Crispian Riley-Smith has launched a new firm called Art Advisory Group.

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Art firm launched by Riley-Smith

Crispian Riley-Smith has launched a new firm called Art Advisory Group.

AAG operates across the art market for clients including private individuals, family collections, museums and “anyone responsible for any art and/or luxury asset”.

The group is a network of specialists covering more than 50 areas from NFTs, anti-money laundering and shipping advice to restoration, valuations of art and antiques and legal advice.

Riley-Smith has 32 years’ art market experience having started at auction houses before becoming a dealer for more than 20 years. He was also founding director of London Art Week and Master Drawings New York (the latter he sold earlier this year).

AAG will sponsor a session at the Art Business Conference in September and is a corporate member of Historic Houses and will attend its conference in November.

Make a FAB visit to the French capital

FAB Paris (previously the two fairs Fine Arts Paris and La Biennale) returns this autumn with 110 galleries. Its second edition, which takes place at the Grand Palais Ephémère from November 22-26, includes more than a third of the exhibitors (36 galleries) making their debut.

The fair has also introduced new categories such as Design.

Conference details are announced

The Art Business Conference will return this autumn on September 12 with themes for discussion including on how the UK can retain its important position in the global art world, art market standards and due diligence, the impact of AI and a focus on sustainability.

A UK Art Market Confidence Survey has been launched in association with the Society of London Art Dealers (SLAD) ahead of the event. This will be completed this summer with the findings released at the conference.

The conference, which takes place at Church House Conference Centre, Westminster, is also launching a scheme for museum curators, offering travel bursaries (in partnership with the Art Fund) and subsidised places to attend the event. It also asks other firms if they would like to ‘support a curator’ to attend the conference by offering funding in addition to the 20 places already funded by the conference and supporters.

You can complete the SLAD survey via

Australia ‘to ban Nazi relics sales’

Proposed federal laws in Australia criminalising the sale and public display of Nazi symbols has led to an increase of militaria sales ahead of the ban, according to reports.

Australian militaria shops and auction houses were reported to have noted an increase in sales for Nazi artefacts ahead of the ban due to come into force later this year.

The new law would make it an offence for the public display and sale of certain Nazi symbols. It will not ban private ownership or transfers of artefacts that are not for profit.

Charles II priest’s prayer book display


The title-page of Fr Huddleston’s missal.

National Trust Image by James Dobson.

The National Trust has confirmed its purchase of a prayer book at auction in Liverpool which is now on display at Staffordshire farmhouse Moseley Old Hall.

As reported in ATG No 2588, the rare artefact had been owned by the priest who helped save the life of King Charles II.

The 400-year-old prayer book was Father John Huddleston’s (1608-98) personal missal. Huddleston was chaplain at Moseley Old Hall, near Wolverhampton, when Charles sought refuge after escaping Cromwell’s troops following the Battle of Worcester in 1651.

Published in Paris in 1623, the rare copy of the Missale Romanum was purchased by the National Trust at Cato Crane’s timed online sale in Liverpool which ended on March 30. Against an estimate of £2000-3000 it was competed for by two bidders and eventually sold at £6700 (plus 33.6% buyer’s premium inc VAT) to the National Trust.

The purchase was made possible by a donation from a volunteer and from the Friends of the National Libraries.

The missal was previously owned by Joseph J Procter, who lived in Cheshire at the time. He had paid McGoff’s, a Liverpool bookshop, just sixpence (6d) for it, in the 1950s.

Read more about it at

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In Numbers


The number of years art fair Frieze has been in existence. The Contemporary art fair will celebrate its 20th anniversary edition this autumn on October 11-15. It will be the 11th edition of Frieze Masters. See more in Dealers’ Diary.