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THEN

18 years ago, January 1989

Saleroom specialists say furniture is the best buy

FURNITURE remains the first choice of Phillips specialists as the best buy in 1989.

The auctioneers’ annual survey, based on the views of 140 saleroom staff throughout the country and abroad, places an emphasis on good quality Edwardian and Victorian furniture, the obvious Georgian dining and writing funiture and the less obvious 20th century furniture by makers such as Gordon Russell, Peter Waals and Ernest Gimson.

NOW

How do these predictions from specialists at the original Phillips auction house stack up 28 years on? Victorian and Georgian furniture would be better value than ever at today’s prices.

THEN

12 years ago, January 2005

New lease of life for 50 year old fair moving with times

AS far as venerable fairs run by venerable associations go, the Antique Dealers Fair of Belgium, which opens this week in Brussels with a vernissage on January 20 and then runs from January 21-30, takes some beating.

For decades, Belgium’s flagship fair was held at the Palais des Beaux Arts in the centre of Brussels, a delightful setting but limited in space and potential.

Then last year, in a bold move and something of a gamble, the fair moved to two huge buildings in the Tour & Taxis complex, magnificent spacious halls in a development of old industrial buildings which are just a short way from the best known parts of the city centre but seem destined for an ultra-fashionable future.

NOW

This long-standing flagship Belgian fair, now renamed BRAFA Art Fair, has prospered at Tour & Taxis since its move in 2004. The latest edition, with 132 exhibitors, takes place this week. See pages 38-39.