Art and antiques news from 2008

In September 2008 Sotheby's much-hyped sale of works by Damien Hirst was a runaway success amid the general gloom, taking £100 million.

After 37 years on traditional newsprint, Antiques Trade Gazette became full-colour gloss.

Dealer Agnews sold its historic Bond Street premises, Elaine Dean retired after 25 years as secretary general of BADA and Christie's South Kensington introduced interiors sales aimed at the retail market.

Scrap metal thefts rise as prices soar

14 April 2008

POLICE are warning that the soaring price of metal has led to a huge increase in thefts from gardens, churches and businesses in the UK.

BADA suspend member pending inquiry

14 April 2008

The British Antique Dealers’ Association have suspended the membership of John Hobbs pending an inquiry into the allegations made against the Pimlico Road dealer in a national newspaper.


Anglers rise to the bait as authorities force the sale of key collection

12 April 2008

IT was the finest UK collection of antique fishing tackle to come to auction for a decade and it arrived via an unusual route.


Hardy reels see robust demand

12 April 2008

THREE bespoke Hardy reels were offered by Holts as part of their shooting sale at Princess Louise House, Hammersmith on March 20.


Ruskin’s cherry blossom takes £20,000

11 April 2008

A TOUCH of spring arrived in Dorchester on April 10-11 where amongst a number of five-figure prices at Duke’s two-day sale was this tiny watercolour of a branch of cherry blossom by the prolific Victorian theorist, critic and artist John Ruskin (1819-1900). Dated 1857, it is displayed here a fraction less than its actual size.

Vacant spring slot as Clarion scrap FORM

07 April 2008

AFTER two stagings, Clarion Events, organisers of the Olympia fairs, have abandoned their new fixture FORM. In 2009, for the first time in 13 years, it looks likely that there there will be no Spring art, antiques or design fair at the West London exhibition complex.


Blaeu globes break Dutch record

07 April 2008

A pair of Dutch library globes by the man regarded as father of western globe making, Willem Janszoon Blaeu (1571-1638), now rank the most expensive work of art ever sold at auction in Holland.


August Bohm goblet sells at £64,000 in the Cotswolds

07 April 2008

A companion work to an August Bohm masterpiece has bought a house record to Gloucestershire firm Wotton Auction Rooms.

French auctioneers get their own revolution

07 April 2008

FRENCH culture minister Christine Albanel has announced a major overhaul of France’s auction system to meet President Sarkozy’s urgent call to “turn the French art market around”.


Thief takes sculptor’s show entry

07 April 2008

THIS lifesize bust of the actor Charles Dance has been stolen from a car only days before it was due to be entered for exhibition.

New owner pays £10m for Momart

07 April 2008

MOMART, the fine art transport, storage and logistics company, have been sold for just over £10m. New owners Falkland Islands Holdings PLC are expected to bring fresh investment to develop the company under existing management and staff, and will focus particularly on the overseas market.


Police issue image of clock thief

07 April 2008

Police are looking for a thief resembling this man who stole a valuable clock from an antiques shop in Kent on Sunday March 9.

Eurantica change

07 April 2008

Organisers Artexis have cut Belgium's Eurantica fair from ten days to five next month.


Midnight raid on Kent centre

07 April 2008

Burglars made off with a large cache of Doulton figures and silver in a sophisticated raid on Bagham Barn Antiques of Chilham, Kent last month.

Semley open London office

07 April 2008

Semley Auctioneers have opened an office and reception at 97 Old Brompton Road, London SW7 3LD.


V&A acquire Godwin vases

02 April 2008

Kensington Church Street dealer Paul Reeves did a double-take at Sotheby’s earlier this month. As well as curating their March 20 mixed-owner decorative arts sale titled The Best of British, he also mounted a week-long selling exhibition of his own stock under the same title in their Bond Street Galleries.

Ashcroft helps to recover stolen VCs

02 April 2008

Lord Ashcroft has been at the centre of a successful bid to recover 96 medals, including nine Victoria Crosses, stolen from a museum in New Zealand in December.


New blood benefits the Maastricht showcase

02 April 2008

Everyone knows about the legendary TEFAF waiting list. The pre-eminence of Maastricht among international art fairs means spaces at the town’s congress and exhibition centre in March are as rare as hens’ teeth.

Seven charged in vast international fake prints fraud

02 April 2008

Three Europeans and four Americans have been charged following the breaking of two international rings involved in the manufacture and distribution of fake 20th century prints.


Christie’s to sell surprise Watteau

02 April 2008

It’s hard to believe there are still undiscovered works by the most renowned artists hanging unnoticed in dusty corners of private houses. But that is what a Christie’s valuation team discovered last year.