Period Lighting Experts Launch Lamps.com Few collecting categories are as complex and rich in nuances than 20th century period lighting. Questions seem to greatly outnumber solid answers. How do you tell the difference, for example, between a lamp worth $1,000 and another worth $5,000? If you wanted to buy a particular Handel or Pairpoint model, where would you look - and what would be a fair price? And if you hoped to sell Grandma's Tiffany table lamp, who could appraise it for you accurately - and then point out the most profitable way to cash it in? These and many other such mysteries are the province of Lamps.com, a new online service whose mission is nothing less than to put the entire world of period lighting at your fingertips at www.lamps.com. "It's really long overdue that someone sorted this field out, and made it collector-friendly", said Dean Lowry, one of the two partners in the new venture. Lowry, perhaps best known for the 8 years he spent helping develop the John Fontaine Gallery into America's best-known outlet for Tiffany, Handel and Pairpoint lighting, sees Lamps.com serving in several ways: "The site is evolving in a number of ways. Of course we will have lamps for direct sale, these illustrated and described in considerable detail and guaranteed to be 'right' - but there's more. For those inquiring, we may well be able to conveniently place lamps directly into collections, or purchase them outright. And needless to say, we'll answer all those troublesome questions people have." Lamps.com's other partner is Howard Booher, an advanced collector based in Ohio who has a particular expertise in Duffner & Kimberly and in leaded lamps in general. Said Howard: "I think we�ll often serve as brokers between sellers and the dozens of dealers and collectors we have gotten to know over the years - there can be a considerable efficiency in this". A live auction is planned for October. For all the wonders and speed of an online service, both partners see a tremendous value in live auctions - the service is tentatively planning to have two important events each year, the first of these now scheduled for October 31st, in Independence, Ohio. "Lighting people love to talk shop, and share their knowledge and enthusiasm - I know we do. And there's really no better place to do that than when surrounded by great examples at an auction and in the days leading up to one", said Dean. "We believe our live events will popularize the online service and, just as important to us, give us an opportunity to reaffirm existent personal relationships, and hopefully create new ones as well". In fact, creating such personal relationships is particularly dear to Dean's heart. He has spent, and continues to spend, most of his professional life on the road all over America, meeting people, discussing lighting, and securing lighting examples. To this point, in some circles he is actually known as the 'Road Warrior'. As the Lamps.com web site is still evolving, and new features and merchandise are added with some frequency, those interested are advised to 'drop in' on a regular basis.
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