Published: February 8, 2011
A line outside the entrance and satisfied-looking shoppers laden with bags and boxes from the dealers at the Boston Antiques and Design Show and Sale only hinted at the activity inside Shriners Auditorium. The show, formerly the Greater Boston Antiques Festival, was given a new name last year to reflect the wider offerings nature of the event. Some 160 antiques dealers and designers were on hand January 15 and 16, and most reported gratifying results.
A line formed outside the ticket window well before the opening on Saturday, and traffic was, for the most part, consistent all day. Buying was brisk; many dealers reported very good sales of smalls. Jewelry was particularly popular. The show has been a bright spot in the bleak depths of January for more than a decade.
Webster Greene Antiques and Interiors of Methuen, Mass., occupied a double booth just inside the front door of the auditorium. While that particular space was a little chilly when the wind blew in, its prominent location attracted a lot of attention and resulted in the sales of paintings, a pair of chairs, some good silver and a Victorian screen. A fine set of Hepplewhite mahogany nesting tables was waiting for a new home, but a pair of chairs had sold, along with a pair of etchings, paintings and silver.
A pair of midcentury fashion illustrations had been framed nicely and, despite their sold tags, drew shoppers into the booth of Yesterday’s Luxuries of Seymour, Conn., where even more sold tags adorned a mahogany Governor Winthrop desk and a framed hunting print.
Fine silver beckoned from the booth of Dan and Nancy Rivers of Feeding Hills, Mass. They experienced good sales of silver, such as a Jacobi and Jenkins three-piece repousse tea set, spoons by London maker Hester Bateman and a Tiffany berry bowl in the Chrysanthemum pattern. They also showed paintings, art glass and jewelry. Nancy Rivers said that they sold all the pearls they had last year at the Wilmington show.
Gray, Maine, dealer Robert T. Foley had sales of interesting smalls and lamps, paintings and a nice pair of architectural finials. An untouched and vibrant snow scene by Russian American artist and illustrator Eugeniy Andreevich Agafonov was untouched and highly appealing, as were three late Eighteenth or early Nineteenth Century wood panels hung in a vanguard formation on the chrome yellow walls of the booth.
Smalls offered by Thymes Remembered of Alstead, N.H., included a tray full of tartanware and another group of ivory that comprised toothpicks and other dainty accessories.
Camille Buda and Matt King of Marshfield and Sandwich, Mass., respectively, had some good sales from their shared booth; fancy smalls fared the best. Buda described sales as “Gangbusters!” She said she sold some textiles, including coverlets, a paisley shawl and a sewing roll-up. There was also a pair of Bristol vases, a Rockingham horse and a majolica figure of a girl with a basket, a Portuguese planter and a set of cast iron and steel andirons. As is his habit, Matt King showed some of his favorite and highly desirable violet glass bottles.
Wenham Cross Antiques of Topsfield, Mass., attracted a lot of notice for the impressive selection of bunnies of every description and rabbit-related material running wild through the booth.
A large textural Victorian embroidered woodland scene hanging panel or rug dominated a wall in the booth of Scott Bassoff-Sandy Jacobs Antiques of Swampscott, Mass. These dealers had sold a late Eighteenth Century English mahogany dining table, a Riley Whiting tall clock and some nice jewelry. A brass chestnut roaster was waiting for a buyer
Lighthouse Oddities of Portsmouth, N.H., reported early sales of a pair of tall green glass lamps and some mirrors. A Victorian decanter stand with two red glass decanters and a large brandy snifter was also offered.
A Fulper blue ceramic punchbowl and cups stood out in the booth of Ye Old Lantern Antiques. The Gloucester, Mass., dealers had a good selection of Japanese porcelain, mixed with a wood Buddha figure, a family record of the early 1800s worked by Margaret S. Robinson and paintings. Cloisonné objects were among the articles that had already sold.
It is always a good sign when a booth is too crowded for a reporter to enter, and that was the case in many instances. Jewelry was of particular interest and all the jewelry booths were pretty crowded. Lou Yelle lent a festive air, playing favorites on the piano for much of the day; Shriners in their blazers and fezzes were also on hand to help out.
Remember When at Salt Marsh Antiques in Rowley, Mass., had vintage Coca- Cola trays and tin advertising. The dealer also showed several cast iron door stops and some pantry boxes.
Sold stickers dotted the walls of Northfield, Mass., dealer Ingeborg Gallery, which brought an extensive array of mostly Nineteenth and Twentieth Century American paintings and drawings and Twentieth Century prints.
The charm of Canadian country antiques was evident in the offerings from Timber River Farm of Timber River, New Brunswick, Canada. Of particular interest was the unsigned oil on canvas painting of the lion tamer Isaac Van Amburgh, a favorite of Queen Victoria’s, but it was nearly eclipsed by the vibrant hooked rugs featuring flowers, another of two cats and a bright red ball of yarn, one of a hen on a nest, a house and a colorful fish. Several examples of very artful twig furniture were also for sale.
One of the draws to the booth of Boston dealer Peter D. Murphy was a set of six very stylish architectural drawings by Seventeenth and Eighteenth Century Scottish architect Colin Campbell. They hung adjacent to an exceptional delft mantelpiece that was cheek by jowl with a set of cast iron sunflower andirons. Two tables and two lamps were quickly packed up for clients who had spotted them earlier.
The Studio Interiors, a Providence, R.I., antiques and design gallery operated by Michael J. Chellel, showed examples of the Nineteenth Century furniture and decoration he uses in the homes he designs. The paintings he showed had all hung in the Renaissance Revival Governor Henry Lippitt House in Providence until 1975.
By late Saturday afternoon, Norman McCulloch of Antiques of Hingham (Mass.) was ebullient about the sales of Steiff mohair animals that he showed, lions and tigers and bears, a camel and a herd of elephants. He sold several daguerreotypes, including an unusual outdoor scene of an ice wagon; steins, jewelry, paper, hanging lamps and a copper banner weathervane that was only recently off a building. A New Hampshire tall clock elicited strong interest and may have sold the next day.
Ellen Tasho and Laurie Carey of Bridgewater, Mass., had a stylish booth with a welcoming garden theme †especially attractive on a bitterly cold January day. A painted table with a steel top could be used for planting, but had once done duty in a Boston bank. They showed a fanciful hall tree, a pair of well-formed cast iron garden urns and an unusual Twentieth Century tree with brass leaves.
Annette Hannon, who deals in Cushing Square in Belmont, Mass., as As Tyme Goes By, said she had “a great show, as usual!” She recounted sales of silver, jewelry, a Limoges porcelain punchbowl, Asian boxes, Lalique pieces and a sampler. Those were only the ones she could remember.
A crouching cast iron greyhound held pride of place in the booth of Witt’s End Antiques. He was poised in front of a butterfly drop leaf table and two Windsor armchairs in old paint and crunchy surfaces. A New York blanket chest in blue paint was on view, as was a Queen Anne maple example with bun feet. The Wallkill, N.Y., dealer also showed several game boards, including one that was sailor-made.
For additional information, www.neantiqueshows.com or 781-862-4039.
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