The Cotswold Art & Antique Dealers’ Association Fair returns for the second occasion to the elegant setting of Blenheim Palace, Woodstock, Oxfordshire OX20 1PP from Thursday 18th to Sunday 21st April 2013. Lady Henrietta Spencer-Churchill, eldest daughter of the present Duke of Marlborough, has kindly accepted to be the new Patron of the Association.
Building on last year’s hugely successful inaugural event, where over 4,000 visitors visited the fair, already there is palpable excitement and positivity from the 29 exhibitors taking part. The fair is to be staged over four days and has been enlarged to accommodate extra stands. All the initial exhibitors have rebooked and the seven new dealers exhibiting are Andrew Dando, Freshfords Fine Antiques, Hallbakker, Elizabeth Harvey-Lee, Kinghams Art Pottery Ltd, Kyffin Gallery, Stuart Boyd and Spencer-Churchill Designs Ltd. The addition of the fair has significantly enhanced the profile of The Cotswold Art & Antique Dealers’ Association (CADA) and the membership has grown to 47 quality dealers. Blenheim Palace is the ‘perfect fit’ to host the fair and it provides a unique experience for the visitor and consolidates the Cotswolds as the antiques centre for the scholar, the collector and the interior designer. Everything is for sale with prices ranging from £100 to £150,000.
The fair takes place in the stunning settings of The Orangery and Campaign Rooms which overlook the Italian Garden at Blenheim. The very best of every discipline is showcased creating a rich tapestry of history and culture including clocks and barometers, early needlework and antique boxes, garden ornaments and statuary, jewellery, silver and glass, carpets and textiles in addition to all kinds of fine furniture and decorative items, Oriental and English ceramics, fine art and much more.
Highlights within the fair include a couple with a Blenheim connection such as an exquisite early 19th century silk embroidery of Britannia mourning the death of Nelson from Witney Antiques. Distinguished visitors were sometimes received by the Duke of Marlborough but on the occasion when Horatio Nelson visited Blenheim Palace in 1802 with Lord and Lady Hamilton, the 4th Duke refused to receive him and greatly offended Nelson by sending out his refreshments into the park and not the palace. John Howard at Heritage has sourced a dish from the very rare ‘Foliage Border Series’ which carries a transfer mark on the back ‘Blenheim Oxfordshire’, dated around 1820 and with a price tag of £750.
Amongst the line up of paintings in the fair are ‘A Portrait of a Lady’ by Charles Edward Halle (1846-‐1914) from Sarah Colegrave 19th & 20th Century Pictures; a ‘Still Life with Tankard and Vase’ by J.B. Priestley OM (1894-‐1984), the celebrated English novelist, playwright and broadcaster who took up painting late in life when he lived with his third wife, Jacquetta Hawkes, at Alveston near Stratford upon Avon from the Titian Gallery; an original etching, c 1890, of La Dance a la Campagne by Pierre Auguste Renoir (1841-‐1919) from Elizabeth Harvey-‐Lee priced at £10,000; and self portrait of John Jones by Sir Kyffin Williams RA (1918-‐2000) from the Kyffin Gallery at £70,000. An exquisite watercolour from Derek Newman is by John Fulleylove RI (1845-‐1908) of ‘The Thames, Oxford, Christchurch College beyond’, signed 1887. For a more contemporary feel, John Noott Galleries are showing work by Peter Barker of local Cotswold scenes such as ‘Swans by the River Coln’.
Collectors of porcelain will enjoy the antique Grainger Worcester porcelain rectangular plaque hand painted with a view of the Royal Crescent, Bath after an 18th century engraving by William Watts, c1820 from Andrew Dando priced at £1,150; a Martin Brothers sculpture of a grotesque bird, dated 1897 from Kinghams Art Pottery for £27,500; and a rare ceramic tray designed by Carl Sigmund Luber and manufactured by Johanne van Schwartz, c1905 for £1,400 from Hallbakker. Chinese ceramics include a famille verte octagonal plate made during the Emperor Kangxi’s reign, c 1710, £5,000 from Catherine Hunt Oriental Ceramics.
Many different styles of furniture adorn the fair from a superb George III period mahogany, satinwood, tulipwood and kingwood library breakfront bookcase from W R Harvey & Co (Antiques) Ltd for £150,000; a pair of early 18th century walnut armchairs with contemporary needlework, c 1725 selling at £14,500 from Kit Alderson; a Regency rosewood library desk chair, c 1815 from Freshfords Fine Antiques selling for £6,500; and for lovers of oak Moxhams Antiques are bringing a late 18th century oak potboard dresser from South West Wales with many of the iron cup hooks still remaining, priced at £4,950.
Montpellier Clocks are showing a fine rosewood library clock by Benjamin Lewis Vulliamy, c 1830, who was a distinguished clockmaker, succeeding his father as head of the family business and Clockmaker to the Crown. More choice is available from Formby Clocks who are bringing a good ebony veneered bracket timepiece with pull quarter repeat on two bells by Jonathan Lowndes of London, c 1695.
Curiosities in the fair include a Brighton Pavilion sewing compendium inspired by Nash’s Brighton Pavilion, the dome enclosing a pin cushion, the lower section a thimble, tape, waxer, pin cushion and needle case, c. 1820, for £6,500 from Hampton Antiques. Jewellery is well represented by Howards Jewellers bringing an Art Deco yellow and white diamond pendant necklace, c 1925. A rare neo-‐classical claret jug decorated with scenes from the compositions of John Flaxman RA is one of the many pieces of interesting glass found on Jeanette Hayhurst’s stand. Textiles include a 19th century silk Ikat coat from the Ferghana Valley, Uzbekistan, c 1860s, in perfect condition, for £4,000 from Legge Carpets, also showing a fine silk Kashan rug from Iran, late 19th century, priced at £2,000.
Not forgetting the outdoors, Architectural Heritage are bringing a pair of mid 19th century wrought iron gates stamped by the maker Butterley who was responsible for many prestigious commissions, priced at £2,800 and a pair of mid 18th century Bath stone finials originating from Barford Park, Somerset for £12,600.