A Painting – Helen Grunwald & Russian Chapel Murals

Helen Grunwald Painting Thumbnail

I’ve been collecting inexpensive pictures, and etchings in particular, since I was about 15 or 16 years old. I’m sure my friends thought I was weird. In fact, I know they did. What attracted me, apart from the prices I could afford as a schoolboy, was that there was usually a story of some sort […]

A Roger Fry Portrait & The Bloomsbury Group

Roger Fry Portrait

“They lived in squares, painted circles and loved in triangles.” said American poet and wit Dorothy Parker about the many members of the Bloomsbury Group. A loosely (yet often very closely!) related group of artists, writers, critics, aesthetes, intellectuals and philosophers, I’ve been obsessed with them since school, and relished learning more about them at […]

A Chance Purchase – A James Elder Christie Portrait

A James Elder Christie Portrait

I don’t look at this sort of thing usually. Those of you who know me, my books or my site know that I’m a ‘twentieth century boy’, and forays into other periods are scarce. It might surprise you to learn that our home is far from the mid-century ‘Madmen’ paradise that you may think, but […]

Fat Lava As Art? A Series Of Prints

West German pottery of the 1960s & 70s, better known as Fat Lava, is a bit like Marmite. You either love it or hate it – there’s no middle ground. Although I’ve seen huge installations in art galleries and stylish illustrations produced for magazines or calendars, I haven’t seen much other ‘art’ produced with it […]

Charity Shop Bargains – A Peggy Angus Print

Although they’re far from being the sources of great, inexpensive pieces that they used to be (I blame eBay and people who write books…), I still can’t resist popping into any charity shop I walk by. A quick browse at the ceramics and glass shelves comes first, followed by a scan of the jewellery counter, […]

Would You Like To Come Upstairs And See My Etchings…?

That isn’t a line I’ve ever used before, but I certainly could. Anyone who knows me knows that I hardly keep my love for etchings a secret. And, as there are over 150 of them, they’re downstairs as well as upstairs. I’ve been buying etchings (often generically called prints) since I was a schoolboy in […]

Mexican Folk Art & Design – A New Trend?

As well as being relaxing, the two weeks I spent in Mexico for our Summer holiday this year were most revealing. I had never really considered Mexican design before and, although I had seen Mexican folk art, I hadn’t considered it properly. These two weeks gave ample opportunities, from visiting museums to wandering the streets […]

25th London Original Print Fair

Although I’m usually associated with 20thC design and collectables, I’m an enormous fan of prints, from engravings to etchings and aquatints. I’ve collected them since I was at school, when I used to spend money earnt from my paper round at local antiques fairs and shops. Naturally, at that level, I couldn’t afford anything valuable […]

To the circus!

With a bit of Polish blood flowing through my veins, I’ve always been fond of decorative arts produced in the former Eastern Block. Amongst my favourite areas are postwar avant garde Czechoslovakian and Polish film and event posters. Over the past two decades, those from the former country have become widely popular and highly desirable […]