About 80% of the global art market by value takes place outside the UK. The largest art market in the world is the US with China in third place (after the UK) followed by France, Germany and Switzerland.

Many more nations have a rich art and antiques heritage with active auction, dealer, fair, gallery and museum sectors even if their market size by value is smaller.

Read the top stories and latest art and antiques news from all these countries.

A date at the chateau… Fair Preview

28 April 2004

SPECIALIST ceramics dealers will, once again, be gathering at the historic chateau at Enghien, 20 miles south west of Brussels, this week for the fourth staging of the Salon Céramique Ancienne (Oude Keramiek).

Live online bidding deal for Sotheby’s

27 April 2004

LIVEAUCTIONEERS.COM, the Manhattan-based company that provides real-time Internet bidding capability to many US auction houses, has signed an agreement with Sotheby’s New York branch to provide its services for selected Sotheby’s sales.

Head and shoulders above the rest at $650,000

22 April 2004

THE international Asian art community descended upon New York in March to secure the most enticing exhibits in Manhattan’s two major Asian art fairs and numerous dealers’ shows. They were also there to contest the best quality Chinese, Japanese, Indian and Southeast Asian fare in Sotheby’s and Christie’s five specialist auctions that took place between March 23 and 25.

Popularity of the radially expanding dining table

19 April 2004

The perennial and international popularity of the radially expanding dining table was underlined in South Africa when Stephan Welz & Co (in association with Sotheby’s) sold this William IV circular extending dining table by Johnstone, Jupe and Co for R950,000 (£84,820), plus 10 per cent premium, in Cape Town on March 30.

Law change creates headache for coin trade

15 April 2004

THE new money-laundering laws appear inadvertently to have created a problem for the coin trade.

Proyart to go

15 April 2004

JEAN-BAPTISTE de Proyart, vice president of Sotheby’s France, is to leave the company this summer to work as an independent art advisor in books and manuscripts, based in Paris. He joined Sotheby’s in 1993 and, as head of books and manuscripts in France, organised several sales since the firm were allowed to sell in Paris in 2001.

The Death of Munrow sold at Sotheby's New York

15 April 2004

The Death of Munrow, depicting the attack by a tiger on a certain Mr Munroe in 1793 when he was out on a hunting party on Saugar Island in West Bengal, is one of the most dramatic and celebrated subjects to be recorded in Staffordshire earthenware. As a result it usually commands a high price when it comes up for sale at auction but few could have predicted the $130,000 (£74,285) (plus buyer’s premium) realised for the example that appeared at Sotheby’s New York last week.

Paris auction boss guilty of fraud

06 April 2004

PARIS auctioneer Jean-Claude Binoche has been given an eight-month suspended jail sentence, and fined €100,000, after a Paris court found him guilty of fraud.

Cultura Basel is axed

06 April 2004

CULTURA Basel, Switzerland’s only international antiques fair, has been abandoned and there seems no likelihood of reviving the critically-acclaimed fixture.

Massive sale proves a staple guide to prices…

01 April 2004

THE massive catalogue of Küncker of Osnabrück (27.22/23 buyer’s premium) devoted to Classical, Byzantine and Islamic coins has fallen onto my desk.

A £40,000 star older than looks suggest...

01 April 2004

The 20in (52cm) high dinanderie vase by Jean Dunand, pictured, right, with original black patina and sleek Art Deco outlines belying its early date of 1913, zoomed to €60,000 (£40,000), five times the estimate, at the Tajan (20.33% buyer’s premium) sale of 20th century decorative arts on March 4.

Scottsboro Boys, Fancies and Abbey Fisher’s pickles

23 March 2004

A PORTRAIT of two of the ‘Scottsboro Boys’, illustrated right, topped this year’s sale of African-Americana at Swann’s when it was knocked down at $36,000 (£19,080). But there was also a bid of $20,000 (£10,600) on a group of 40 letters and telegrams addressed to Dickenson, Hill & Co. and S.R. Fondren, slave dealers of Richmond, Virginia, in the years 1836-62.

Wynkyn de Worde’s indulgence and Thomas Bewick’s extra illustrations ...

23 March 2004

THE rarest and probably the earliest piece of printing in a February 26 sale held by Pacific Book Auctions of San Francisco, the papal indulgence from Wynkyn de Worde’s press seen right, was bid to $13,000 (£6890), but there were some other early items in the collection of editions of Aesop’s Fables formed by the late Dr Margaret Rose Quentin that opened the auction.


23 March 2004

THE 330-lot tribal art sale at Blanchet & Associés (17.94% buyer’s premium) back on January 30 featured 173 pre-Columbian pieces. These achieved a 70 per cent take-up, with a top price of €14,500 (£10,000) for a polished stone ritual Hacha from Guatemala, right, 9 1/2 x 7 1/2in (24 x 19.5cm), whose relief decoration took the form of the profiled face of a dead man, topped by the giant, curved fang of the sacred serpent.

Late spring flowering for Milan antique fairs

23 March 2004

WHEN it comes to trade fairs it’s showtime all the year round in Milan, but antiques have their biggest flowering in the late spring with two major vetted fairs in the city taking place hot on each other’s heels.

Who’s been sleeping in this Hollywood fantasy bed?

16 March 2004

THE first day of a Belle Epoque sale held by Doyle of New York on February 25-26 awoke what one might, with greater reason than most, term a sleeper – the remarkable piece of furniture, catalogued as “An Italian Baroque style Mahogany Bed”, seen right. The bed was part of the Woodruff collection, comprising stock from a former Hollywood business that from 1922-60 was a popular rental source for the film studios, but stock that for the past 40 or more years has been in storage in Oklahoma.

UK dealers ready to give Florida newcomer a second shot

16 March 2004

HOT on the heels of the distinctly glitzy and upmarket Palm Beach Classic, a new fair, the Palm Beach Jewelry and Antique Show, moved into the same venue, the new Palm Beach County Convention Center, with a broader-based, much larger fair, and pulled it off.

Rousseau’s Julie ‘Lettre XX1'

16 March 2004

BOUND in red morocco gilt, an autograph draft manuscript of one of the more important letters that make up the narrative of Jean Jacques Rousseau’s Julie, ou La Nouvelle Héloise – Lettre XXI, in which Saint-Preux writes about the women of Paris – was sold for €82,000 (£56,550) as part of the library of King Léopold III and Princess Lilian of Belgium at the Chateau d’Argenteuil near Waterloo. The sale was held by Sotheby’s Paris on December 11.

$120,000 revival of Belgian altar fortunes

16 March 2004

ALTAR surrounds and other architectural elements from a 19th century Belgian church proved one of the bigger attractions at a February 8 sale held by in Los Angeles by Bonhams & Butterfields – a sale titled ‘Revival of the Centuries’.

New York from the rooftops, with Skyboy adding to the Right Wonder

16 March 2004

TWO views of New York from what were, at the time, the city’s tallest buildings, are illustrated here. Both were part of the February 17 Swann’s sale of ‘100 Fine Photographs’, where ‘The Movement’, another of Frantisek Drtikol’s much admired pigment prints was scheduled to have become the sale’s best seller for the third time in a row, but in this instance failed to live up to expectations of $340,000-60,000.