'Northumberlandia' land sculpture under construction near Cramlington, Northumberland, northern England. Some observers call it Slag Alice. This file is made available under the Creative Commons CC0 1.0 Universal Public Domain Dedication.

Princess Anne unveils UK giant land sculpture

'Northumberlandia' land sculpture under construction near Cramlington, Northumberland, northern England. Some observers call it Slag Alice. This file is made available under the Creative Commons CC0 1.0 Universal Public Domain Dedication.

‘Northumberlandia’ land sculpture under construction near Cramlington, Northumberland, northern England. Some observers call it Slag Alice. This file is made available under the Creative Commons CC0 1.0 Universal Public Domain Dedication.

LONDON (AP) – Princess Anne unveiled a giant goddess sculpted from rock, earth and waste reclining in the remains of an open coal mine in northern England.

The private ceremony Monday formally declared that the 1,300-foot-long figure, named Northumberlandia, has been completed. The female figure predictably has divided local opinion, with one local official calling it ridiculous. Backers of the project hope it will attract thousands of visitors, and create jobs.

Visitors are able to scale the figure’s curves, but pilots flying into Newcastle airport get the best view.

American artist Charles Jencks designed the 3 million pound ($4.7 million) sculpture.

It is near Antony Gormley’s steel sculpture Angel of the North, which is about 12 miles away.

Copyright 2012 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

AP-WF-09-03-12 1132GMT


ADDITIONAL IMAGE OF NOTE


'Northumberlandia' land sculpture under construction near Cramlington, Northumberland, northern England. Some observers call it Slag Alice. This file is made available under the Creative Commons CC0 1.0 Universal Public Domain Dedication.

‘Northumberlandia’ land sculpture under construction near Cramlington, Northumberland, northern England. Some observers call it Slag Alice. This file is made available under the Creative Commons CC0 1.0 Universal Public Domain Dedication.

A cabochon ruby and diamond bangle attributed to Paul Flato, USA, 1940s, formerly owned by the Art Deco painter Tamara de Lempicka, which is priced at £47,000 ($74,620) on the stand of Twenty-First Century Jewels at the LAPADA Berkeley Square Art & Antiques Fair. Image courtesy Twenty-First Century Jewels and LAPADA.

London Eye: August 2012

A cabochon ruby and diamond bangle attributed to Paul Flato, USA, 1940s, formerly owned by the Art Deco painter Tamara de Lempicka, which is priced at £47,000 ($74,620) on the stand of Twenty-First Century Jewels at the LAPADA Berkeley Square Art & Antiques Fair. Image courtesy Twenty-First Century Jewels and LAPADA.

A cabochon ruby and diamond bangle attributed to Paul Flato, USA, 1940s, formerly owned by the Art Deco painter Tamara de Lempicka, which is priced at £47,000 ($74,620) on the stand of Twenty-First Century Jewels at the LAPADA Berkeley Square Art & Antiques Fair. Image courtesy Twenty-First Century Jewels and LAPADA.

With “London 2012” nearing its conclusion, the capital is braced for a return to normality. It may land with a bump. Londoners are already preparing to bid farewell to the efficient transport system magically laid on for the Games and to welcome in its place the congested, dysfunctional road and rail network to which they are accustomed.

Fortunately the more prestigious art and antiques fairs scheduled for September and October are generally patronized by the sort of high net worth clientèle that eschews public transport in favor of the black cab or private limousine. So, despite the lingering recession, the weeks ahead still hold plenty of commercial promise for the trade.

They say there’s an app for everything and you know that must be true when even a somewhat conservative trade body like the Association of Art and Antiques Dealers has developed an iPhone app for its Berkeley Square Fair that is scheduled to run from Sept. 19 to 23.

An architect’s design for the new LAPADA Art & Antiques Fair marquee in Berkeley Square, which runs Sept. 19 to 23. This year sees an expanded modern and contemporary art section and a new restaurant and terrace overlooking the square. Image courtesy LAPADA.

