Friday, October 31, 2008

Beyond Limits

Chatsworth House, Derbyshire UK

Above: Marc Quinn, Planet, painted bronze and steel and size 398 by 353 by 926cm

Above: Eric Goulder, Bella Figura, bronze and height 232cm

Above: Richard Hudson, Love Me, polished bronze and height 200cm

Above: Lynn Chadwick, Sitting Couple, bronze and height 255cm

Above: Claude Lalanne, Pomme de New York, bronze and height 248cm

Above: Robert Indiana, The American Love (White Blue Red), polychrome aluminium and size 366 by 366 by 188cm

Above: Salvador Dali, Femme en Flamme, bronze and height 360cm

When looking around Chatsworth House it is evident that the current 12th Duke Peregrine Cavendish and Dutchess Amanda Cavendish are keen collectors of modern art. It is therefore no surprise that Sotheby's chose to house the Beyond Limits exhibition in the grounds of Chatsworth. Beyond Limits is a selling exhibition of monumental modern and contemporary sculpture. It is now in it's third year, following the success of last year where almost all of the 22 pieces found a buyer, and attracted more than 30,000 extra visitors to the garden at Chatsworth.

Director Alexander Platon who has organised the last two exhibitions said, “In the past couple of years, we’ve seen sculpture emerge as one of the fastest growing sectors of the international art scene. It’s a fantastically exciting development, and one that has been particularly evident at the recent Beyond Limits exhibitions we’ve held at Chatsworth: last year’s show attracted buyers from around the world, while at the same time drawing in droves of visitors from across the UK. What to my mind makes the event here so compelling is not only the exciting nature of the pieces we’re able to bring together, but also – and very importantly – the drama of the setting: the gardens here provide the most magnificent backdrop imaginable and that, combined with the hugely powerful juxtaposition of history and modernity, makes for an all-consuming experience.”

This year, Chilean artist Fernando Casasempere has created a work (Fusion) directly inspired by a visit to Chatsworth, while Yorkshire-born Richard Hudson has created a bronze (Love Me) especially for the occasion. Their work will be shown alongside that of other leading contemporary sculptors, such as Jaume Plensa, Fernando Botero, Ron Arad, Kiki Smith, Bernar Venet, Jedd Novatt, Arnaldo Pomodoro, Claude Lalanne, Beverly Pepper, François Xavier Lalanne, Robert Indiana, Manolo Valdes, Kan Yasuda and Eric Goulder. Marc Quinn, Zaha Hadid and Zadok Ben David will also once again be represented. While contemporary sculptors dominate, their work will be complemented by that of artists whose work defines the “modern” era of the early 20th-century artists like Salvador Dalí, Aristide Maillol and Lynn Chadwick.

Perhaps the most dominant pieces is Mark Quinns 'Planet', a ten meter seven ton bronze and steel sculpture of a baby, painted brilliant white and sat playfully in front of Chatsworth house. Mark Quinns sculpture is a literal and symbolic sign of how large the scale of the contemporary art market has become. Quins other works include, a sculpture of Alison Lapper (a disabled pregnant friend of Quinn) on the fourth plinth at Trafalgar square in 2005 and a gold statue of Kate Moss in a yoga position.

Sotheby's Beyond Limits

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Banksy and Pest Control

Lyon & Tunbull, Contemporary art sale London

The question of authenticity remains high on the agenda in the Banksy market after a last minute intervention by the self-styled guerrilla artist had a devastating effect on Lyon & Turnbull's latest attempt to break into the London contemporary art market. in a statement released by his publicist the day before L&T's sale of modern and contemporary art and design in Marleybone on September 27th, Banksy refused to authenticate five street works at the sale estimated at over £200,000. These works had been removed form their original settings and had been approved by Vermin, the recently established authentication service made up of a 'board of experts' set up as an alternative to the Banksy approved verification panel, Pest Control.

Banksy's statement read "For the sake of keeping all street art where it belongs, I'd encourage people not to buy anything by anybody unless it was created for sale in the first place."

