The masters are the highlights of a stunning fair in London, writes Des O’Sullivan

Masterpiece at the Royal Hospital, Chelsea, in London until next Wednesday features top quality art, antique furniture, rare books, antiquities, ancient art, and contemporary jewellery.

The eighth edition of the fair, which replaced the old Grosvenor House antiques fair, brings together an assembly of 150 of the leading galleries and specialists in the world.

Reflecting the cross- collecting ethos that now dominates taste, Safani and Geoffrey Diner share a large stand which presents a mix of ancient Egyptian, Roman, and Greek antiquities alongside iconic 20th century and contemporary design.

Galerie Mathivet is showing contemporary Aboriginal art in an Art Deco interior, while Repetto and Donati Galeries present Roman pieces alongside post-war Italian works.

John Berwald and MD Flacks show British modern art with Chinese antiques.

There is everything from a Van Gogh at Dickinson to a chased, patinated gilt bronze and pink granite centre table from the Directory period in Paris, c 1798-1800, at Steinitz.

A Paris Directory centre table at Steinitz, at Masterpiece in London.
A Paris Directory centre table at Steinitz, at Masterpiece in London.

The Famous Women dinner service by Vanessa Bell and Duncan Grant (1932-34) is at Piano Nobile, while Christopher Le Brun’s Union (Horse with Two Disks) is at the New Art Centre on stand D27 and the sculpture park outside the fair.

‘Union’ (Horse with two Disks) by Christopher Le Brun at New Art Centre, at Masterpiece in London.
‘Union’ (Horse with two Disks) by Christopher Le Brun at New Art Centre, at Masterpiece in London.

Fine furniture and decorative arts from the 17th century to the present day can be found on stands like Galerie Perrin, Edward Hurst, Apter-Fredericks, and Ronald Phillips.

There is modern and contemporary design at Modernity Stockhold, Dutko Gallery; Based Upon; Linley; Rose Uniacke; and David Gill Gallery.

Among a strong representation of 19th to 21st century art are works on paper by the likes of Picasso, Hockney, Lichtenstein, and Warhol.

There is a world class contingent of dealers in ancient art. An assembly of the world’s leading contemporary jewellers is gathered alongside selections of rare books, fine silver, photography, and exceptional ceramics.

‘Death’s Way II’ by William Crozier at Piano Nobile, at Masterpiece in London.
‘Death’s Way II’ by William Crozier at Piano Nobile, at Masterpiece in London.

The importance of referring back to the masters cannot be overstated in any category of collecting.

Masterpiece is the sort of fair which offers collectors across a huge range a once-off opportunity to develop the eye.


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