Noonmark Antiques

Art of China, Highlights from the Philadelphia Museum of Art

Lisa

This week is Asia Week in New York City, when auctions, dealers, and exhibits converge to promote Asian art and artifacts. With Asia on my mind, I happened to notice an article in Antiques and the Arts Weekly about Hiromi Kinoshita and her curatorial work at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Since I was visiting  Philadelphia, I decided to take a look at her new installation and reexamination of works acquired by PMA through the years.

I wondered how the exhibition would be displayed. Not to worry. The large temple rooms, scribe’s room and tea house are still in place. The new installation is off to the side corridor.

I really like Hiromi’s four themes. The first is Belief in the Afterlife. This exhibit highlights beautifully rendered funerary art.

Panel from a house shaped sarcophagus, circa 618-907

Panel from a house shaped sarcophagus, circa 618-907


The second is a nod to our place in Nature and the Cosmos and addresses naturalistic symbols on various objects owned by scholars.

Bowl with the three friends of Winter ( Plum, Bamboo, Pine) circa 1426-1435

Bowl with the three friends of Winter ( Plum, Bamboo, Pine) circa 1426-1435

China and its Connections to the West is the theme of the third gallery and examines art forms that were floated between China, Europe and America. I particularly enjoyed the comparisons between Delft and Chinese porcelains.

Delftware plate, made in the Netherlands, 1680-1700

Delftware plate, made in the Netherlands, 1680-1700

Dish with Dragon, made in China early 1600’s

Dish with Dragon, made in China early 1600’s

The final exhibit underscores art owned by the Emperor and his Court. These works were loaded with symbolism and adheres to meaning and order in life.

Court robe laden with symbols

Court robe laden with symbols

There is a hard cover companion book available in the gift shop, Art of China, Highlights from the Philadelphia Museum of Art, that is filled with beautiful photos and descriptions in case you cannot make it to the exhibition.

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Winter Show 2019, Park Avenue Armory

Lisa

It is a rainy Thursday in North Jersey. Temperatures are in the upper 50s, a far cry from 4 degrees this past Monday. Such are the temperature fluctuations in this region. At least there is no snow to hinder visitors to the Winter Show at the Park Avenue Armory. The Show runs from January 18-27 so there is still time to see some marvelous displays.

We went to the Show on Saturday the 19th. I like to go as early as possible to enjoy the enthusiasm of the opening days. It is now Thursday. I have not had a moment to write until now and I am reflecting on what I saw and how I see the state of the market.

My main interest is Americana. There were about ten dealers of Americana that I coud recall who were exhibiting at the Winter Show. Every booth was magnificent and always inspiring. But, I missed the colleagues who were not there. The feel of the show was different and to me, overwhelmingly modern. Not that there is anything wrong with that. Tastes change and the change was evident at the Show.

To me, it appears that New York sets the tone for design and decoration and eventually, the rest of the world follows. If the Winter Show is any indication of the current trend then it stands solidly post 1900. Unfortunately, many folks are unaware of the changes in taste. This past week, I received several calls from clients who declared, "My parent has died, would you come and buy their furniture." "Their furniture" usually turns out to be reproduction 18th century pieces which have very little if any marketability at this time. It is a sad state of affairs but the reality of the times. My advice to one friend, who recently inherited her parents furniture, "If you can hold on until 2026 ( the 250th Birthday of America) there might be renewed interest in American furniture." Or maybe, we dealers can manufacture a new trend toward "Going Green" and being environmentally responsible by recycling and reusing our parents beloved furnishings.

Here are some highlights from the Winter Show, 2019:

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Charlie in the booth of Olde Hope.

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Andy Warhol by Jamie Wyeth, Adelson Galleries

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The booth of miniatures by Elle Shushan

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Arthur Liverant

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Oversize balloon chairs in the booth of Kelly Kinzle

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Toys and banks on display , Gemini Antiques

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Wall mural by Rufus Porter in the booth of Stephen Score

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Tiffany in the booth of Lillian Nassau

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Cherry Blossoms by Sung Hee Cho, 2018 ( South Korea)

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David Schorsch's booth at opening on Saturday.

