode in the cult 1969 road movie Easy Rider. A poster from the film showing Fonda riding the bike with his shirt billowing in the wind is part of the lot, which carries the sale’s top estimate of £22,000-£25,000. For collectors of a more spooky disposition, but with less money at their disposal, a book describing the trial of two witches in 1664 has an estimate of £600£900. A TRYAL of WITCHES at the ASSIZES held at Bury St Edmonds for the country of Suffolk; on the tenth day of March, 1664. Before Sir Matthew Hale. Taken by a person then attending court, is a fi rst-hand account of the trial of two elderly widows, Rose Cullendar and Amy Duny, who faced 13 charges of bewitching children between the ages of a few months to 18 years old. They were both found guilty and were hanged at Bury St Edmunds.
Above A poster from the iconic film is part of the lot Above left The replica chopper from the film Easy Rider has the top estimate of £22,000£25,000 Below left The dinosaur
spike is estimated to make £5,000-£8,000
Bottom right The Kate Board is estimated to make £500-£800 Below right The scold’s
bridle was first recorded in 1567 and carries an estimate of £600-£1,000
Have we reached peak quirky? Most definitely not, the category still has a long, long way to go. Collectors and interior designers are looking for big statement pieces but they have to be original – reproductions or anything not authentic will not make the grade. Areas such as witchcraft, advertising art and circus art are very strong at the moment and I can’t see this slowing up. What is really exciting about the sale is that it gives us the opportunity to group similar pieces together, which makes them look exceptional. A one-off piece in a saleroom might not look terrific, but a group of the same genre looks stunning.
A dodo vertebrae found during the 1860s in the 0.5-sqkm Mare aux Songes fossil site in Mauritius has an estimate of £1000-£1,500. Almost all the known dodo bones in existence were found in the swamplike site and are characterised by their golden brown colour. A tail spike from a 170 million-yearold stegosaurus has an estimate of £5,000-£8,000. The dinosaur’s fearsome tail, used to ward off attack, was made up of four large spikes which are, today, very rare.
There are so many, but I especially love the late 19th-century scold’s bridle. Sometimes called a witch’s bridle, a brank’s bridle, or simply branks, it was variously used as an instrument of punishment, form of torture or as a means of public humiliation. The bridles were first recorded in Scotland in 1567, where the courts inflicted the contraption mostly on female transgressors and women considered to be rude, nags or common scolds. This “Shreklike” version on the bridle we have on sale (below) was probably produced as a curio for Victorian gentlemen, as homage to ‘tales of olde’, popular at the time. I also adore Grayson Perry’s (b. 1960) Kate Board , 2017, which is decorated with a picture of the Duchess of Cambridge in the style of a brass rubbing and comes from a limited edition of 999. I also love the ghost train doors which came from Blackpool and are super cool.
Where is the interest coming from?
AUCTION fact file WHAT: Out of the Ordinary WHERE: Sworders, Cambridge Road, Stansted Mountfitchet, Essex, CM24 8GE WHEN: February 11 VIEWING: February 7 and 10, 9am-5pm, February 9 10am-1pm and from 9am on the day of the sale and online at www. sworder.co.uk
It will be worldwide, especially Andy Kershaw’s posters. With North Korea constantly in the news, Kim Jong-un has almost become like a pop star. Each poster is estimated at between £2,000 and £3,000 and they are all in very good condition.
ANTIQUE COLLECTING 55
EVENTS Round Up
A guide to the best fairs in the UK and around the world
The Palm Beach Show, Florida
Taking place over Presidents’ Weekend and featuring the cream of UK dealers, the 17th annual Palm Beach Show opens its doors this month. This year’s revamped look will see enhanced entrances and ‘wow-factor’ backdrops welcoming visitors as they enter the show floor.
MORE to SEE Above The Parisien Galerie Steinitz’s stand at last year’s event
A dozen UK exhibitors will take part this year including the Knightsbridgebased gallery Gladwell & Patterson; William Cook Antiques based in Hungerford and Richmond-based 20th-century art specialists Dinan & Chighine. The fair, from February 13-18, will also feature a new contemporary focus devoted to post-war and contemporary art, objects and design. The fair welcomes more than 150 domestic and international exhibitors showcasing art, antiques and jewellery to private collectors, museum curators, investors and interior designers. Palm Beach Show Group CEO, Scott Diament, said: “We anticipate 2020 to be an exciting and transformative year.” For a list of all the exhibitors go to www.palmbeachshow.com
Making the journey to West Palm Beach? Check out what else is on in the area West Palm Beach Antique Art and Design District More than 40 antique shops offer an impressive selection of 17th to 20th-century antiques, fine and decorative arts, period deco and modern furnishings. 3200-3900 South Dixie Highway, Southern Blvd. & Belvedere Rd., West Palm Beach
Schultze & Weaver: Architects of the Resort A new look at the work of the New York architects Schultze & Weaver which, between 1921 and 1931, built 14 art deco hotels across America. On at the Preservation of Palm Beach, 311 Peruvian Avenue, Palm Beach, admission is free. Side-By-Side in Old South Beach: Photographs by Gary Monroe and Andy Sweet A new exhibition highlights the work of two Miami Beach-born photographers who captured South Beach from the late ‘70s and ‘80s, when it was a Jewish retirement village by the sea. On at the The Adolph & Rose Levis JCC’s Sandler Center, 95th Avenue S. Boca Raton. Left The UK’s Willow Gallery is a regular visitor Below Ceramics are a perennial favourite at the Florida event
56 ANTIQUE COLLECTING
Shepton Mallet Antiques, Vintage and Collectors’ Fair
There’s some changes to the popular Somerset fair this year with the date moving from the weekend to Friday and Saturday. Consequently, this month’s event will take place on February 28 and 29, with early trade dealers admitted on 9am to 1pm on the first day. Grant Nicholas, from organiser IACF, said: “The new opening time allows visitors longer at the fair on the first day, with more time to make their purchases. Condensing the fair slightly will make it a more economical venture for both buyer and seller.” As usual the fair will be housed in
5 MINUTES with Dealers Michael and Liz Flatter who are regular exhibitors at the Shepton Mallet fair in Somerset Describe the business We started 15 years ago when my mum, a dealer of 30 years, had to give up because of ill health. We sold the remainder of her stock for her and were immediately hooked. Soon after we discovered we were selling mostly glass, both antique and contemporary. . What types/era of glass are popular? We sell 95 per cent contemporary glass now (usually 30-40 years old, or earlier). Antique glass does sell, but it has to be very special.
