Tuesday, August 04, 2009


Antiques Roadshow was such a BLAST!!

The Currier & Ives prints that I was certain were not originals (but c/n verify from research) were not -- although 3 are very good quality reprints, the 4th not so quality -- probably from the 1950's. The prints are each worth between $30-$50 and add a few bucks for the framing/matting. Nick Lowry the appraiser took the time to show me how to identify reproductions from originals... Appraiser Alasdair Nichol was appraising what he & Lowry believed might be two Rembrandt etchings -- which unfortunately had been matted & framed sometime in the 1800's so much of the art and the signature were obscured -- AND THEY AREN'T ALLOWED TO TAKE THE FRAMES & MATS APART (even though the owner said she would right there -- she had bought them at a garage sale for $5 each!!) They told her to take them to a certified appraiser and if they were real Rembrandts (which he suspected they were) they could be quite valuable!!

DH''s metal lamp with a mica shade (which I call the ugliest lamp in the world LOL) made by the Rembrandt lamp company in Chicago (which we knew) was made in 1927-1928 and is a good art deco lamp worth $250-$300.

The millefiori paperweights (Google images HERE) were all made in the last 20 years and were worth between $10 and $30 each.

My two Indian style pieces of pottery which I picked up at a garage sale a few weeks ago for $10 each were appraised by Joan Caballero as being worth much more. The pottery by Taos Master Potter Mary Witkop (which I knew because it is signed) is worth $300-$500. If it were by a Native American potter, it c/b worth thousands!

Joan told me that there are at least as many Anglo artists working in Taos as Native American. My other piece of pottery she said was one of the most interesting pieces of tribal pottery she had seen all day...

She didn't think that was by a Native American because it is not an Indian style... but Anglo. It has a mark on the bottom but she had never seen that mark before. That pot is also worth $300-$500 -- but again, if I could find out whose mark is on the bottom (which she said would probably take a trip to Taos to find out) and if it was a Native American, could be worth much, much more!

After doing more research, it is probably a piece of either Mary Witkop or perhaps her son Carl Gray Witkop... I find this exact style pottery all over Mary's work... and although she still works in the oxidized clay, I don't see any of her current work in the dark oxidized clay. There's a short video of her studio on YouTube where she briefly talks about oxidizing her clay and the colors it produces. Her son is or was in the San Antonio (TX) area...
although this piece doesn't match any of his current work in form or color. I have yet to find a reference to the slashes/hash mark that is on the bottom of the pot anywhere and I could not find a reference to his signature or mark. You can see some of Mary Witkop's pottery on a number of gallery websites as well as pics on her MyFace... (you see the pot in the upper left photo is close in design to mine although mine is all black, and the blue pot in the middle of the second row is almost identical to my terra cotta colored pot!) If anyone recognizes the mark on the bottom of the black pot, let me know!!

We had THE.MOST.FUN.ever! at the Roadshow. We met loads of the nicest and most interesting people in every line and saw some incredible stuff -- like a LIFE SIZE metal (could be Hessian??) horse!! It had a chainmail-like knit "blanket" on it's back and a decorative chainmail covering on it's ears. As I said to J. Michael Flanigan as we both stood gaping at this horse, "So is that the first horse on the Roadshow?" He laughed and said, "No, but it's the first life-sized one!" Unfortunately, they did not allow photography in the filming/appraisal areas but the Roadshow photographer was taking lots of pics to put up on their website (none up yet...) All told, we got there a little after 11:00 (we stayed in a hotel close by) and although our tickets were for 12:00, they let us inside to a staging area (it was already 101 outside). We made our way with all the others into the appraisal area about 12-12:30; although the lines we were in were long, they moved pretty quickly and we were out of our 4 lines about 3:30. Originally DH & I were going to stay together, but after we saw the lines, we split up and re-connected at the last (pottery) appraisal. We opted not to do the Feedback Booth (looking back, we should have!) but I didn't want to have to unwrap & unpack the prints or pottery (I took a big wheeled suitcase -- and thank heavens we did!)