Ceramics Fair 2019 in New York City

Lisa
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Charlie and I braved the dire warnings of the weather forecast and took the New York bound train and Q subway to the Ceramics Fair at 321 E.73rd Street. The weather turned out to be perfect for travelling and we were glad we made the effort. The above image is the view from the third floor entrance into the show. There were 9 dealers total and the atmosphere of the show had a boutique quality.

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Almost immediately upon entering the show, my eyes fell upon this marvel of a book, " The Paragon Tea Wares Pattern Book" circa 1900-1933. This hard bound book contains hand colored pages of beautifully detailed flowers which were transferred to tea ware. The books and pottery were manufactured in Staffordshire, Stoke on Trent. Available with this particular book are 2 cups and saucers that demonstrate the artwork. I learned, that at the time, most of the pattern books were burned when they outlived their usefulness.

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Mocha ware and cats from the booth of Martyn Edgell

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The Ceramics Fair is open tomorrow. Free admission. Worth the trip to see VERY fine ceramics.

Sotheby’s Important Americana Auction, January 17 & 20, 2019

LisaComment
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This is the time of year when thoughts turn toward snow and antiques in New York City. A light atmospheric dusting of snow fell lazily as we headed out on Sunday morning into the city. Our focus that day was on Sotheby’s Auction Preview at 71st & York Streets. Previews are one of my favorite past times. Objects for sale are on display for potential buyers and curious onlookers to observe and touch.This is a hands on, take a good look and learn activity that is open to the public and FREE. Museums charge admissions. Auctions do not. If you want to learn more about antiques I highly recommend auction previews.

Sotheby’s and Christie’s previews kick off Americana Week in New York City. Throughout the week, there will be auctions, shows, and special events. There will be four shows in NYC. The Art, Design, and Antiques Show opens on January 18, 2019. The Winter Show at the Park Avenue Armory runs from January 18-27. The New York Antique Ceramics Fair runs from January 17-20, and The Outsider Art Fair from January 17-20.

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Sold for $6,250.

Back to Sotheby’s. Because of limited time constraints, I chose Sotheby’s because there were particular items I wished to see due to their South Jersey and Philadelphia connections. A side chair Lot # 1613 from a suite of furniture made by Thomas Tuft (died 1788) was commissioned by Richard Edwards in 1775. Richard Edwards owned a home at 140 East Main Street in Moorestown, New Jersey and was a merchant in Lumberton, New Jersey. Where did Richard Edwards display this beautiful suite of furniture - in his home or in a show room in Lumberton? Edwards had 10 children. The furniture is in well kept condition. More research is required.

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Lot #1435 passed

The Stratton-Carpenter-Wheeler Families Mahogany Chest on Chest Lot # 1435 attributed to John Folwell was second on my list of must sees. This chest has a lovely Revolutionary War story to it. I know so well the story of the marauding Hessians who came through Moorestown and camped overnight in the Smith-Cadbury Mansion, sending the females of the house into a frantic tizzy. In a similar  situation, British troops marched through Haddonfield to search the homes for arms. The frantic owner of this chest on chest, pulled it from the corner, and wrapped her 15 year old daughter in blankets, hiding her behind this very chest. A mother’s love gives Herculean strength in times of desperation.

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Sold for $375,000.

And here is what I mean about getting up close to take a better look at a piece of history with an estimate of $500,000. - $800,000. This is Lot # 1434 The Scott Family Carved and Figured Mahogany Dressing Table. Cabinet work attributed to Thomas Affleck (1740-1795) and carving attributed to James Reynolds (1736-1794) made in Philadelphia circa 1770. This was a learning experience and I think we spent about 15 minutes hovering around this piece.

There were other fascinating items at the preview. Below is just a brief sampling.

Lot # 1454 sold for $13,750.

Lot # 1454 sold for $13,750.

Lot # 1537 passed

Lot # 1537 passed

Lot # 1483 passed

Lot # 1483 passed

More weather vanes than you can 'shake a stick at!'

More weather vanes than you can 'shake a stick at!'

And a well known collector browsing the floor. You never know who you will see.

And a well known collector browsing the floor. You never know who you will see.

