Ethan Miller: champion for Canada’s art and antiques

Ethan Miller poses with the 7¼-in gauge steam locomotive model that brought $15,340 plus the buyer’s premium at Miller & Miller's September 2021 auction. Image courtesy of Miller & Miller and LiveAuctioneers. Price converted to US dollars.

Ethan Miller poses with the 7¼-in gauge steam locomotive model that brought CA$13,000 plus the buyer’s premium at Miller & Miller’s September 2021 auction. Image courtesy of Miller & Miller and LiveAuctioneers.

NEW HAMBURG, Canada – Ethan Miller, co-owner of Miller & Miller Auctions Ltd. in New Hamburg, Canada, credits his late father, Jim, a longtime antiques dealer, for giving him a front-seat view to the antiques world and the details of collecting and selling. Ethan and his brother Justin began selling on eBay back in 2006 and, 10 years later, transitioned to an auction house model. Today, the firm is known for high-value goods and collections, particularly those significant to Canada’s cultural heritage.

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Spice up your fall wardrobe with vintage fashion

This Chanel vintage caviar gold logo leather handbag is the perfect color for accessorizing fall fashions. It sold for $1,200 plus buyer’s premium at Eros Auctions Inc. Image courtesy of Eros Auctions Inc., and LiveAuctioneers

NEW YORK — Well-designed, well-constructed vintage clothing never goes out of style. If anything, it can set you apart as someone who is fashion forward. If you’re wearing a Mondrian-inspired 1960s mini dress or a vibrant 1980s Pucci shift to a party or dinner at a local bistro, you won’t see anyone else dressed the same way. If that were not enough to plead the case for vintage, recycled garments and accessories are eco-friendly and sustainable, unlike “fast fashion” from chain stores.

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Celebrating the rise of Hispanic contemporary artists

Enrique Chagoya’s ‘Homage to the Un-Square’ sold for $2,800 plus the buyer’s premium in May 2021 at Rago Arts and Auction Center. Image courtesy of Rago Arts and Auction Center and LiveAuctioneers

NEW YORK— The Latin-American and Hispanic art traditions are rich, incorporating some styles from Europe and the United States but largely calling upon the influences of their own cultures. Artists living in, or with a heritage linked to Cuba, Mexico, Spain, the Caribbean, Central or South America have made huge contributions to the art world. There are quite a few whose works are avidly collected by museums and bring five and six-figure sums at auction.

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A miniature Sefer Torah created in Poland in the early 19th century made $9,000 plus the buyer’s premium in September 2017. Image courtesy of Kedem Auctions and LiveAuctioneers.

Miniature torahs: Tiny miracles, inspired by faith

A miniature Sefer Torah created in Poland in the early 19th century made $9,000 plus the buyer’s premium in September 2017. Image courtesy of Kedem Auctions and LiveAuctioneers.

NEW YORK — Bigger is not always better when it comes to antiques. Elegant smalls can bring big prices, and this is certainly true when it comes to miniature Torahs.

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Robert Davidson’s (Haida), S’gan mask (Killer Whale mask), carved and painted red cedar, cedar bark, feathers and operculum shells, attained $54,458 plus the buyer’s premium in July 2021. Image courtesy of First Arts Premiers Inc. and LiveAuctioneers.

Indigenous Northwest Coast art speaks to collectors everywhere

Robert Davidson’s (Haida), S’gan mask (Killer Whale mask), carved and painted red cedar, cedar bark, feathers and operculum shells, attained $54,458 plus the buyer’s premium in July 2021. Image courtesy of First Arts Premiers Inc. and LiveAuctioneers.

Robert Davidson’s S’gan mask (Killer Whale mask), fashioned from carved and painted red cedar, cedar bark, feathers and operculum shells, attained $54,458 plus the buyer’s premium in July 2021. Image courtesy of First Arts Premiers Inc. and LiveAuctioneers.

NEW YORK — The arts and objects made by native and indigenous peoples in North America have long been of interest, not just in region where they were made but by collectors and admirers everywhere. This is no less true for the works of the Native American communities of the Northwest Coast of the continent.

