Published: March 14, 2006
The 36th Annual Bedford Hills Antiques Show had the air of a long established and much appreciated show. From the friendly Lions Club members welcoming the incoming crowd to the intricate corners around which would open booths with ancient Chinese sculptures, dog paintings, Lalique, antique clocks and barometers or just that perfect Victorian child’s chair, the setup was thoughtful and appealing. Martin Greenstein, the show’s promoter, said that he is “not sure if it’s the Bedford name or cabin fever setting in, but every year the Bedford Hills show seems to create the most excitement of all my shows in Westchester.”
At Grace A. Packer’s booth there was excitement early in the morning on Saturday. Coming from Bridgeport, Conn., Packer was showing a navy blue trimmed pitcher and bowl set with poppies that had a most unusual cutout top. Within a half an hour of opening, Packer had three interested people vying for the set, which was marked at $395. She also had a Victorian American silver over copper tea set with a tray in a very popular grape pattern, for $895.
Another early sale was at Stephen Gero’s, At Balcony Antiques, Canton, Conn., where a lovely early Victorian rosewood child’s chair, with cinnamon twist arms and legs, 1865, original fabric, was being shown for $395. But it was a Victorian footstool with yellow and white stripped fabric and cinnamon twist legs that was gone before an hour had passed. Another special piece he was offering was a Roseville wisteria vase, 7 1/2 inches high, with double handles and in almost pristine condition. Gero found it in a home that was “deceptively simple from the outside,” he said, “but when you walked in, every surface, shelf and cupboard was filled with things the woman had collected for who knows how long – probably all her life. All of it in almost perfect condition. It was a real treat.”
Talking after the show, Gero mentioned that every piece ofmajolica he had with him, 12-14 pieces, were bought on Sunday by awoman who had them all shipped to her second home in Florida.”Those pieces also came from the same house, and my customer boughtthem all. It was a good show for me; Marty always does a great,professional job, from loading in to loading out – he’s rightthere, helping, keeping everything going. He even offered us all[the dealers] a buffet dinner on Friday night. My next show is oneof his in Armonk in April.”
As with most of Greenstein’s shows, this one featured both the high end designer items and antiquities and dealers with items for beginning collectors as well as a few one-of-a-kind booths.
“I do my best to include dealers with reasonably priced merchandise, as well as dealers that you will see in the finest New York City antiques shows,” said Greenstein.
Brad Reh of Southampton, N.Y., brought an impressive display of estate jewelry, as he always does, including a pair of Boucheron, Paris, ear clips, circa 1930. They were 18K gold and platinum by L’Enfant, and were “examples of the finest French craftsmanship from the Art Deco and Retro periods,” according the Reh. Exquisitely crafted with diamonds, each clip was the mirror image of the other, designed to be worn specifically on the left or right ear, and on the back were perfectly executed designer marks.
One booth with unique offerings was Amy Parsons’ from BedfordHills, N.Y. She sells quilts and pillows and hooked rugs andvintage throws. One quilt prominently displayed was a coxcomb withurns pattern that looked and felt brand-new but was made in Lima,Ohio, circa 1890. “It looks like it was made and then folded up andput away,” Parsons commented, “until someone decided to close upthe house.”
She had a cigar silk pillow cover, circa 1890, made from the silk wrapping tapes that used to come around cigar boxes, each stitched together and then embroidered around the edges.
She also had some early Twentieth Century crazy quilt throws with long silk fringes that she speculated might have been made by a mother and daughter pair, one with sedate although richly colored flowers, the other a cacophony of colors and shapes all overstitched together to make a very crazy looking piece.
Highlighting the variety that is the hallmark of this show, in the second of two gyms at the Fox Lane High School transformed into antiques display rooms, was Lily Choi’s booth, Dragon Culture, New York City.
She was offering Oriental antiques and fine art including some spectacular sculptures from the Tenth Century Tang dynasty. She had a pair of horsemen with saddles and riders all constructed from clay; each was authenticated as early Tang and each was priced at $7,500. Also for $7,500 was a “fat lady” sculpture, made from clay, which was unpainted but had a decorative headpiece and regal stature.
Fine art could be found at the booth of Aline Kimerling,Chappaqua, N.Y., which included two paintings by Bertha Dorph(Danish, 1875-1960). One, a painting of Dorph’s twingranddaughters, each with a cap on, in profile, was selling for$8,500 and another, a large and well painted still life of flowersin a vase, showed Dorph’s fine control and use of color. In abeautiful and original period frame, it was marked at $9,500.Kimerling also had an early oval painting of a woman, unsigned butattributed to Thomas Sully, in excellent condition, priced at$2,800.
Some booths were set up in the wide corridor, which allowed them lots of room. Biuk Fardin, Fardin’s Antique Rugs, Fairfield, Conn., needed the room to spread out her collection of rugs, and not just Oriental. She pulled out a small rug to show, a Navajo 3 1/2-by-5-foot antique, probably woven around 1900 with a camel wool background that she confirmed was “very unusual.” It too looked as if it had been made and then stored carefully; it was in excellent condition and she had it marked at $2,400. Another very unusual piece that Fardin was showing was a horse blanket, circa 1880, from Seneh, Persia. It was wool pile with original vegetable dye and its shape, rectangular with a cut out so it would fit around a horse’s neck, made it intriguing.
Another interesting find was at Philip Guttridge’s, ColdSpring Harbor, N.Y. He was featuring an English specimen chest,made around 1845, with intriguing ends to every drawer. They werecovered with screening that looked like old copper, perhaps sowhatever the specimens were, they could dry out even though thedrawers were closed. Edwardian, it also had a hidden, secret drawerfor that item you never want found.
Yesterday’s Luxuries, Hamden, Conn., Rick Linehan and Bob Voss, had tea tables, three floral design hand painted, early 1950s, each table with a different design, and a pair of French 1920s bedside tables, mahogany, with an inlaid design all the way around the circular, marble topped tables. They were $1,695 for the pair.
At Ackerson Homestead Antiques, Park Ridge, N.J., June and Charles Bertini had a set of six Pennsylvania balloon back side chairs in original paint, stenciled decoration, circa 1840, for $1,800.
Lisa and Steve Fisch Antiques, Wappingers Falls, N.Y., specialize in cupboards, and he is an expert refinisher and restorer, but the 1930s Australian oak kitchen cupboard with leaded glass – the only part of this unusual cupboard that needed any repair, Steve said – was in nearly perfect condition from the dough “proofing” box to slide-out drawers, its narrow depth made it desirable for the modern kitchen. It was marked at $3,200.
Jaffe and Thurston Art and Antiques, Wawarsing, N.Y. – ArnoldJaffe and Diane Thurston – had filled a corner of their booth witha two-drawer late classical mahogany drop leaf worktable, 1840, twochromolithographs from 1871 – one was “On the Hudson Near WestPoint” – two Japanese Imari plates, Nineteenth Century, and abeautiful Rose Medallion vase.
Martin Greenstein’s The Last Detail Antiques Shows will be in Armonk, N.Y., at Armonk High School, April 22-23. Greenstein is glad the Armonk school, unlike Fox Run, is not under construction. But he will be back next year, he thinks in February, to dispel the winter blues with the 37th annual Bedford Hills Antiques show. For more information, 914-572-4132.
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