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.

Turkish table clock is toast of sale

06 February 2004

Most Continental auctioneers combine clocks with their furniture sales, and Sotheby’s Amsterdam is alone in hosting the city’s only regular specialist clock and watch outing. These biannual specialist sales attract a mix of local and international dealers and in recent years Sotheby’s specialist Jos Meis has seen an increase in demand from US buyers for decorative French gilt mantel clocks and from Dutch collectors for the quality Dutch clocks in his sales.

The market responds to cautiously catalogued cameos

06 February 2004

THE close of 2003 gave us much information on the current market in 18th-19th century cameos with more than 130 examples on offer between two European auction rooms, one in the UK, the other in Italy.

Olympia in the sun – why trade heads for Florida

06 February 2004

HOT on the heels of the upmarket, well-established Palm Beach Classic, the brand new Palm Beach Jewellery and Antique Show will be launched from February 13 to 17 at the same venue, the new Palm Beach Convention Center. The event is fully booked with a hefty 225 dealers but the astonishing fact is that no fewer than 70 of these are from the UK.

Crab tureen cover makes £134,830 at Christies in New York

05 February 2004

It wasn’t just top pieces of Americana and Old Master paintings that occupied the salerooms in New York last month, there was also a good selection of Chinese Export porcelain on offer. Christie’s were selling the third installment of the Benjamin Edwards III collection of Export Porcelain on January 20 plus an interesting mixed owner selection in their Captains and Kilns ceramics auction on the same day.

Sales from Hoffmann

04 February 2004

FRANCE: THE centenary of the Wiener Werkstätte, founded by Josef Hoffmann and Koloman Moser in 1903, was commemorated in Vienna with various museum and gallery exhibitions, and two specialist auctions at the city’s main auction houses – the Dorotheum and Wiener Kunst.

Top two link up in medieval Manhattan

02 February 2004

FOR their third biennial exhibition, Blumka Gallery of New York and Kunsthandlung Julius Böhler of Munich join forces for a truly stunning collection of recent acquisitions at Blumka’s premises at 209 East 72nd Street.

Old Masters hold sway over Modern Art as prices remain unstable

02 February 2004

PARIS: A PLETHORA of picture sales in Paris in December yielded some unexpectedly high prices but an erratic overall response, with an average take-up (by lot) of around 60 per cent. Results were stronger for Old Masters than for Modern Art, while the presence of buyers from across Europe helped offset the absence of Americans, deterred by the weak dollar.

Binoche is charged over ‘illegal’ 1995 sales

02 February 2004

Paris auctioneer Jean-Claude Binoche has been charged with fraud in connection with the sale of three pictures in 1995. Binoche, 61, is accused of buying two works himself at an auction he staged on 18 October 1995, which is illegal under French law, and of selling another work after the sale (a Prud’hon drawing, to the Beaux-Arts museum in Dijon). After-sales were illegal in France at the time, although they have been permitted since 2001.

Ski posters to give your walls a lift

02 February 2004

POSTERS provide instant wall power to any interior, and carefully chosen they can prove a most effective (and cost-effective) device in any decorating scheme. Look out for two interesting poster auctions next month on either side of the Atlantic.

Christie’s are French number one

26 January 2004

Christie’s have become France’s leading auction house in terms of market share after posting 2003 Paris sales of €80.3m (£55m), a rise of 40 per cent on 2002.

European coin record in NY

26 January 2004

A new record for a European coin was set in New York on January 15 at a sale held jointly by Baldwin (London), Markov (N.Y.) and M&M Numismatics (Washington DC). The subject of this excitement was a Russian silver rouble.  Boldly estimated at $500,000, after spirited bidding it reached $525,000 (£308,823), selling to a Japanese dealer on behalf of a client.

Sotheby’s bet on Forbes and Whitney as guaranteed winners

23 January 2004

Using the incentive of financial guarantees, Sotheby’s have secured two spectacular consignments for the New York spring auction calendar: the Forbes collection of Fabergé and pictures from the Whitney collection.

Mouseman oak cupboard

The mouse roars in New York…

23 January 2004

Even if the buying power of Americans is not so much in evidence in Europe in some quarters these days, they appear much less reluctant to flex their financial muscles in their own back yard. This seems to be particularly true when it comes to decorative arts.

LVMH bow out with Tajan sale

19 January 2004

Fashion giants LVMH have sold their controlling stake in leading French auction house Tajan to Rodart, a company owned by American businesswoman Rodica B. Seward. Financial details of the transaction have not been disclosed.

Why The Last Samurai is the hero of sword sellers of New York…

15 January 2004

CAN a mere movie affect the antiques market? The answer would appear to be yes, at least in New York where, since the release of The Last Samurai, starring Tom Cruise, interest in the ancient Japanese weapons of the Samurai has soared with a significant number of new collectors entering the field declaring they have been inspired by the film.

Furniture in picture

15 January 2004

Organisers of Spain’s top antiques fair Feriarte, held last November 22 to 30 at Madrid’s Juan Carlos I Exhibition Centre, report the 200 exhibitors between them sold 6317 items. The gate was 37,147.

Light the blue touch paper and retire for 350 years…

15 January 2004

Sold at $26,000 (£15,570) as part of the $3.82m (£2.28m) sale of the H.P. Kraus inventory held by Sotheby’s New York on December 4 and 5 was a lavishly illustrated manuscript of 1661 dealing with fireworks, ballistic design and construction.

Giacometti gets foundation at last

12 January 2004

A French Foundation devoted to Swiss sculptor Alberto Giacometti (1901-66) has finally been launched, ten years after his widow Annette called for its creation in her will. The French government gave the Fondation Alberto & Annette Giacometti the green light on December 9.

Stateside for ceramics

08 January 2004

THERE will be even greater English trade interest in one of the big success stories of recent years on the New York fairs scene – The New York Ceramics Fair. The fair, which has expanded from four to five days and will run at the National Academy of Design Museum, 1083 Fifth Avenue at 89th Street, from January 14 to 18 with a preview party on the evening of January 13.

Honoured English nine help broadenappeal of old Manhattan

08 January 2004

TO many Americans, Manhattan’s annual Winter Antiques Show is the most prestigious fair in the land. It is certainly the most venerable since from January 16 to 25 (after a charity party on January 15) it celebrates a half century at New York’s Seventh Regiment Armory, Park Avenue at 67th Street.