A pair of lamps designed by surreal artist Salvador Dali and made in Britain have been temporarily stopped from being exported.
The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sports say that the pair of lamps, which feature champagne glasses, are the finest examples of British modern lighting and have banned them from export. It wants a buyer to pay £440,000 for them otherwise the export ban will be lifted.
Edward James was a patron of the surrealist movement and helped Salvador Dali design two pairs of champagne glass lamps. One pair was housed at James’ Monkton House alongside Dali’s Mae West Lips sofa and lobster-shaped telephones. The other pair was owned by the Edward James Foundation which runs West End College that teaches fine art conservation courses. This pair was sold and is the subject of the export ban.
Richard Calvocoressi of the Reviewing Committee of the Export of Works of Art and Objects of Cultural Significance said:
“The lamps are everything one would expect of Dalí. Witty, erotic – the champagne cups can be read as female breasts – the lamps are also strikingly sculptural, standing about the height of a person, with the line of vertical cups resembling a spinal column: a brilliant example of fantasy lighting.”
You won’t be able to buy Salvador Dali lamps or Mae West Lip sofas at Lancashire antique shops, but you can purchase quality antique lamps and fine antique sofas for discerning Lancashire antique buyers.
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