I cannot quite believe that another year has gone by and I am again introducing Antiques Trade Gazette’s rare books supplement.
Time certainly seems to accelerate as I get older and despite the enormous trials of Brexit, Covid and now the dreadful war in Ukraine, the rare book world happily keeps on turning.
We remain blessed with a healthy market, an ever-changing offering of bibliophile treasures and some notable areas of growth in new collecting interests.
Life at Forum continues to evolve; it often seems that the nonstop merry-go-round of both the fortnightly timed auctions and bimonthly live auctions gives us little time to do much more than focus on the next deadline and then the next.
I want therefore to pay tribute to the dedicated team at Forum who work so hard in providing the best possible service to all our customers; from research and catalogue descriptions, supplying information and countless condition photographs, to packing, shipping, internet bidding and so many other tasks.
Over the course of the past year Forum’s sales again exceeded £20m from nearly 50 auctions and an increasingly active private treaty sales department.
It is from this position of strength that we agreed in December to merge into the highly respected Gurr Johns art advisory business that four years ago bought Dreweatts and Bloomsbury Auctions. At the time Antiques Trade Gazette ran a front page story announcing the ‘new powerhouse’.
In what I see as a wonderfully serendipitous ‘full-circle’ journey, many of us are once again working with former colleagues across the full range of fine and decorative arts disciplines.
For some of us oldies we have the sweet taste of being re-associated with our alma mater – Bloomsbury Book Auctions – whose name and reputation we spent so much of our careers building. It goes without saying that we all relish this new chapter in the Forum story.
For those of you who have not visited us since February you may be unaware that we have moved a full 20 yards across the road from the old building to brand-new offices at 4 Ingate Place, SW8.
With all departments on the ground floor (so no lift needed), we again have a dedicated saleroom and still ample parking.
If you do not yet know Forum, we look forward to welcoming you now that unrestricted in-person viewing and bidding has returned.
Rupert Powell is managing director of Forum Auctions