Whitehall Blog

Archive for September, 2012

Show Set-Up and Opening Night Contrast

Friday, September 28th, 2012

Today was the second day of set-up so we were all pretty organized when I took these photos—except no Whitehall shots as our booth was completely hidden by a stack of shipping cartons 6′ high!  The school authorities suddenly panicked today that the kids were walking in narrowed hallways due to boxes piled on both sides—a rational response but probably due yesterday as the mounds were growing.  In addition we had to be ready for the Fire Marshall’s inspection which meant keeping 3′ wide path clear through our booth to the power control room!  Oh well, as you will see below, we finally looked pretty good!

To add to the joyous confusion of set-up, school classes were brought in for kids to do sketches, write descriptions and/or stay in classes for short booth talks by dealers–my first photos.

A class exploring

Two Boys studying a secretary while Joseph Hayes talks on cell phone

Jeff Bridgman and his Flag Collection--Gave a School Lecture This Afternoon

Of course not everything is pristine clean and polished when we arrive–fingerprints on silver to scratches on furniture–all must be seen to.  The next photo is Joan Tinkler of The Silver Vault polishing!

All smiles--the joy of silver polishing!

You may think my “joy of silver polishing” is being facetious, but a half hour before I was polishing in a sink our massive English silverplated and cut glass three bottle wine caddy.  To see the tarnish disappear and a gleaming surface appear is truly a joy—as is brass and copper polishing as well!  One receives instant gratification from the gleaming surface!

Boxes in temporary holding pattern!

Every aisle was like this—some however piled much higher and deeper—like in front of our booth.

Of course, some are always ready in a flash!

Art Galleries are particularly likely to be ready early!

This is the gallery of Island Weiss and if I had a spare $24,000 the next photo is of a bronze that would be headed home with me!

Sabin Howard's "Armor"

Sabin Howard’s “Armor” represents a man beaten down by verbal and psychological abuse—a period in the artist’s life which is happily now in his past.  Don’t really relate to the message—although I think we all feel this way some days of our lives—but the sculpting is breathtaking!    All 20 of the edition have sold, the artist’s proof has sold—this is the Foundry Proof 1.


Only 200 more pieces of porcelain to place!

Finally, just in time for opening, Lynda Willauer will have every gorgeous piece in place and we will all be ready for the Opening Night Party!

The next series of photos were taken about 15 minutes before the show opened this evening–terrific crowd, lots of interest and reasonable to good sales!

Lynda Willauer's booth ready for selling!

Joel Fletcher in their wonderful art filled booth--a dealer since the show was founded

Joyce from A Bird In Hand--also a dealer here for many many years!

Remember all of that silver polishing!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

And finally some views of the Whitehall display!  We have shown in the show since the second year when it was reorganized as a high end show covering the fine and decorative arts.

Front features a rare pair of burl ash Charles X feauteuil, c. 1830

It seems a bit crowded but within an hour we sold three tables and everything opened up nicely!

Charles X chairs with Bouillotte table filled with decanters

Nearly every piece in these photos is on our website–please peruse it for details of date, size, condition and price.

Back corner is a fabulous Greyhound Pub Sign

Three incredibly rare American playground equipment salesman/s samples, c. 1920

These are three of the rarest and most delightful salesman’s samples we have ever seen—hours of scouring auction records revealed not another example of these wonderful, fully operational samples of playground equipment of the 1920-30′s.  I remember as a child the wonderful “antique” playground equipment in the Joplin, Missouri parks—especially Shifferdecker Park—where the full size models of these were still played on daily in the 1950′s when I was a wee lad!  The one with the rings allowed the kids to run faster and faster until finally you left the ground and flew around in a circle at a 45 degree angle—now its done by machines, no wonder we just get fatter and fatter!

Hope you have enjoyed this visit to our first show of the new fall season–please visit us at the shop, here in New Jersey, next week in Birmingham, Alabama, the following week at the High Point Antiques and Design Center and the following week in Cincinnati, Ohio!  Our season is posted on our website so don’t miss an opportunity to visit us across the country this year.


