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Emperor of the Channel

05 July 2002

GERMANY: Round about the year 286AD times were very interesting in Britannia. Some small documents of this small and little known facet of British history appeared in the Lanz (15% buyer’s premium) sale in Munich on May 27.

Museum’s swansong

27 March 2002

Museums are well known as the protectors of age, but now we have an example of how age is to prove the downfall of such an institution. The silver lining to this cloud is that it provides a unique opportunity for the trade and collectors.

Endless appeal of Infinite Life

31 January 2002

A large, gilt-copper altar statue of Amitayus, the Buddha of Infinite Life, on a lotus flower base, right, 3ft 2in (96cm) tall and hailing from Inner Mongolia/Dolonnor or China (c.1700), proved the main attraction at Nagel’s Asian Art sale in Stuttgart on November 10, selling for DM420,000 (£134,000).

Sunny Beuys…

31 January 2002

GERMANY: Joseph Beuys’ Sonnenkreuz (1947-48), a patinated bronze sculpture 15 x 81/4in (37 x 21cm), evoking a crucifix against a radiating sun, sold comfortably over estimate for DM200,000 (£64,000) at the Lempertz Contemporary Art sale in Cologne on December 5.

Danish prototype hits £48k

30 January 2002

GERMANY: TYPEWRITERS may not be renowned for their beauty but there was undeniable aesthetic charm, as well as historic significance, to the 1867 Malling Hansen Writing Ball that set a new world record price for an historical typewriter with a double-estimate DM150,000 (£48,000) for Auction Team Köln in Cologne on December 1.

On white horses, let me fly away…

29 January 2002

IT CANNOT often be said of an auction catalogue that its lot numbers will be used for a very long time, perhaps a century or more, as reference numbers in a standard academic publication. The catalogue of Numismatik Lanz of Munich is just such a one.

Early dirham catches the word

13 December 2001

It is not usually understood that the prophet Mohammed did not actually ban images. This came about some 60 years after his death. In very late AH77 (696AD) the then caliph instituted an epigraphic gold coinage: the dinar (cf. Latin: denarius).

Oetke Group negotiate sale of Colnaghi

05 November 2001

The German-based Oetke Group are currently in negotiations to sell the Bond Street galleries of Colnaghi, one of the oldest names in the London art trade, to the London and Munich Old Master dealer Konrad Bernheimer.

Poussin’s strictly private appeal

22 October 2001

The rediscovery of a significant work by a major Old Master painter is always an event for the art trade, even if the work not obviously commercial. When Anthony Blunt wrote his monograph on Nicholas Poussin (1594-1665) this painting, right, of The Holy Family with St. John the Baptist, executed c.1627-28 when the young Poussin first worked in Rome, was only known from engravings.

Bernheimer to launch biennale in Munich

12 September 2001

TOP German dealer Konrad Bernheimer, who has galleries in Munich and London, is the driving force behind a new international, prestige fair at the Haus der Kunst, Munich scheduled for a 2003 launch.

Record price for painting at German auction

19 July 2001

GERMANY: Over the last few years there has been an increasing awareness that high quality works will always fetch exceptional auction prices almost regardless of where they come up for sale.

Art Sales at Lempertz

13 July 2001

GERMANY: Lempertz’ Old Masters in Cologne on May 19 produced a hammer total of DM6.7m (£2.1m) and a surprise price of DM192,000 (£60,000), paid by the Italian trade against an estimate of just DM4000, for a Bildnis eines Singers, a portrait of a singer with crimson turban and coat, his left forefinger resting on a musical score, 3ft 1in x 2ft 6in (93 x 77cm).

Next stop Basel for the top antiquities

09 July 2001

AFTER Grosvenor House, a number of leading dealers’ next major fair is at Basel – Cultura, which will be held from October 13 to 21 at Hall 3 of Messe Basel where some 85 exhibitors from Europe and the US will stand.

Cologne fair marks solid progress

23 April 2001

ENOUGH of the 117 exhibitors reported decent sales at the 32nd Kunst Messe Koln, the West German Antique Dealers Association national fair at Cologne’s Trade Fair Centre from March 24 to April 1, to record a solid performance, probably up on last year.

Sales put spotlight on glass

02 April 2001

GERMANY: ONE of the earliest items available at W.G. Herr’s (buyer’s premium 18 per cent + VAT) latest sale on March 17 was an iron and copper Zunftdose (guild member’s box, right), 81/2in (22cm) tall and engraved Magnus Brock Möller der Hunger 1697, that comfortably cleared estimate with DM7500 (£2400).

Showstopping pottery model of a recumbent Bactrian camel

19 March 2001

TEFAF Maastricht closed on Sunday with museum-quality goods having sold well – particularly Old Masters, Contemporary art and Oriental – but business was being achieved from the opening party on March 9, when collectors converged on this showstopping pottery model of a recumbent Bactrian camel, 101/2in (27cm) high, on the stand of London specialist Ben Janssens.

Phones ’aint what they used to be

01 February 2001

GERMANY: Telecommunication items sold at Auction Team Breker in Cologne included another great rarity: a Telefon-Globe Hide-A-Phone‚ manufactured c.1928.

The toast of society…

01 February 2001

Albert L. Marsh, a young inventor from Illinois, was granted a patent in 1906 for his discovery of an alloy that would only oxidize and burn up after many thousands of heating cycles.

Cologne makes its marks with younger generation

18 December 2000

GERMANY: WITH an attendance of 70,000, there was certainly plenty of interest in the work at the 34th Art Cologne, one of the world’s leading fairs for modern and contemporary work which showcased 276 dealers from 21 countries in Cologne Exhibition Centre between November 5 and 12.

Tek Sing – proof that the Internet can work

04 December 2000

IN a week that has seen the NASDAQ plummet and general gloom settle over the dotcom world, the massive Tek Sing cargo sale has shown that the Internet can play an extremely useful role in the international auction scene.