Tim Harding Collection of Motoring Photographs

William Sherbrooke and his Bentleys, photo by Chas Bowers

Toovey’s are delighted to announce the Sale of The Tim Harding Collection of Motoring Photographs. It was amassed over a lifetime of collecting by Tim Harding, a motoring historian who had an encyclopaedic knowledge of early vehicle marques.

Tim Harding died in 2018 and part of the collection is now to be dispersed through an auction sale at Toovey’s in Washington. West Sussex, on 27th October 2021. Such is the size of the collection that this will be the first of two sales.

Music Hall Stars Nervo & Knox in an Aston Martin

The collection comprises photographs in all formats from full plate to ‘box brownie’.  The images, well over 20,000 in number, cover the period from the very earliest days of motoring to the early post war era. Most are loose but some are framed and mounted, and there are also ‘family albums’ compiled in period.

Marseal Trade Stand

Whilst mainly focussed on cars, the collection also covers commercial vehicles, cyclecars, motorcycles, racing cars, motorsport generally, trials, rallies and racing including Brooklands. Some lots will cover period garages and workshops, motor accidents, as well as postcards of motoring in topographical settings.

In addition there are a number of items of automobilia such as manufacturers’ catalogues from the 20s and 30s, and dealers’ brochures.

The auction will be held on Wednesday 27th October 2021 at 1pm.
Viewing for the sale will be held on:
Mon, 25th October 2021: 10:00 to 16:00
Tue, 26th October 2021: 10:00 to 16:00
Wed, 27th October 2021: 09:00 to 13:00

Bidding is available at our rooms and live via the third party website the-saleroom.com, commission bidding is also available.

The online catalogue will be available on our website from the 16th October.

The Medicinal Reciprocal

As I’m writing this, the whole world is struggling with the dire effects of the awful Coronavirus that has caused such devastation to every aspect of our lives. There is a race to find a viable vaccine that could potentially release us all from lockdown and give us back our freedom. In the absence of that vaccine we rely on the medical care we currently have access to and put our faith in. It has been that way since records began, with medicine being an important part of our life.

Today we are used to blister packs of pills and glass bottles of medicine, but before these innovations, apothecaries – the modern day pharmacist – stored their supplies primarily in pottery receptacles. These were ideal for the storage of dry herbs or liquid remedies as they could be made in any size required, sealed with something like wax and labelled accordingly.

During the Renaissance period the role of the apothecary increased greatly as important innovations and discoveries were made in the fields of biology and human anatomy. An increased number of jars for the storage of drugs and remedies were required. An apothecary in charge of a large pharmacy attached to a monastery or palace could reasonably have around one thousand plus different drug-jars.

Lot 1255

The sixteenth and seventeenth centuries in particular saw these jars take on a decorative side as well as a practical. Pharmacies would have a particular armorial or motif that was applied to all jars supplied to them, and areas of production would use a particular style, glaze or colouring. Much research has been done into the many different types of drug-jars which survive to this day, and we can now with much certainty attribute styles, shapes and decoration to particular areas of Europe or even specific potteries or decorators.

Lot 1267

We are very fortunate to have in our 19th November 2020 auction of European Ceramics a private collection of tin-glazed pottery, which includes a number of drug-jars. This collection is part of that assembled by the late Professor Maurice Stacey CBE FRS, a chemist of the University of Birmingham. For his scientific work Stacey received many awards; this work included the first synthesis of vitamin C and the separation of uranium isotopes for the WW2 atomic bomb project. He was helped in the assembling of his collection by Professor F.H. Garner, also of the University of Birmingham, and a great collector of tin-glazed pottery, known as delftware. Professor Garner’s books on delftware are still widely respected today, so his influence on Professor Stacey’s collection is important.

A number of the drug-jars in the collection, or albarellos to give them their Italian name, have inscribed labels denoting specific drugs or remedies. We can only imagine the ailments and the people they may have potentially been used on 400 years ago.

The collection is available to view online here.

Britain Retains Global Art Market Position

A detail of a Japanese Satsuma dish painted by Sozan for Kinkozan

In 2018 the Art Basel and UBS Global Art Market Survey confirmed that the United Kingdom had regained its position from China as the second largest global art and antiques market behind the United States. Earlier this year it was announced that Britain had retained this position in 2019.
Given the scale of China’s market this is a remarkable achievement for the United Kingdom.