Two Rivers Antiques Show

Thursday, September 27th, 2012

Tomorrow night is the opening benefit for the Cancer Program at the Monmouth, NJ Hospital held at the Ranney School in Tinton Fall, NJ.  It is a gorgeous well balanced show for a great cause–will post some photos tomorrow.  Open Saturday and Sunday–please come if you are close by!  Grab the details at

Two Rivers Antiques Show and Garden Tour, Red Bank, NJ, New 


The Joys of the Triangle

Sunday, September 23rd, 2012

Attending the annual Battle of the Bands tonight in downtown Durham reminded me once again how wonderful this area is, from world class hospitals (Duke just named best in North Carolina and Top Ten in America and where just outside the walls of the hospital one can wander through a vast botanical garden) to the restored downtown including the fabulous American Tobacco Campus to one of the great university towns of America (Chapel Hill) to an urban mecca in our capital city of Raleigh–the three create the Research Triangle famous throughout the world.

Here are a couple of photos of a bit of what it means to live here!

The Sarah P. Duke Gardens in the heart of the Duke Campus–the Asian Lagoon.


Stage Under The Lucky Strike Water Tower

Joining with over a thousand folks gathered together to watch a selection of bands, all amateur, from area businesses battle it out for bragging rights–and raise about $100,000.00 to benefit an area charity.  This year’s beneficiary is KidZNotes, the program bringing classical orchestral and choral education into the impoverished neighborhood schools of Durham.  From 60 kids to 140 kids to 200 kids now in six schools–and hopefully doubling next year–this program designed on the famous system in Venezuela which has lifted hundreds of thousands of children out of ignorance and poverty by instilling in them a love of classical performance, the personal pride of accomplishment, and the desire to succeed academically.  A classical music education inspires children where ever it is offered and Durham is one of the leading lights in fostering these programs in America–all through cooperation by the educational community and funded by private resources!  Every child is receiving 500 hours of musical education and performance time per year, including music camp during the summer!

This does not happen by accident.  The indomitable forces at work here are the founder of the program, Lucia Powe, and the director of the program, Katie Wyatt, both assisted with great boards and fantastic, dedicated teachers.

And speaking of support, The Chamber Orchestra of The Triangle (www.thecot.org) has as its November Concert a performance in the historic Hayti Heritage Center, the center of historic African American Culture in Durham, bringing 13 of the finest KidZNotes players to sit second stand and 50 of their chorus to end the concert with “Lift Every Voice and Sing”.  The COT has received a grant from the NC Arts Council to help fund this concert involving coaching by our orchestra members and two performances, November 11 and 12, transportation of the students to rehearsal, funding for their teachers, and free tickets for their families and friends to attend the concert.  Also on that program are Ravel’s “Mother Goose” , Faure’s “Dolly Suite”, and the glorious African American soprano Louise Toppin in Canteloube’s “Songs of the Auvergne”.

The next photos are candids I shot tonight at the “Battle”.

Lucia, as always, joyfully talking about KidZNotes with event guests

Katie and her boyfriend enjoying the huge excitement of the night!

The person smiling beside Lucia is Pam Pate, one of Chapel Hill High’s most talented art teachers–now retired.

This final shot is of the landmark Lucky Strike Water Tower in the heart of the restored Victorian Campus and a symbol of the change of Durham from the City of Tobacco to The City of Medicine and Education–what a glorious transformation.  And as an aside, every restaurant surrounding this event was simply packed with young families and young couples enjoying the atmosphere of downtown Durham, even on a night with no ballgame and no concert at our world class minor league ball park and Durham Performing Arts Center, THE busiest live theater by attendance in the ENTIRE United States–and only open 5 years!


Persian Carpet Designer Brunch

Wednesday, September 19th, 2012

Today I dropped in on our friends Doug, Nelda and Cynthia Lay at The Persian Carpet Oriental Rug Gallery in Durham where they were holding the third of their quarterly series of rug education brunches for Interior Designers.  While they have a vast national designer network they felt the regional designers were often overlooked–the same issue Elizabeth has been working with at Whitehall.  Cynthia came up with this wonderful quarterly event showing the latest trends in hand made carpets from around the world, with a special emphasis on contemporary designs and a lesser emphasis on the copies of traditional rugs.  Today featured, in particular, a vast range of Nepalese rugs.

Enjoy the wonderful photos I took of their shop this morning–and the scrumptious Bloody Mary Brunch!

Doug greeting designers

Cynthia discussing interesting new designs


Main Gallery Room with caravan camels in the windows bringing new rugs!

That’s Nelda in turquoise top chatting with more new arrivals.

Many of the quiet, elegant new designs

Brunch and Bloodies Await!

With 22 designers attending, many new to their gallery, the event was a rousing success!



New Shipment Is In!

Monday, September 10th, 2012

Please check out the website for many of our new items!  Catalogues have been mailed!  More pictures will go up all week on the website.

New post soon on some of the intriguing items!