A further statement posted on the Pest Control website stated: "All works authenticated by Pest Control have been done so in conjunction with the artist. Banksy does not provide this service through any other third parties and we would caution collectors against relying on such bodies."

The reasons behind Banksy's protective stance are thought to be threefold. Firstly, public acknowledgement of original street works may open the artist up to potential prosecution for vandalism. Then there is the issue of fakes, Pest Control say that they have identified 89 street pieces and 137 screen prints falsely attributed to the artist so far this year. Thirdly, Pest Control, which is also closely associated with Banksy's primary dealer lazarides, wish to maintain their position as the sole authentication body and thereby control the supply of approved works on the market.

Banksy and Pest Control

Lyon & Turnbull

Want to know more about porcelain?

Auction Atrium, Kensington Showroom

Auction Atrium are to hold a two-part evening course on English and Continental Porcelain. Aimed at those who want to know more about the start of porcelain manufacture in Europe, the course will be run at their Kensington showroom by former Christie's South Kensington specialist Mark Longley, who is a now valuer at Auction Atrium.

The course will offer a broad introduction to the subject of English and European porcelain, focussing on the major factories and the products they made.

Session One of An Introduction to Continental Porcelian runs from 7-9pm on Tuesday, November 18. Session Two is the same time a week later. Course fees are £5 per session, with proceeds going to hosting the Age Concern Annual Tea Dance.
Further details on 0207 792 9020

The most expensive piece of recycled art?

Healer, by Ghanaian sculpture El Anatsui

Above Healer by the Ghanaian sculpture El Anatsui, which is made of thousands of gin and whiskey bottle tops, brought some relief in a difficult financial climate when it sold above estimate for £290,000 at Sotheby's contemporary art sale on October 17th.

When local distilleries in Nigeria recycle each other's bottles, the screw caps associated with each brand are discarded in the process. By collecting these materials, and laboriously sewing them together with copper wire, Anatsui’s transformative process aims to "subvert the stereotype of metal as a stiff, rigid medium and rather showing it as a soft, pliable, almost sensuous material capable of attaining immense dimensions and being adapted to specific spaces" (Anatsui 2005).

Throughout a distinguished forty-year career as a sculptor and professor, Anatsui has addressed a vast range of social, political and historical concerns, and embraced an equally diverse vocabulary of media and process. Using anything from chainsaws and welding torches to this intricate and meditative 'sewing' process, he has shaped materials ranging from cassava graters and railway sleepers to driftwood, iron nails and obituary notice printing plates.

October Gallery

Autumn exhibition

Pimlico, London UK
November 5th - 15th 2008

Three BADA members with adjoining galleries on Pimlico Road are jointly holding autumn exhibitions. Side by Side is what they call their new venture and, from November 5 to 15, they offer three very different shows. Specialist Nicholas Gifford-Mead presents 'The Grate Exhibition', a celebration of the artistry that went into fire grates and other fire furniture of the 18th and 19th centuries.

Next door, Julian Simon Fine Art puts on 'A Private Eye', a show of naive and primitive paintings from the mid-20th century.

Anthony Outred's exhibition 'Knock Knock' displays antique brass door furniture and it demonstrates the variety, rich colour and fine chasing such metalwork can bring to architectural decoration.

Nicholas Gifford-Mead

Julian Simon Fine Art

Anthony Outred

Ebay ban ivory

Ebay, USA

EBAY are to ban the sale of ivory products on its USA site from January, after banning cross-border sales of ivory products last year.

A spokesperson for the online auctioneer said, "We simply can not ensure that ivory listed for sale on eBay is in compliance with the complex regulations that govern its sale".

Contempoary art hit by credit crunch

The once flying market for contemporary art lost some of its height last week as it felt the force of the economic crisis. Frieze, conducted from a tent in Regents Park from October 15-18 was badly hit as the £66.25 million combined auction total came in under half the estimated value.

Sotheby's, Christie's and Phillips de Pury had all asked consigners to lower their reserve levels before the sales after receiving indications that demand would falter following the worst crisis in banking and the financial sector since the Great Depression.