An architect’s design for the new LAPADA Art & Antiques Fair marquee in Berkeley Square, which runs Sept. 19 to 23. This year sees an expanded modern and contemporary art section and a new restaurant and terrace overlooking the square. Image courtesy LAPADA.

The app informs you about the fair’s exhibitors and offers directions and opening hours, plus an interactive guide to nearby galleries in Mayfair and beyond. The real bonus, however, is that it comes with a complimentary ticket admitting two people to the fair. Presumably all you need to do is flash your iPhone at the front desk and you’re in. Who said the antiques trade was stuck in the past?

The LAPADA app contains links to illustrated previews of many of the items that will be on show. Among the jewelery we spotted a Flying Swallow brooch, circa 1925, by the Parisian firm of La Cloche Frères.

This 18-karat gold Flying Swallow brooch, circa 1925, by the Parisian firm of La Cloche Frères, featuring Burma rubies, emeralds and diamonds, will be on the stand of London dealers The Gilded Lily at the LAPADA Fair. Image courtesy The Gilded Lily and LAPADA.

This 18-karat gold Flying Swallow brooch, circa 1925, by the Parisian firm of La Cloche Frères, featuring Burma rubies, emeralds and diamonds, will be on the stand of London dealers The Gilded Lily at the LAPADA Fair. Image courtesy The Gilded Lily and LAPADA.

On the stand of London dealers The Gilded Lily, this tour de force of the lapidary arts combines gold, Burma rubies, emeralds and diamonds set in 18-karat gold overlaid with platinum. In a similar taste is a 1940s cabochon ruby and diamond bangle attributed to the American jeweler Paul Flato, priced at £47,000 ($74,620) on the stand of Twenty First Century Jewels. The fact that it was once owned by the Polish Art Deco painter Tamara De Lempicka will doubtless deepen its appeal among discerning collectors.

One other object that caught our eye from LAPADA’s publicity was a Victorian Chester-hallmarked silver “nef” in the form of a galleon in full sail by the German silversmith Berthold Müller.

At the September LAPADA Art and Antiques Fair in Berkeley Square, London silver dealers Langfords will be showing this Victorian silver ‘nef’ in the form of a galleon in full sail by the German silversmith Berthold Müller, bearing import marks for Chester. Image courtesy Langfords and LAPADA.

At the September LAPADA Art and Antiques Fair in Berkeley Square, London silver dealers Langfords will be showing this Victorian silver ‘nef’ in the form of a galleon in full sail by the German silversmith Berthold Müller, bearing import marks for Chester. Image courtesy Langfords and LAPADA.

These little contraptions used to be filled with salt and were pushed around the dinner tables of noble families. It would be interesting to know where this example — which can be seen on the stand of London Silver Vaults dealers, Langfords — might end up. Finally, among the more handsome furniture items is a Regency crossbanded amboyna wood tip-top center table in the manner of George Smith, circa 1825, which Antiques Roadshow expert Lennox Cato is offering at £24,000 ($38,000).
Edenbridge furniture dealer and 'Antiques Roadshow' expert Lennox Cato will be asking £24,000 ($38,000) for this Regency crossbanded amboyna wood tip-top center table in the manner of George Smith at the LAPADA Fair. Image courtesy Lennox Cato and LAPADA.

Edenbridge furniture dealer and ‘Antiques Roadshow’ expert Lennox Cato will be asking £24,000 ($38,000) for this Regency crossbanded amboyna wood tip-top center table in the manner of George Smith at the LAPADA Fair. Image courtesy Lennox Cato and LAPADA.

Regular art market watchers will already be familiar with the virtual dominance by Asian dealers of the market for imperial Chinese porcelain in recent years. Every time a significant collection of imperial wares, jades, or traditional brush paintings comes up for auction — whether in London or the provinces — one can be sure to encounter a saleroom full of mainland Chinese or Taiwanese or Hong Kong dealers. It was thus no surprise to be told by the leading art market research companies that China has become the largest art market in the world by volume of transactions. What did come as a surprise, however, was to read the investigative journalism published by Forbes that suggested that the Chinese market may be something of a hall of mirrors. Whether, as Forbes reported, the Chinese auction sector is indeed state-controlled and subject to various kinds of nefarious activity remains a moot point. What is not in doubt, however, is the fact that some of the more expensive lots hammered down in recent years in European salerooms still remain unpaid for.