The British art and antique market is a significant sector in the UK economy. In 2019 the total annual value of art and antique exports broke through £9 billion for the first time whilst imports rose to £2.142 billion.

Britain is the second largest art and antique market in the world with a 20% global market share. It uniquely attracts high value items from around the world for sale recognising the profession’s expertise and ability to add value. These objects are sold, predominately at auction, to a global audience. Britain has the most varied and largest art and antiques market in Europe.

Back in 2013 Toovey’s, together with a small group of the UK’s leading regional auctioneers, was invited to China. The introduction of British auction practice and ethics was seen as an important part of this exchange in Beijing. A working relationship was also formed with Epai Live, China’s largest mainland online auction platform for the marketing of art and antiques, which continues to provide our clients with rare, direct access to this market.

Demand from China has had a profound effect on collectors’ markets.
The Chinese and Asian market for ceramics and works of art proved its resilience and strength at Toovey’s last week.

Our first specialist auction since the Covid-19 lockdown saw strong demand from China, Japan, the UK and Europe. Viewing and bidding at the salerooms by appointment proved popular whilst keeping people safe and successfully combined with interest and competition online, from the bank of telephones and commission bidders.

A fine Chinese polished bronze censer, mark of Xuande but Qing dynasty

One of my favourite lots in the sale was a fine Chinese polished bronze censer. Although of later date it bore the mark of the 15th century Ming Dynasty Emperor Xuande Its rectangular body was beautifully cast in low relief with an archaisitic dragon and keyfret band flanked by a pair of moulded lion mask handles. Raised on four scroll moulded bracket feet it measured just 5 ½ inches and realised £5200.

The Yonghe Lamasery, Beijing

It reminded me of my visit to the Buddhist Yonghe Lamasery in Beijing. There in the courtyards scores of young people lit their incense sticks placing them in giant bronze censers, their prayers rising with the clouds of incense to heaven. Inside towering gold figures provided windows into prayer.

There was a notable increase in competition for Japanese items. The finely painted Satsuma dish by Sozan for the Kinkozan workshop was decorated with two bijin in conversation beneath a pine tree and sold for £3800.
Throughout the Covid-19 lockdown enquiries and interest in art and antiques remained strong. It is exciting and hopeful to see that demand reflected in the confident return of sales with post lockdown prices at auction showing real strength as markets re-immerge.

 

Another Rare Louis Vuitton Trunk Discovered by Toovey’s

The recently discovered Louis Vuitton cabin trunk.

Toovey’s have unearthed another rare Louis Vuitton ‘Explorer’ travelling trunk.

This rare Louis Vuitton zinc covered ‘explorer’s’ cabin trunk (malle cabine) was produced circa 1895. The interior displays the original printed label numbered ‘33525’, and is comparable to the example we sold in October 2017 (read our blog post here). The current vendor having discovered our previous success was surprised by the value and decided to consign it with Toovey’s.

Louis Vuitton printed label
Louis Vuitton printed label

These trunks were issued in zinc and aluminium and were designed to withstand the extreme environments of the late 19th century explorer, giving the trunks their nickname.

This rare cabin trunk will be offered for sale at Toovey’s on Friday 6th December 2019 with a pre-sale estimate of £20,000-30,000. Please contact Will Rowsell for any enquiries regarding this trunk.

Exceptional Thomas Sheraton Table Discovered in Sussex

Lot 2100 An important Regency mahogany revolving library table after a design by Thomas Sheraton

An exceptional Regency mahogany revolving library table, after a design by one of the most famous and important names in English furniture history, Thomas Sheraton, has been entered for sale at Toovey’s Auctioneers by a Sussex collector.

The table bears many of the hallmarks of the manufacturer Gillows of Lancaster who made furniture for the Duke of Norfolk at Arundel.

The table will be auctioned by Toovey’s at their Spring Gardens, Washington salerooms on Friday 8th November 2019 and carries a pre-sale estimate of £20,000-£30,000 (plus B.P.)