Phillips de Pury's evening sale on October 18 was the worst affected. The £4.16 million total was under a quarter of presale expectations and the selling rate was 54 per cent.

Christie's contemporary art evening sale the day after totalled £28 million hammer, well bellow the pre-sale low estimate £57 million, with the selling rate at 55 per cent.

Sotheby's evening sale on October 17 made £18.8 million hammer against a £30.1 million pre-sale low estimate. they managed to sell 73 per cent of the 62 lots. The majority went for under their low estimates, including the top lot, an Andy Warhol Skull, which was guaranteed and estimated at £5-7 million, it sold to a New York dealer for £3.85 million.

Paint diverted from landfill

RESEARCH conducted by environmental consultancy Resource Futures has shown that the UK paint reuse network diverted 450,000 litres of paint from landfill in 2007.

The 65 Community RePaint projects that form the network collected the equivalent of £1.75 million worth of paint. The findings revealed that 50% of the paint was leftover half-tins donated by the public at council waste sites. The other 50% was end-of-range and discontinued lines, dented tins, donated by DIY retailers and manufacturers and decorators. the paint was then offered for use by local charities, community groups and individuals in social need to brighten up their living and working environments.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Dream team buys Antiques Trade Gazette

London UK - METROPRESS, the publishers of Antiques Trade Gazette and owned by the Daily Mail (DMG), has been taken over by a management buyout team of Anne Somers (managing director), Mark Bridge (editor-in-chief), Simon Berti (sales director), Pablo Luppino (finance director), and an additional director with an IT bias, Bob Fairchild from geo online info group Landmark, a former Matrix client itself now owned by DMG.

Word on the street is that profitability of the ATG is down, with costs rising and auction ads sales falling, which is why DMG moved to divest itself of ATG, as well as some of its US niche antique publications. ATG has turned from passive auction advertising and news, to providing printed auction catalogues and now software for auction houses live auctions with More recently ATG has set up another division providing software for general auction sales with

The buyout was supported by HSBC and Matrix venture capitalists. ATG's turnover is £6m with staff of 53. Matrix normally buys businesses worth between £5m and £20m and has taken less than half the equity of the new venture. DMG employs 16,000 with £2bn worldwide turnover from newspapers, magazines, TV, radio and trade shows, including Newark antiques fair, Ardingly, Shepton Mallett etc. The DMG ATG deal does not include the antique fairs, which over the years have also been rumoured to be losing money.

DMG gave as a reason for the sale that 'ATG is no longer strategically aligned with our long term objectives'.


