19 July 2017

Old as Time Antiques

Little and LARGE 
at A18, 
The Mews at Grays 

Since Old as Time Antiques moved to stand A18 in The Mews at Grays, they have focused on establishing their stock of bracket, mantle and small clocks and timepieces, along with the repair, servicing and valuation services they offer. 

Recently they have introduced wall mounted regulators, clock/barometer combinations, “Art Deco” clocks and the sale of a private collection of first quarter 19th century silver pair cased verge gents pocket watches and silver cased hunter gents pocket watches, all in perfect working condition. 

Below are some images of the pieces mentioned above. A full description can be viewed on the Grays website.

Silver Hunter Verge Key Wind Gents Pocket Watches

 English Silver Paired Case Verge Key Wind Gents Pocket

A Movado Clicker Timepiece, c1920/30 Image A WW2 Land Issue Gentlemen’s Pocket Watch

An ‘Art Deco’ Marble Timepiece

A Late 19c Fusee Wall Dial Timepiece Image A circa 19c/20c AustroGerman 1?2hr Wall Regulator

An early 20c Barometer/Clock Combination

All their clocks are 'shop ready', having been prepared by individuals who have a proven record of completing simple and complex repairs to quality timepieces, clocks and watches. 

Unit A18, Grays Mews

Open Monday and Thursday afternoons, and all day Friday or anytime by appointment.

Facebook: @oldastimeantiques 
Twitter: @OATantiques 
Tel: 01442 395761 (ext 6 for the support staff)
Email: oldastime@hotmail.co.uk

13 July 2017

Lapis Lazuli and the World's 'Most Perfect' Colour

Lapis lazuli is a semi-precious stone with a unique place in the History of Art…

Detail of 'Madonna and Child' Giovanni Bellini, Venice, c.1475-76. Ultramarine pigment created from ground Lapis Lazuli is used for the Virgin's Robe.

This vivid and intense blue rock, mottled with white calcite, has been mined in remote mountainous regions since antiquity; principally the Badakhshan mountains of modern day Afghanistan.

Before the discovery of smaller mines across the globe, these remote mountains were the only source of the rock known to Europeans. Travelling via the expanded east to west trade routes of the Medieval and Renaissance periods, lapis was ground into the pigment known as ‘Ultramarine'.

Declared by Italian painter Cennino Cennini as ‘the most perfect colour’ (The Book of Arts, 1400), the brilliance and rarity of the pigment usually reserved it for the adornment of angels and royalty, in particular the Virgin Mary. 

Through the influence of master painters Giotto, Masaccio and Bellini, the distinctive hue is now forever associated in visual culture with the robes of the Holy Mother.

Despite increased availability, the status of genuine lapis lazuli has endured and is used for fine jewellery, exquisite ornaments and striking decorative objects around the world.

If you would like to pick up your own piece of the world’s most perfect colour, we have curated a selection of objects available at Grays...

Fine carving from Lapis Lazuli depicting courtly ladies adorned with flowers. Chinese, mid 20th century. Available at Christopher Cavey and Associates

18ct Gold and Lapis Lazuli Castellated Seal. English ,Victorian c1839-1901. Available at The Antique Jewellery Company

Carved Lapis Lazuli Sculpture of a bird, Afghanistan, mid- 20th century. Available at Safiullah Shamas Antiques

Lapis Lazuli and Diamond Brooch, 1970s. Available at Michael Longmore

Free-form natural Lapis Lazuli. 20th century.  Available at Christopher Cavey and Associates

6 July 2017

Frieze Sculpture 2017

London’s largest outdoor exhibition, the Regent’s Park Frieze Sculpture 2017, kicked off yesterday and will run throughout the summer months, ending 8 October 2017. The exhibition brings together 23 new and significant works by 20th-century masters and leading contemporary artists from around the world.

Highlights include Thomas J Price’s (Hales) startling triple portraits of men of African origin; Reza Aramesh’s (Leila Heller Gallery) metamorphosis of mythical animal and subjected figure; and a six-metre-high ubiquitous toy-human figure by KAWS (pictured below).

