D.C. Spring Antiques Show kicks off with steady sales

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Guests at the inaugural D.C. Spring Antiques Show, March 6-9, at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center were impressed at the size, quality and caliber of the show. With more than 250 international exhibitors and more than 200,000 items for purchase, guests and exhibitors alike hailed the event as ‘the best antiques show to come to Washington, D.C., in years.’

The D.C. Spring Antiques Show debuted with collections of fine art, sculpture, furniture, silver, textiles, bronze, jewelry, Americana, objets d’art, porcelain, ceramics, pottery, watches, clocks, Asian art and antiques, carpets, glass and more ranging in date from the antiquities to the 20th century. Many of the items were of museum or exhibition quality including an exact copperplate engraving printed copy on woven paper of the Declaration of Independence originally commissioned by Secretary of State John Quincy Adams in 1820; and a silver topped gold and diamond necklace with 50 karats, circa 1870.

Guests enjoyed the opportunity to speak with exhibitors about items firsthand and received sound advice on the benefits of investing in the antique, art and jewelry market. “The best investment a person can make, especially in today’s economy, is in hard, tangible assets like antiques, art and jewelry. In hard economic times, the antiques markets fair well and maintain their value when compared with traditional forms of investment,” explained Kris Charamonde, co-owner of the Palm Beach Show Group and the D.C. Spring Antiques Show. “The added benefit of investing in antiques is that you can enjoy your investment for its beauty while also watching it appreciate in value over time.”

Guests seemed to take this advice right to their pocketbooks, as sales remained constant throughout the show’s four-day run. Fine antique furniture exhibitor William Cook of the United Kingdom further commented, “The economy has made its mark on practically every industry including the antique market. However, where many businesses are failing, this (antique) market is remaining steady. People are still purchasing high-end, quality antiques, but their looking to obtain the absolute best quality to fit within their financial means.”

Fine art sale highlights included: a set of four natural stone fossil murals from the Eocene age (over 50 million years ago) with a combined value of $22,000; a set of commissioned Virginia landscapes by artist Wolf Kahn; six paintings including a very large oil on canvas work featuring three children from the 1850s, in original gesso frame as well as a marriage piece by Patrick J. McMoreland featuring two portrait miniatures of two brothers and their wives, circa 19th century.

Three American works were sold, including Winter Road by Henry Martin Gasser valued at $18,500; Twilight Landscape by Hal Robinson valued at $15,000; and Ships on the Thames by Frank Myers Boggs valued at $25,000.

Jewelry sale highlights included a gold, diamond and sapphire pin; a pair of 20-carat diamond hoop earrings; a wood bangle with embedded gems; a rare Victorian mother-of-pearl cameo; a carved emerald bracelet; a Cartier Ruby Art Deco bracelet, circa 19th century; and three retro chunky gold bangles.

Other sale highlights included a handmade silk hooked wall hanging titled Shadows by Greenfell Million, Newfoundland, circa 1930s, with a value of $4,800.

Japanese porcelain exhibitor Marvin Baer of New Milford, N.J., had a $10,000 first day with respectable sales that continued for the remainder of the week. Specific sales included a fine piece of Satsuma by Ryozan and a Satsuma vase by Seikozan.

In addition to the main show, many guests attended entertaining, educational lectures given by an all-star line-up of industry experts, many of who were published authors and authorities in their fields. “It has always been our goal to provide an environment that fosters the understanding and appreciation of antiques in addition to offering an enormous selection of high-quality items,” said Judy Oppel, lecture organizer. “The lecture series enhances the total show experience and was well-received by guests.” Popular lectures included “Tiffany Favrile Glass and the Quest of Beauty,” “Dining in Style with Georg Jensen Silver” and “A Journey of Artistic Splendor: 20th Century Jewelry Design.”

For more information regarding the inaugural D.C. Spring Antiques Show call 410-243-3790 or e-mail alarimore@profilespr.com. The second annual D.C. Spring Antiques Show will take place March 5-8, 2010, at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center.