Attendees at an art and antiques auction held at Barnard Castle may have been surprised when a Chinese modesty screen, valued at £700, eventually sold for £31,000. Two bidders were fiercely battling it out, with one on the internet and the other bidding on the phone, desperately trying to secure the 19th century screen. David Harper, an antiques expert who is recognised from TV shows like Antiques Road Trip, put the Chinese screen forward for a client he was representing, believed to be from Bishop Stortford.
Although Harper said that the bidding war was exciting, especially as the figures got higher, he also added that the final amount didn’t surprise him greatly. According to Harper, it is possible to guess the value of an item within a margin of 20 per cent. However, some of the more unusual Chinese items are fetching higher prices, especially those which are of exceptional quality. Another item which sold at a high price during the auction did surprise Harper however, as a tiger’s skull with an inkwell embedded sold for almost £2,000. The skull was the work of Roland Ward, an acclaimed taxidermist, and had been stored in the attic of a home in Suffolk.
It is advisable to spend time at an antiques store when looking to discover more about the history of an item. Antiques dealers may have pieces in stock from the Far East, including antique chairs and chests from China. There are a number of antiques experts willing to display items in Preston and surrounding areas.
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