UK

The United Kingdom accounts for more than one fifth of the global art market sales and is the second biggest art market after the US.

Through auctioneers, dealers, fairs and markets - and a burgeoning online sector - buyers, collectors and sellers of art and antiques can easily access a vibrant network of intermediaries and events around the country. The UK's museums also house a wealth of impressive collections

Another fine mess : Stanley’s marvellous eclecticism

06 December 2002

The name Stanley J. Seeger will be familiar to many art collectors and auction goers for there have already been no fewer than five auctions of his works of art and pictures since 1993, ranging from 88 works by Picasso sold in New York to Contemporary art in Milan and 18th-20th century British pictures in London.

Regency mahogany secretaire bookcase sells for £27,500

06 December 2002

With the recent closure of numerous manufacturing depots belonging to a Cardiff company, the time came to dispose of items from the manager’s flat. The best of these items, all of which were sold on November 20 at the Cardiff rooms of Anthemion Auctions, was this Regency mahogany secretaire bookcase.

New salerooms, improvements and expansion – the provinces are buzzing

06 December 2002

RUPERT Toovey launches his huge new saleroom in Sussex in a week, Dreweatt Neate have just completed a major revamp of their Donnington Priory rooms near Newbury and a host of other salerooms around the country have announced new facilities, upgrades and launches. Here we detail some of these changes, which indicate that however concerned many may be about the state of the UK antiques business, there is confidence out there and the determination to prosper through improved service.

Dining on a grand scale appeals at £20,000

06 December 2002

Five days after Sotheby’s auction, a smaller, 152-lot Russian sale comprising works of art and pictures went under the hammer at Christie’s South Kensington’s rooms on November 26 and here too buyers picked over the contents with 60 per cent changing hands.

Tulips…

06 December 2002

Interior decorators may well be familiar with the work of ARC prints, the Battersea firm based at 1-6 Andrew Place, SW8.Their high quality reproductions of antique engravings of Piranesi vases, Roman architectural studies and David Roberts Middle Eastern landscapes can be seen on the walls of many an antique shop or stand as well as providing a stylish focal point to domestic interiors.

Kensington is new venue for Haughtons’ ceramics fair

02 December 2002

LONDON-based Brian and Anna Haughton are moving their International Ceramics Fair & Seminar from the West End to the Commonwealth Centre in Kensington where it will be staged in conjunction with a new event, The London Asian Art Fair.

NEC to stage August fair at Earls Court

02 December 2002

CENTRE Exhibitions, the organising arm of Birmingham’s National Exhibition Centre, are launching a new Antiques For Everyone fair at the Earls Court Exhibition Centre in West London next August.

Top-end Victorian art feels the pinch

02 December 2002

The market for high-value Victorian pictures took a downturn last week when Christie’s and Sotheby’s Important British Picture sales posted some worryingly high levels of bought-ins.

Dual effect of packed sales calendar

28 November 2002

The upside of Asian art in London is that the volume of sales pulls in all the Asian and international buyers. The downside of this concentration is that scheduling without overlap is difficult and buyers inevitably pick their way through all those goods selectively. Christie’s South Kensington, who fielded a marathon 600-plus lot Chinese auction on November 14, felt both effects.

Papier-mâché is the new black

28 November 2002

“Black lacquered papier-mâché is back in vogue after a couple of years in the doldrums,” said Bonhams’ David Houlston, hailing one of the most successful components of November Chester sale on 6-8 November. This material was a decorative complement to the crepuscular interiors of Victorian houses and Mr Houlston believes that its resurgence is due to the ingenuity of modern decorators who have found brighter uses for the black.

Rare Staffordshire pearlware model of a camel fetched £27,000

28 November 2002

A private collection of Wood family Staffordshire pearlware figures was the main focus of a sale of British ceramics held by Sotheby’s Olympia on November 19.

What do we do about brown furniture? NAVA ask members

28 November 2002

FACING up to the decline in demand for brown furniture was the central issue taxing the National Association of Valuers and Auctioneers (NAVA) at their annual general meeting in Cardiff.

Blowing its own trumpet at last

28 November 2002

In the warm dirge of the Victorian brass band, this serpentine instrument was king of the pumping bassline. But the sad journey of the ophicleide from fame to obscurity in a little under 50 years illustrated the pace of musical change in the 19th century.

Farmer’s dance image reaps a record at £480,000

28 November 2002

Korean Art: IT was the half dozen pieces of Korean works of art that rounded off the Japanese sale at Sotheby’s Olympia rooms on November 11 that provided the auctioneers with their sale highpoint in the form of this painting by Park Sookeun (1914-65), one the country’s most sought-after artists.

£12,500 chairs justify ‘realistic’ furniture market

28 November 2002

While many provincial auctioneers berate the slowing down of the brown furniture market, Phillip Taubenheim of Gloucestershire auctioneers Wotton Auction Rooms (10% buyer’s premium) is finding it pretty healthy. “As long as we are realistic with our vendors and they are realistic with us, everything seems to be OK,” he said.

Barlow’s horses gallop home

28 November 2002

Auctioneer Geoffrey Barfoot has noted increased activity at the general sales in the Campsea Ashe rooms of Abbotts (10% buyer’s premium) and the mood has spread to fine art – “provided the lots are fresh to market and good or rare”.

New dawn for Apollo

25 November 2002

AT the last moment London-based international arts magazine Apollo has been saved. The December issue was to have been the last of the magazine, which was established in 1925, but late last week it was announced that The Spectator (1828) Ltd. had acquired all the assets of Apollo in a private sale, with immediate effect.

Asian Art in London

21 November 2002

Asian art in London, the annual nine-day celebration of the capital’s artistic, academic and commercial expertise in the Asian art field, was in full swing last week with auctions, dealers’ shows, lectures and exhibitions. The highlight of this year’s Asian auction series was this Chinese 15th century Chenghua mark and period ‘Palace’ bowl, part of the collection formed by the 2nd Baron Cunliffe offered at Bonhams on November 11 where it sold for £820,000 (plus 17.5/10 per centpremium).

The cat’s whiskers

21 November 2002

THE sale at Amersham Auction Rooms (15 per cent buyer’s premium) on October 3 had a number of items with collector appeal – none more so than this Wemyss cat, right, a speciality within a speciality. The vendors had no knowledge of the value of the 123/4in (32cm) black and grey cat but bidders at Buckinghamshire didn’t need the Wemyss Ware Made in England painted mark to the base to recognise it for what it was and the cat sold to a local dealer at £4000.

Wood yew believe it? Burr cabinet rates a £5200 bid

21 November 2002

Robert Finan has been holding these specialist sales at the Ship Hotel for six years and next year intends to go quarterly. With the major UK auctioneers having shipped their tribal art departments to Continental Europe and America, the valuer’s biannual outings are just about the only chance for the serious connoisseur to root out African totems and Maori weapons from the colonial timecapsules of the British countryside.

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