four halls, with more than 30 shopping booths in an arcade at the Royal Bath and West Showground, as well as 600 outdoor stands selling everything from vintage teddies and eclectic furniture to luxury luggage and glassware. Above Antique Chinese dolls are one of the quirkier items on sale Below The Somerset fair showcases 600 dealers
times a year. There we can find the unusual, especially Lalique glass, that you simply cannot find here. We will also buy unusual ceramics there, too. What do you look for in a piece? The glass has to be perfect with no damage and no staining. When it comes to vases, water is the enemy. When we buy we ask ourselves if we would put the piece in our home. If the answer is ‘yes’ we buy it.
Collectors with a penchant for mid-century chic will want to head to one of the highlights of the Nordic antiques calendar this month when 250 dealers present the best the region has to offer. Antikmässan runs in the Swedish capital from February 13-16 with a preview day on February 12. Visitors can expect to find the best quality modern design, with a host of experts on hand to boost their Nordic know-how. The event is held in partnership with SKAF - the Swedish Art and Antique Dealer Association. Visitors can make the most of up to 14 commuter trains which leave Stockholm Central Station every hour to make the 10minute journey to Älvsjö Station - just 200 metres from the venue’s main entrance. Top Swedish glass can enliven any room Below Swedish antiques never go out of fashion Bottom A selection of glass and ceramics from one of last year’s dealers
Advice for the new collector? Buy with your eye. I think that, especially with glass, you have to handle the piece; touch and feel are very important. Buy what you love, it doesn’t have to be expensive, it just has to feel right. Below Glassware on sale at a recent stand
Aside from Shepton Mallet, where are your hunting grounds? We try to buy whereever we are exhibiting. Last year we attended our first Worcestershire Antiques Fair at the Chateau Impney Hotel, Droitwich in Worcestershire, which was a huge success. We will be returning there for two fairs this year - the first of which is the 15th to 16th of this month. We attend fairs all over the country, from Harrogate, to Lingfield and Brighton Racecourses, as well as venues like Dorking Halls. We also go abroad to buy, visiting both France and Belgium about five ANTIQUE COLLECTING 57
EVENTS Round Up
Did you know? The hall was opened by King Edward II and Queen Alexandra in 1904 and designed ostensibly for floral exhibitions and displays.
Adams Antiques Fairs, London
Celebrating 30 years at its central London location, Adams Antiques Fairs continues at the Royal Horticultural Hall this month with an event on February 23. A ‘must visit’ on the capital’s collecting calendar,
the ‘Horti’ has, over the years, built up a dedicated army of followers. One Sunday a month, the event near Victoria bus and coach station and just minutes from Tate Britain, is the longestrunning Sunday antiques fair in London. More than 140 dealers from across the UK exhibit at the fair. Above The fair sets up its stalls in the Royal Horticultural Halls, hence the nickname ‘Horti’ Left Miniature portraits are on sale
DEALER Profile Behind the scenes with Ray Walters from Vintage and Modern Pens is a regular exhibitor at the ‘Horti’ What sparked your interest in fountain pens? The penmanship of a couple of English teachers (and my mother) with their careful styles and mistake-free writings, left a lasting impression. I’ve collected and used fountain pens for more than 20 years, there are so many aspects to consider: size, nib, material, colour and performance. In 2014 I established my own business, Vintage and Modern Pens. What was pens’ golden age? The 1930-1960s, driven largely through innovation, affordability, ease of use, huge-scale international manufacturing and marketing from all the major brands including Parker, Swan Mabie Todd, Waterman, Montblanc and Pelikan.
58 ANTIQUE COLLECTING
Is there a ‘holy grail’ pen? I am still looking for that elusive Montblanc 128 PL Fountain Pen. If I did find it I am not sure I’d get any change from £3,000.
. What advice have you got for new collectors? Devote time to research, join the Writing Equipment Society (WES), ask questions of dealers either by email or in person, and try out as many pens as possible. Writing paper and inks are both strong areas of growth. Each has a quality hierarchy and it’s not unusual to pay upwards of £50 for a bottle of ink and a fine block of writing paper.
Edinburgh Antiques, Vintage and Collectors’ Fair
From old medical bags to vintage fairground rides, Scotland’s largest antiques fair returns to the Royal Highland Centre this month. More than 250 stallholders come together in one hall promising a wealth of vintage treasures and antiques. The event on February 15-16 has a free shuttle bus from Waterloo Place opposite the Apex Waterloo Hotel in Edinburgh centre.
