18 January 2018

Lumiere London

Today is the day London's festival of light, 'Lumiere London', kicks off. The festival includes a programme of 50 works across the capital, from Thursday 18 to Sunday 21 January 2018, and showcases art from leading UK and international artists.

The first edition of the free event ran in 2016, but this is the biggest to date.

Mayfair highlights include illuminated seesaws on South Molton Street, an ethereal and illuminated sculpture, 'Was That a Dream?' in Berkeley Square and an installation of chandeliers made from used plastic bottles, with the participation of community groups and education teams at Veolia.

Don't forget to pop in to Grays while you're in the area, here's our pick of the bright new things in this month at Grays, to bring a little light into your lives:

Indian powder box c.1820. Available from Marco Polo Antiques

Aquamarine bow brooch set in platinum, with 18ct white gold pin, 1940s. Alabaster & Wilson Ltd. Available from Miwa Fine Jewellery

Satsuma brooch, Japanese. Meiji period. Available from Don Bayney
Black opal ring with diamond shoulders, 15ct gold and platinum mount. Available from C & B Gems & Antique Jewellery

Sir Herbert Hughes Stanton, 1870-1937, Oil on canvas. Available from Horton London

Russian 19c silver and plaque-a-jour enamel coupe. Available from Tabunov Antiques

11 January 2018

Create Unique Interiors with Antique Tiles

Antique tiles are the perfect way to create a unique interior design...
Top row from left: Iznik Fritware Tile, 17th Century; Dutch Delft Blue and White Tile, 17th Century; Ottoman Iznik Tile, 17th Century. All Available at Guest and Gray.
 Second row from left: Qajar 17th Century Tile; Syrian Tile of the Ottoman Empire, 17th Century; Spanish Tile, Unknown. All Available at Antique Choices.
Third row from left: Minton Tile c1878; Two Arts and Crafts Style Tiles, 19th Century, Available at The Antique Jewellery Company

Despite their rich history, tiles are an accessible purchase for the budding antique collector or interior decorator. Often relatively inexpensive, they can be used for a whole variety of decorative or functional purposes, and are available in a seemingly infinite array of shapes and styles.

Perhaps you want to create the feel of a sun-drenched Mediterranean terrazza? In that case seek out Iznik tiles.. Their history begins as early as 13th century, Turkey, where the production of brightly-coloured geometric ceramics flourished. Iznik's visual aesthetic permeated the artistic cultures of southern Europe for hundreds of years.

If you want to achieve the classic warmth of a country cottage, look out for Delftware: a ceramic that began in the 17th century, in the Dutch town of Delft. The familiar blue and white designs (originally a fashionable emulation of imported Chinese Ming-ware) now feel quintessential in an English home; calm yet characterful, traditional yet unpretentious.

The wealth of detailed tile designs from the Victorian and Edwardian eras, produced in the great age of industrialisation, can evoke both grandeur and homeliness.

Individual tiles can depict scenes from novels, myths and legends, botanical drawings or elaborate patterns. Minton, Arts and Crafts, Art Nouveau... each style has its own particular charm .

Whether you're after a specific look or an eclectic mix, we've hand-picked some unique individual tiles available at Grays to inspire you:

Dutch Delft Polychrome 'Bloempot' Style Tile, c1610- 1650. Available at Guest and Gray

Spanish Polychrome Tile, c1500. available at Guest and Gray

Japanese- Style Tile, 20th Century, Available at Hongman Yang

Japanese- Style Tile, 20th Century, Available at Hongman Yang
12th Century Persian Triangular Tile made from ground Lapis Lazuli. One of Six. Available at Antique Choices

Dutch Delft Polyxhrome Tile, 17th Century, Available at Guest and Gray

         For more inspiring design ideas using Antique Tiles, Check out our Pinterest board!

4 January 2018

Shop the latest arrivals at Grays

The New Year is here, and with a new year comes new stock. Our dealers source the most irresistible treasures and one-of-a-kind finds: an inventory so diverse that you could easily browse the stalls for hours.  

We have a selected a few of the latest arrivals from dealers to kick start 2018. Be quick - as with most antique and vintage pieces, these items are few and far between!

Art Nouveau turquoise in matrix and mother of pearl necklace, offered by Aurum

Brooch and earring set, c1950s, offered by Tings Jewellery Box

8 day quarter hour mahogany cased Garrards movement mantel clock, c1930-40, offered by Old as Time Antiques

Late 18th century silver and diamond snake, offered by P & R Szuhay

French guilloche blue enamel and gold cufflinks c1890, offered by Nigel Norman

Pair of Japanese polychrome Dutch decorated apothecary bottles, 17th century, offered by Guest & Gray

‘Standing Dancer’, bronze. James Butler RA (b.1931), offered by Horton London

21 December 2017

Last Minute Christmas Gifts at Grays

English Chad Valley Bear, pre-1952 with Original Blue Bow. Available at All You Can Bear

The clock is ticking and there are only three days to go until Christmas, but don't worry last minute shoppers, we are here to help!

We've hand picked a beautiful selection of unique pieces - for him, for her, for friends, for children... for anybody who deserves something extra special.

Grays Antiques is located less than a minutes' walk from Bond Street tube station a stones throw from Oxford Street. We are home to dealers in everything from jewels, gems, fine silver, fine art and porcelain, to Islamic and Oriental art, vintage fashion and antique toys.

We are open Friday the 22nd from 10am-6pm and Saturday the 23rd from 11am-4pm. Let the hunt begin !