3rd October 2008: Matrix Private Equity Partners (MPEP), the small buyout specialist, has invested into the MBO of Metropress Limited (‘Metropress’). Metropress publishes the Antiques Trade Gazette (‘The Gazette’), the leading weekly newspaper that provides the latest in market information, news and analysis to art and antiques trade professionals and collectors in the UK. Acknowledged as the ‘Bible’ of the fine art and antiques industry, The Gazette is a newspaper for serious buyers and sellers. MPEP has taken a significant minority stake in the business.
Based in London and Chelmsford, Metropress was established by a journalist in 1971, in order to launch The Gazette. The first publication to serve the antiques trade, it provides an accurate, balanced and impartial view of the art and antiques business and over this time, has built up a degree of prestige and trust unrivalled by other publications. As the first choice publication for auction industry advertising, The Gazette also publishes advertising for fairs, galleries, packers, shippers, insurers, career opportunities and a host of other services.
In 1994, Metropress was acquired by Daily Mail and General Trust PLC (‘DMGT’), and since then has largely been left to its management to run as a stand alone business, with DMGT supplying some central services. In 2000, Metropress leveraged its existing auction house relationships by offering to manage their catalogue printing requirement. This has now been extended to offer an on-line option. In 2006, management launched the idea of Live Auctions, in order to address the potential offered by the internet. The business currently employs 53 people and its annual revenue is in excess of £6 million.
The strong management team that has been responsible for implementing the transition of the business from a paper-based publisher to one with an on-line presence, will be further augmented by the introduction of one of MPEP’s Operating Partners, who has significant experience in the sector. MPEP has introduced Bob Fairchild as investing Non-Executive Chairman to the management. Fairchild is particularly suited to the deal, having previously been Managing Director of a successful joint MPEP and 3i investment, Landmark Information Group, which was sold to DMGT.
Anne Somers, Managing Director of Metropress said: “Matrix Private Equity Partners’ supportive backing combined with Bob Fairchild’s expertise and vision will really help to exploit the potential of the business. We very much welcome the investment by MPEP.”
Jonathan Gregory of Matrix Private Equity Partners said: “Whilst we recognise that advertising spend may in the short term be susceptible to the prevailing economic environment, the transaction is modestly geared and we have built in protection to ensure that the VCT’s receive their yield. This, strengthened by the involvement of Bob Fairchild as Non-Executive Chairman, and a management team that has delivered strong profit and cash generation for its current owner and Metropress, means that the business is well placed to deliver further growth.”
- Ends –
Matrix: Baker Tilly (London) – Stephen Mason and Kurt Tiedt, accounting due diligence
PBD Consulting (London) – Lisa Whelan, commercial due diligence
Marriott Harrison (London) – Duncan Innes, Jonathan Leigh-Hunt, Ben Devons, Hugh Gardner, Rebecca Briam and Chloe Hymas (legal)
Management: Vantis Corporate Finance (London) – Philip Marsden, Francesca Granelli and Mathew Lunn (corporate finance)
Lewis Silkin (London) – Philip Lamb and Nadim Khan (legal)
Bank: Pinsent Masons (Birmingham) – Victoria Baker (legal)
Matrix Private Equity Partners – Jonathan Gregory, Eric Tung
For further information, please contact:
Equity Dynamics
Corinna Vere Nicoll 07825 326 440
Jane Kirby 07825 326 441

Lapada and the BBC

Earlier this year Sarah Percy-Davis of Lapda wrote to Mark Thompson, Director-General of the BBC, expressing the concern of many Lapda members that programmes such as The Antiques Roadshow, Bargain Hunt and Cash in the Attic do not make members of the public aware of the various charges and costs of buying and selling at auction. She asked the Director-General to encourage the editors of these programmes to give a more balanced representation of the trade.

A few weeks later Sarah received a reply from mark Thompson which made it clear that the programme makers responsible for all three programmes, and also for Car Booty, another BBC programme, had been shown her letter. Inevitably, they all defended their positions.

With regards to Bargain Hunt the letter stated: "The programme intends to continue to remind their viewers, where appropriate, of the costs of buying and selling at auction." The makers of Antiques Roadshow said they believe that most of their valuations are dealer valuations, as opposed to auction prices, and Cash in the Attic claimed they regularly include the line: "remember if you're thinking of buying or selling at auction, there are various fees to be taken into account, such as commission."

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Pub demolition sparks woman's anger

Scarborough, UK

A SCARBOROUGH artist says items inside a former Scarborough pub, which is being demolished, should have been recycled and reused rather than destroyed. Eileen Heaton, 62, of Gildercliffe, has seen items including a fridge, washing machine, cooker, microwave, gaming machines, furniture and carpets, light fittings, beer pumps, till and even glasses being destroyed as part of the demolition of the Barrowcliff pub.

The site is being cleared to make way for a new care home for elderly people.

Mrs Heaton, who is a painter, said: “They’re literally smashing through and taking everything with it. It’s very upsetting to see and a lot of stuff could have been recycled. Many people I have spoken to as well as myself have felt that the contents could have been recycled, sold or donated.”

Joanne Williams, business development manager at Redworth Construction, said: “Just about everything in the building could not be re-used as there had been so much deliberate vandalism.

“However, everything that is taken away by the skip companies is recycled at the other end. They have Government targets to fulfill so they actually sort all the material and send it to various places to be recycled. If we were to sort it at this end it would be incredibly time-consuming.”