Woolverton Inn, Stockton, New Jersey

Lisa
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This year, both our married children decided to spend Christmas with their spouse’s families. Charlie and I would be alone over the holiday. So, I made a plan. A bucket list item was to see the re- enactment of Washington’s famous crossing of the Delaware on December 25. The crossing was to take place at 1:00 pm. Unfortunately, Washington’s celebrated voyage across the Delaware River in a replica of the original boat was cancelled due to river turbulence. Not to worry. We headed on to the Woolverton Inn, a beautiful well kept Bed and Breakfast just above Lambertville in the village of Stockton, New Jersey.

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The drive North on Route 29 is always scenic and harkens back to the 18th century. As we pulled into the driveway of the Woolverton Inn, we were greeted by a docile family of sheep in a well groomed pen by the back patio. The earliest portion of the Inn was built in 1793 of locally quarried red shale.

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John Reading ( 1657-1717) made the first land purchase here. Subsequent owners were Daniel Howell ( 1688-1733) and his sons Daniel (1708-1790) & John Howell ( 1721-1808) who continued on until Charles Wolverton (1698-1765) and John Wolverton (1735 -1773) became the owners. Of note, William Rittenhouse was buried in a cemetery plot a short distance from the house. This plot included Howell and Wolverton family members. Catherine Howell Rittenhouse (died 1778) and Peter Rittenhouse (died 1791) were also buried in the same plot, so it may be safe to assume that the Rittenhouse connection was through the Howell family.

 Circa 1793, John Prall, Jr. (1756-1793) a lieutenant  during the Revolutionary War who fought at the battles of Germantown and Monmouth, built the stone home that is the Woolverton Inn today. John Prall, Jr. was a merchant and owner of a linseed oil mill. A later owner embellished  the home during the mid 1800’s, which now features a front porch, balcony, and mansard roof.

Another former owner was St. John Terrell, famous for inventing the Lambertville Music Circus. His vision was to create a theatre in the round on a hillside using the natural incline to resemble an amphitheater. The first location in Lambertville lasted from 1949-1961.The theatre was moved and expanded to another space in Lambertville and lasted from 1962-1970. The performances were not unlike Cirq du Soleil today. St. John Terrell was also responsible for the initial recreation of Washington’s daring trip across the Delaware River on Christmas Eve. How serendipitous that I chose the Woolverton Inn for our Christmas get away.

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The current owners Mary and Mario are gracious and hospitable. Our room was the Newell Library on the third floor with a view to the sheep pasture. Breakfast was a beautifully made to order frittata and Canadian bacon. There are other cottages on the property and the staff will deliver breakfast to your door. The Woolverton Inn is located at 6 Woolverton Road in Stockton, NJ. A lovely 10 minute walk will bring you to the Delaware River towpath and the quaint village of Stockton.

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The Hunter House, Newport, Rhode Island

LisaComment

Two years ago, I scheduled the Hunter House as a place to visit on our trip to Newport, Rhode Island. The tours of Hunter House are a separate package from the grand mansion tours and the price of a ticket is $30. Townsend & Goddard furniture are kept here and we decided to come back another time when we could take our time on the tour. A year later, I made plans to return to Newport. What better way to celebrate my 60th birthday than to devote a morning to the Hunter House? After a tasty breakfast at the Artful Lodger B&B, we drove to 54 Washington Street and found street parking. Be prepared, the Hunter House does not compare in any way to the grand Newport Mansions. However, in its time, it was home to a number of influential people.There were no visitors when we arrived around 10:40 that day, but, the rules are a bit quirky here and they might have made us wait until 11:00 ( there were at least 2 tour guides available) but after some persuasion, we proceeded.

Our guide David was very knowledgeable and we asked him to tell us EVERYTHING he knew. The original portion of the house was built in 1748 for Colonel Deputy Governor Jonathan Nichols, Jr. Nichols died in 1756 and Colonel Deputy Governor Joseph Wanton purchased the house. The house gained an addition and a second chimney along with a central hall during Wanton’s tenure. These changes produced a formal Georgian mansion. However, Wanton was a loyalist and a merchant during the Revolution and was imprisoned for treason. After the Revolution, Senator and Ambassador William Hunter purchased the house and for this man the house was named.