Given this background and the lingering whiff of controversy surrounding the Chinese market, it was reassuring to see that London dealers Eskenazi, surely the preeminent Western purveyors of Asian art, are to stage an exhibition devoted to Qing porcelain. This will be a chance to see some of the finest examples of the sort of wares that are currently quickening the pulses of Chinese mainland collectors. Originating from a single private collection, many of the pieces

This famille rose Qing dynasty ruby ground porcelain vase, Qianlong mark and period, 1736-1795, will be on display at Eskenazi in Clifford Street as part of Asian Art in London in November. Image courtesy Eskenazi Ltd.

This famille rose Qing dynasty ruby ground porcelain vase, Qianlong mark and period, 1736-1795, will be on display at Eskenazi in Clifford Street as part of Asian Art in London in November. Image courtesy Eskenazi Ltd.

London Asian art dealers Eskenazi’s forthcoming exhibition of Qing porcelain in November will include this pair of underglaze blue and pink enameled porcelain ewers, Qing dynasty, Qianlong marks and of the period, 1736-1795. Image courtesy Eskenazi Ltd.

London Asian art dealers Eskenazi’s forthcoming exhibition of Qing porcelain in November will include this pair of underglaze blue and pink enameled porcelain ewers, Qing dynasty, Qianlong marks and of the period, 1736-1795. Image courtesy Eskenazi Ltd.

An underglaze blue and iron-red porcelain flask, Qing dynasty, Qianlong mark and period, 1736-1795, to be shown by Eskenazi as part of Asian Art in London. Image courtesy Eskenazi Ltd.

An underglaze blue and iron-red porcelain flask, Qing dynasty, Qianlong mark and period, 1736-1795, to be shown by Eskenazi as part of Asian Art in London. Image courtesy Eskenazi Ltd.

are provenanced to earlier famous collections, such as those of J.M. Chu, T.Y. Chao and Paul and Helen Bernat.

How many of these masterpieces will ultimately find their way back to China is as yet unknown, but given the levels to which Chinese collectors are prepared to go to acquire museum-quality objects, one suspects that at least some of them will soon be heading east. Eskenazi’s exhibition at their Clifford Street premises runs Nov. 1-23 and is timed to coincide with the 15th Asian Art in London event.

Founded in 1988, the 20/21 British Art Fair remains one of the most popular fairs in the London art market calendar. This year the fair marks its 25th anniversary and so one supposes there will be a celebratory atmosphere at the galleries of the Royal College of Art from Sept. 12-16. What makes the fair so enduring and popular is its unwavering focus on Modern British art. This is a sector of the market whose fortunes have fluctuated greatly in contrast with other more international categories, and yet it continues to build a passionate collecting base and prices are now rising. Among the potentially more sought-after works on sale this year is a signed lithograph, Paper Pools, by David Hockney — arguably the Royal College’s most famous alumnus — on the stand of Dominic Guerrini,

David Hockney’s 'Paper Pools,' a signed lithograph from an edition of 1,000, on the stand of London dealer Dominic Guerrini at the 20/21 British Art Fair at the Royal College of Art. Image courtesy Dominic Guerrini and 20/21 British Art Fair.

David Hockney’s ‘Paper Pools,’ a signed lithograph from an edition of 1,000, on the stand of London dealer Dominic Guerrini at the 20/21 British Art Fair at the Royal College of Art. Image courtesy Dominic Guerrini and 20/21 British Art Fair.

while Agnew’s will be a showing a superb example of the work of the late Keith Vaughan (1912-1978) — Man Gathering Fruit of 1948.
London dealers Agnews will be showing this oil on canvas by Keith Vaughan (1912-1977) 'Man Gathering Fruit,' 1948, at the 20/21 British Art Fair at the Royal College of Art from Sept. 12-16. Image courtesy Agnew’s and 20/21 British Art Fair.