Scarborough Evening News

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Antique News relaunch

Antique News have re-launched after 10 successful years on line, promoting the British antiques trade around the world to establish contacts between private and trade buyers and sellers.

Antique News

The traditional defies the credit crunch

Summers Place Auctions ltd, Billingshurst West Sussex
Live Auction 21st October 2008

James Rylands of Summers Place Auctions said, "If we were to split the sale into three parts new sculpture, traditional and fossil, the traditional would have performed the best. There were a lot of happy vendors from the trade and a lot more that lined the tent such as Alex and Adrian Puddy, Johnathan Barton and Will Fisher to name a few. We were happy with the sale as our core business is antique statuary and this performed well. There seemed to be an element of clients wanting to invest in solid assets in such economical uncertainty.

Nine out of the ten top lots were sold to private's, and there were a number of international buyers which reflects the international nature of our business. It seems that the credit crunch is not effecting the top end so much and in general good things are still fetching good money. Although, there seems to be a lot less players and an air of caution from buyers.

The sealed bid auction takes place on Friday 24th October, for which we have received a number of bids, but we are approaching it with a note of caution as I predict it will be patchy and a bit selective. Overall we are happy with the concept of the sealed bid, but with times as they are it seems that the lower and middle market pieces are proving more difficult to sell."

Above: A Coalbrookdale Oak and Ivy pattern seat, circa 1870, the back stamped CBDale & Co. no 30and with registration and pattern stamps, the pierced seat with retailers plate stamped J Edmundson & Co. Dublin, 152cm.; 60ins wide
Estimated Price: £3000-5000, Price incl premiums: £6875

Above: A lead shepherd boy by John Cheere, mid 18th century on stone base 132cm.; 52ins high and on associated gritstone pedestal, 220cm.; 87ins high overall
Estimated Price: £20000-30000, Price incl premiums: £28100

Above: A rare wrought iron bridge, circa 1840, 477cm.; 188ins long by 154cm.; 60ins wide tread width 81cm.; 32ins
Estimated Price: £8000-12000, Price incl premiums: £21500

Above: Antonio Frilli, An impressive carved white marble of a naked girl asleep in a hammock. Italian, late 19th century, signed A Filli, Florence on later pink veined marble plinth 122cm.; 48ins high by 190cm.; 75ins long by 61cm.; 24ins deep
Estimated Price: £50000-80000, Price incl premiums: £120500

Summers Place Auctions Ltd

'Antique' Magazines


Now the nights are drawing in and the credit crunch has set in, what could be better than sitting by the fire and reading an old edition of SalvoNEWS. Salvo are offering five back copies of SalvoNEWS for £10, they will be any edition from the many years we have been producing SalvoNEWS.

To receive the 5 five copies send a cheque to Salvo LLP, 10 Barley Mow Passage, Chiswick, London, W4 4PH or telephone 020 8400 6222 to pay over the phone and we will send you out your five copies and wish you happy reading.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

NEC test

Antiques For Everyone, NEC Birmingham

Everyone is braced to see how Antiques For Everyone at the NEC Birmingham will fair in the current economic storm. From October 30th Birmingham's Exhibition Centre will house the last Antiques For Everyone in the current calender. Some 350 dealers have stands, although, some of the bigger names have pulled out and others have taken smaller spaces, but that is possibly just a sign of the times.

Since the worldwide banking crisis began fairs both in the UK and in the US have stood up a lot better than expected, thankfully so far there has not been any disasters.

Antiques For Everyone

Friday, October 17, 2008

SalvoNEWS 275

SalvoNEWS 275

A monthly magazine with lots of interesting stories about the trade, fairs, auctions, demolitions, things for sale and things wanted, it also keeps you up to date with the latest going's on at Salvo and how we can help you to make the most out of your business or help you to find the perfect object you've been looking for.

You can subscribe to the magazine for £50 a year which includes a free directory entry and listing on Google maps. Please send a message to Salvo if you require any further information.