No photography is permitted in the Hunter House because some of the furnishings are privately owned and on loan. It is worth the trip to see these pieces. In the Northeast parlor, a John Goddard triple top gaming table rests beside one wall. It has four open talon claw and ball feet. Pilasters with carved Corinthian capitals frame the fireplace while tiny winged cherub faces smile down on visitors.

The Southeast sitting room has grain painted pine panels that resemble walnut. And here is where I found a friend. I had seen this painting by Gilbert Stuart at the Yale University Museum.

There is also a splendid Honduran mahogany desk with duck feet in this room. A painting by Cosmo Alexander is featured here. Alexander was one of Gilbert Stuart’s first teachers.

In the hallway outside the sitting room is a massive Townsend King of Prussia marble top side table with front web claw and ball feet in the front and spade feet in the rear. A cherry tall case clock by James Wady keeps time in the hallway. There are only six known Wady clocks in existence.

The keeping room has a very large fireplace with a 1740 Newport Harbor scene hanging above. Jacobean furniture has the stage here, along with Westerwald jars and Newport pewter by Melville and Belcher.

The dining room or reception room is decorated with pine panels painted as rose cedar. They are beautiful and I asked Charlie if we could do this to our home.

The mahogany staircase is not original to the home. The twisted balusters are a marvel of turning skill. The stairway leads to another room with panels of rose cedar paint. A discovery above the fireplace reveals a very early landscape painting of the settlement of Newport. A Goddard highboy resides here along with a Chippendale mirror with a perched phoenix.

The upper hallway shows a sample row of chairs from different periods to compare and contrast. Admiral de Ternay’s room is above the Northeast room and is almost identical to the room beneath with siblings of the smiling cherubs. It is painted a moss green color. A curious image of the Touro Tower hangs above the fireplace. The focal point of this room is a Townsend/Goddard Santa Domingo Mahogany highboy.

Across the hall is the Hepplewhite room. The central feature of this room is a beautiful Holmes Weaver Hepplewhite card table. A piece by John Townsend in this room displays exquisite bellflower decoration. It is amazing that Townsend could transition from Chippendale to Hepplewhite with such ease.

The final upstairs room displayed an excellent white trapunto bed cover. The stuffed work was extraordinary. Again, this room was identical to the room below in terms of layout.

Originally, the front door faced the harbor. Legend has it, that when the master was home, he put a pineapple outside on a post to notify neighbors of his safe return.

A Burlington County Quaker Discovery

LisaComment

Recently, we visited a Quaker family in Burlington County, NJ on a house call. Among other items, they wished to consign this photograph. The image itself was curious and we wondered if there might be something more hidden behind the photo.

One clue - The frame was grain painted beneath the varnish.

Another clue - The frame construction appeared to be older than the image it contained.

Plus a wood backboard and undisturbed tacks.

I took it home and left it in a corner for a few days. Finally, at the right moment, I sat down and carefully removed the tacks. I was hoping for a fraktur or a birth/marriage certificate. I held my breath.

It was an Award of Merit, issued at Westtown School in Pennsylvania in 1886 to Edward T. Middleton.

I assume, the calligraphy was executed by Edwin Thorp, who was a teacher at Westtown School at that time. These awards are lovely and I'm certain, a coveted trophy by the student.

But, why was the award covered by an odd photograph? I did some more research and discovered

a heartbreaking incidental memory in the Friends Intelligencer, 1892. The poor parents must have been devastated at the death of their son. I suppose, the Award of Merit, hung with pride in their home. To hide the painful memory the award was covered by a photo of a stairway, leading to heaven or an unfinished house (unfinished life)

I contacted the consigner and they wished to keep the calligraphy. They have a son named Edward. They did not know this story. I hope, if anyone ever learns about my heritage that they will share it with me.

Grant Wood- American Gothic & Other Fables at the Whitney Museum in NYC

LisaComment

I am a child of the 60's. I knew the painting American Gothic and associated it with Kellogg's Cornflakes. Now that I am approaching my 60's, I have come to appreciate Grant Wood's skill. I highly recommend a trip to the Whitney Museum in NYC to view the exhibition of Grant Wood's work. I find it very engaging. There is also a beautiful book for purchase filled with his creations and interesting essays. On view until June 2018.