London dealers Agnews will be showing this oil on canvas by Keith Vaughan (1912-1977) ‘Man Gathering Fruit,’ 1948, at the 20/21 British Art Fair at the Royal College of Art from Sept. 12-16. Image courtesy Agnew’s and 20/21 British Art Fair.

Cheek-by-jowl with these giants of British art is a screenprint titled No Ball Games of 2009 by the much hyped street artist Banksy, also on the stand of Dominic Guerrini.
Street artist Banksy’s 'No Ball Games,' a signed screenprint of 2009, on sale with Dominic Guerrini at the 20/21 British Art Fair. Image courtesy Dominic Guerrini and 20/21 British Art Fair.

Street artist Banksy’s ‘No Ball Games,’ a signed screenprint of 2009, on sale with Dominic Guerrini at the 20/21 British Art Fair. Image courtesy Dominic Guerrini and 20/21 British Art Fair.

September is always a busy month in the UK arts calendar as everyone returns from holiday to confront life’s rain-sodden realities and takes a deep breath in readiness for the Frieze onslaught. October will be even more intense this year as Frieze sits alongside its new Old Master equivalent — Frieze Masters. London Eye will be on hand to report the inaugural instalment of this groundbreaking addition to the annual fairs calendar.

Away from the capital, we always like to give a brief mention to the exhibitions staged by the Jerram Gallery in Sherborne, Dorset, chiefly on account of their unerring ability to discover lesser-known but gifted British artists. Their next exhibition, titled “The Mind’s Eye,” features new landscape and still life paintings by David Brayne and Vivienne Williams and runs from Sept. 22 to Oct. 12. The two works we illustrate here — David Brayne’s landscape titled Silver Hare,

Somerset-based painter David Brayne will be showing this landscape, 'Silver Hare,' at an exhibition entitled ‘The Mind’s Eye’ at the Jerram Gallery in Sherborne, Dorset from Sept. 22-Oct. 12. Image courtesy David Brayne and Jerram Gallery.

Somerset-based painter David Brayne will be showing this landscape, ‘Silver Hare,’ at an exhibition entitled ‘The Mind’s Eye’ at the Jerram Gallery in Sherborne, Dorset from Sept. 22-Oct. 12. Image courtesy David Brayne and Jerram Gallery.

and Vivienne Williams’s still life, Jug with Pears and Beans,
This still life, 'Jug with Pears and Beans,' by Vivienne Williams will be included in ‘The Mind’s Eye’ exhibition. Image courtesy Vivienne Williams  and Jerram Gallery.

This still life, ‘Jug with Pears and Beans,’ by Vivienne Williams will be included in ‘The Mind’s Eye’ exhibition. Image courtesy Vivienne Williams and Jerram Gallery.

demonstrate how well matched are their individual visions and painterly techniques.

Finally, we are happy to hear from Sotheby’s spokeswoman Mitzi Mina that Sotheby’s director and star auctioneer Henry Wyndham is “currently on track for a full and rapid recovery” after sustaining injuries to his face while out shooting on the grouse moor. We wish Mr. Wyndham a speedy recovery and look forward to seeing back on the rostrum in the near future.

It took a $1,195 bid to buy this colored inkcake at Neal Auction in New Orleans in April 2012. It dates from the 1700s and was probably never used for its intended purpose of making ink.

Kovels – Antiques & Collecting: Week of Sept. 3, 2012

It took a $1,195 bid to buy this colored inkcake at Neal Auction in New Orleans in April 2012. It dates from the 1700s and was probably never used for its intended purpose of making ink.

It took a $1,195 bid to buy this colored inkcake at Neal Auction in New Orleans in April 2012. It dates from the 1700s and was probably never used for its intended purpose of making ink.

For the past few years, auctions of Chinese antiques have attracted many bidders and high bids. The auctions have included many items that were not recognized by American bidders. A recent auction sold a “Chinese polychrome-decorated inkcake” for more than $1,000. I had to do some research.