MEET the ORGANISER Helen Yourston from B2B Events How did you start in the business? Too many years ago to remember! My first venture was working for an auction room in Surrey. At the same time I became an adult education teacher in antiques before starting a dealing career, then became a fair organiser. How has the fairs circuit changed since you have been involved? A lot. Back in the late ‘80s and ‘90s it seemed that, as dealers, we couldn’t do anything wrong. But fairs, like so many other things, are cyclical – one minute dealers are doing very well, the next it’s completely the opposite. Dealers today moan about the same things we did in my early days of trading. A lot of traders dislike TV programmes and their demand for discounts – do you agree? To an extent. The industry has always been one that offers discounts if asked. Some programmes definitely need to be more realistic and remember the impact they are having on the industry they are filming. What advice have you got for fair visitors? Research what you are looking for, so you have a rough idea of cost. Know what facilities are on site, take some cash with you (the industry will never go cashless). Dress suitably including footwear. Ask the organiser for dealer recommendations if you are looking for something specific. If you are just browsing make sure you visit exhibitors both inside and out. Prices inside can be just as good value as outside. Above all enjoy yourself. Above Vintage fashion is always a draw Right More than 250 stallholders attend the event
Wilkinson's 1_Wilkinson's 1 02/01/2020 10:18 Page 1
The OlD SAlerOOmS, 28 NeTherhAll rOAD, DONCASTer, DN1 2PW, eNglAND Tel: +44 (0) 1302 814884 Fax: +44 (0) 1302 814883 email: email@example.com website: www.wilkinsons-auctioneers.co.uk
Period Oak, Country Furniture and effects, Featuring a Private Collection of Nottingham Alabasters
Sunday 23rd February 2020
Viewing Days: Thursday 20th February 2020 Friday 21st February 2020 Saturday 22nd February 2020 Sunday 23rd February 2020 Or by private appointment
11am start time
11-4pm 11-4pm by app 9-11am
Fully printed catalogues available for Â£8.50. Debit & Credit Cards Accepted.
FAIRS Calendar Because this list is compiled in advance, alterations or cancellations to the fairs listed can occur and it is not possible to notify readers of the changes. We strongly advise anyone wishing to attend a fair especially if they have to travel any distance, to telephone the organiser to confirm the details given.
LONDON: Inc. Greater London Adams Antiques Fairs 0207 254 4054 www.adamsantiquesfairs.com Adams Antiques Fair, Lindley Hall, 80 Vincent Square, Westminster, SW1P 2PE, 23 Feb.
Coin and Medal Fairs Ltd 01694 731781 www.coinfairs.co.uk London Coin Fair, Holiday Inn Bloomsbury, Coram Street, WC1N 1HT, 1 Feb. Etc Fairs 01707 872 140 www.bloomsburybookfair.com Bloomsbury Book Fair, Royal National Hotel, 38-51 Bedford Way, WC1H ODG, 9 Feb. Bloomsbury Ephemera, Book & Postcard Fair, Royal National Hotel, 38-51 Bedford Way, WC1H ODG, 23 Feb. IACF, 01636 702326 www.iacf.co.uk Antiques and Collectors’ Fair, Alexandra Palace, Alexandra Palace Way, N22 7AY, 2 Feb. Sunbury Antiques, 01932 230946 www.sunburyantiques.com Sunbury Antiques Market, Kempton Park Race Course, Staines Road East, Sunbury-onThames, Middlesex, TW16 5AQ, 11, 25 Feb
SOUTH EAST AND EAST ANGLIA: including Beds, Cambs, Essex, Hertfordshire, Kent, Norfolk, Suffolk, Surrey, Sussex. Dovehouse Fine Antiques Fairs www.dovehousefine antiquesfairs.com 07952 689717 Antiques Fair, Dorking Halls, Reigate Road, Dorking, Surrey, 23 Feb. Haddon Events www.haddonevents.co.uk 0751 9276507, Ware Vintage Fair, The Drill Hall, 17 Amwell End, Ware, Hertfordshire, SG12 9HP, 16 Feb. Sunbury Antiques 01932 230946 www.sunburyantiques.com Sandown Antiques Market, Sandown Park Racecourse, Portsmouth Road, Esher, Surrey, KT10 9AJ, 16 Feb SOUTH WEST: including Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, Cornwall, Devon, Dorset, Gloucestershire, Hampshire, Isle of Wight, Oxfordshire, Somerset, Wiltshire. IACF, 01636 702326 www.iacf.co.uk Shepton Mallet Antiques and Collectors’ Fair, Royal Bath & West Showground, Shepton Mallet, Somerset, BA4 6QN, 28-29 Feb
Penman Antiques Fairs 01825 744074 www.penman-fairs.co.uk Petersfield Antiques Fair, The Festival Hall, Heath Rd., Petersfield, Hampshire, GU31 4EA, 31 Jan-2 Feb. EAST MIDLANDS including Derbyshire, Leicestershire, Lincolnshire, Northamptonshire, Nottinghamshire, Rutland. Guildhall Antique Fairs 07583 410862 www.guildhallantiquefairs.co.uk Antiques Fair, Hermitage Leisure, Silver Street, Whitwick, Coalville, Leicestershire, LE67 5EU, 9 Feb. IACF 01636 702326 www.iacf.co.uk Runway Monday at Newark Antiques and Collectors’ Fair, Runway Newark, Newark, Nottinghamshire, NG24 2NY, 24 Feb. WEST MIDLANDS including Birmingham, Coventry, Herefordshire, Shropshire, Staffordshire, Warwickshire B2B Events, 07774 147197 or 07771 725302 www.b2bevents.info Malvern Flea and Collectors’ Fair, Three Counties Showground, Malvern, Worcs., WR13 6NW, 9 Feb. Coin and Medal Fairs Ltd. 01694 731781 www.coinfairs.co.uk The Midland Coin Fair, National Motorcycle Museum, Bickenhill, Birmingham, B92 0EJ, 9 Feb. NORTH
60 ANTIQUE COLLECTING
Galloway Antiques Fairs 01423 522122 www.gallowayfairs.co.uk Antiques Fair, Stonyhurst College, Nr Clitheroe, Lancashire, BB7 9PZ, 21-23 Feb
SCOTLAND B2B Events 07886 501931 www.b2bevents.info Edinburgh Antiques, Vintage and Collectors Fair, Royal Highland Centre, Ingliston, Edinburgh, EH28 8NB, 15-16 Feb. INTERNATIONAL IFAE www.palmbeachshow.com Palm Beach Jewelry, Art and Antique Show, Palm Beach Country Convention Center, Okeechobee Boulevard, West Palm Beach, Florida, USA, 13-18 Feb. Stockholm International Antiques Fair 08-749 41 00 www.antikmassan.se firstname.lastname@example.org Mässvägen 1, Älvsjö, Stockholm, Sweden, 13-16 Feb.