Overmantel Decoration by Grant Wood, painted the same year as American Gothic 1930

Lilies of the Alley - earthenware pot and found objects by Grant Wood, 1925

Plaid Sweater by Grant Wood, 1931

Corn Cob Chandelier for the Iowa Club Room by Grant Wood, 1925

The Birthplace of Herbert Hoover by Grant Wood, 1931

Stained Glass Window by Grant Wood

Dinner for Threshers by Grant wood, 1931

Appraisal by Grant Wood, 1931

Midnight Ride of Paul Revere by Grant Wood, 1931

American Gothic by Grant Wood, 1930 ( his sister & his dentist were the models!)

Philadelphia Antiques & Art Show 2018

LisaComment

Here are some of my favs from the show......

Charlie checking out the Paint Decorated Child's desk, circa 1820-1830 in th booth of Kelly Kinzle

Paint Decorated Child's desk circa 1820-1830, Kelly Kinzle

Patchwork Quilt of 28 Buildings in the booth of Olde Hope Antiques

Pair of African American Andirons in the booth of Steven S. Powers

Mock Orange by daughter of a slave, Ida Jones displayed in the booth of Steven S. Powers

Fly Eagles Fly!!!! For a Super Bowl fan- a full body eagle weathervane. A gift from President Woodrow Wilson in 1920 to a deserving citizen. The eagle was placed on a pole and surrounded by trees. The trees grew and obscured the vane. Eventually, the eagle was placed in a barn where it sat until now. In the booth of Nathan Liverant & Son

The booth of Jim & Nancy Glazer

The booth of Charles Clark

Love these! Porcelain Garden Seats in the booth of John Chaski

Somerville Manning Gallery

Museum of the American Revolution – Verplanck’s Point Camp

LisaComment

The Museum of the American Revolution opened Spring, 2017. During that time, Charlie & I were in the middle of a major move, from our home of 30+ years in Moorestown, NJ to Maplewood, NJ. Simultaneously, our daughter decided she wanted to get married during all the commotion. We produced a lovely February 2018 wedding for her (60 degree temps that day, to my relief) I mention this only because now we seem to be locked into the winter that will never end, even in April!

At the first opportunity in February, 2018 we determined to see the Verplanck’s Point Exhibit at the Museum of the American Revolution located at 101 South Third Street in Philadelphia. I was VERY excited to see this exhibit.

On display in the first floor exhibition hall was a 7 foot long panorama of a Revolutionary War watercolor that is “the only known wartime depiction of George Washington’s headquarters tent.”   It was breathtaking, not only in terms of artistic merit, but, because it was an actual depiction of the layout of the camp at Verplanck’s Point in New York in 1782.

Where is Verplanck’s Point and who was Verplanck? According to the HudsonValleyGal, Verplanck’s Point was originally purchased from the Native Americans by Dutch colonist Stevanus Van Cortlandt in 1683. His granddaughter Gertrude inherited the property and married Philip Verplanck who renamed the land Verplanck in place of the original Native American name, Meanagh. By the way, Philp’s parents were Jacobus Verplanck and Margaret Schuyler.

Verplanck’s Point is located on the east side of the Hudson River, off Route 9 across from Bear Mountain State Park. Today, it is a peaceful setting, where a few  markers acknowledge  historic events and an important 18th century ferry crossing. This crossing was commandeered by the British during the Revolution. Washington made an attempt to reclaim this ferry crossing but his plan was neutralized. Eventually, the British moved on, leaving the ferry crossing unoccupied and allowing for the Washington encampment. (allthingsliberty.com)

The 7 foot panorama was painted by Pierre Charles L’Enfant. L’Enfant was the son of a painter and had studied at the Louvre among other prestigious art institutes. He came to America as a French soldier and served on Washington’s staff in Valley Forge and in the Hudson Valley.