An inkstick or inkcake is a piece of solid ink that might be a mixture of soot and animal glue made from egg whites, fish skin or animal hides. Its scent was enhanced with cloves or sandalwood or other natural products. Other types of inkcakes were made of burnt material, plant dyes or minerals. The mixture was kneaded and pressed into a carved mold to dry. The inkcake had to be ground on an inkstone with some water. The ink could be mixed to be thick or thin. An ink brush was dipped into the ink and then used to write or draw on paper. Early examples date back to the 12th century B.C. New ones are in stores now.

The auction’s inkcake dated from the mid 1700s. The colored raised decoration on one side pictured a landscape with a temple, table, sculpture and candle. The other side was decorated with a colored dragon in the sea, a mark and an inscription. The inkcake was stored in a carved wooden box that was 4 7/8 inches high, 3 1/8 inches wide and 7/8 inch deep.

Inkcakes, as well as inkstones, inkbrushes and paper, are highly regarded as symbols of culture.

Q: I have an unusual chest that I would like to sell. It has many small drawers. On the inside of one it reads, “The Practical Glove Holder, Patented October 7, 1897, A.N. Russell & Sons, Canadian Patent August 7, 1897.”

A: A.N. Russell & Sons was founded in Ilion, N.Y., in about 1883 by Albert N. Russell. The company made cabinets for gloves, ribbons and thread, as well as umbrella holders. The ribbon and glove cabinets were its most popular items. It later made bronze- and aluminum-framed museum cases until the business closed down in 1932. In 2007 an A.N. Russell & Sons ribbon cabinet in very good condition sold for $1,300 at auction.

Q: I have a cookie jar that looks just like the Shawnee Smiley pig cookie jars, but it’s not marked “Shawnee” or “Smiley.” The only mark on the bottom is “USA.” It has red flowers and a red kerchief. Is it real or a reproduction?

A: Shawnee Pottery Co. of Zanesville, Ohio, began making these cookie jars in 1942. At first they were called “Smiling Pig.” There were many versions. The earliest ones were cold-painted or plain and had a triangular rim. Later jars had round openings and were hand-painted or decorated with decals. Decorations included apples, clover, flowers, plums, shamrocks or strawberries and different-colored kerchiefs. Some were marked “Pat. Smiley USA” or “Shawnee Smiley 60,” but many are just marked “USA.” When the company went out of business in 1961, the molds were sold to Terrace Ceramics, which made the cookie jars in plain white without decorations. There are also many fake Smiley Pig cookie jars on the market. Price of a genuine Smiley pig jar is determined by condition and decoration and ranges from $140 to $250.

Q: I inherited my grandfather’s collection of more than 600 cigar bands. They are in an old scrapbook. Only a small corner of each band is glued onto the page. There are pages that have cigar bands picturing every president from George Washington to Teddy Roosevelt. Are they of any value?

A: Collecting cigar bands was a popular hobby in the early 1900s. Cigar manufacturers used the bands to keep cigars from unrolling and to identify and advertise their brands. Some bands made in the early 1900s were printed with real gold gilt. Single bands as well as sets of bands like your U.S. presidents were made. Collectors used to look for sets that interested them or for particularly beautiful designs. As with most paper collectibles, pasting or gluing them into an album or book lowers their value – unless they can be safely removed without damaging the paper. There are few cigar-band collectors today, but there are many collectors of cigar memorabilia. Look for dealers or auctions that sell cigar-box labels, cigar cutters and other tobacciana.

Q: I have an old advertising sign that reads, “Blue Buckle Work Garments, Strong for Work, Overalls, Pants, Shirts.” It is 13 inches long and 4 1/2 inches tall with blue letters and a blue border on a white background. It is metal with enamel paint. In the corner is written, “Balto. Enamel & Nov. Co., Balto. & 200 Fifth Ave., N.Y.” Is it of any value?