ADVERTISE TODAY PLEASE CALL
JO LORD on 01394 389950 or email: email@example.com
Malvern Flea & Collectors Fair Three Counties Showground, Worcestershire, WR13 6NW. Sunday 9th February
Cash only entrance: 7.30am-3.30pm - £5
Edinburgh Antiques, Vintage & Collectors Fair Royal Highland Centre, Ingliston, EH28 8NB.
Cash only: Sat: Early 8.15am - £6 Sat: Entry 10am-4.30pm - £5 Sun: 10am-3.30pm - £4
Royal Highland Centre £5 visitor car parking charge.
Malvern Antiques & Collectors Fair
The Severn Hall, Three Counties Showground, Malvern, Worcs, WR13 6NW
Sunday 1st March Antiques, Art Deco, collectables & much more
NO OUTSIDE PITCHES
Wilton House Antiques Fair 2020 6th–8th March, 10.30am–5pm Enquiries 01722 746728 www.wiltonhouse.com Wilton House Wilton Salisbury Wiltshire SP2 0BJ
Cash only: Early: 8.30am - £4 Entrance: 10am - 4:00pm £3
Tel: 01636 676531 www.b2bevents.info
Petersfield Antiques Fair January 31st February 2nd 10.30am-5pm Festival Hall, Heath Rd, Hampshire GU31 4EA
38 Traditional Quality Vetted Stands Complimentary E-Tickets via
18th - 20th March Chelsea Old Town Hall, Kings Rd, SW3 5EE Wed 3-8, Thur 10.30-6, Fri 10.30-4.30
ANTIQUE COLLECTING 61
AUCTION Calendar Because this list is compiled in advance, alterations or cancellations to the auctions listed can occur and it is not possible to notify readers of the changes. We strongly advise anyone wishing to attend an auction especially if they have to travel any distance, to telephone the organiser to confirm the details given.
LONDON: Inc. Greater London Bonhams, New Bond St., W1 020 7447 7447 www.bonhams.com None listed at time of going to press Bonhams, Knightsbridge, SW7 020 7393 3900 www.bonhams.com The Gentleman’s Library Sale, Feb 12 Watches and Wristwatches, Feb 18 Travel and Exploration, Feb 26 Chiswick Auctions, 1 Colville Rd, Chiswick, W3 8BL 020 8992 4442 www.chiswickauctions.co.uk Design, Feb 11 Asian Art, Feb 18 Designer Handbags and Fashion, Feb 26 Byron, Feb 27 Christie’s, King St., SW1 020 7839 9060 www.christies.com Impressionist and Modern Art Evening Sale, Feb 5 The Art of the Surreal Evening Sale, Feb 5 Impressionist and Modern Works on Paper, Feb 6 Impressionist and Modern Art Day Sale, Feb 6 Post-War and Contemporary Art Evening Auction, Feb 12 Post-War and Contemporary Art Day Auction, Feb 13 Hansons, The Langdon Down Centre, Normansfield, 2A Langdon Park, Teddington,TW11 9PS 0208 9797954 www.hansonsauctioneers.co.uk Collectors and Specialist, Feb 22 Roseberys, Knights Hill, SE27. 020 8761 2522 www.roseberys.co.uk Modern and Contemporary British Art, Feb 11 Sotheby’s, New Bond St., W1 020 7293 5000 www.sothebys.com
62 ANTIQUE COLLECTING
Surrealist Art Evening Sale, Feb 4 Impressionist and Modern Art Evening Sale, Feb 4 Impressionist and Modern Art Day Sale, Feb 5 SOUTH EAST AND EAST ANGLIA: Inc. Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire, Essex, Hertfordshire, Kent, Norfolk, Suffolk, Surrey, Sussex Bellmans, Newpound, Wisborough Green, Billingshurst, West Sussex, RH14 0AZ 01403 700 858 www.bellmans.co.uk The Saturday Sale, Feb 22 Interiors, inc. Asian Ceramics and Works of Art, Coins and Medals, Feb 25-27 Bishop and Miller, 19 Charles Industrial Estate, Stowmarket, Suffolk, IP14 5AH 01449 673088 www. bishopandmillerauctions.co.uk Silver and Objects of Vertu, Feb 7 Fine Art, Feb 8 Mr Bishop’s Auction, Feb 11 Jewellery and Watches, Feb 22 Canterbury Auction Galleries, 40 Station Road West, Canterbury, Kent, CT2 8AN 01227 763337 www. thecanterburyauctiongalleries.com General, Feb 8-9 Cheffins, Clifton House, 1&2 Clifton Road, Cambridge, CB1 7EA 01223 213 213343 www.cheffins.co.uk Art and Design, Feb 13 Interiors, Feb 27 Crows Auction Gallery, Reigate Road, Dorking, RH4 1SG, 01306 740382 www.crowsauctions.co.uk General, Feb 12 Ewbank’s, London Rd, Send, Woking, Surrey 01483 223 101 www.ewbankauctions.co.uk