The watercolor was divided into 6 parts, mounted on linen and bound in book form. It was auctioned in May, 2017 at Heritage Auctions and purchased by Philip Mead, chief historian and director of curatorial affairs at the Museum of the Revolution. Mead was thrilled to purchase such an important piece of American history that coincided with the Museum’s opening and depicts the historic headquarters tent.

A word about the Museum. If you go, allow plenty of time. There is much to see, read, experience, and ponder. Take the children. Even though there is a lot of reading, the experience will stay with them. Lots of hands on activities. I particularly enjoyed the film in the theatre that discussed the war. The finale of Washington’s actual tent on display is very moving. The Verplanck's Point exhibition closed on February 19, 2018.

New York Ceramics and Glass Fair, 2018

Charles HammellComment

Here are some scenes from the 2018 New York Ceramics and Glass Fair.

Hideaki Miyamura

Hideaki Miyamura

Paul Vandekar, seated

Art Reed Blown Glass Table in the booth of Jill Fenichell

Jill Fenichell with Art Reed Blown Glass Table

 Booth of Lynda Willauer

18th century mourning rings in the booth of Moylan/Smelkinson

Mourning rings - Moylan/Smelkinson

Pair of porcelain iris by Katherine Houston Porcelain

 

Buried Treasure / New Discoveries in Philadelphia Slipware from the Collection of the Museum of the American Revolution

Charles HammellComment

I could not wait to see this exhibit. Below are examples from over 85,000 (yes 85,000!) fragments recently dug from a brick lined privy shaft in Old City Philadelphia during an excavation by archaeologists from the Commonwealth Heritage Group. The location was on site at the new Museum of the American Revolution. This area was probably the dumping grounds for several 18th century taverns. Conservator Melba Meyers painstakingly reassembled these treasures and they were exhibited at the 2018 Ceramics Fair in NYC.This undocumented slipware was probably made in Philadelphia by early French or German colonists. Interestingly, slipware of similar marbled design was uncovered in the Montpelier area of Southern France. These pieces were made during the late 1600's. Fascinating to imagine a design concept crossing the Atlantic to the New World. The exhibit was sponsored by Ceramics in America/ Chipstone Foundation and the Museum of the American Revolution. Specialist Ceramics Scholar Debbie Miller gave a detailed presentation during the event. For more information and future releases and analysis, contact Rob Hunter.

Outsider Art Fair, 2018

Charles HammellComment

Scenes from the Outsider Art Fair, 2018 in NYC.

Charlie & artist/Outsider Authority Steven S. Powers

Something so soft carved into something so hard. Granite Bird Family. Steven S. Powers booth.

Fred Giampietro

Bill Traylor

Bell & Hammer Piano Andrew Edlin Gallery

Shrine to Mose Tolliver

Hideaki Yoshikawa

Winter Antiques Show, 2018

Charles HammellComment

The Winter Antiques Show at the Park Avenue Armory in New York City struck me as particularly stunning this year. Stephen Score's booth at the entrance was captivating, as was Elle Shushan's jewel box of a booth. David Schorsch's full court press of outstanding pieces were a knock out and there were many red stickers there. Olde Hope Antiques is a reliable source for over the top collector's pieces. Nathan Liverant & Son's booth was overflowing with show attendees. I was so busy talking to Kelly Kinzle, I forgot to snap a shot of his outstanding Reading, PA cabinet, entirely covered with exquisite marquetry. The Show continues until Sunday, January 28.

Charlie gazing at Stephen Score's booth.

Behold, the sign! Stephen Score's booth.

Charlie Hammell & Stephen Score in deep discussion.

Exterior of Elle Shushan's booth.

Feature wall of David Schorsch's booth.

Breathtaking detail of above Album Quilt. David Schorsch.

Another detail of the Album Quilt. David Schorsch.

I noticed the shadow first. Captivating hanging sculpture by Lee Bontecou.

 

Over the top Connecticut overmantel, Nathan Liverant & Son.

Another overmantel, this one from New York, in the pristine booth of Olde Hope Antiques.

Oh my! Double mocha jugs. Nathan Liverant & Son.

The perfect Shaker stack. Olde Hope Antiques.

For my musician friends, a European trade sign.

