Guide to collecting William Lionel Wyllie

It is rare to find an artist, inextricably associated with just one sort of subject, whom everyone admires. William Lionel Wyllie is held in just such high regard: even art collectors who have no interest in marine pictures recognise Wyllie’s work in the saleroom with a sort of quiet affection, rather like spotting one’s elderly former schoolteacher in the supermarket. Wyllie’s popularity is easy to understand on a couple of levels – he was undeniably skilful in all that he did and his work has a straightforwardness about it that makes its subject matter quite plain – but the more puzzling aspects of his appeal are its longevity and the broad base of collectors whom his work continues to attract.… View the full post Read more

Impressive sales at LAPADA Fair

The recent LAPADA Art & Antiques Fair in London’s Berkeley Square attracted over 20,000 visitors from the UK and abroad. Extended by a day in response to demand following last year’s successful event, the organisers said the week-long Fair resulted in impressive sales for member dealers. This year’s event welcomed many high profile attendees including art collectors François Pinault and Dasha Zhukova; American Vogue Contributing Editor Lauren Santo Domingo; English businessmen Sir Stuart Rose and Sir John Madejski, OBE; as well as British Conservative Party politician Lord Deben.… View the full post Read more

Guide to collecting Lucie Rie ceramics

Glazed stoneware teapot with bamboo handle, c.1960. (Photo courtesy Wright A fascinating paradox lies at the heart of Lucie Rie’s work. On the one hand her work is grounded in modernism and an interest in design and architecture dating back to her early years of study in Vienna; yet on the other her most personal work has a depth of character and texture, as well as a powerful simplicity of form and deliberately evocative, primitive quality, that is reminiscent of the ceramic treasures unearthed in an archaeological dig.… View the full post Read more

Firth ceramics collection sale at Adam Partridge

A special preview has taken place at the CPA’s Contemporary Ceramics Centre in London of the Alan and Pat Firth collection of studio ceramics. Over the years the Firths amassed an exceptionally important collection of studio ceramics, together with a range of other craft items in silver, jewellery, glass, textiles and furniture. A Lucie Rie stoneware teapot with an estimate of £2000-3000.… View the full post Read more

Prattware is top draw at sale of early English pottery

Prattware was highly sought after at the sale of the William Blakey Collection – one of the most important and comprehensive private collections of early British pottery to come on to the market in recent years. Bidding at auctioneers Peter Wilson reached £1,200 on two Prattware teapots c. 1800 (more than 10 times their low estimate). Each had a moulded body, one with a swan finial, the other with a cherub finial, all painted in Pratt colours.… View the full post Read more

Why are Martin Brothers’ birds such a flyaway success?

Martinware expert, Alison Davey of AD Antiques. A rare Martinware grotesque bird is one of the highlights of the Canterbury Auction Galleries’ two-day sale on October 13-14th.  In a style typical of Martinware, the detachable crow-like head (left) has a quizzical look, with the head and base incised ‘R.W. Martin & Bros London and Southall’ and dated 16.4.1905. It stands 23cm (9¼in) high on a turned ebonised base and has an estimate of £3,000-4,000, despite some damage.… View the full post Read more

Lebanese artist’s work soars above its estimate

Le Parc Montsouris, by Chafic Abboud A painting by Chafic Abboud (1926-2004), one of the foremost Lebanese and Arab painters of the 20th century, made £25,200 (including a buyer’s premium of 20 percent) at Chiswick Auction’s 20th century and contemporary art and design sale. Le Parc Montsouris, 1985, which depicts a public park in the 14th arrondissement of Paris, sold well above its low estimate of £4,000 on September 22.… View the full post Read more

‘Lizardman’ furniture to be auctioned in Devon

While the best known of the Yorkshire ‘critters’ is undoubtedly, Robert Thompson of Kilburn – known as the ‘Mouseman’ – many other craftsmen of the era and area signed their work with an animal or other carving. A collection of ‘Lizardman’ oak dining room furniture, comprising an octagonal dining table, eight chairs, a sideboard and display cabinet are expected to make between £2,000-£2,500 when they go on sale at Bearnes Hampton and Littlewood fine art sale on October 6 and 7.… View the full post Read more

Constable’s The Lock to go under the hammer

A painting by John Constable – considered one of his finest works – is expected to make £12m when it goes under the hammer in December. The Lock, painted in 1824, propelled the Suffolk painter to fame after a landmark exhibition at the Royal Academy. It is one of two versions painted by the artist the first of which sold at auction in 2012 for £22.4m.… View the full post Read more

Peninsula War medals in Tennants’ sale

Two Peninsula war medals, due to be sold at Tennants Auctioneers on Wednesday 30 September are thought to be an incredibly rare pair.  The fascinating story behind this sale lot is Able Seaman and later Captain Patrick Campbell, 48th Regiment of Foot, carried out his periods of service under the commands of both Lord Admiral Nelson and the 1st Duke of Wellington.… View the full post Read more