We had a wander through Regent’s Park and were impressed by the spectacular works dotted around the area, which certainly made a striking effect. Here are some of our favourites:

John Chamberlain | Fiddler's Fortune 2010 | Coloured aluminium

Urs Fischer | Invisible Mother 2015 | Cast brass and enamel 

Magadalena Abakanowicz | Standing Figure with Wheel 1990 | Bronze and iron

Eduardo Paolozzi | Vulcan 1999 | Unique bronze

Bernar Venet | 17 Acute Unequal Angles (2016) | Corten steel

KAWS | Final Days 2013 | Afromosia wood 

At Grays, we discovered a few noteworthy sculptures from our dealers...

Salvador Dali | Venus Aux Tiroirs | Bronze | Offered by Tabunov Antiques

David Williams | 'Louise II' | Bronze | Offered by Horton London

Amedeo Gennarelli | Terracotta Bust | Offered by Patrick Boyd-Carpenter

29 June 2017

London Art Week

Kicking off tomorrow (with the preview today), London Art Week will be celebrating exceptional art from across the past 7,000 years! The art event is hosted across more than 40 of the London's best galleries and auction houses. Several of these galleries are based in Mayfair, very close to Grays, including Kallos Gallery on Davies Street and Raccanello on New Bond Street, not forgetting Bonham's and Sotheby's, also on New Bond Street, of course - why not combine a gallery visit with a trip to Grays?

Don't forget we have our very own art dealers at Grays, below is a selection and their pieces:

Stand 127
Tel: 020 7491 7623

Romain De Tirtoff (Called Érte). November 1892 – April 1990. Russian born French artist and designer. Art Deco Fashion Design. Pen Ink and Watercolour. c1925. From Patrick Boyd-Carpenter.

Horton London
Stand 126
Tel: 020 7495 8752

Bronze sculpture, 1906. From Horton Antiques.

G21 & MG34/35  | Grays Mews
Tel: 07952 437 97

Stand B18/C19 | Grays Mews
Tel: 020 7629 7034

Three panelled Persian qajar with antique mirror interior.
Depicting family of the prophet. From IQ Antiques Ltd.

London Art Week

Thursday 29th June: Preview – Invitation Only
Friday 30th June – Friday 7th July: 10am – 6pm
Saturday 1st July – Sunday 2nd July: 11am – 5pm

Auction Houses:
Friday 30th June – Friday 7th July: 9am – 5pm
Saturday 1st July – Sunday 2nd July: 11am – 5pm

23 June 2017

The Summer Art & Antiques Fair Olympia

The Art and Antiques Fair at Olympia kicks off next week with the preview on Monday 26th June, running through until 2nd July. The Fair is celebrating its 45th year, featuring an exciting and eclectic selection of items from different eras to the present day, with prices ranging from £100 to £1000. Of those 160 specialist dealers exhibiting this year, you will find some of our very own dealers from Grays. Here is a glimpse of what is in store...

Olympia Art & Antiques Fair. Image courtesy of Antiques Trade Gazette.

Horton - Stand 84

LAPADA member, David Horton has 35 years experience dealing in antiques, fine art and a range of fine jewellery from the 18th century to the present.

Charles James Pibworth, Bronze Sculpture, Dated 1906.

Black Opal Pendant On Seed Pearl, Circa 1910.

Wimpole Antiques - Stand D20

Specialising in Victorian and Edwardian pieces that are important and remarkable emblems of 19th and 20th century jewellery.

Wimpole Antiques are also showcasing 30 pieces by Oscar Heyman at Olympia. This will be in conjunction with the publication of Oscar Heyman's book 'The Jewelers' Jeweler' by Yvonne J.Markowitz and Elizabeth Hamilton. Oscar Heyman was the only American jeweller asked to work for Cartier, Tiffany & Co and Van Cleef & Arples.

Ballerina Ring set with celebrated baguette shaped diamonds in the design of a tutu, with a centre stone that is a natural untreated sapphire.

Ruby and Diamond Brooch invisibly set with natural Burma Rubies, set in platinum.

Member of LAPADA. Anthea specialises in fine gem-set jewellery, circa 1840 - 1940, including a stunning collection of Victorian jewellery.

French Diamond and 18ct Gold Bracelet, Circa 1960.

18ct Gold Sapphire and Emerald Mario Buccellati Ring.

Persis has 13 years experience dealing in a beautiful range of fine antique and vintage jewellery.

An Art Deco Natural Siam Ruby and Diamond.