 

 

Sotheby's Important Americana Auction NYC, January 20, 2018

Charles HammellComment

Here are a few of my favorite things at the Sotheby's Americana Auction this weekend.

Amish Crib Quilt 20th century  Estimate $200 -$300. Sold for $400.

Detail, Federal Settee, possibly Portsmouth, New Hampshire 1810  estimate $6,000 - $12,000.

Sold for $4,000.

Detail, New Jersey Watercolor Fraktur, set of Four, 1804-1809 Sold for $12,500.

Flowing Urn Hearth Rug 1835, New England  Estimate $5,000 - $7,000. Passed at $4,000.

Painting by Joseph Whiting Stock 1840  Estimate  $8,000 - $12,000. Sold for $13,750.

Rhode Island Windsor Side Chair c. 1800  Estimate  $5,000- $7,000. Sold for $5,625.

New England Calamanco Quilt, late 18th century  Estimate $6,000 - $8,000. Sold for $9,500.

Detail, Yarn Sewn Table Rug, 1825 New York   Estimate $5,000 - $7,000. Sold for $7,500.

Detail, Revolutionary War Map created 1777, showing East and West New Jersey

Estimate $14,000 -$18,000.

 

Important American Furniture, Folk Art and Silver New York, January 19, 2018

Charles HammellComment

The 2018 Winter Antiques events are getting under way in New York City. Charlie and I stopped in to Christie's Auction House at Rockefeller Center to check out the preview. Here are a few of my favs.

Charlie takes a look at a Chippendale Mahogany Block Front Chest of Drawers, Boston 1760-1780 Estimate $60,000 - $90,000.

Queen Anne Walnut veneered High Chest of Drawers and Dressing Table, 1735-1760

Estimate $200,000-$400,000.

Silk on Linen Sampler, 1840, Burlington, NJ   Estimate- $20,000 - $30,000. Sold for $17,500.

Leaping Stag Weathervane 1875, New York    Estimate $8,000-$12,000. Sold for $27,500.

19th Century Pennsylvania Farm Scene  Estimate $30,000 - $50,000. Sold for $68,750.

Lita and a friend at the Christie's preview.

The auction takes place on January 19, 2018 at 11:00, 20 Rockerfeller Plaza, New York.

 

Morristown Armory Antiques Show October 2017

Charles HammellComment

"Noonmark Antiques, where have you been? You haven't posted since August 2017." Well, Charlie and I packed up 35+ years of accumulated memories and practical neccessities and moved to a gorgeous little town, an easy 30 minute express train ride to Penn Station New York. I am smitten with Maplewood, New Jersey and find it a privilege to live in this beautiful, friendly, hoppin' village. And because we live here now, there is no excuse for us to miss the Morristown Armory Antiques Show this weekend.

We arrived a bit after the opening and judging by the crowd, I imagine there may have been a line. By the way, it's a lovely hilly ride to the armory, perfect for antiquing.

We saw a few other ADA dealers there shopping the show. They left weighed down with their purchases "to sell." What were a few of my favorite things that I saw? Well, hands down, Charlie and I both went gaga over a pair of huge and heavy black and white glass windows leaning nonchalantly against a wall. They are wonderful. They came from a 1920's  factory and according to dealer Jim McGrath, they have been in his warehouse until now. There are a few issues but he has a guy who can repair them. These are great folks. If you have a spot for them, go check them out.

Jim McGrath, Massachusettes $6,500. for the pair

Other favorites? A set of animal shaped iron carnival targets in red/orange paint. They were pretty cool. A Stubbs ship painting for $4,500. A 1960's coffee set for $70. (very sleek) There is a lot to see. Worth the trip. Admission is only $5.00 Open today until 6:00 and tomorrow October 29 from 11-5.

The Morristown National Guard Armory, 430 Western Avenue Morristown, NJ 07960

 

 

Prospect Hill Plantation

Charles HammellComment

Charlie and I enjoy exploring different restaurants when we travel. Most of the time, I will carefully research an area to find the highest rated restaurants since we like to have a good experience. For our Virginia trip, I discovered the Prospect Hill Plantation in Louisa County, Virginia. The Prospect Hill Plantation is a Bed and Breakfast that also serves dinner. The ratings were quite high so I made a reservation. We went on a Wednesday evening and there were no other diners in the intimate dining room. Uh oh, we wondered, did we make the wrong choice?

