Spanish sun…and bargains?

It didn’t look promising. I suppose I should known – after all, it was a British bank holiday. As we were also briefly caught in between workloads, the banker and I decided to escape to Mediterranean sun and warmth in Madrid. Having never been before, I also welcomed the chance to explore the antiques and collectables market in a new city. It seems that in Spain, antiques tend to be exactly that – 19th century and before – so most shops were of little interest to me. Guidebooks showed that the centre of the Madrilene collectables and flea market world occurred on a Sunday morning, in the ‘Rastro’ part of southern Madrid. The area got its name from the fact that, from the 16th-19th centuries, the streets contained slaughterhouses. When a dead animal was dragged off by a tanner, it left a rastro, or trail of blood, behind it. Grizzly. Today, the only thing I hoped to be dragging off down the road was a huge bag of bargains! We arrived at 9am, as …

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Mark gets his life back

Finally, it is done! My next bookalogue has gone off to the printers – at last. As I type, somewhere in Guangdong printing presses are furiously churning out 1,500 copies of what I hope will be an enjoyable read. It’ll certainly be informative – much of what is in here has not been seen since it was published in a specialist trade magazine (Czechoslovak Glass Review) from the 1950s-70s. So one thing I can guarantee is that you’ll find some surprises inside – so much is either simply not known, or is incorrectly attributed to Murano or other factories. Get your hands on a copy on the 13th July, when Graham Cooley‘s excellent exhibition opens at the King’s Lynn Arts Centre in King’s Lynn, Norfolk. For more information, please see www.sklo.co.uk, but for the meantime, here’s a sneak peak of the cover. Talking of sneak peaks, if you want to get in there early, and be totally informed, then join the Glass Association so you …

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