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Thomas Crown Affair, 2015 style

There's been a significant art heist in Verona, Italy.

The mayor of Verona is quoted as saying that the theft must have been 'specially commissioned by someone because the thieves were well timed, well organised and knew what they wanted'.

Article on the art theft from The Art Newspaper.com

Things like this always amaze me. Martin and I have had discussions about the motives for this type of heist and the dispersal of the bounty.

I still don't understand. What on earth are they going to do with it? One can't exactly show off to one's friends with a, 'Here, look at my priceless collection of stolen art.'

Anyway, I'm just glad no one at the museum was hurt.

Is it or isn't it? Art dealer may have found a sculpture by Donatello

The (heretofore) lost Donatello
Oh, it would be so brilliant if this were true. Art dealer Andrew Butterfield thinks he's found a heretofore unknown sculpture of a putto by Renaissance artist Donatello. Well, not quite unknown; there was a similar piece at the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, but a curator pronounced it not by Donatello, which meant that no one was going to take a punt on this one..

Anyway, it's a bit complicated, but the New York times has a good explanatory article:

New York Times article on the lost Donatello

Ulverstone the latest to join Tasmanian Antique Fair Scene

The Antiques Fair circuit in Tasmania is a lively one, and a new player has stepped modestly into the ring. The Ulverstone Rowing Club is the latest organisation to hold a fundraiser in the form of an antiques fair, and the inaugural is due to take place over the weekend of the 4-6 September 2016.

We hear that there has been such an influx of young people into the rowing club that they cannot afford boats for them all.

Well, anything that advocates halesome activity for kids is fine with us.

The season will continue with the Latrobe Antiques Fair October 16-18, the Woolmers Estate Antiques Fair November 6-8, and then of course the Hobart Collectors Antiques Fair to usher in the New Year.

Good luck, folks!

Ulverstone Antiques and Collectables Fair
4-6 September 2016

Kings Parade 
Ulverstone, Tasmania 7315

Phone: 03 6425 3447

Facebook: Ulverstone Rowing Club

Strathalbyn Antiques Fair

We've had no word on how the Strathalbyn Antiques Fair went this weekend. Usually Australian antique dealers are tripping over themselves to get their ha'penny's worth in, but it's been surprisingly quiet.

I'm not quite sure what to call this fair; I've seen it variously described as a long-running South Australian event, and as 'the Inaugural'. I think what's happened is that a long-running (20 years +) fair has been sold, reorganised, and repackaged into what sounds like a more upscale affair. It takes place in various venues around the town, which sounds like fun.

I hope it went well because that's good for the industry.

Did you attend? Do let me know how things went.

Christie's Winning the Sotheby's-Christie's Rivalry - At Least for Now

Is Christie's winning the ongoing Sotheby's-Christie's duel? The New York Times seems to think so, according to this article about the rivalry.

Christie's posted about $1 billion (UDS) more than Sotheby's in '...auction and private sales for the first half of 2015'.

The article correctly points out that there's more than a little bit of 'apples and oranges' in this comparison; Sotheby's, for example is public and accountable to its shareholders, which Christie's is privately-held, so there are different reporting standards being followed.  In addition, Sotheby's is pushing ahead in some areas, like classic cars, and it seems to be moving forward with improved technology. Christie's, however, continues to hold the lead in the contemporary art market, and that makes all the difference.

It'll take another year or so before we know if the changes in Sotheby's management are making a difference, but meantime, no-one at either of these giants is headed for the poorhouse just yet, and it's fun for the rest of us to watch and speculate from the safety of our armchairs.

Manet's 'Le Printemps' up for auction

Well, this is exciting!

Manet's 'Le Printemps' is to be sold at auction. The portrait, painted in 1881, has been owned by the same family for a century.

Christies' are predicting (i.e. 'hoping for'?) $35million. Pshaw! I for one don't think they have to worry. I predict this blows the previous record, around $32mill if memory serves, out of the water!


Lucky Door Prize - Newcastle Antiques Fair

Image credit unknown

*Lucky Door Prize* at the Newcastle Antiques and Collectables Fair, 8 - 10 August 2014.

Entry is free to all persons 17 and older who have purchased a ticket for entry into the Fair.

One lucky winner will be drawn and will win $1,000.

Terms and conditions can be found at the following website address:  http://www.antiquesandvintagefairs.com/sweepstakes-rules

NSW Permit No. LTPS/14/05064