Salvo Guide PDF

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

The end of The Mall

The Mall, Camden London

The campaign to save The Mall in Camden Passage appears to be facing defeat, with the landlords of the North London antiques centre having evicted all the remaining dealers.

The iconic Grade II listed building at the head of the famous antiques thoroughfare, which formerly housed over 30 dealers, now lies empty with the shutters down. Members of the trade, local residents and Islington Council have expressed their outrage at the closure of what has been an important focal point for the trade and the community.

Islington Council leader James Kempton said, "This is a very sad day and one we all hoped could be avoided, but the developers are more interested in making a fast buck."
The owners of the Mall, the retail property investment company London & Associated Properties (LAP), gave dealers until October 1st. It is thought that LAP are attempting to convert the two floors of the building into single units in order to sell the space to a multi-national chain.

A number of dealers have moved across London to Gray's antiques centre in Mayfair. Mike Weedon of Camden Passage Associates said, "For the landlords to do this at a time when shock markets are falling and in the midst of a slump in commercial property seems foolhardy."

The public enquiry will be held on December 9-10 at The Crescent Suite Highbury, 70 Ronalds Road, London N5 1XA. Anyone wishing to speak should give their name at the door on arrival before 10am on December 9.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Reuse it don't loose it, Newhaven East Sussex

The urge to re-use building materials is nothing new - the dissolution of the monasteries by Henry VIII provided every village with a ready-made supply of high-quality stone - but it assumes fresh urgency in a credit crunch.

The husband and wife team of Daniel and Charis Hill have set up Tiger Enterprise. The firm differs from most architectural salvage firms in that it rescues new building materials rather than period features. Therefore, reusing materials that would have been written off as waste and gone straight to landfill, they are also helping builders to save money and reduce their carbon footprint.

“People can check out what we have on the website and we do sell stuff on eBay,” Daniel Hill says. “But most people come to the yard. These could be a DIY dad who wants a few bricks to build a barbecue in the garden or a builder who wants a few thousand for a garage extension. We also have new sanitary-ware - toilets, baths, sinks, Butler sinks - gates, timber both new and recycled, as well as all sorts of roof tiles.”

Tiger is able to thrive because builders routinely buy more materials than they need. “It is far cheaper for the builder to over-order than to run out during a project,” explains Hill, who has a BSc in construction management from London South Bank University. “When I was working for my father in his development business I began to notice just how much stuff was being chucked away. It really was staggering. The building industry in the UK produces an estimated 90million tonnes of unwanted building materials, of which about a third ends up in landfill.

"In the South East, as much as 20 per cent of new building materials ends up not being used. Developers, of course, pay for this to be taken away. I thought that here was a very lucrative opportunity, to re-use this waste and in doing so reduce the carbon footprint. So far this year we have diverted more than 600 tonnes of re-usable, unwanted but new building materials from landfill and saved 320 tonnes of carbon dioxide.”

The Hills' first yard for storing the materials was half a back garden that they rented for £20 a week, but they soon moved to an industrial estate in Newhaven, East Sussex. The business is growing so rapidly that they are now in the process of moving to a much bigger site in Brighton. When this move is completed, all the materials in the yard will be bar-coded and the details logged on a computer for ease of identification and distribution. For small and medium building sites, the company limits its free take-away service to within a ten-mile radius of Brighton and Newhaven. But the Hills have been negotiating with bigger housebuilding companies such as Berkeley Homes and Kier Construction, which does contract work for East Sussex County Council. These businesses are very supportive of the ethos behind Tiger Enterprise and are proud to display the certificates that they are awarded by the company showing that they are recycling their waste - albeit new building material - in an environmentally friendly way.

Reuse it don't loose it

Times Online

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Signs of depression

Above: UK debt as a percentage of GDP 1900-2000 (TK's prediction for 2008 onwards is in red)

Above: USA debt as a percentage of GDP 1940-2080

FOUR people turned up to the annual bash at Shipston, the lowest turnout in its ten year history, which upset Lou and Jason who had planned on the normal fifteen to twenty being in attendance. As a result, I have agreed that next year Salvo will sell tickets for the meal and credit cards will be taken for room bookings, three of which were cancelled in the two days prior.