The air dates for the Phoenix telecasts are in January... it really was so much more fun than we imagined and the Roadshow people really have their stuff together -- well organized (it c/h/b pure chaos but wasn't!) We saw a number of filmings -- turquoise jewelry collection, a hugely thick (and apparently quite old) book (must have been 10-12" thick!), a painting... and we're sure the horse will make it to television! One of the producers I was chatting with while in line said they usually film dozens and dozens of segments (and in large cities like Phoenix where 5,000 people and more than 10,000 objects are appraised, it c/b more!) and then pick the best 8-12 for each show ... they would probably get 3 nights of shows from Phoenix. We heard that a few of the people we met in some our lines had been selected for filming, so it will be interesting to see if any make the shows! The film crews and people with ARS were more than happy to chat with people, and as I said, the appraisers were so nice and pleasant... not a snob or an ego among them! Many people had the ARS books with them and the appraisers were delighted to autograph them.

I was just happy to meet & talk to the Keno twins (Leslie and Leigh -- who really are that handsome and that nice and enthusiastic AND IDENTICAL in person as they are on the show!), Messrs. Lowry & Nichols & Ms. Caballero... and Mark Wahlberg (the host) -- what a hoot! I said to Wahlberg, "So whose idea was it to do Phoenix in August??" He laughed and said "Well, it could be Biloxi in August or Phoenix... but I knew I was going to be somewhere hot in August since the Roadshow only travels in the summer!" He laughed and said, "I keep asking them, 'Have you been to Phoenix in February?? It's really nice there in February!!' " All of us were laughing. He & many of the appraisers -- like the Keno bros. -- were in suits & ties! We had a wonderful and relaxing time... the best. AND we got to have a long and relaxed dinner with my brother Saturday night and we had a long and relaxed lunch with him again on our way home Sunday!! Two days in a row! It was great to see him!!

We heard (but did not see) that the appraisals in Phoenix included some pretty old furniture (a dresser for $25,000) and a painting which was apparently (or supposedly, since we heard and did not see it) a prototype for one of the original Star Wars posters, a fabulous piece of rare jade jewelry, and a special collection of Charles Schulz's Peanuts work... It will be interesting to see it all when it airs!! So that is the story of the Roadshow escapade. Here's a PBS video of what the experience is (was) like -- exactly! And a big thank you to all of the PBS volunteers who worked from 6:30AM until everyone was done (after 6:30PM) and were helpful and fun... and they stood ALL DAY.



At 8/05/2009 4:11 AM , Blogger liberal army wife said...

It sounds so amazing and fantastic and wonderful and FUN!!! I'm so glad you had such a great time. but yeah - Phoenix in August. hm. timing NOT the best!

I'll look for you when it airs. Love that show. LOVE it.

Hey - ParentsZone is back - someone hacked it, but TechMama did magic.


At 10/10/2009 5:52 PM , Blogger SV Arctic Tern said...


Came across your blog today while searching for items related to my Mom, Mary Witkop. Interesting to see photos of some of her earlier pieces, are they dated at all? Where did you find them? Would you mind if I borrowed copies of the photos? I've been looking for examples of her work to post. She's currently doing a show to commemerate her 40 years as a potter at the Harwood Museum of Art.

The 3rd piece is not Witkop, it's looks like it was throw on a wheel and glazed, I don't recognize the mark. My Dad, Carl Witkop always signs his work Witkop or C Witkop

Juanita Witkop

At 10/10/2009 7:07 PM , Blogger Some Soldier's Mom said...

Juanita, I'd be honored for you to use the photos of her pot. Not sure when it was made, but it was while she and Carl were working together in NM (according to the card with the pot).

As for the second, I wish I could find who the mark belongs to... and it could have been done on a wheel although there do not appear to be anchor marks on it... my understanding is that it was purchased by the original owners in the same area of NM at the same time they acquired the pot by your mother. Perhaps if you show her the picture of the "oil pot" it might ring a bell with her as to other local artists back then??

Regards, Carla


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home