By: Jenna Curry
The organizers of this year’s Winter Antiques Show have expanded their definition of the word “antiques.” The 75 exhibitors at the show, which runs Jan. 22–31 at the Park Avenue Armory in New York, will not only bring an array of exceptional Americana but also Ancient Greek, Egyptian, Roman, pre-Columbian and Chinese antiques. “We’ve added some mid-20th-century material as well,” says show director Catherine Sweeney Singer, relaxing the traditional stricture that an “antique” object should be at least 100 years old.
Hans P. Kraus Jr. Fine Photographs’ booth will be designed as a replica of the Aureole room in Lacock Abbey, the home of William Henry Fox Talbot, coinventor of photography. “We’re re-creating the Aureole window—the subject of his first photograph—and part of the interior, as well,” says Hans Kraus, who will display actual objects from the Lacock Abbey home, on loan from Fox Talbot’s family. Kraus is bringing at least two-dozen Fox Talbot images, both negatives and soft prints, ranging in price from $10,000 to the mid-six figures.
Mary Cassatt’s Little Girl in a Large Red Hat (circa 1902–05), offered by Adelson Galleries of New York, is an example of the artist altering her usual repertoire to include portraits of a young girl seated alone or with a dog. Cassatt’s subjects sometimes came from servant families but nevertheless convey a sense of dignity and strength.
Safani Gallery of New York will offer an Egyptian sarcophagus belonging to a female singer at the Temple of Amun in Thebes. The mummy case, which was collected in the 1920s, was covered in a tar-like material for years. With new technology, in 2007, Safani had the black substance removed to reveal intricate painted images illustrating sacred texts from the Book of the Dead.
Ralph M. Chait Galleries of New York will offer a collection of Chinese art, including export porcelain, as well as bronzes from the first millennium B.C. One rare example of Chinese porcelain is a circa 1820 bowl depicting Thomas Jefferson’s Virginia home, Monticello. “The bowl was probably part of a group of pieces made for a family member or admirer of Jefferson,” says Steven Chait, who is offering the bowl for an undisclosed sum. Most of the works in the Ralph M. Chait Galleries booth are priced at $5,000 and up.
Six dealers are new to the exhibitors list of the 56th annual show: Liz O’Brien, Lost City Arts and Maison Gerard of New York; Nicholas Grindley Works of Art and Peter Petrou Works of Art, both of London; and C.L. Prickett of Yardley, Pa., who is returning to the show after a hiatus of about 15 years.