According to Daniel Thomas, Property Correspondent of the Financial Times (9 October, 2009):
‘Prices for traditional arts and antiques are continuing to outstrip those for contemporary work as investors look to shelter savings by buying safer assets.’
Artinfo (14 October 2009) continues in a similar vein and adds that the market is becoming quite particular in what it wants and what it doesn’t want. For example, lower end more contemporary antique furniture, ceramics, metal and pictures are becoming quite difficult to sell.
Both agree however that ‘the traditional “safe havens” of jewellery and silverware’ are showing growth in all price brackets. Certainly gold jewellery is doing very well and the value of gold is very high at the moment, which means that even if the piece of jewellery isn’t crafted particularly well, its intrinsic value still guarantees a good price at auction. Also solid silver flatware comes into this grey area between fine antique and intrinsic value. At a time when no-one wants to be bothered to clean silver cutlery, the sheer bulk and weight (for example six place settings weighs approximately 3lbs), of even fairly modern pieces means it is guaranteed to fetch a good price.
So be prepared for surprises when you go to auction. Until quite recently, it would have been Clarice Cliff and Moorcroft that made the sky high prices. However, now it is often ‘late’ silver cutlery bought for just a few pounds in a job lot ten years ago and unfashionable gold jewellery from any era that becomes the guaranteed earner and traditional asset for the canny investor.
No comments yet.