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Latest saleroom movers and shakers

Bristol Auction Rooms has moved to new premises in the south-east of the city in Brislington and made a number of appointments this year.

Stephen Ferguson becomes saleroom manager with a focus on silver, jewellery and watches, joining from Wotton Auctions in the Cotswolds. He previously worked for Bonhams as regional jewellery specialist in Bath.

Alongside textile and costume consultant Liz van Hasselt, he will hold the firm’s first sale at its new premises. The silver and jewellery and vintage fashion sale will be held on September 13 at the new saleroom on Yelverton Road, just off Hungerford Road.

Ferguson will work with consultant and ambassador Richard Madley, who joined earlier this year and also conducts its auctions.

Roseberys’ new print head

South London saleroom Roseberys has appointed a head of department for its prints division. Shane Xu joins from Sworders. She was previously at auction house Bloomsbury.

She will hold her first modern and contemporary prints and multiples sale on October 9.

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Gallery buys Dylan Thomas portrait

Christie’s has helped to broker the sale of portrait of a young Dylan Thomas by Augustus John (1878-1961) to the National Portrait Gallery (NPG).

The picture, which links not just two friends, but two key figures in 20th century Welsh art, was sold via a private treaty sale for £214,750. It was one of two portraits of the poet by the artist that date from c.1937 when Thomas was 23.


The c.1937 portrait of Dylan Thomas by Augustus John bought by the National Portrait Gallery.

The painting was previously on long-term loan to the NPG where it has been on permanent display for 20 years. The other c.1937 portrait is now in the collection of the National Museum Wales.

The artist and sitter met in the early 1930s. In the spring of 1936 John introduced Thomas to Caitlin Macnamara, whom the poet married the following year.

The work was purchased for the NPG with a contribution of £94,800 from National Heritage Memorial Fund, £70,000 from Art Fund and £49,950 from The Thompson Family Charitable Trust.

Lady Lucan lots on sale at Bonhams

A Victorian silver trophy cup won by Lord Lucan in a backgammon game is part of the Lady Lucan collection on sale at Bonhams on October 3.

The cup, maker’s mark WH, London 1844, is engraved Clermont Club Open Backgammon Tournament October 1969 and is estimated at £200-300.

Lord Lucan was known as a professional gambler – but his nickname of ‘Lucky’ is thought to be ironic as his frequent heavy losses meant this was rarely true.


Victorian trophy estimated at £200-300 as part of Bonhams’ Lady Lucan collection.

John Bingham, the 7th Earl of Lucan, disappeared in 1974, shortly after the attempted murder of his by then estranged wife and the murder of the nanny of their children, Sandra Rivett. At the inquest into Rivett’s death, Lucan was identified as her killer – the first member of the House of Lords to be named in court as a murderer since 1760.

Lady Lucan died last year and now her estate leads Bonhams’ Private Collections Sale. She had married Lord Lucan in 1963.

Dealer’s van stolen with stock inside

A Norfolk dealer is appealing for help from the antiques trade after his van was stolen with stock inside.

Mal Cannell of Cannell Antiques in Raveningham, Norfolk, reported the theft of his white Mercedes Sprinter (car registration KV14 XUB) to the police but is hoping some of the items stolen may be offered to other dealers.

The stock had been stored in the van ready to go to a polisher and restorer. Items include kilim rugs, an oak settle, a mahogany two-door press cupboard, an oak refectory table and a travelling trunk.

Anyone with information should contact the police using crime reference number 36-51295-18.

In Numbers


The number of portraits fed into an artificial intelligence system to create a new work by algorithm. Edmond de Belamy is one of 11 unique works in a series called La Famille de Belamy conceived by the Paris collective Obvious.


‘Edmond de Belamy’, a portrait created by an algorithm, estimated at $7000-10,000 at Christie’s.

It will be the first work of art created by an algorithm to be offered at a major auction house when Christie’s sell it with a $7000-10,000 estimate in New York on October 23-25.