Published: March 16, 2021
Review and Photos by Rick Russack
HAMPTON, N.H. – Peter Mavris has developed a good formula for his Hampton shows and he sticks with it. It’s not a large show but the quality of the material offered offsets that. Many of the exhibitors participate in major shows around New England and beyond, as do many of the buyers. The collectors who attend the show regularly are seeking early material, and they have plenty to look at. It’s a “tabletop” show, so there’s not a whole lot of furniture, although there are some smaller pieces. The show opens at 10 am, and dealers have about two hours to set up. Most set up quickly and then shop the show. Preshow buying at the March 7 show was strong, and some items changed hands more than once. It’s a short show, ending around 1 pm, encouraging buyers to make their decisions quickly. The next show in Hampton will be on April 11. Mavris also manages a show in Concord, N.H., during Antiques Week and expects that show will be able to proceed as it has in past years, barring any unexpected Covid problems.
Buyers interested in ceramics had items spanning more than 400 years from which to choose – a circa 1650 German stoneware jug from Ross Levett to midcentury studio pottery offered by Corey Daniels. There were numerous pieces of English and Dutch Delft, transfer-decorated and other Staffordshire, redware other stoneware and more. There was quite a bit of silver, numerous paintings and prints, cloth animals, painted woodenware, Asian items, Inuit items, early books and maps, early glass, early lighting and more. The “and more” category included some interesting and unusual items, such as a circa 1880 float from a Masonic parade, a Persian astrolabe, a box of parts for making miniature Windsor chairs, a silver hair pick made from a moose splint bone, to name a few.
Returning to a live show for the first time in several years was Corey Daniels, Wells, Maine. Daniels was a regular exhibitor at the New Hampshire Antiques Dealers show, dealing in Americana, for many years and now has a gallery on Route 1 in Wells concentrating on contemporary art works. He brought a few pieces of midcentury pottery and an interesting piece for a collector of Arts and Crafts period objects. It was a signed, framed, William Harnett trompe l’oeil print of a violin and sheet music hanging on a rustic door. The hinges of the door in the print were repeated on the heavy oak frame with heavy cast hinges. Daniels priced the print and frame at $750.
Several dealers brought stoneware and early ceramics. Sam Herrup, Sheffield, Mass., had an Ohio stoneware jug with cobalt blue script lettering “Lithia Springs, Londonderry, Ohio.” It was priced $495. Herrup also had a selection of Eighteenth Century ceramics, including Liverpool Delft and a rare spotted, crouching, slipware cat, dating to the mid-Eighteenth Century, which was priced at $1,500. It was small, just 3½ inches long, but it was wonderful. The earliest piece of stoneware, and perhaps the earliest item in the show, was the large Westerwald jug with three coats of arms that Ross Levett, Thomaston, Maine, had. He thought that it might date as far back as 1620 but not much later than 1650. That might sound like walking a fine line, but he’s knowledgeable and detailed and wanted to be accurate. It was priced at $3,100. Cristin Mayhew, West Tisbury, Mass., had a large stoneware jug incised “G. Benton & C. Stewart, Hartford,” and there was more on the floor.
In addition to Herrup, several other dealers brought English and Dutch Delft. Cristin Mayhew had some, Linda DeCoste had several pieces, including three plates with bianco-sopra-bianco decoration. That Italian term, meaning white-on-white, was an uncommon form of decorating both English and Dutch Delft, beginning around 1750. DeCoste also had several other pieces of Delft, ranging in price from $275-$650. John Prunier, Warren, Mass., in addition to Delft and other early English ceramics, also had a wide selection of Asian ceramics.
Mike and Lucinda Seward, Pittsford, Vt., usually have interesting items, and their booth is one of the first stops for many buyers. They like silver and usually have a broad selection. One of the more unusual items in the show was a hair pick that Lucinda showed. It had a silver mount, signed Tiffany, and that silver mount stated that it was made from a “Moose Splint Bone.” In this time of environmental awareness, items made from moose bones are probably no longer sold by Tiffany. They also had an 1819 map of New York state priced $495.
Early lighting available included an attractive pair of three-arm tin chandeliers for which Tom Moser was asking $1,500. Elaine Fleming, Middleboro, Mass., was asking for $495 for a large, unusual adjustable candle holder, probably meant to remain on the floor, alongside a chair. Early candlesticks were available in several booths,
After the show, Peter Mavris said that all had gone well. “I think this one was clearly the best of the four shows this season,” he said. “We had fewer dealers than we usually do, but we had more paid admissions. There were more than 50 people on line when the show opened. I think now that people are getting vaccinated, they feel better about getting out. I saw a lot of packages being carried out. The weather was in our favor this time, and I’ve been getting calls about doing the April show and dealers are also asking about August in Concord. I think we’re going in the right direction.”
For information, 207-608-3086 or http://www.petermavrisantiqueshows.com/.
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