Antique and Collectors’ including Silver, Feb 19 Militaria, Stamps, Books and Maps, Feb 20 The W.E. Berry Movie Poster Artwork Collection, Feb 28 Keys, Aylsham, Norwich, Norfolk, NR11 6AJ www.keysauctions.co.uk None listed at time of going to press Lacy Scott & Knight, 10 Risbygate St, Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk, IP33 3AA 01284 748 623 www.lskauctioncentre.co.uk Home and Interiors, Feb 1, 22 Toys and Models, Feb 8 Dolls and Teddy Bears, Feb 28 Rowley Fine Art, 8 Downham Road, Ely, Cambridgeshire, CB6 1AH 01353 653020 www.rowleyfineart.com None listed at time of going to press Sworders Fine Art Auctioneers, Stansted Mountfitchet, Essex 01279 817778 www.sworder.co.uk Homes and Interiors, Feb 4, 18 Out of the Ordinary, Feb 11 Tring Market Auctions, Brook St, Tring, Herts, HP23 5EF 01442 826 446 www. tringmarketauctions.co.uk General, Feb 8 Fine Art, Feb 28 T.W. Gaze, Diss, Norfolk 01379 650306. www.twgaze.com Jewellery, Antiques and Interiors, Feb 7 Architectural Salvage and Statuary, Feb 8 Antiques and Interiors, Feb 14, 28 The Antiques Special Sale, Antiques and Interiors, Photographica, Feb 21 Rural and Domestic Bygones, Feb 29
SOUTH WEST: Inc. Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, Cornwall, Devon, Dorset, Gloucestershire, Hampshire, Isle of Wight, Oxfordshire, Somerset, Wiltshire Amersham Auction Rooms, Station Rd, Amersham-on-theHill, Bucks. 01494 729292 www.amersham auctionrooms.co.uk General, Feb 6, 13, 20, 27 Bearnes Hampton & Littlewood, Okehampton St, Exeter, Devon 01392 413100 www.bearnes.co.uk Antiques and Interiors, Feb 4, 25 Sporting and Collectors, Feb 19 Charterhouse Auctioneers The Long Street Salesroom Sherborne, Dorset 01935 812277 www.charterhouse-auction.co.uk General, Feb 6-7 Chorley’s, Prinknash Abbey Park, Gloucestershire, GL4 8EU 01452 344499 www.chorleys.com None listed at time of going to press David Lay Auctions Penzance Auction House Alverton, Penzance, Cornwall 01736 361414 www.davidlay.co.uk Asian, Feb 20 Dawson’s Auctioneers 9 Kings Grove, Maidenhead, SL6 4DP www.dawsonsauctions.co.uk Antiques and Fine Art, Feb 22 Dickins, The Claydon Saleroom, Calvert Road, Middle Claydon, Buckingham. MK18 2EZ. 01296 714434 www.dickinsauctioneers.com None listed at time of going to press Dominic Winter Auctioneers, Mallard House, Broadway Lane, South Cerney, Cirencester,
Gloucestershire, GL7 5UQ 01285 860006 www.dominicwinter.co.uk Printed Books, Maps and Documents, Feb 12 Duke’s, Dorchester, Dorset 01305 265080 www.dukes-auctions.com Avenue Auction, Feb 18 Lawrences Auctioneers Ltd. Crewkerne, Somerset, TA18 8AB 01460 703041 www.lawrences.co.uk General, Feb 5, 12, 19, 26 Mallams Oxford, Bocardo House, St Michael’s St, Oxford. 01865 241358 www.mallams.co.uk The Picture Sale, Feb 26 Mallams Cheltenham, 26 Grosvenor St, Cheltenham. Gloucestershire. 01242 235 712 www.mallams.co.uk Country House, Feb 6 Mallams Abingdon, Dunmore Court, Wootten Road, Abingdon, OX13 6BH 01235 462840 www.mallams.co.uk Home Sale, Feb 10 Phillip Serrell, Barnards Green Rd, Malvern, Worcs. WR14 3LW 01684 892314 www.serrell.com General, Feb 13, 27 Plymouth Auction Rooms, Faraday Mill Trade Park, Cattledown, Plymouth, Devon, PL4 OSE 01752 254740 www.plymouthauctions.co.uk Antiques and Collectables, Feb 12 Stroud Auctions, Bath Rd Trading Estate, Bath Rd, Stroud, Gloucestershire, GL5 3QF 01453 873 800 www.stroudauctions.co.uk General, Feb 5-6 Woolley & Wallis, Salisbury, Wiltshire, SP1 3SU 01722 424500 www.woolleyandwallis.co.uk The Judith Howard Collection of Sevres Porcelain, Feb 4-5 Tribal Art and Antiquities, Feb 19
EAST MIDLANDS: Inc. Derbyshire, Leicestershire, Lincolnshire, Northamptonshire, Nottinghamshire, Sheffield Bamfords, The Derby Auction House, Chequers Road, Off Pentagon Island, Derby, DE21 6EN 01332 210000 Antiques, Interiors and Jewellery, Feb 12, 26 Specialist Militaria, Feb 12 Specialist Toy and Juvenalia, Feb 26 Batemans, Ryhall Rd, Stamford, Lincolnshire, PE9 1XF 01780 766 466 www.batemans.com The Fine Sales and Specialist Collectors, Feb 1 Jewellery and Watches, Silver and Gold, Feb 14 Gildings Auctioneers, The Mill, Great Bowden Road, Market Harborough, LE16 7DE 01858 410414 www.gildings.co.uk Antiques and Collectors, Feb 4, 18 The Stamford Auction Rooms The Sale Room, Unit 3, Station Road Ind. Estate, Little Bytham, Lincolnshire, NG33 4RA 01780 411485 www.stamfordauctionrooms.com General, Feb 29 WEST MIDLANDS: Inc. Birmingham, Coventry, Herefordshire, Shropshire, Staffordshire, Warwickshire, Bigwood Auctioneers, Stratford-Upon-Avon Warwickshire, CV37 7AW 01789 269415 www.bigwoodauctioneers.com Furnishings, Interiors and Collectables, Feb 7, 14, 28 Brightwells, Leominster, Herefordshire. 01568 611122 www.brightwells.com Wine, Port, Champagne and Whisky, Feb 19 Cuttlestones Ltd, Penkridge Auction Rooms, Pinfold Lane, Penkridge Staffordshire, ST19 5AP 01785 714905 www.cuttlestones.co.uk Antique and Interiors, Feb 5, 19
