2538DD Chelsea

A 19th century bronze bust of Isis by Pierre-Eugène-Émile Hébert was bought by an Egyptian businessman at the recent Chelsea Antiques Fair from Garret & Hurst.

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However, as a collector of Egyptian artefacts, his interest was piqued by the c.1867 goddess sculpture, which was ticketed at £5500 on the stand of Garret & Hurst.

It is these chance encounters with new clients which have caused dealers to long for the return of in-person events. Chelsea was one of the first of such events in London this year. It ran from March 23-27 at Chelsea Old Town Hall, following its return under new owner 2Covet last September.

Sales were reported across the event, with one important 19th century painting selling for a six-figure sum. Haynes Fine Art also made a successful clutch of sales later in the event.The gallery told ATG that it “loved the fair,” but worried that there was pressure on it as one of only few fairs at its level still running in London.

Newcomers included Jacksons Antique, whose Callum Jackson travelled from Lincolnshire and said he had enjoyed the exposure the London event provided (see 5 Questions below), as well as Shanshan Wang, who received serious interest in her range of Asian antiquities.

The fair included a special focus and lectures on glass. Specialist Mike Moir (M&D Moir) reported selling a piece of Palda, offered for £800, to a returning client who came to hear him speak.

Fair director Sophie Wood said it is now “well-placed to capitalise on its redevelopment and we will continue to evolve and refine its presentation to meet the needs of our visitors”.

It returns from November 2-6 with a preview day on November 1.