Chinese Canton Enamel Quatrefoil Tea Caddy, c.1736-95. Available at Guest and Gray

Regency 18ct Gold Micro Mosaic Earrings Depicting Birds and Butterflies. Available at The Antique Jewellery Company 

Art Deco Aquamarine and Diamond Ring. Available at Saul Greenstein

Meissen Ornament Depicting 'Leda and the Swan' c.1745. Available at Serhat Ahmet

French Multi-Stone Pendant with Tourmaline and Mint Quartz, set in 18ct Gold. Available at Horton London

American Crystal Cufflinks with Racehorse Paintings set in Gold, c1910. Available at Nigel Norman

French Egyptian Fan Design Cufflinks, 18ct gold, Cartier c.1960. Available at Jan Havlik Fine Jewels

Vintage Gucci Handbag. Available at June Victor
Mughal Indian Silver Tray, c.1740. Available at Joseph Cohen

14 December 2017

Glassblowing By Candlelight : Thursday 14th of December

 London Glassblowing Studio at 62-66 Bermondsey Street, Offering displays of glassblowing plus the sale of Peter Layton's signed pieces of decorative glass.

British artist Peter Layton is one of the world's most widely acclaimed glass artists, credited with invigorating the glass art market in London and abroad from his studio in Bermondsey. 

Glass Art aficionados or anyone with an interest in craft, showmanship and display, can RSVP to a special Christmas-themed evening tonight, 'Glassblowing By Candlelight'.

From 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm Peter Layton and the London Glassblowing team will host a festive evening of music, mulled wine and mince pies, as well as wonderful glass gift ideas. Enter your name in the Bauble Lucky Dip to win a chance to make a bauble in the studio this evening.

View and purchase wonderful Christmas gifts from Peter Layton and resident artists, as well as work from invited guest artists, including Amanda Simmons, Philip Vallentin, Jonathan Rogers, Stephen Foster, Morag Reekie and Ruth Shelley.

Guests will have the opportunity to browse fabulous creative treasures in the gallery, or find a studio piece at the sale table.

Those who may miss tonight's festivities can see Whats On at London Glassblowing in the future, and can also pop in to visit Aurum here at Grays, who have a special working relationship with Peter Layton, and talk passionately about his work whilst offering a wonderful selection of his pieces.

We have selected some of our favourites from their range below...

Glass Vase in 'Hockney' Design, Signed by Peter Layton. Prices start from £780.00. Offered By Aurum

Glass Bottle with Stopper in 'Reef' Design, Signed by Peter Layton. Prices start from £195.00. Offered by Aurum

Glass Vase in 'Pointilist' Design, Signed by Peter Layton. Prices start from £645.00. Offered by Aurum

Glass Vase in 'High Grove' Design, Signed by Peter Layton. Prices start from £440.00. Offered by Aurum

Glass Vase in 'Pollock' Design, Signed by Peter Layton. Prices Start from £780.00. Offered by Aurum.

7 December 2017

Christmas Table

Turn your table into a stunning display using elegant antique pieces and festive accents. Christmas is a time for magical splendour. Accessorise with luxe touches, and of course a touch of rich greenery and glitter!

Shop our Christmas table accessories, decorations, and centerpieces to make your festive table and dining room stand out.

Silver basket for candied sweets after dinner, 1791, London. Available at Hallmark Antiques

19th century Meissen porcelain centrepiece depicts The Three Graces of Greek mythology holding aloft an intricate decorated plate. Available at K & M Antiques

Cat & dog salt & pepper shakers, silver and glass, continental. Available at Jack Podlewski

Art Nouveau cups and saucers by KPM Berlin. Available from Serhat Ahmet

Solid 925 silver candlesticks, made by Crichton Brothers (Lionel Alfred Crichton) in Old Bond Street London 1939. Available at AMS Antiques
19th century Japanese Imari Fish Dishes, c1880. Available at Wheatley Antiques
Silver etched jug 1900-1910. Available at Evonne Antiques 

30 November 2017

London Mithraeum: An Ancient Temple in the Heart of London

A new exhibition at Bloomberg SPACE reconstructs an ancient temple and explores the most mysterious religion of the late Roman Empire: The Cult of Mithras, the bull slayer.

Permanent display at the London Mithraeum, Bloomberg Space. Tickets are Free but it is advisable to Book Online.

In post-war London, archaeologists discovered a subterranean river laid bare by the ruins of the blitz. Next to the river they unearthed a Roman settlement.

The conditions of the marshy ground had preserved a wealth of objects such as tablets, jars and rings but most significantly - the head of a young, masculine deity, identified as Mithras.

The god Mithras originated in Persia and first appeared in Roman worship around the 1st century AD. Evidence of small underground buildings dedicated to him, known as ‘Mithraeums’ have been discovered in Rome, Ostia, Numidia, Dalmatia, and along the Danube.

These would have been dark claustrophobic spaces, lit by torchlight. Only the names of higher ranking members of society are associated with the cult, and worship involved complex and mysterious initiation rituals. Exact details of their practices remain obscure…

The original discovery has been reconstructed for the new exhibition. It aims to create a multi- sensory experience combining traditional display with theatrical effects.

Visitors will descend seven metres underground into the temple amid mist, haze, and chanting voices.

Inspired by the spirit of discovery here at Grays (which boasts its own underground river, a lost tributary of the Tyburn) we've selected some of our finest antiquities from the Ancient Roman period...

Roman Male Head, 1st-2nd Century AD. Available at Antique Choices 

Roman Bronze in the Figure of a Bull, 2nd Century AD. Available at Armin Antiques

Micro- Mosaic based on original Ancient Roman Design from the Capitoline, Rome. Available at Peter Szuhay

Terracotta Rhyton in the form of a Bulls Head, 4th Century AD. Available at  Antique Choices

Ancient Roman Cameo of Medusa 4th Century, set in 19th Century Gold Mount. Available at Peter Szuhay

Roman Iridescent Glass Jar, 2nd Century AD. Available at The Solaimani Gallery

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