Journal

20 June 2014

Masterpiece London 2014

These last two weeks have been very exciting and I write this having just loaded our collection for exhibition at Masterpiece London, 2014.

We will be at stand C11, which is currently having a bespoke hand painted wall canvas installed.

We have also created a new layout for the show this year and look forward to putting it all together over the weekend.

The shop will be open as usual during the run of Masterpiece 2014 and if any of you have not yet received your complimentary tickets, please contact the office and we will make the necessary arrangements for you.

For those of you who have not yet had the chance to visit Tate Britain to see the first national exhibition of British Folk Art, please note that it is conveniently situated just along the embankment from the South Grounds of The Royal Hospital Chelsea.

Masterpiece is the pre-eminent Art | Antiques | Design event in London and 2014 is its fifth incarnation. Housed, as always, in a remarkable purpose built temporary structure, there will be a wide range of exhibits from some of the world’s leading specialists. It is spacious, comfortable and inspiring. Each year there are exceptional works to see and enjoy, we are confident that this year will be no exception.

We look forward to seeing many of you there next week.

 

10 June 2014

We are in the countdown to our exhibition at Masterpiece London 2014, for the fifth consecutive year, where we will be showing some fine works of British Folk Art, to compliment and compare with works on display, further along the Embankment, at the Tate.

British Folk Art at Tate Britain is now open. I feel like pinching myself as I write the words.

The nature of the works which we have sought out, exhibited and valued for the best part of forty years are no longer quite so “fringe”, “niche” or “neglected”.

Tate Curator Martin Myrone and artist Jeff McMillan have together curated the show which they describe as a “proposition”.  They have selected works which they believe have artistic merit of one kind or another and that have previously been described or exhibited as “Folk Art”.

They have not been drawn into explanations or definitions, they have simply put together a visually compelling collection, in multifarious media, to propose the idea that they have qualities worth recognising and exploring.

After the Press and Preview day yesterday, notices and reviews have already been published in notable newspapers including The Guardian, The Times, The Daily Telegraph, The Express, The London Evening Standard and in specialist press including The Art Newspaper, ATG “London Summer Capital of Art” and House & Garden periodical. British Folk Art has finally “come out”.

I will re-visit, maybe later today and probably then again on other occasions. I already knew some of the works very well, but enjoyed seeing them there, in the joyfully coloured galleries of Tate Britain, as conceived and directed by Martin and Jeff.

Most importantly this small exhibition announces a formal recognition of British Folk Art and acknowledges that it has played a part in the history and development of British Art.

Please make time to visit the show. You may not respond positively to it all, but I believe it plays an important role in the development and understanding of the qualities inherent to genuine naive and primitive art and that it will make you smile. Try it!

06 June 2014

We have been planning and looking forward to June 2014 for a long time and now suddenly everything seems to be happening so quickly!

The fifth Masterpiece London, Art, Antiques and Design Show opens in twenty days time.

We are happy to say, with confidence, that we shall be exhibiting some “museum quality” works at Masterpiece 2014, as other similar and important works of British Folk Art are being shown in the Tate Exhibition, which will be open and runs concurrently with Masterpiece, just along the Embankment from the Royal Hospital Chelsea South Grounds.

We have exhibited at Masterpiece since its inception and recognise that the founders, had the courage and conviction to give the London summer season the premier Art, Antiques and Design show it deserved and had long been waiting for.

They had the foresight to secure a wonderful central London location and the creativity to develop a unique space and atmosphere in which to showcase great works from multifarious disciplines and periods, sourced and presented by some of the world’s leading specialists.

Like all well managed events, it has been tweaked and fine tuned each year, culminating in the most critically acclaimed and commercially successful year in 2013. With such positive momentum and an amazing rapidly established international reputation, we can only see it developing the brand, already associated with extraordinary works, shown in a convivial space, in a remarkable temporary building and are proud to continue our participation and association with it.

We will be sending out a series of Newsletters/Journals over the coming days, illustrating some of the pieces we will be exhibiting and other details in the build up towards the opening.

For those of you who may be interested in visiting Masterpiece 2014, who are not already on our mailing list, please contact us if you would like a complimentary invitation to visit or if you would like any further information or details about the event.

As we thought, June 2014 is set to be an exciting month.

05 June 2014

Our 2014 Folk Art Exhibition is over and almost all the sold pieces have left us for their new homes.

It has become an important and enjoyable couple of weeks for us, as we see many of you here enjoying the pieces and sharing your thoughts and responses.

Curiously we continue to see as many visitors at the exhibition as we used to, but the visits have become more evenly spread out over the exhibition period, since much of the buying is now done directly from the Catalogue and our Online Catalogue, rather than at the Preview.

Direct catalogue sales and online business have increased greatly over the years, from both British and overseas clients and it is always rewarding to hear from those of you who write or call to say how pleased you are when you receive the pieces in the flesh.

Now our attention turns immediately to the preview party and opening of the Tate Exhibition of British Folk Art next week.

Excitement is building and there has already been some excellent press coverage of the show including:

"Folk Revival" in the BBC Antiques Roadshow Magazine

"Folk art, does it include your nan's knitting?" in The Guardian

"Tate Britain rejects ‘elitist’ Old Masters as Turner makes way for thatched king" in The Times

"Toby jugs and a straw King Alfred: The Tate celebrates British Folk Art" in The Express

"Remembering art's folk heroes" in the ATG supplement London Summer Capital of Art.

"Folk Tales" in House and Garden, July 2014

We have spoken to several other art critics and journalists who are interested in seeing the exhibition and in the concept of Folk Art being shown in Tate Britain.

Innovative Tate Curator Martin Myrone, Co-Curator Ruth Kenny and artist Jeff McMillan have worked tirelessly and enthusiastically to make this happen and will present the works they have selected in this groundbreaking show in an unconventional way and with fresh eyes.

We cannot think of a more fitting institution than Tate Britain to host this first national Exhibition of British Folk Art and applaud their initiative and vision.

Hopefully many of you will be able to visit the show which opens next Tuesday 10th June and runs until the end of August 2014.

 

Gallery Tour