26 May 2019
March 2, 2012 - Filed under: Antiques on TV — Harriet

If you’ve ever wanted to know more about the way antique mahogany pedestal desks are auctioned in Cumbria, Sky Arts has just launched a new series which gives you the opportunity to find out.

Sky Arts ‘fly on the wall’ series Auction, now in its third season, takes us into some of the most prestigious auction houses in the world, plus some of the smaller regional sale rooms and country house sales. Therefore, you’re as likely to see antique mahogany pedestal desks in Cumbria going under the hammer, as you are £20m masterpieces at Sotheby’s.

In episode one of the new series, which aired on February 29th, the star lot was a Venetian landscape by 18th century artist Francesco Guardi, which was expected to sell for more than £20m. A little more down to earth was a fascinating specialist auction of 120 pianos, the most valuable of which carried an estimate of £20,000.
Future episodes will see the hammer falling on a million pound bank note, Elizabeth Taylor’s diamonds, Rodin sculptures and a camera that’s been to the moon. Victorian dining chairs and antique cabinets don’t seem to feature much, but that’s rather the point. The beauty of Auction is that it shows you the rare and unusual. This is a change from season two, where a Mackintosh antique dining table was just one of several local saleroom highlights.

It should be remembered that, whether you’re buying or selling, antiques auctions take a hefty commission fee. If you’re looking for Victorian dining chairs, a Cumbrian antique dealer is the best place to go.

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