Summer Newsletter

Dear All.

I have just had the great pleasure of paying one of my, increasingly less frequent, visits to London. Of course my main port of call is always The Pimlico Road and the surrounding neighbourhood.

The Pimlico Road Private View was held at the end of June and this event was one of the most enjoyable of the many over the years. Perhaps because of the rain quite a few friends decided not to come. More was the pity for them as the evening was very well attended and all the participating shops were bursting at the seams. Lots of new shops proved an added attraction and all were most hospitable and welcoming.

Cox London’s tiny but beautifully stocked and styled shop was a treat. Buzzing with guests it was difficult to interrupt the flow of conversation to congratulate them both. It transpires we go back a very long way when Chris used to restore precious antique items for me back in the 1980’s. Having always wanted to have a shop in this area he and his charming wife Nicole have finally fulfilled their dream. All the items are designed and made by them and their team. Stunning chandeliers, table lamps, side tables and accessories in bronze and glass.

Pinch, just around the corner in Bourne Street was equally busy. Their very elegant and pared back shop was looking stunning with contemporary furniture and lighting. Sadly I did not have a chance to talk with them as they were inundated with enquiries.

Robert Kime‘s exquisite showrooms were as welcoming as ever. A wonderfully comfortable atmosphere of antique carpets , divinely comfortable sofa’s and arm chairs though new gave a hint of a Victorian or Edwardian country house in it’s heyday. Wonderful old porcelains and delft pottery adorned tables and cabinets. Their own collection of printed fabrics are used on walls and to cover chairs and sofas. All in muted colours bringing the past right up to the minute reflecting contemporary tastes . The Private View guests were made to feel very much at home.

Sybil Colefax and John Fowler held a marvellous party in their enticing new show rooms. A generous bar offered champagne , wine or soft drinks. Delicious canapés were proffered by charming waitresses using pottery bowls and platters on sale in the showroom. The sausages were presented on a marblised glazed pottery square bowl priced at £450. This is their Interior Design head quarters not to be confused with their partner company Colefax and Fowler the textile firm. Added to their eclectic mix of period and modern furniture I could not help but notice their exciting collection of works of art by 20th century British artists. I spotted two stylish paintings by Ivon Hitchens and a wonderful little gouache by my old friend John Craxton , no longer with us sadly. This was of one of his many images of goats from his beloved Greek islands. I met up with Mary-Anne Taylor , an excellent picture restorer and dear freind, and Sheelagh de Ossuna known as Bonny, a dear friend from Trinidad , with whom I spent the rest of the evening wondering from one beautiful show room to another.

Jamb gave their much anticipated and very generous party as ever as did Ransom and Soane. All were packed with clients and revellers out to make the most of a most enjoyable evening. I fear they were all in for a long evening of guests reluctant to leave such convivial surroundings.

I managed to pop in to John Adams Fine Art to admire their lovely French paintings. A quick visit to Outred where an amazing Italian 17th century refectory table bowled me over. Rose Uniacke was packed with admiring clients. Her elegant showrooms proving an enviable space in which to hold her very generous Private View. A brief hello to everyone at Haynes Fine Art looking as enticing as ever and resisting Paul’s ever generous hospitality. Onwards ever onwards.

Gabriel Bernardi held an exciting exhibition of silver by Puiforcat, Art Works from dealer Mr Valmorbida, and his ever stylish furniture and objects designed by himself. His beautiful little shop and design office were bursting out onto the street with a very glamorous crowd. I missed out on his neighbours Ochre as time was rapidly running out. I bumped into David Thomas the jeweller on my way to Collier Webb and FBC London but arrived just too late.

Joanna Wood‘s usual hospitality was much missed as they have recently relocated to splendid premises on Elizabeth Street a short stroll away from the Pimlico Road. It was also sad to see not all the shops took part in this wonderful event. Sad because they definitely missed out on the perfect opportunity to meet new clients as well as old friends.

The evening was still young so Bonny and I retreated to the Sloane Club to meet up with her partner Bernardo Bermudez, Mrs Babs Thomson formerly of Sotheby’s and Christies, and Pat Wengraf an expert in Renaissance bronzes for a very jolly light supper in the club lounge. Sadly Caroline Stanley, who has long helped run this marvellous institution with such style , is retiring to the country though I am sure our paths will continue to cross for many years to come . We wish her a most enjoyable retirement.

Finally to bed. Tired but invigorated by the stimulation of such an exciting array of new stock in and around the Pimlico Road. I managed to catch up with many old friends, clients , designer’s and dealer’s whom I had not seen for ages. The Pimlico Road is a great meeting place for all of us from across the globe. A community of kindred spirits. Come and join us and be a part of the on going development of this vibrant Design District only a minute away from Sloane Square.

Regards and best wishes. Mark Boyce.

PS: The following evening I attended the Masterpiece Preview where I was delighted to see Rose Uniacke‘s atmospheric stand and the sophisticated exhibit of 88 Gallery. Linley London also had a very smart showing of their bespoke cabinetery.

An added pleasure was to see the very elegant and glamorous display of “robertaebasta”, Roberta Tagliavini and her son’s first showing here. We welcome them to the Pimlico Road as they will soon be open at No 85, Jean-Claude Ciancimino’s previous premises. Dealers in exceptional 20th century Works of Art, Fine Furniture and Objet’s d’Art. Congratulations.

This small pocket of Belgravia - just a few minutes walk from Sloane Square - is home to some of the finest antiques shops and galleries in London. There is a vast array of choice; endless variety that satisfies every appetite from the expert eye to the simply inquisitive looking for something special.