The current Master of the Arts Scholars, Nicholas Somers, heralded it as a historic day for all those who have worked over the past ten years to create a company open to all involved in studying, curating, collecting and trading in the decorative and applied arts.
The vision for such an organisation came from two antiques trade luminaries: the late Jonathan Horne, former chairman of the BADA, and Lord Brooke, former president of the BADA and the British Art Market Federation. It was they who began the three-stage process that came to fruition last week.
The Company was first recognised by the City as the Guild of Arts Scholars, Dealers and Collectors in 2005, becoming a Company without Livery in 2010, and has had to meet the stringent financial and other targets set by the London Corporation at each stage.
Many Livery Companies date back to the Middle Ages, but since the 1950s there has been a resurgence of interest in the Livery movement and the Arts Scholars are now one of around 30 'Modern' Companies representing many of the professions that are central to the economy today.
The Company's 247 members include dealers and auctioneers, academics and museum curators, collectors, as well as shippers, restorers, insurers and many other service providers.
For further information on joining the company contact the clerk at firstname.lastname@example.org