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Tag Archives: chris barber

June 12 | The Andrews Shaker Collection Gallery Walk

Shaker Brown-Red-painted Rocking Chair, New Lebanon, New York, c. 1800 (Lot 9: Estimate $12,000-$15,000)

Thursday, June 12, 2014

The Andrews Shaker Collection – A Gallery Walk

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Reception:  5:30PM Gallery Walk: 6:00PM

Guided tour and discussion of selected highlights from The Andrews Shaker Collection hosted by Stephen L. Fletcher, Director and Christopher Barber, Deputy Director of American Furniture & Decorative Arts.… Read More

Americana Auction Adds Online-only Section to the Traditional August Event

More than 650 lots to be offered live on August 11th; an additional 300 lots to be offered online from August 5th to 13th.

MARLBOROUGH, MassJuly 30, 2013Skinner, Inc. will host an auction of American Furniture and Decorative Arts on August 11th at its Marlborough gallery. Skinner’s “August Americana” sale continues to be a highlight of the summer auction calendar, and this year Skinner is pleased to introduce a 9-day, online-only component to this annual event.… Read More

Courageous Sailing and the Corporate Challenge Regatta

During bright and sunny spring and summer days, most of us can’t wait to get outside at the end of a workday. One thing that makes my weekends last just a little longer through May and June is the Corporate Challenge Regatta. For the past 5 or 6 years, Skinner has taken part in this event hosted by Courageous Sailing in Charlestown, Massachusetts.

A Skinner team participates in the Corporate Challenge Regatta to support Courageous Sailing

Courageous Sailing is a non-profit organization that aims to use sailing to build character and camaraderie among Boston children from all economic and ethnic backgrounds.… Read More

Rare Miniature Portraits Reach an Audience 10,000 Miles Away

When I first saw these pictures, they looked much like any other attractive pair of miniature portraits that we sell in our American Furniture & Decorative Arts auctions. Who could have guessed at first glance that they could be extremely rare pieces painted by a one-time criminal?

A Rare Dutch Colonial Portrait Survives from the Early 18th Century

The Portrait of Elizabeth Van Dyck Vosburg is one of the ultimate rarities: a unique and early example of American naïve painting from the early 18th century. This oil-on-canvas work was painted by an artist widely known as The Gansevoort Limner, who some scholars believe was a Dutch-born immigrant named Pieter Vanderlyn. Whatever the case, this artist was prolific in the period from about 1730-45 in the area that would become New York State.

Enough is known about the provenance of this particular painting that it is identified as showing Elizabeth Van Dyck at the time of her marriage to Martin Vosburg in 1725. That date certainly makes it one of the earliest known works by the artist, and one of the earliest attributed American paintings of any kind still in private hands.

Listen to a Vermont Furniture Lecture by Philip Zea

On August 13, in association with a highly regarded collection of Vermont Decorative Arts being offered at auction at Skinner the following day, we were lucky enough to welcome Philip Zea, who presented the lecture, “Cabinet Furniture in All its Variety: Vermont Craftsmanship, 1780-1850,” to about 70 attendees. Mr. Zea is President of Historic Deerfield, a noted scholar in the field of American Furniture and Decorative Arts, and an authority on the history of Vermont cabinetmaking. His well-received, informative, and often amusing talk can be heard here.

The Flawed Masterpiece: Tale of a Too-short Chair

The chair pictured here, you may realize, used to be about three and a half inches taller than it is now. For some unknown reason its long-ago owner, whether by necessity or choice, lowered it. Maybe it became water damaged or rotten. Maybe one foot cracked and weakened and the easiest way to make the chair’s other legs useful was to just even ‘em all out. Maybe the owner wanted his child to be able to sit in it more easily.