The meal was convivial, although repro outnumbered antique this year. As a result of the small number, the discussion was more erudite than usual, with issues such as the increasing price of Chinese cast ironware (it has doubled in the past two years), how to beat the recession (grow vegetables and keep chickens in your yards), tax inspections and who is going bankrupt (Conservation Building Products for one).

The last recession was in 1989-1993. In those days they happened every seven years and had been since records began. Gordon Brown's handing over of interest rate control to the Bank of England was deemed a clever idea because it did away with politically caused recessions. But the Bank of England's mandate was to control inflation. It was not to regulate house price inflation caused by borrowing. Anyone could see that this was bottling up the mother of all recessions, and it was only a matter of time before it would descend maelstrom-like on a mainly disbelieving populace.

This depression will probably last for a few years. The total global debt is huge and is mainly owed by the west to the east. The USA's $700bn bailout represents less than one per cent of their total debt including pensions of $70 trillion and rising (see chart). Current US debt is more than $500,000 per household. UK total indebtedness is £1.5 trillion including pensions and UK total GDP is £1.4 trillion. So the UK would have to work for nothing for a few years to get back on an even keel.

SalvoWEB has in the past been an indicator of economic activity, with many visitors coming to our site when they are thinking about projects at the planning stage. An upturn in visitor numbers presages an increase in sales over the coming months. Right now visitor traffic is at a low point (see link below).

Since the 1970s the salvage trade has always been able to make money during a recession. There have been several reasons for this.
1. Recessions reduce the number of competing businesses as some, usually those most recently established, give up in a kind of last in first out movement.
2. For businesses with a cash surplus there are usually stock bargains to be had. A recession is a good time to buy.
3. During a recession the annual stock valuation can involve a healthy write down as NRV drops. Make the most of that to claw some tax back.
4. When houses become hard to sell, and money is tight, homeowners think that since they are going to be stuck with their houses for a while they should get jobs done on their house. Using salvage is often favoured because reclaimed and antique materials are a better investment and will appreciate in value even if the rest of their house depreciates.
5. Recessions usually create volatile markets where big opportunities exist if you can spot them and are nimble enough to steal a march on the competition. Keep a close watch for shifts in your stock category sales and profitability - they may be a pointer to some real money to be made. Equally if you run out of stock this could be an indication that your prices are too low and that you can put them up.
6. The media is always looking for good news stories in a recession. Try you local TV radio and newspaper for a story about a customer who uses salvage for a project because they love the quality, know its good value, know it will increase the value of their house, and that even if they get stuck with it their house will be happier to live in now that antique or reclaimed materials have been installed, and that its so much greener and low carbon footprint and it employs more local people, and so on.
7. Now might be the time to think hard about advertising. You should spend ten per cent of your turnover on sales and marketing, including advertising. Don't forget that it is free to put stock on and what better thing to do in those quiet periods.

Let us know your trade stories and any more tips for weathering the recession.

SalvoWEB stats

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Architectural Salvage sale at Gaze

Gaze, Diss Norfolk

Gaze Auction Rooms will be holding a sale of architectural salvage on Saturday 11th October. The sale conducted by Carl Willows will include 760 lots, starting at 10am at Saleroom 1 & Sale Meadow.

COMMENTS Carl Willows on the Architectural Salvage sale
"It was a dreadful sale, I was very disappointed with the small number of attendees and those who did come stood around the side's talking about the current economic crisis. Interestingly out of the top seven lots all but one were stone paving and the other was an eighteenth century oak plank. Yorkstone seems to be fetching around £100 per square meter, which is similar to what oak flooring is commanding.

Although it certainly seemed that the economic storm had hit this sale we are optimistic for the future especially now the economic problems seem to be global, so we remain confident for future sales."