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The upright piano: the original home entertainment center

A circa-1800 satinwood and mahogany upright square piano by Irish artisan William Southwell achieved £16,000 (about $18,200) plus the buyer’s premium in May 2016. Image courtesy of Dreweatts Donnington Priory and LiveAuctioneers

A circa-1800 satinwood and mahogany upright square piano by Irish artisan William Southwell achieved £16,000 (about $18,200) plus the buyer’s premium in May 2016. Image courtesy of Dreweatts Donnington Priory and LiveAuctioneers

NEW YORK – The upright piano was the original home entertainment center. Before the rise of the television, the hi-fi stereo and the radio, family and friends gathered around a piano to while the evening away. The upright, or vertical design, which arrived in the early 1800s, effectively democratized the piano; it was more compact and less expensive than a grand piano, the case for which concealed a horizontally-oriented arrangement of strings that demanded far more floor space than most middle-class people could provide in their homes.

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Howard Finster was renowned for his wood cutouts, such as this 1989 example titled ‘The Angel Of The Lord,’ which earned $26,000 plus the buyer’s premium in April 2021. Image courtesy of Slotin Folk Art and LiveAuctioneers.

Howard Finster: a preacher whose other calling was folk art

Howard Finster was renowned for his wood cutouts, such as this 1989 example titled ‘The Angel Of The Lord,’ which earned $26,000 plus the buyer’s premium in April 2021. Image courtesy of Slotin Folk Art and LiveAuctioneers.

Howard Finster was renowned for his wood cutouts, such as this 1989 example titled ‘The Angel Of The Lord,’ which earned $26,000 plus the buyer’s premium in April 2021. Image courtesy of Slotin Folk Art and LiveAuctioneers.

NEW YORK — Howard Finster (1916-2001) is known to most as an important self-taught artist, but he likely would have said his most important job, out of the many different trades he pursued, was as a Baptist preacher in the South. His twin callings of art and faith became forever intermingled.

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This circa-1935 Dinky pre-war No.28/2 trade box (A1009), including six delivery vans, achieved $11,505 plus the buyer’s premium in August 2019. Image courtesy of M&M Auctions and LiveAuctioneers.

The small world of Britain’s now-classic Dinky Toys

This circa-1935 Dinky pre-war No.28/2 trade box (A1009), including six delivery vans, achieved $11,505 plus the buyer’s premium in August 2019. Image courtesy of M&M Auctions and LiveAuctioneers.

This circa-1935 Dinky pre-war No. 28/2 trade box (A1009), featuring six delivery vans, achieved $11,505 plus the buyer’s premium in August 2019. Image courtesy of M&M Auctions and LiveAuctioneers.

NEW YORK — Dinky Toys are a beloved collectible that were first produced in 1933 by Frank Hornby of Hornby Railways, a British maker of model electric trains. These die-cast zinc cars and vehicles were first known as Hornby Modelled Miniatures and were designed as accessories to the company’s O gauge train line.

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A Nippon porcelain covered urn, 38in tall, achieved $42,000 plus the buyer’s premium in September 2020 against an estimate of $400-$600. Image courtesy of Susanin’s Auctions and LiveAuctioneers.

Nippon label is alluring to Japanese porcelain buffs

A Nippon porcelain covered urn, 38in tall, achieved $42,000 plus the buyer’s premium in September 2020 against an estimate of $400-$600. Image courtesy of Susanin’s Auctions and LiveAuctioneers.

A Nippon porcelain covered urn, 38in tall, achieved $42,000 plus the buyer’s premium in September 2020. Image courtesy of Susanin’s Auctions and LiveAuctioneers.

NEW YORK — Vintage porcelain has always been collectible. Some pieces can cost as much as a house, while others have more reasonable prices. Japanese culture has a rich porcelain-making tradition, driven in part by an abundance of good clay. Porcelain has been made throughout the country for centuries, and archeologists have documented at least six kilns designed for firing ceramics that date back to ancient times.

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Birger Sandzen landscapes: not a bad one in the bunch

‘Twilight,’ a 1927 oil-on-board Colorado landscape by Birger Sandzen, achieved $81,000 plus the buyer’s premium in August 2017. Image courtesy of Case Antiques, Inc. Auctions & Appraisals and LiveAuctioneers


‘Twilight,’ a 1927 Colorado landscape by Birger Sandzen, achieved $81,000 plus the buyer’s premium in August 2017. Image courtesy of Case Antiques, Inc. Auctions & Appraisals and LiveAuctioneers

NEW YORK – When you see your first Birger Sandzen painting, your brain performs an obvious, unmistakable swivel. First, you think, “That looks like a Van Gogh,” followed by the quick realization, “Van Gogh never left Europe.” Your brain is right. Vincent Van Gogh never left Europe. Birger Sandzen did, however, and he unleashed his considerable talents on the landscapes of middle America, finding color and vivacity in the plains of Kansas and the mountains of Colorado.

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