An Edwardian Diamond Pendant Necklace c.1910.

John Joseph - Stand E7

Member of LAPADA. John Joseph have been established for 25 years, dealing in genuine pieces with natural untreated stones dating from the Georgian, Victorian, Edwardian, Art Deco and Art Nouveau eras.

An Edwardian 1915 Pendant, with a 1.5 carat centre diamond, set in platinum.

Serhat Ahmet - Stand 114

Specialising in Meissen, KPM Berlin, Sèvres, Vienna and other fine European porcelain and objets de vertu. Exhibiting a diverse range from the 18th, 19th and 20th centuries. 

 Meissen Large Vase with Pink Rose Bouquets, Circa 1890-1900.

Marina Oriental Art - Stand 18

Specialising in Japanese Art Meiji Era (1898-1912).

Circa 1900 Silver, Gold and Enamel Box, Signed Japanese Meiji.
Resting Figure of Hotei  Inkwell, Japanese Meiji (1868-1912).

Matthew Foster  - Stand E23

Matthew Foster is one of the United Kingdom's leading purveyors of the highest quality jewellery and collectables from the Art Deco, Retro, Art Modern and 1960s periods.

An Art Deco Period Bakelite Box with metal foil overlay. French "Cigar Smoker", Circa 1920s.

15 June 2017

Father's Day: Last-Minute Gift Ideas

As you all know, it can be difficult to avoid the usual high street "gift ideas" that we often see in the lead up to Father's Day, which falls on 18 June this year. It is also a challenge to find something your dad will not genuinely expect to receive. So why not surprise him with something unique, we think the best way to achieve this is to buy vintage. At Grays we have so many treasures to choose from we're sure your mission will be accomplished by the end of your visit, and for the very last minute shopper, don't forget we're open from 11am until 5pm on Saturday.

Here's some of our top picks at Grays to help inspire you...

Penhaligon’s genuine silver bookmark with blue tassle. Offered by Past & Present.

Art Deco mantel clock. Offered by Old as Time Antiques.

Gold pocket watch, available from Spectrum

Carved green chalcedony cufflinks with diamond centres and surrounds, c1920. Available from Wimpole Antiques.
A finely enamelled brown trout brooch in silver and gold,English c,1930. Available from Nigel Norman.
Boston Bomber WWII plane model/ashtray. Available from Leon's Militaria.
Pablo Picasso. Portraitiste IV, original etching, (16th December 1966 IV, Mouguins). Available from Horton London.

8 June 2017

Signet Rings: A Unique Gift for Father's Day

If you are searching for a unique Father's day gift this year, something really special, then why not consider a signet ring? These beautiful, characterful objects are steeped in tradition, and yet are enjoying something of a resurgence in modern men's fashion.

Historically, signet rings were used as a seal of authentication for high status individuals, and played a crucial role in business, politics and society.

Seals of authentication - created from the method of inscribing a mirror image onto a hard surface - were used as far back as Ancient Mesopotamia 3500 BC. Signet rings are even mentioned in The Old Testament,

"And the Stone was brought, and laid upon the mouth of the den; and the King sealed it with his own signet."
(Daniel 6:17)

Their use proliferated throughout the Ancient world, became a permanent fixture of social status in the middle ages, and later enjoyed prominence in the Georgian and Victorian eras. In contemporary fashion, they are still prized for their unique historical and aesthetic value.

Here at Grays we have hand picked a stunning selection of signet rings from different eras, including some that aren't inscribed and are suitable for personalised engraving.

Ancient Roman ring dating from the 3rd century AD, silver with carnelian intaglio of clasped hand. Available at Ancient Jewellery.

Victorian amethyst and 18ct gold intaglio ring. Depicting a rearing horse with a monogram underneath. Available from The Antique Jewellery Company

Victorian bloodstone and 18ct gold shield shaped signet ring. Available from The Antique Jewellery Company

 Rare Art Deco engraved sapphire signet ring, depicting a stag's head crest. Signed Boucheron Paris, and dated 1930  Available from Havlik Fine Jewels

Top to bottom: Victorian 18ct gold  ring; Victorian carnelian on 18ct gold ring.
Both are part of a selection of plain signets available from Leila in the Mews and suitable for engraving. Visit Bennett and O'Connell Engravers for engraving enquiries.

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