Not at all! We were treated to one of the best meals we have ever had, I would say, one of the top ten meals of our lives, ranking alongside Le Bec Fin. The opening salad was an extraordinary bundle of prepared vegetables, wrapped in romaine letteuce leaves and topped with artistic flair.

My entre was a carefully constructed tower of tender chicken medallions and butterfly shrimp topped with lime/tequilla sauce, which was quite delicious. But, the astonishing dessert was a beautiful baked meringue swan of strawberry mousse and a bit of candle concealed in a pastry sculpture. How did this chef know I was a musician or was it sheer coincidence, I am not sure, but I appreciated the treble clef signs on the plate. A masterful meal and all for us- no on else entered the restaurant. I should have found out the chef's name, they deserve recognition here.

Afterwards, we strolled the family owned grounds, caught another perfect sunset, and enjoyed the various millstones incorporated into the sidewalks. We were told that one of the buildings on the property dates to the late 1600's.

Our dinner at Prospect Hill Plantation was a gourmet dining experience. The room is quite small. I would not recommend taking young children although teenagers may be impressed by the creative displays.

Bluebird Cottage at Oliver Creek Farm

Charles HammellComment

From time to time, folks ask me where we like to stay while on the road. I highly recommend Bluebird Cottage at Oliver Creek Farm air bnb in Troy, Virginia. The 2 story house is located on Ghost Dance Road on a very private farm. The grounds are well kept and much nicer than I expected. Justine and her husband own the farm. Her restored  Victorian farmhouse is about 100 feet away so there is plenty of privacy. Justine is very interesting and the cottage is loaded with books, particularly on the topic of photography. I would definitely return to this lovely secluded location. I could spend time here just in the cottage itself, perusing the books or working on my own research. The farm is close to Monticello and Montpelier.

If you enjoy photographing sunsets, this meadow will give you ample opportunity.

Bluebird Cottage at Oliver Creek Farm

Where the afternoon sky meets the evening sky

I believe there was a Civil War battle near here. Gives me a bit of a shudder to think.

James Madison's Montpelier

Charles HammellComment

James Madison's Montpelier

James Madison's view of the Blue Ridge Mountains

It is always exciting to sell an antique item. It is especially exciting to sell a piece to an institution because we know that many more people will have the opportunity to observe an important piece of history.

Noonmark Antiques had within its collection, a pair of matching fan back  brace back Windsor chairs by Philadelphia maker William Cox. The chairs were in superb condition and one was branded “Cox” underneath the seat. http://noonmarkantiques.com/furniture/pair-of-cox-philadelphia-windsor-chairs/

A few years ago, we received a call from Grant Quertermous, then Assistant Curator at Montpelier, James Madison’s home in Virginia. Grant  purchased the fan back Windsor chairs for Montpelier. Since that time, we have been curious to see the chairs in their new home. Our trip to Virginia provided us the opportunity to see the chairs. Charlie and I were very excited and could not wait to begin the tour. We went through the downstairs, room by room, no chairs. I began to steel myself for disappointment as I made my way to the second floor. Maybe the chairs were not part of the exhibition. But then, in “Mr. Madison’s Room,” right beside the bed where he uttered his last words, was one of the fan back chairs! What a special honor it was to see our chair here in James Madison’s room.

We continued on with the tour into Mr. Madison’s library and there was the other fan back Windsor, in front of the fireplace. I had the urge to rearrange it, after all I knew this chair so well and wanted to show off its lovely proportions. But, I resisted and finished the tour.

Our guide offered a very comprehensive explanation of Madison’s life, maybe because there were fewer people here than at the other two mansions we saw. Montpelier has only been open to the public since 2008.

Back porch

Dolley Madison was a larger than life figure in my young mind when I first read about her as a young child. It was certainly an honor to see her beautiful home.

Montpelier had several owners before it became open to the public. William DuPont purchased the home in 1901. Extensive renovations were made to the house only to be demolished when the home was purchased to be displayed in its original form.