London


Lawyers predict £100m-200m UK class action within weeks

11 February 2002

LAWYERS say that Sotheby’s and Christie’s can expect to face a £100m lawsuit over price-fixing at UK auctions within the next few weeks.

Stars and students in print

07 February 2002

IN 1954 the painter and printmaker, Philip Reeves (born 1931), being interviewed for a post as a lecturer at the Glasgow School of Art, produced a letter of reference from the artist Robert Austin (1895-1973).

Collectable clout of Nelson and Titanic

05 February 2002

The Maritime sale held by Bonhams (15/10% buyer’s premium) in their New Bond Street rooms on January 16 was a sizeable 400-lot affair divided roughly 50/50 into paintings and maritime artefacts – the latter featuring anything from ship models to scrimshaw, divers’ helmets to sextants.

Agnew’s fight £1.5m claim over Van Dyck attribution

05 February 2002

MAYFAIR art dealers Agnew’s are hotly contesting claims for a £1.5m refund over an Old Master which is at the centre of a dispute over who painted it.

Imperial gifts – from Meissen to Wedgwood

29 January 2002

The 102 lots of European ceramics that rounded off Christie’s (17.5/10% buyer’s premium) December 13 furnishing sale at King Street had, despite a degree of softness to the Meissen market, a generally high take-up for that factory, with 18 of the 25 lots of tablewares and figures changing hands and some strong individual results.

A little stick of Blackpool pietra…

29 January 2002

If 1930s Blackpool looks like a British version of the Italian Riviera it is because this poster advertisement, right, was designed by a Neapolitan watercolourist, Fortunino Matania, for the LMS railway company whose trains serviced the Lancashire resort.

A second signed Carli

29 January 2002

The final ceramics auction in London last year was the glass sale held at Sotheby’s Olympia on December 18. The top priced lot at £50,000 was this damaged but rare North German covered goblet of c.1675, painted and signed by Johann Anton Carli of Andermach am Rhein with a scene of Christ and the woman of Samaria.

Sotheby’s ring changes at Olympia to woo bidders

28 January 2002

Longer opening hours and a free parking system are to be introduced at Sotheby’s Olympia rooms from next month. The auctioneers have reached an agreement with the local Hammersmith and Fulham council to open an hour earlier at 9am from February.

Illuminating price for chandelier

23 January 2002

Villa Bombrini Sale: TWO days before their main mixed owner European furniture sale, Christie’s also offered a separate single owner auction – Furniture and Works of Art removed from Villa Bombrini, ‘Il Paradiso’, Genoa – on December 11. Just over 300 lots were offered, of which three quarters found buyers – selling to the tune of £1,134,280.

A newer look at watercolours

23 January 2002

LONDON is especially strong on niche events and specialist fairs do not come much more quintessentially English than The Watercolours and Drawings Fair which will be held for the fourth time at the Park Lane Hotel, Piccadilly, London W1 from January 31 to February 3.

Helmet combines academic and monetary values

23 January 2002

ARMS & ARMOUR: Academic importance doesn’t always equate with financial interest, but in the case of the item pictured here, a 16th century close helmet, which went under the hammer at Sotheby’s Olympia (17.5/10% buyer’s premium) on December 7, there was a happy concurrence between the two.

Cosy threesome

16 January 2002

LONDON: Three dealers exhibiting at the Spring Fine Art and Antiques Fair at Olympia in West London will hold a concurrent joint exhibition just two minutes’ walk away from the West London exhibition complex, with the object of pulling in the public and any decorators who are in town.

Johnson medals set new world record

16 January 2002

A new world record was set at Spink’s sale of Medals, Orders and Decorations (ODM) on December 10. The group of medals won by Air Vice-Marshal (as he became) “Johnnie” Johnson were sold for £241,500 (including premium).

Steiff competition as solid as ever

16 January 2002

The third sale in Christie's South Kensington’s December toy triumvirate was their teddy bear and soft toy sale held on the 3rd of the month. The second of their biannual sales in this category, this was a sizeable offering at 319 lots and was well attended by a mix of collectors and dealers.

Drumming up business

16 January 2002

NEXT week the British fair, which some 17 years ago was the first to cater seriously for the home and, more importantly, the transatlantic decorative trade, opens in its marquee at Battersea Park.

Minton boxed – Doulton sell museum collection

15 January 2002

Bonhams are to sell the impressive collection of Minton ceramics from the Minton Museum, Stoke-on-Trent in their New Bond Street rooms this year. The collection will be dispersed in two instalments, with the first 400-lot dispersal scheduled for April 30.

Half of the earliest English nursery rhyme book rates £40,000 in Knightsbridge

14 January 2002

Blackamoor, Taunymoor, Suck a Bubby; Your Father’s a Cuckold, Your Mother told me ....not the most familiar of nursery rhymes, nor indeed one likely to find much favour in the present century, but that rhyme, illustrated right, is only one of 37 found in the second volume of Tom Thumb’s Pretty Song Book, many of which are much more familiar, if not always in quite the same form as we know them now.

Bruton Street’s Lefevre Gallery to close

14 January 2002

LONDON: Mayfair’s Lefevre Gallery, a leading player on the London art scene since it was founded in 1926, is to close.

The People’s Commissariat and the Imperial family jewels

14 January 2002

A jewellery sale held by Sotheby’s on November 27 included a few exhibition and sale catalogues, plus a very rare and important work published in Moscow in 1925 by the People’s Commissariat of Finances.

Were these bird books special copies given to Coenraad Temminck?

14 January 2002

The bird with the splendid hairdo pictured right is one of five original watercolours, possibly by Madam Knip herself, found in a special copy of Temminck & Knip’s Histoire naturelle des Pigeons of 1801-11 that sold for £30,000 to a private buyer at Christie’s November 28 sale.

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