Published: December 8, 2015
Review And Photos by Andrea Valluzzo
WETHERSFIELD, CONN. — A perennial favorite among dealers and buyers is the one-day Wethersfield Antiques Show, which celebrated its 15th edition November 21 at the Pitkin Community Center. The show may be small, but it is loaded with nice Americana, lots of smalls, folk art and an interesting mix of goods. Running just six hours long and mounted just before the holidays, the show attracts many buyers who come with gift-buying in mind.
“I’ve been a supporter of the Wethersfield show for many years. It’s simply a beautiful and affordable community event and I wish there were more like it in terms of dealer mix and the cost to the dealers. It isn’t my strongest show for selling fine art, but it’s fun to be there. It’s also wonderful for gift shopping,” said Donna Kmetz, Douglas, Mass. “This year I sold a wonderful pencil drawing by Robert Nisbet, one of the early Twentieth Century artists from the Kent, Conn., art colony, and had lots of interest in a large painting by George Matthew Bruestle, one of the early group of artists at the Florence Griswold House in Old Lyme, Conn. A National Academician, Bruestle was a renowned Old Lyme artist who was born in New York City and settled in Lyme after studying at the Arts Students League and the Académie Julian in France.”
Mad River Antiques, North Granby, Conn., reported a solid showing. “We’ve been participating in the Wethersfield show since its second year and we always enjoy doing it — the committee does a great job and we see a lot of our regular customers each year. We sold a piece of stoneware, an early sled and several smalls, but by far our largest number of sales were of antique and vintage Christmas items — in fact, it was our best Wethersfield yet,” said dealer Lorraine German.
John Bourne Antiques, Pittsford, Vt., also did well. “I had a very good show selling all smalls, mostly folk art items,” Bourne said, who wrote up sales of a wonderful handcarved eagle and a terrific large chopping bowl in original blue paint. “It was a good buying crowd — something that has been missing in a lot of other shows.”
John Maggs of Jan and John Maggs, Conway, Mass., said smalls and period jewelry were selling well, making it a good show for them, even if people were interested in but failed to pull the trigger on early furniture. “Nevertheless, with a few postshow jewelry sales, our bottom line was well above average. The show is easy and fun to do because of the facility, but especially because of a staff who aim to please. It’s a great little show, and we look forward to it each year,” he said.
Adin Poole of Ironstone Antiques, Hardwick, Mass., reported having “a terrific show in Wethersfield,” Popular with buyers were very early American furniture and folk art. “We sold three pieces of household furniture: a 1740 desk in original old red paint, a 1720 Queen Anne table and a 1800 pine blanket chest. I had numerous pieces of old folk art that got a lot of attention, both Nineteenth Century pond boats and tin items. The winning sale was a 1870 tin rooster weathervane top… loved the crowd and show and hope to do it again in 2016.”
Stiles House Antiques, Woodbury, Conn., offered a cherry Pembroke table, Connecticut River Valley, with molded serpentine top above tapered legs with provenance to the Tracy House in Meriden, Conn.; a Nineteenth Century pierced tin pie safe with a single drawer over two doors having three pinwheel pattern panels; and a stack of Nineteenth Century painted softwood covered firkins with tongue and groove staves.
Other standouts seen at the show included a trio of nice samplers and a colorful hooked rug with farm animals at Denise Scott, East Greenwich, R.I.; a marble black Americana figure wearing a white tuxedo and top hat that came out of a Brooklyn theater in the 1970s at Joseph Collins, Middletown, Conn.; and a fine corner cupboard in blue paint at Patina Art and Antiques, Roxbury, Conn.
For additional information, www.wethersfieldhistory.org or 860-529-7656.
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