News

3 November 2015

A pair of chairs after a design by Thomas Hope (1769-1831)

The seemingly simple form of this pair of Regency ‘tub’ chairs exemplifies Thomas Hope’s timeless genius as a designer.  Their apparently effortless curved backs seem redolent, for example, of the 1920s ‘art deco’ seat furniture by designers such as Emile-Jacques…

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27 October 2015

The Autumn Season begins: PAD, and an American trip

The atmosphere at PAD, the Pavilion of Art and Design held each October in Berkeley Square, was scintillating. The show was packed for the duration and, quite simply, worked. Visitors from across the globe loved the ambience created by our Parisian organisers, while the equally international exhibitors benefited from the response to their carefully created stands. During a mild autumn week, with Frieze Masters up in Regent’s Park, London’s art market felt in rude health.

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12 October 2015

PAD 2015: first preview this afternoon

As ever, the set up for PAD was a delight.  This may be accounted for by our pleasure in this event; by the friendly atmosphere created by the organisers and exhibitors alike; by the range of fascinating materials brought by…

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25 August 2015

Ivory: responding to the Fish & Wildlife Service

Since the publication on 29 July in Washington of the Fish & Wildlife Service’s ‘Rule’ setting out proposed amendments to the Endangered Species Act, auction houses, collectors, dealers, and museums in the States have been considering and progressing their responses.  The clock is ticking down on the 60-day window allowed for written arguments.

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26 July 2015

Ivory: Fish & Wildlife Service publish ‘Rule’ to amend implementation of Director’s Order 210

Make no mistake: the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (FWS) is faced with a tough task.  It must, among many other responsibilities, implement universally supported government policy on the conservation of endangered species.  With regard to Director’s Order 210, first issued in February last year, its role is to contribute to the elimination of the illicit trade in poached ivory.  It has been evident for the past eighteen months that this quest has been sweeping up in its wake the trade in world-class works of art made from or incorporating ivory.

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18 July 2015

Ivory: ‘African Elephant Conservation and Legal Ivory Possession Act of 2015’

On 15 July, Senators Steve Daines [R-MT] and Lamar Alexander [R-TN] introduced into Congress a wide-ranging Bill aimed at halting the over-regulation of ‘legal ivory’.  If adopted the Bill would specifically end what is, in effect, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s unilateral ban on the import of lawfully possessed ivory.  Impediments to internal trade and legitimate ownership would also be overturned.  Equally, the Bill would lead to significant efforts being funded to assist anti-poaching efforts in countries with at risk elephant populations.

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14 July 2015

Sybella Bullock (1805-1850): her prize medal of 1825 re-discovered

  Sybella Bullock was a daughter of the entrepreneur and showman William Bullock (1773-1849), and the niece of the sculptor, designer and cabinet maker George Bullock (1782/83-1818). Such little information as is known of Sybella Bullock’s life can be gleaned…

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3 July 2015

News from London

As July begins, it finally feels like summer.  The art market is entering its end-of-season phase, but here in London, at least, things will remain active for several more weeks. In what a modernist architect perceptively described to me as…

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22 June 2015

Masterpiece 2015: the lure of luxury in London

Masterpiece looks set, once again, to achieve its ambition of presenting a luscious array of luxurious objects to lighten the chill of a London summer.  The weekend saw a building site being transformed into a glamorous shop window for works…

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2 June 2015

Furniture and Works of Art, 2015: now online

In the middle of last week we received a pallet-load of cartons containing the latest edition of our annual publication  Furniture and Works of Art; it is ‘sage green’ this year, for those who always refer to these by the…

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26 May 2015

Summer in London: our new catalogue, and Masterpiece

As June approaches, the traditional art market in London will once again be centre stage. We are about to send out the 2015 edition of our annual catalogue Furniture and Works of Art. This year we include a cup and…

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15 May 2015

Instagram: eye-catching thoughts on the move

In circumstances that are beyond ridiculous, I recently lost my BlackBerry somewhere between New York and Chicago.  So, following years of lobbying by Clive Wilson (responsible for this website) I have been persuaded to move on to an iPhone.  I…

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21 April 2015

Ivory: no closer to an outbreak of common sense in the US?

Mirror Back, French (possibly Paris), 1350-75.  Metropolitan Museum of Art There are still no signs of a pragmatic dialogue on the impact of Director’s Order 210 (February 2014) breaking out in the public arena. The fact that there are ‘sides’…

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18 April 2015

‘Some Silver by John Hardman & Co for Charles Lygon Cocks’: a new discovery

In 1996, the Decorative Arts Society Journal (20) published Martin Levy, ‘Some Silver by John Hardman & Co for Charles Lygon Cocks’ (pp. 1-10).  The article discusses silver supplied to various members of the Cocks family, and in depth a…

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9 March 2015

A weekend in Maastricht: preparing for TEFAF 2015

We left London in a somewhat relaxed mood, after breakfast at the incomparable Little Bread Pedlar, but then our Eurotunnel crossing was delayed.  Some two hours later than scheduled, however, we arrived in the MECC to find that the indefatigable…

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15 March 2015

TEFAF, 2015: we are on our way

Creating stands for art fairs never loses its appeal.  Each March, by the time ‘Maastricht’ comes around, we will have spent the previous twelve months or more gathering together a group of fresh objects that we can present in a…

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