Cuttlestones Ltd, Wolverhampton Auction Rooms, No 1 Clarence Street Wolverhampton, West Midlands, WV1 4JL 01902 421985 www.cuttlestones.co.uk Antique and Interiors, Feb 12, 26 Fieldings, Mill Race Lane, Stourbridge, DY8 1JN 01384 444140 www.fieldingsauctioneers.co.uk General, Feb 8 Halls, Bowmen Way, Battlefield, Shrewsbury, Shropshire, SY4 3DR 01743 450700 www.hallsgb.com Antiques and Interiors, Feb 5 Hansons, Bishton Hall, Wolseley Bridge, Stafford, ST18 0XN 0208 9797954 www.hansonsauctioneers.co.uk Country House Collectors and Attic, Feb 6 Kingham and Orme, Davies House, Davies Road, Evesham, WR11 1YZ 01386 244224 www.kinghamandorme.com Film Posters, Feb 21 Locke & England, 12 Guy Street, Leamington Spa, Warwickshire, CV32 4RT 01926 889100 www.leauction.co.uk General, Feb 6, 13, 20, 27 Potteries Auctions, Unit 4A, Aspect Court, Silverdale Enterprise Park, Newcastle, Staffordshire, ST5 6SS 01782 638100 www.potteriesauctions.com 20th Century British Pottery, Collector’s Items, Household Items, Antique and Quality Furniture, Feb 8 Richard Winterton Auctioneers, The Litchfield Auction Centre, Wood End Lane Lichfield, Staffordshire, WS13 8NF 01543 251081 www.richardwinterton.co.uk Home and Interior, Feb 18-20 Trevanion & Dean The Joyce Building, Station Rd, Whitchurch, Shropshire, SY13 1RD 01928 800 202 www.trevanionanddean.com Fine Art and Antiques Feb 8
NORTH: Inc. Cheshire, Co. Durham, Cumbria, Humberside, Lancashire, Greater Manchester, Northumberland, Tyne and Wear, Sheffield, Yorkshire Anderson and Garland Crispin Court, Newbiggin Lane, Westerhope, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE5 1BF 0191 430 3000 www.andersonandgarland.com Town and County, Feb 5, 19 The Collectors’ Auction, Feb 6 The Toys and Comics Auction, Feb 20 Capes Dunn Charles St., Manchester 0161 273 1911 www.capesdunn.com Interiors, Vintage and Modern Effects, Feb 10, 24 European Ceramics and Glass, Feb 11 Collectors with CDs, Feb 25 Elstob & Elstob, Bedale Hall, North End, Bedale, North Yorkshire DL8 1AA 01677 333003 www.elstobandelstob.co.uk Fine Art, Antiques and Jewellery inc Fine Wines and Spirits, Feb 29 Hansons, Heage Lane, Etwall, Derbyshire DE65 6LS 01283 733988 www.hansonsauctioneers.co.uk Moorcroft, Feb 5 Antiques and Collectors, Feb 13-20 Peter Wilson Fine Art Victoria Gallery Market St, Nantwich, Cheshire. 01270 623 878 www.peterwilson.co.uk Interiors, Feb 6 Fine Wines and Spirits, Feb 13 Musical Instruments, Feb 27 Sheffield Auction Gallery, Windsor Road, Heeley, Sheffield, S8 8UB. 0114 281 6161 www.sheffieldauctiongallery.com Antiques and Collectables, Feb 7, 21 Football Programmes and Sporting Memorabilia, Feb 7 The Household Auction, Feb 8 Specialist Collectable Toys and Retro Gaming Auction, Feb 20 ANTIQUE COLLECTING 63
Tennants Auctioneers, Leyburn, North Yorkshire. 01969 623780 www.tennants.co.uk Antiques and Interiors, Feb 8, 21 Costume, Accessories and Textiles, Feb 8 Coins and Banknotes, Feb 12 Stamps, Postcards and Postal History, Feb 19 Modern Living: Art and Design, Feb 29 Modern and Contemporary Art, Feb 29 Wilkinsons Auctioneers, The Old Salerooms, 28 Netherhall Road, Doncaster, DN1 2PW 01302 814884 www.wilkinsons-auctioneers.co.uk Period Oak, Country Furniture and Effects, Featuring a Private Collection of Nottingham Alabasters, Feb 23 SCOTLAND Bonhams, Queen St, Edinburgh. 0131 225 2266 www.bonhams.com None listed at time of going to press
Lyon & Turnbull, Broughton Pl., Edinburgh. 0131 557 8844 www.lyonandturnbull.com Paintings and Works on Paper, Feb 18 Rare Books, Manuscripts, Maps and Photographs, Feb 19 WALES Anthemion Auctions, 15 Norwich Road, Cardiff, Wales, CF23 9AB 029 2047 2444 www.anthemionauction.com Fine Art, Antique and Collectors’, Feb 19 Peter Francis Towyside Salerooms, Old Station Rd, Carmarthen, SA31 1JN 01267 233456 www.peterfrancis.co.uk Antiques and Collectables, Feb 5, 19
Fine Art Auctioneers & Valuers
MODERN & CONTEMPORARY BRITISH ART Tuesday 11 February