Above: Twenty seven square yards of York stone flags from a farmhouse kitchen floor in Morpeth, Northumberland, estimated at £2200 - £2500

Hammer Price £2500

Above: A Carron Hobgrate and a fire dog, estimated at £30 - £40

Hammer Price £15

Above: A Zinc bath, estimated at £75 - £115

Hammer Price £120

Above: A composition statue - naked lady bathing, estimated at £180-£270

Hammer Price £270



Frieze, Regents Park London
October 16 to 19

Frieze has spawned a whole host of satellite art shows around the capital, but one of the more distinctive Frieze Week events with an appeal outside soely contemporary art, is DesignArt London. Successfully launched last year, it will have a second airing in a marquee in Berkley Square, Mayfair, from October 15 to 19.

The fair is focused on 20th century design and contemporary decorative arts, expanding from 20 exhibitors in 2007 to 32 this year. Iconic and classical examples of mid-20th century design will be on sale as will some Deco.


Friday, October 03, 2008

Full time office administrator

Drew Pritchard Ltd, Glan Conwy Wales

Drew Pritchard Ltd, specialists in Stained Glass and Architectural Antiques currently seek a proactive office administrator. Preferably with experience in the antiques industry and appropriate computer literacy, communication and phone skills.

Further details on home page.

Drew Pritchard

Restoring a Regency Fireplace

Matt Davies of Premier Fires and Floors Restoration
Video by Colleen Gowlett

Matt Davies of Premier Fires and Floors Restoration removes a Regency fireplace from a period house in Islington. He and his team fully restore the fireplace which was in pieces when it was removed, fit a new hearth, craft matching bull's eyes which have been lost over the years and make the insert larger as it was falling out of the wall. The fireplace is then fitted back into the house fully restored.

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Give and Take Reuse event

Camden, Hungerford Primary School, Hungerford Road, London, N7 9LF (off York Way nearest tube, Caledonian Rd)

GREEN fingered residence can stem the credit crunch with the Camden Council's first ever household plant exchange. The even is the latest edition of the council's Give and Take Days, which has seen more than a tonne of items traded at the last event in the summer.

The next community swap shop event is on Saturday 11 October 11am - 3pm. Members of the public can bring any unwanted items such as books, toys, lightly used clothes, kitchenware or electrical appliances in the morning between 11am and 2pm. From 11pm to 3pm anyone can come along and take away any items they need. The council will be accepting furniture, although the residents must transport it to and from the event. All electrical goods will be safety tested on the day.

Camden Give and Take Reuse

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Antiques by Design

Above: Guy Chevenix-Trench (photo: Paul Raeside/BBC Homes & Antiques)

Guy Chevenix-Trench, Antiques by Design Essex
Article from Antiques Trade Gazette, 4th October 2008
by Joan Porter

When Guy Chevenix-Trench looks at a pile of rusting junk it is with a designer's inventive and eco-savvy eye. Sourced from fairs, auctions, reclamation yards, skips, scrapyards and on walks in the Essex countryside where he lives, every old farm implement, rusted mirror and crumbling bedstead will have its use.

Guy transforms these into lamps, tables and mirrors, which he sells through his company Antiques by Design and at fairs, including his first visit to this year's Salvo Fair, to which he will return in 2009. Guy's range of sport-themed lamps are a particular hit, kickstarted when he used vintage bowling balls as lamp bases for a hotel in Ireland.

"I could do cricket balls as well, and if I could do that I could do fishing rods and then cricket bats and then polo sticks," said Guy. "Standard lamps created from fishing rods with the old reels attached are now Antiques by Design best seller. Golf club lamps were very tricky, until, after about a year, I had the idea of putting the clubs in a bag."

A former North Sea diver, he set up welding operations in the oilfields, a skill which he uses today. From diving Guy became a windsurfer instructor and was made redundant in 2003 his love affair with antiques took over and he began selling chandeliers and furniture.

"I just couldn't make money at it; there were so many other people doing it. Three years ago I made a lamp from a busted but beautiful balustrade. I made up a few, took them to an interiors fair and that was it."

And Guy's favourite piece? His 18th century hand-held harrow fashioned into a chandelier.

Antiques by Design