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Fontaine’s to Host One-Day Seminar and Appraisal for Tiffany and Other Lamps

by WorthPoint Staff (02/23/10).

This Tiffany Dragonfly lamp, and others like it, will be the topic of discussion at a free seminar and appraisal session to be hosted by Fontaine’s Auction Gallery on Sunday, Mar. 21, 2010.

This Tiffany Dragonfly lamp, and others like it, will be the topic of discussion at a free seminar and appraisal session to be hosted by Fontaine’s Auction Gallery on Sunday, Mar. 21, 2010.

PITTSFIELD, Mass. – Fontaine’s Auction Gallery—which has been the scene of numerous auctions that featured rare and vintage lamps and lighting fixtures—will be offering a free one-day seminar and appraisal on the lamps of Tiffany and other 20th century lighting.

The seminar is slated for Sunday, Mar. 21, in the firm’s gallery facility here in Pittsfield.

Guest speaker for the event will be Paul Crist of Paul Crist Studios, an expert in Tiffany lamps and the author of the book “Mosaic Shades II.” Crist specializes in Tiffany examples and has more than 30 years’ experience in mosaic shades (copper foiled and leaded).

Teaming with Crist will be John Fontaine of Fontaine’s Auction Gallery, himself an expert in the field of lamps and vintage lighting and co-author of the book “The Handel Lamps Book.” Fontaine invites the public to bring their lamps to the seminar for a free evaluation and authentication. A certificate documenting a vintage lamp’s authenticity may also be purchased.

“If you have one piece or an entire collection, we are here for you,” said Fontaine. “We suggest calling ahead, to reserve a time slot in the morning or afternoon.” Fontaine added his firm will host a Spring Exceptional Antiques Auction on May 22, at which a session will be devoted entirely to fine lighting from estates and collections from around the country.

“We are offering a zero-percent sellers’ commission on high-end lighting and antiques,” Fontaine said. “That’s right; it will cost consignors nothing to sell their Tiffany and other high-end lighting at one of the top galleries for 20th century arts and lighting in the country.” Fontaine’s implemented the zero-percent commission policy at the end of last year.

Crist is a nationally renowned and leading expert in the lighting field by dealers and collectors alike. He is said to be the “last stop” for authenticating and lighting evaluation and his exhaustive research and documentation, spanning more than three decades, prompted him to produce the three-volume “Mosaic Shades” series, which is used as a learning tool by collectors.

John Fontaine and Paul Crist, who will both speak at the seminar, authored these lamp books.

John Fontaine and Paul Crist, who will both speak at the seminar, authored these lamp books.

His first publication, “Mosaic Shade II,” is packed with knowledge and photos of the many copper-foiled shade makers apart from Tiffany, to include Duffner & Kimberly, Chicago Mosaic, Wilkinson, John Morgan, Unique Glass Co. and more. Volume II serves a dual purpose: it is a handsome coffee table treasure, and it is a “go-to” reference for the ambitious researcher.

Fontaine was born into the world of auctions and antiques. He has been in the business for 40 years, both as an auctioneer and ambitious researcher. His knowledge extends to renowned furniture makers like J.H. Belter, J. & J.W Meeks, R.J. Horner, Herter Brothers, Alexander Roux, Gustav Stickley, Charles Rohlfs and many others recognizable to collectors.

But Fontaine’s passion for lighting is uncharted. Over time, he has had the kind of hands-on experience that most can only dream about, and his driving ambition assisted him well in the preparation and writing of “The Handel Lamps Book.” Documenting and photographing the treasures of Philip Handel, he was able to produce a definitive reference work on Handel lamps.

Fontaine has embraced the world of 20th century lighting fully. Included in his repertoire is knowledge of other reverse painted lamp makers such as Moe Bridges, Pittsburgh, Jefferson and Pairpoint, as well as leaded/copper-foiled lamp makers like Tiffany, Duffner & Kimberly, Chicago Mosaic, Wilkinson, John Morgan, Unique Glass Company and many others.

For more information about this seminar, call 413.448.8922, e-mail to info@fontaineauction.com, or visit the Fontaine’s Auction Gallery Web site.

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