Laurence Stephen Lowry RA RBA (British 1887-1976), a private collection of five works on paper Estimates from £7,000 Fully illustrated catalogue available and on the website
Specialist Helena Anderson | firstname.lastname@example.org 70/76 Knights Hill, London SE27 0JD | +44 (0) 20 8761 2522 www.roseberys.co.uk Collecting 192mm X 128mm.indd 64Antique ANTIQUE COLLECTING
Cheltenham Antiques Why not not pay pay aa visit visit to Why to the the finest finestquality quality
nt, TN8 5BD
ANTIQUES ANTIQUESCENTRES CENTRES
antiquecentre centre in in the the South East England… Complement home antique South Eastofofyour England… with a fine crystal glass or you won’t be disappointed! you won’t be disappointed! brass chandelier. Over 300 old chandeliers for sale, many unique. All fully restored and rewired.
Cheltenham Antique Market, 1 The Square, Church Street, Edenbridge, Kent, TN8 5BD 1 The Square, Church Street, Edenbridge, Kent, 54 Suffolk Road GL50 2AQ TN8 5BD T: 01732 864163 Tel: 01242 529812 T: 01732 864163 E: email@example.com www.antiquecrystalchandeliers.co.uk E: firstname.lastname@example.org www.edenbridgegalleries.com www.edenbridgegalleries.com
“The biggest collection of fine and antique jewellery in London” £500 - Cheltenham £50,000 Cheltenham
Complement your home Complement your home with a fine crystal glass or with a fine crystal glass or brass chandelier. Over 300 brass chandelier. Over 300 old chandeliers for sale, old chandeliers for sale, many unique. All fully many unique. All fully restored and rewired. restored and rewired. Cheltenham Antique Market, Cheltenham Antique 54 Suffolk Road GL50 2AQ Market, 54 Suffolk Tel: 01242 529812Road GL50 2AQ Tel: 01242 529812
Gloucester Antiques Centre 1/4_Layout 1 13/11/2019 12:30 Page 1
The NEW New GLOUCESTER GloucesTer THE ANTiques ceNTre ANTIQUES CENTRE
we have found a new home We home in the heart of the city of Gloucester In the heart of the city of Gloucester in aa beautiful beautiful 16th 16th century in century building building in historic westgate street in historic Westgate Street come visiT ANd see our woNderful COME VISIT AND SEE OUR WONDERFUL ArrAy of ANTiques ANd collecTAbles ARRAY OF ANTIQUES AND COLLECTABLES
We orientalcollectibles, collectibles, Wehave havesilver, silver, jewellery, jewellery, oriental ceramics, postcards,railwayana, railwayana, ceramics,art, art,glass, glass, toys, toys, postcards, stamps, much more. more. stamps, coins coins and much enjoy two floors floorsofofthe the Enjoybrowsing browsing on on two Guild hall, original mercers original Mercers Guild hall, (expanding floors of ofthe theadjacent adjacent (expandingsoon soon into into two floors Maverdine chambers) Chambers) maverdine Weare are open open 77 days we days aa week week Monday-Saturday 10-5, andsunday Sunday11-4. 11-5. monday-saturday 10-5,
THE New NEW GloucesTer GLOUCESTER ANTiques ANTIQUES CENTRE The ceNTre LTD, lTd, 26 WESTGATE STREET, GLOUCESTER, GL1 2NG 26 wesTGATe sTreeT, GloucesTer, Gl1 2NG
TEL 529716 Tel 01452 01452 529716
FOLLOW ON fAcebook FACEBOOK follow US us oN
THE THENEW NEWGLOUCESTER GLOUCESTER ANTIQUES CENTRE ANTIQUES CENTRE We have found a new home We have found a new home In the heart of the city of Gloucester In the heart of the city of Gloucester in a beautiful 16th century building in a beautiful 16th century building in historic Westgate Street in historic Westgate Street
COME VISIT AND SEE OUR WONDERFUL COME AND SEE WONDERFUL ARRAY OFVISIT ANTIQUES ANDOUR COLLECTABLES ARRAY OF ANTIQUES AND COLLECTABLES We have silver, jewellery, oriental collectibles, We have oriental collectibles, ceramics, art,silver, glass,jewellery, toys, postcards, railwayana, ceramics, art, glass, toys, postcards, stamps, coins and much more. railwayana, stamps, coins and much more. 58 Davies Mayfair, Enjoy browsing Street, on two floors of the Enjoy browsing on two floors of the original Mercers Guild hall, (Opposite Bond Street Tube) original Guild (expanding soon into Mercers two floors of thehall, adjacent (expanding soon intoChambers) two floors London W1K 5LPof the adjacent Maverdine Maverdine Chambers) We are open 7 days a week We- are open days a week Monday-Saturday 10-5, 7and Sunday Monday Friday 10am -11-5. 6pm Monday-Saturday 10-5, and Sunday 11-5.
