Published: January 16, 2018
Review and Photos by Jackie Sideli
SWANSEA, MASS. – No one is exactly sure when the first vibrant and long-lasting Venus de Milo Antiques Show occurred on Route 6. It is possible, said current show manager Amanda Lynn, that the event is 40-50 years old. Lynn remembers that Dick Goff was the first manager, followed by John Domingos and Lighthouse Promotions.
Now it is in her capable hands. Lynn, a Seekonk, Mass., antiques dealer, has for the past eight years also served as an antiques show promoter. She helped former manager John Domingos for many years, until she assumed management of the show after Domingos became ill. For the past eight years, she has been working to build up this show. In addition to the January 1 event, the show takes place on Memorial and Columbus weekends, both on the holiday Mondays.
When the opening bell sounded at South Coast’s own Venus de Milo on January 1, a crowd of eager customers came rushing in. Indeed, it was challenging to walk in the aisles. Lynn described the gate as “phenomenal, one of the biggest gates ever.”
Sherry Cohen of Up Your Attic Antiques, Framingham, Mass., thought the crowd was “very optimistic.” She said, “I have sold a few things. There’s a better crowd.” David Thompson Antiques & Art, from South Dennis, Mass., had acquired a Cape Cod estate, which included a striking John Gregory (1903-1967) lithograph, “Sunset, Wharf’s End Provincetown.” The lithograph, which numbered 88 of 100, was being offered at $150. Thompson was also showing a collection of vintage decoys found in a Cape Cod estate. Antiques dealer Michael Collins, Waterhouse Antiques, Warren, R.I., displayed a set of ten elaborately etched glasses priced at $385. Collins also had a dramatic circa European 1720-40 religious painting, which he had priced at $1,800.
Several vintage jewelry dealers were exhibiting at the show. Caryn Abroms, Medway, Mass., carries antique and period jewelry from 1850 to 1970, including Midcentury and Scandinavian examples, priced from $100 to $1,800. Exhibitor Andrea Fatell was selling Mexican jewelry from the 1930s, 1940s and 1950s – all designer-signed and priced between $300 and $3,000. Laurie-Anne Ackerman, from Marsh and Ackerman, Swansea, was also present at the show, wearing her signature hat and displaying jewelry, silver and antiques in her booth.
Exhibitor Michael Chellel has a company based in New Bedford called The Studio. Chellel specializes in Nineteenth Century interiors – including upholstery, window treatments, stenciling, trims and wallpapers, as well as frame and painting restoration. Chellel had a stunning table, a 1920 copy of an earlier design, that was all mahogany and priced at $400. He was also offering a pair of circa 1850 alabaster candlesticks from Italy, priced at $350. Susan Porter from Little Compton, R.I., offered a selection of vintage purses.
Rejoining the show this year after a brief absence was Marilyn Whalley Marion, Mass. “It’s a nice show,” said friend Christopher Makepeace. Whalley was exhibiting a stylish advertising print depicting polar bears for the Harte Motor Company and dating from 1945. The print was priced at $145.
What looked to be a comprehensive group of Victorian marble top stands in amazing condition was shown by a gentleman from Second Season Antiques in Tiverton. He had brought this period furniture for the collector to enjoy. A particularly likable piece was an oak stand with drawer and pink marble backsplash and top. Beautiful, it was priced at $300.
Hatfield House, Bridgewater, Mass., came with a miniature sailboat priced at $185, as well as a pastel and charcoal portrait, $660, that had been found in an Enfield, Mass., estate. It measured 26 by 21 inches. Antiques dealer Gary Jennings, from Rehoboth, Mass., had a collection of vintage toy trains in old paint, which he was offering at prices ranging from $10 to $100.
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