Art and antiques news from 2007

In 2007 Christie's and Sotheby's raised their buyer's premium to the once unthinkable level of 25% for lots under £10,000.

In May contemporary art sales totalled $868 million in New York and in June £220 million in London, three times the previous year's total.

After renewed pressure from LAPADA the Department of Transport finally approved an official road sign promoting antiques as a local attraction.


French auctioneers get a taste of the British antiques scene

08 October 2007

A delegation of 17 members of the Syndicat National des Maison de Ventes Voluntaires (SyMEV, the main body representing French auctioneers) was in England last week for a three-day study tour investigating different aspects of the UK market.

Bonhams promote Girling to be chief across all of Europe

08 October 2007

Bonhams have announced a series of senior management changes for their European operations. They include the appointment of former deputy chairman Matthew Girling in the new role of Bonhams CEO Europe.


£180,000 coin record

08 October 2007

SPINK have set a new record for an English silver coin with the £180,000 they took for a 1663 Charles II silver Crown on September 27.

Falklands medals record broken twice in two months

08 October 2007

CHARTERHOUSE auctioneers in Sherborne, have broken the auction record for a Military Medal group only two months after the previous one was set.

Portobello gains extra protection

08 October 2007

Council puts up new barriers to fend off invasion of clone stores and retail giants

Leonardo’s Yarnwinder recovered

08 October 2007

HIGH-end art crime became the focus of media attention after the recovery of Leonardo da Vinci’s Madonna of the Yarnwinder last week.

Text barcode could prove just the ticket for art fairs

08 October 2007

VISITORS to the Year_07 Art Fair from October 11-14 can test out a new ticket booking service that could pave the way for other events.


London dealer takes 18th century mirror at £80,000

08 October 2007

Ten telephone bidders drew battle lines with several bidders in the room for this 4ft 8in x 3ft (1.42m x 92cm) giltwood pier glass sold by Saltney, Chester auctioneers Byrne’s on September 29.

Mallams quit Bicester for new selling centre in Oxfordshire

01 October 2007

Mallams, who conducted their final sale in Bicester two weeks ago, have revealed they are in the final stages of negotiations to acquire a new saleroom site in Oxfordshire.


Landmark sale as Perot offers Magna Carta for $30m

01 October 2007

What price one of the most important legal documents in the history of democracy? On December 10, Sotheby’s New York will offer for sale one of just 17 surviving 13th century copies of Magna Carta.

It’s ‘business as usual’ say Antiquorum as ex-boss gears up for legal battle

01 October 2007

Antiquorum, the world’s leading watch auctioneers, insist it will be “business as usual” following the shock departure this August of the Geneva firm’s charismatic founder, Osvaldo Patrizzi, after a row with Japanese owners Artist House Holdings, who acquired Antiquorum for a reported $30m in 2006.

Sotheby’s add new slant to Islamic week

01 October 2007

There will be a new slant to this month’s Islamic week of sales in London. In a move presumably aimed to tap into new areas of the lucrative Middle Eastern market, Sotheby’s will inaugurate a sale of Modern and contemporary Arab Iranian Art. The sale will take place on the afternoon of Wednesday, October 24, immediately after their traditional Islamic works of art sale.

Bonhams to sell 3000 lots in Savoy Hotel clear-out

01 October 2007

BONHAMS will auction off the contents of the Savoy Hotel on the premises in London in a three-day sale just days after it closes for a £100 million refurbishment.


Antiques with Saks appeal

01 October 2007

WE have heard a lot about antiques being out of fashion, and the best reply is that if antiques are presented stylishly they are always in fashion. Just look at a window of upmarket Fifth Avenue Manhattan store Saks during New York’s Fashion Week. The chief window designer of Saks called on East 61 St dealers Historical Design and said he had the idea of introducing Saks’ new shoe floor with high fashion shoes displayed on vintage chairs.

How to hold an auction in the US… from Shropshire

01 October 2007

Provincial auctioneer’s novel twist for breaking into the American market


Charger on show at Simon Chorley

01 October 2007

This heraldic ceramic charger by Alfred and Louise Powell, c.1920, is one of 140 examples of Cotswold Arts and Crafts on view at Simon Chorley Art & Antiques from October 13-21 as part of a loan exhibition titled Cotswold Craftsmen, 1894 to the present day.

Dealers give in to legal threat over Kyffin Williams find

24 September 2007

THE dealers who found a cache of work by the artist Sir Kyffin Williams in a secret drawer have given it up in the face of legal pressure.


The £33,000 Doge of Dorking

24 September 2007

A pair of 19th century Venetian views by Italian artist Francesco Zanin proved to be the high point of a Silver Jubilee auction held by Ewbank auctioneers of Surrey on September 20 and provided their owner, a local Dorking family, with an unexpected financial bonus when they sold for multiples of their original estimates.

Scam alert

24 September 2007

EXHIBITORS booked for the forthcoming NEC Birmingham and LAPADA Cheltenham fairs are being targeted by Austrian-based scam guide FAIR Guide.

Double scoop as Russian and Chinese magnates reclaim their heritage

24 September 2007

The auction of the Rostropovich-Vishnevskaya collection of Russian art was dramatically cancelled the day before the sale following an offer from a Russian businessman for the entire collection.