Saturday 11am - 5pm
THE NEW GLOUCESTER ANTIQUES CENTRE LTD, THE NEW GLOUCESTER ANTIQUES GL1 26 WESTGATE STREET, GLOUCESTER, 2NG LTD, 020 7629 7034 CENTRE 26 WESTGATE STREET, GLOUCESTER, GL1 2NG
TEL 01452 529716 graysantiques.com TEL 529716 FOLLOW US01452 ON FACEBOOK
FOLLOW US ON FACEBOOK ANTIQUE COLLECTING ANTIQUE COLLECTING 6565
LAST WORD Marc Allum
‘I am going through the usual post-purchase, consumed-by-doubt phase and I don’t understand how I have become the owner’
Will it be blue skies for Marc Allum in 2020?
Marc My Words Breaking his golden rule, Marc Allum starts 2020 with a sight unseen purchase. Has he struck it lucky or squandered money to pay his tax bill?
o sooner have we got past Christmas and the New Year before the next yearly milestone heaves into view in the shape of a tax bill. I had vowed I wouldn’t spend a penny before I’d paid it. Yet, before finding my chequebook, I was completely beguiled by an auction lot that I didn’t have time to view, thereby breaking two personal edicts. Firstly, my golden rule about buying sight unseen and, secondly, spending several thousand pounds that had already been apportioned to HMRC. Why do it? Well, as we all know, it’s the nature of our business. Robbing Peter to pay Paul is par for the course because, when you see things that are unique and good, all reason goes out of the window.
BUYER’S REMORSE So what have I bought, I hear you ask? Well, at this point I don’t want to say because I’m now going through the usual post-purchase, consumedby-doubt phase and I don’t quite understand how I have become the owner. Was it dealer’s nous, or luck? For a start, I can’t quite fathom why there was so little competition. Yet, after 40 years of buying
66 ANTIQUE COLLECTING
So, having not got a condition report on the aforementioned lot, or made a trip to see it, I’m about to set off to pick it up. Will I be disappointed? Will I have the right to be disappointed? (I think not, because I know and have accepted the risks of buying something at auction sight unseen). But it is with some trepidation that I’m hoping my first major purchase of 2020 will prove my mettle – or luck – as a dealer. In the meantime watch this space. If you don’t hear anything you’ll know why! 2020 will no doubt be an interesting year and I wish everybody involved in this amazing world success. As it says on my signet ring: cavendo tutus – success through caution. Below Valuing whisky at a recent
filming of the popular show
at auction, I’m well aware that you can sometimes strike it lucky. Have I benefitted from the maxim ‘who dares profits’? Did I prosper from fellow bidders’ post-Christmas poverty, or the fact, they too, have a looming tax bill? Or was it my knack at spotting an unseen bargain? As we all know, the ability to see objects in a certain, nuanced, way is at the heart of our trade. In fact it’s what makes it so multi-dimensional and allows enigmatic, clever and specialist purveyors to prevail. But it’s a double-edged sword. My sense of enthusiasm for a particular piece is not always shared by clients. Trying to convey its indefinable quality, based on history, rarity, beauty or even ugliness, to a would-be buyer can provoke some nerve-wracking times. As a result, I sometimes feel like I’m operating in an esoteric ‘bubble’.
POOR SALESMAN I am equally frustrated by a customer’s illogical objections, such as ‘it’s too gold’– making me a terrible salesman. Accurate condition reporting is part of my Virgoan obsession as we all have such different ideas about what constitutes a good colour, damage or acceptable wear.
Above Marc in surer times at Antiques Roadshow Left What does 2020 signal for Marc?
Marc Allum is a specialist on BBC Antiques Roadshow and the author of several books on collecting. For more details go to www.marcallum.co.uk
Specialists in the sale of single owner collections and estates
Part of a private collection of Macallan single malt whisky
INDEPENDENT ANTIQUES ADVISOR & VALUER • Antiques • Silver • Classic Cars • Watches • Jewellery • Wine & Whisky www.marklittler.com
01260 218 718
1965 Rolex GMT-Master Pepsi Estimate: £15,000 William George & Co
George IV silver candlesticks Estimate: £350–520 Adam’s
Coffee table, Herman Miller Estimate: £760–1,150 Wright
Marble bust Late 19th/early 20th century Estimate: £11,500–15,500 Christie’s
Sear c 2000 h over a uct hous es fr ion om over the w all orld Andy Warhol, Mick Jagger Estimate: £30,000–50,000 Sotheby’s
Pumpkin, Yayoi Kusama (b.1929) Hammer price: £550 Forum Auctions
Hermès bag Kelly Starting price: £7,500 Stockholms Auktionsverk
Your search for art, design, antiques and collectables starts here
May Day V, Andreas Gursky Estimate: £450,000–650,000 Phillips
Mahogany dresser Estimate: £500–660 Uppsala Auktionskammare
Swivel chair by Hans J. Wegner Estimate: £2,460–3,300 Bruun Rasmussen
Style of Serge Mouille, ca. 1950s Estimate: £300–460 Rago Arts
Edwardian Art Noveau frame Estimate: £200–300 Tennants
Emerald cut diamond ring Fixed price: £27,400 Once Upon A Diamond
Without title, Alexander Calder Estimate: £430–600 Artcurial
Edwardian arm chair, ca. 1910 Fixed price: £3,850 Wick Antiques
Find the true value of your treasures - only £13. Visit barnebys.co.uk/valuation