Published: August 5, 2003
Jean Sinenberg produced the 12th annual Hamptons’ Summer Antiques and Garden Show at the Bridgehampton Community House, July 17-20. Offering a market for about 50 dealers at an old town hall-type building and its grounds, the show is in one of Long Island’s most affluent vacation and second-home areas.
The Hamptons are a group of towns and villages on the eastern end of Long Island along the Atlantic seashore, 100 to 140 miles out of New York City. Easy access by train for more than 100 years created a very high priced real estate market as early as the 1920s. It is often thought of as the location for The Great Gatsby (probably incorrectly because many place Gatsby on the North Shore of Long Island), but in any case it has maintained very high property values even in tough times. Now home to entertainment personalities such as Steven Spielberg and Renee Zellweger, it is also home to the very wealthy Wall Street types. And that is good for antiques.
The promoter Jean Sinenberg has been dealing in antiques for many years from her shop Georgica Creek, Wainscott, N.Y. She produces a variety of shows in spring and summer together with her daughter Suzanne. Some are open air or tented but this show is one of her upscale events, with well-defined walled booths inside and a “rose garden maze” in the side yard.
The opening was Thursday, July 17, as a benefit for East End Hospice and Jean said it “raised a lot of money for the charity” due to very good attendance. Friday afternoon is usually a slow period for most shows, but dealers were generally pleased with the opening night’s activity and looked forward to more on Saturday and Sunday.
Style at the show is very open with a great deal of Twentieth Century design styles exhibited. “Garden” has become a very popular word to associate with antiques today, much as “country” was a buzzword of 20 years ago. It seems to mean architectural, decorative and furniture rdf_Descriptions that might have come from a garden or the lush grounds of an estate or could be put there. Obviously at an antiques show those rdf_Descriptions should be old but there is no clear answer on how old; some promoters say before World War II, others do not say.
The first booth in the show was Jean’s own where she was exhibiting a Chinese-style dining room set, table, chairs, server and all. She also had a very interesting double gate leg table in mahogany with modified New York-style legs. New York legs in this context are the turned then square then turned again legs popular with New York furniture makers in the Nineteenth Century.
Dealers were from throughout the East and Midwest. Jerry Kielian, West Palm Beach, Fla., had a great deal of garden ornaments in his space, including statues at one half life-size, urns and unusual planters.
Eleish-Van Breem Antiques of Woodbury, Conn., offered early Nineteenth Century household furnishings but from Europe. A tall-case clock in her booth had English or Scottish works and face with a Swedish case for $7,000.
Andrew Spindler, Essex, Mass., had a very wide time span in his collection. A French day bed, Louis XVI (1840) was surrounded by late Nineteenth Century and mid-Twentieth Century prints. Cara Antiques had some exotic porcelain including majolica serving pieces that were made with reproductions of food in the porcelain; highly decorative but not too useful as your fork would chip the glaze. Another of their showcases was porcelain jugs and vases by Clarice Cliff, from England, circa 1928-1937, Art Deco.
Mixing of styles and materials was typical in many booths. T. J. Antorino, New York City, had a dark hardwood library table, circa 1900, with iron chairs similar to banister backs in a dining room setting. Elliot Spaisman, Washington, D.C., had an Empire settee with a concrete porch pedestal as a side table and these booths were both visually pleasing.
Howard and Linda Stein, Solebury, Penn. (Bucks County), had a matching set of six wooden sack back Windsor armchairs, a pair of bow back in iron.
Ed Hyre, Hamilton-Hyre of Mechanicsville, Penn., had a table full of mercury glass from various parts of the Western World and various ages. Most of the objects were candleholders but there were a few dishes and vases as well.
Susan Oostdyk, Andover, N.Y., offered mostly antique French mattress ticking and some vintage toile, circa 1740. She sells it to be made into pillow covers, coverlets and dining table linen among other uses. At this same show Faustina Pace, a Miami dealer, had a room setting featuring bedding and pillows in vintage ticking.
This show has become a tradition in the Hamptons for the dozen years of its existence. The variety for a small show is as wide as the big Pier Shows in New York City. It is convenient and great fun in the summer season. Customers plan the weekend and some even plan a trip to be there; just ask collectors Barry and Nansi Nelson, for they came.
Jean Sinenberg and her daughter Suzanne have several more shows at the Hamptons this summer. Ads are in the Antiques and The Arts Weekly or call 631-537-0333, Email firstname.lastname@example.org. If traveling to the Hamptons try to connect with one of their shows; they are worth the effort.
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