Ben Clark, co-chief executive officer at the Gurr Johns group with Gurr Johns Capital managing director Alessandro Fiorotto.

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Gurr Johns starts money lending

Art advisory group Gurr Johns has launched a new money lending business.

Gurr Johns Capital will focus on lending to collectors of art, luxury items and collectables with loans from $1m upwards across six-month to three-year deals.

The new company is run by managing director Alessandro Fiorotto, who joined Gurr Johns in 2020 from The Fine Art Group. He said: “Being neither an auction house nor a main street bank allows us to provide more flexible loans while also offering specialist advice. We put together bespoke financial loans for individuals, gal leries, companies, and institutions – whether their goal is to release liquidity, make new acquisitions or simply bridge a cashflow need.”

The loans will be on a 40-70% loan-to-value range against assets including fine art, sculpture, jewellery, watches, well-cellared wine, high-value furniture, vintage cars and other collectables.

The financing options will be offered to all clients across the Gurr Johns group which includes auction houses Dreweatts and Forum.

However, it does not overlap with the smaller scale peer-topeer lending product offered by lender Unbolted via Forum.

Critters creep into Yorkshire show


Beaver pin tray by Stan Dodds on show at Tennants.

Event space The Garden Rooms at Tennants Auctioneers is hosting an exhibition on the work of 40 craftsmen inspired by Robert ‘Mouseman’ Thompson.

Yorkshire Critters runs until June 15 in Leyburn, North Yorkshire.

The works by the craftsmen, operating in Yorkshire from the 1930s to the present day, include pieces loaned from private collections, the workshops or fami ly collections. The craftsmen featured include the Woodpeckerman, Beaverman, Squirrelman and Wrenman. Among the items on show is a beaver pin tray made by Stan ‘Woodpeckerman’ Dodds (on loan from Beaver Furniture), a Squirrelman ashtray (on loan from Squirrelman Crafts) and a bowl with a carved tortoise – the first ‘Critter’ used by Bob Hunter before he changed to become Wrenman (on loan from Wren Cabinet Makers).

A selection of ‘Critter’ pieces coming up in the 20th century Design sale at Tennants on June 25 will also be on display.

Rugs and textiles are covered online

The festival of rugs and textiles organised by HALI magazine returns to an online staging this month.

The HALI Fair Online runs until May 30 and features 24 exhibitors showing antiques rugs, textiles and tribal art. The event also includes videos and presentations as well as an exhibition of items from two Iranian collections specifically curated for the event.

Alert over pair of stolen medals

Two medals were stolen from Stafford Antiques Fair on May 14 from Antique Armoury. The dealer hopes to alert the trade and recover the items.

The medals were a single Victorian Egypt medal named to Pte 4559 J Mooreby Scots Guards and a single George V/ First World War medal to 112275 Sgt Alexander ‘F’ Spe Coy RE.

Staffordshire Police have been alerted.

Anyone with information should contact Staffordshire Police or call 101 quoting crime reference number 1681605.

John Peel archive comes to auction

The archive and collection of the late DJ, journalist and producer John Peel (1939- 2004) is coming to auction at Bonhams on June 14.

A group of highlights from Peel’s personal archive, which includes rare records, personal correspondence and memorabilia, will be offered at Bonhams Knightsbridge.


John Peel’s gramophone, estimate £800-1200 at Bonhams.

Among the lots is a Mono Pressing LP Two Virgins (1968) annotated by John Lennon and Yoko Ono which is estimated at £15,000-20,000, a 1969 promotional album of The Rolling Stones signed by the band with an estimate of £6000-8000, and Peel’s early 20th century horn gramophone with a guide of £800-1200.

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In Numbers


The total from Phillips’ ‘most successful auction in company history’, the 20th Century & Contemporary Evening Sale in New York on May 18. The $225m (£182.25m) including premium for 36 lots represented a 90% increase on the previous year. Jean- Michel Basquiat’s Untitled from 1982 was top-seller at $85m (£68.85m), the artist’s thirdhighest price at auction.