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Seeing Double 

As the summer holidays draw to a close, and the evenings are sadly drawing in too, we are preparing for the autumn shows and refreshing our website.  We have booked into a house sale in the Midlands, started planning the next catalogue and photographed lots of new stock.  

As we worked, I noticed how many items were in pairs like the Minton’s Majolica jardinieres (top) - and not necessarily things one would expect to need two of.  For example, this pair of large and very fine brass fenders.  Few rooms nowadays have two large fireplaces in need of matching fire furniture but, Charlie assures me, if someone does want a pair, they are extremely hard to find. 

Pairs of bookcases are less rare and often balance a room scheme or fit into the alcoves on either side of a chimney breast.  Being tall and slender, this satinwood pair, attributed to Hicks of Dublin, with glazed bookcases above marquetry decorated cupboards, would easily fit the bill.

Alternatively, this pair of side cabinets by Gillows of Lancaster would also fit or flank a window.  In the early 19th century pairs of cabinets were frequently placed on either side of an entrance hall.  Symmetry was everything. 

This pair of walnut wing armchairs in the George II style would suit any snug or study as they are very comfortable for reading and the prefect height for use either side of a partners’ desk.  

The Victorians preferred their chairs in drawing rooms and bedrooms to be more formal and upright (and not for lounging in!)  This pair of ‘Black Forest’ armchairs come from the Swiss Alps.  The back and legs are carved to imitate gnarled vines bearing bunches of grapes. 

Lastly, in this newsletter, we have a pair of attractive giltwood Victorian mirrors in the Chippendale style.  On the website, there are many other examples of items in pairs:  globes, sofas, side tables, bedside tables, lamps, cannon, paintings and sculptures.  

The Maritime Art of Montague Dawson

In the world of maritime art and antiques there are certain “blue chip” names that every collector and dealer looks for and one of those is that of Montague Dawson. Born in 1890 and the grandson of another marine painter-Henry Dawson-Montague was also influenced by his father's keen interest in yachting and his choice of career was never really in doubt. By 1924 he had been recruited as the official on-board artist for the voyage of the steam yacht St George to the South Seas and he later served in the Dazzle Painting Section based at Leith during World War II. Due to his being present at the surrender of the German High Seas Fleet at the end of the war, he was able to capture many memorable images of that momentous event, some of which were used as illustrations in The Sphere........

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