A: Blue Buckle Overalls were made by Jobbers OverAll Co., a firm founded in Blackstone, Va., before 1910. It later moved to Lynchburg, Va. In 1920 the company claimed to be the world’s largest overall manufacturer, but it went bankrupt in 1921 and was taken over by Old Dominion Garment Co. of Dallas. Old Dominion continued to make Blue Buckle work garments. The manufacturer of your sign, Baltimore Enamel & Novelty Co., was founded in 1898 as the Baltimore Enamel Co. It made signs and, in 1903, manufactured America’s first official license plates – for Massachusetts. Before then, car owners made their own license plates. The Blue Buckle sign is worth about $50.

Tip: Light can damage many types of antiques. Furniture finishes will fade; textiles and paper can fade or darken. Light will also weaken wood and fabric.

Need prices for collectibles? Find them at Kovels.com, our website for collectors. More than 84,000 prices and 5,000 color pictures have just been added. Now you can find more than 856,000 prices that can help you determine the value of your collectible. Access to the prices is free at Kovels.com/priceguide.

CURRENT PRICES

Current prices are recorded from antiques shows, flea markets, sales and auctions throughout the United States. Prices vary in different locations because of local economic conditions.

  • Hoody Doody slide puzzle, 15 tiles, black line drawings of Howdy Doody, Mr. Bluster, Clarabelle and Dilly Daily, plastic, white ground, 1950s, 2 1/2 inch square, $45.
  • Anchor Hocking Vitrock range set, milk glass with red tulips, c. 1945, grease jar 6 1/4 inches, shakers 4 inches, three pieces, $60.
  • Pat Boone paper dolls, two dolls, one in tennis clothes with racket, other in dress pants and shirt, Pat Boone copyright, 1959, $70.
  • Uneeda Dollikin advertising doll, vinyl head, straight dark brown hair, fully jointed, nail polish on fingers and toes, orange strapless jumpsuit, navy flats, 1950s, 19 inches, $95.
  • Rumrill Pottery vase, made by Red Wing, Indian Group line, bulbous, star-pattern rim, orange and bay matte glaze, marked, c. 1935, 5 1/2 x 5 1/4 inches, $150.
  • Cast-iron embossing seal, lion’s head, painted black with gold trim, “Buffalo Live Stock Exchange Inc., Apr. 1, 1887,” 11 1/4 inches, $230.
  • Applique quilt, tulip pattern, red, green, blue and white, leaf and vine border, white muslin backing, 1800s, 84 x 78 inches, $550.
  • Eames-style lounge chair and ottoman, black leather, laminated rosewood base, Selig Mfg. Co., 40 x 34 inches, chair, 21 x 17 inch ottoman, $650.
  • “Buy OshKosh B’Gosh Overalls” sign, heavy cardboard, Uncle Sam with left fist up, right hand pointing, red, white and blue shirt and hat, gold ground, red lettering, 1918 patent date, 13 7/8 x 29 7/8 inches, $800.
  • Columbia Nickel Savings Bank, Lady Liberty on front, eagle and shield on sides, push lever, registers dollars and cents, red, white and blue stripes, c. 1910, 4 x 4 x 4 inches, $1,620.

Available now. The best book to own if you want to buy or sell or collect – and if you order now, you’ll receive a copy with the author’s autograph. The new Kovels’ Antiques & Collectibles Price Guide, 2013, 45th edition, is your most accurate source for current prices. This large-size paperback has more than 2,500 color photographs and 40,000 up-to-date prices for more than 775 categories of antiques and collectibles. You’ll also find hundreds of factory histories and marks, a report on the record prices of the year, plus helpful sidebars and tips about buying, selling, collecting and preserving your treasures. Available online at Kovelsonlinestore.com; by phone at 800-303-1996; at your bookstore; or send $27.95 plus $4.95 postage to Price Book, P.O. Box 22900, Beachwood, OH 44122.

© 2012 by Cowles Syndicate Inc.


ADDITIONAL IMAGE OF NOTE


It took a $1,195 bid to buy this colored inkcake at Neal Auction in New Orleans in April 2012. It dates from the 1700s and was probably never used for its intended purpose of making ink.

It took a $1,195 bid to buy this colored inkcake at Neal Auction in New Orleans in April 2012. It dates from the 1700s and was probably never used for its intended purpose of making ink.