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The Philadelphia Antiques Show
April 13, 2010, Volume 56, No. 29


The Philadelphia Antiques Show, April 17-20
The Nation’s Premier American Antiques and Decorative Arts Show

Special Museum-Quality Exhibit and Finest Examples of Period Antiques


Coffee Cup and Saucer with the arms of Giles. Made in China, about 1785. The Cluthe Collection

Fifty of the nation’s foremost arts and antiques dealers will showcase rare period furniture, folk and fine art, ceramics, porcelain, silver, textiles and jewelry at the 49th Annual Philadelphia Antiques Show. The event, organized by a committee of more than 200 volunteers, is widely recognized as the premier American antiques and decorative arts show in the country, and attracts thousands of visitors each year. The 2010 show will feature a special museum-quality loan exhibit titled, A Call to Arms: Chinese Armorial Porcelain for the British and American Markets, 1700-1850. The 49th annual show, which runs Saturday, April 17 through Tuesday, April 20, 2010, will be held at The Navy Yard. 

The 2010 Philadelphia Antiques Show is presented by The Haverford Trust Company.

2010 Beneficiary–Penn Center for Ocular Imaging

Proceeds from The 2010 Philadelphia Antiques Show will provide funding for the new Penn Center for Ocular Imaging. The Center will include sophisticated ocular imaging instruments at the Perelman Center, the Scheie Eye Institute, and at all Penn eye care practices. Computerized integration will enable images acquired at any site to be available to doctors and patients at every Penn eye care facility, allowing more accurate diagnoses and improved treatment. The Center will be the most sophisticated and fully integrated ocular imaging center in the region, continuing Penn’s tradition of providing state-of-the-art vision care to the patients of the Greater Philadelphia region and beyond.

The Philadelphia Antiques Show is the major fundraiser for Penn Medicine. Since 1962, the show has raised more than $16 million for innovative programs with a direct impact on patient care. Previous benefiting programs include Penn Center for Patient Safety and Advocacy, Penn Lung Center, Institute on Aging, and Cardiovascular Surgery.

“We are looking forward to another year as the nation’s foremost arts and antiques show,” said Show Chair Liz Cavanaugh-Kerr. “Our deep commitment to raise money to support Penn Medicine continues to drive our dedication to present an unmatched show year after year.”

Giles Bookplate with the arms of Giles.
Engraved by Robert Montgomery, New York, 1783. Courtesy Angela Howard.
The arms that decorate James Giles’s bookplate and service are those of the Giles family of Boden, England, which had been used by the American branch of the family from the seventeenth century. However, James Giles, who had served in the American Revolution as a lieutenant in the Second Continental Artillery, adapted his arms, adding a cannon and an American flag below the shield and creating the motto “Libertas et patria mea” (Liberty and my Country).

A Call to Arms: Chinese Armorial Porcelain for the British and American Markets, 1700-1850

The 2010 featured loan exhibit, A Call to Arms: Chinese Armorial Porcelain, is a tribute to antiques dealer Elinor Gordon (1918-2009), who participated in every Philadelphia Antiques Show since its inception in 1962. Ms. Gordon was a highly respected and honored authority on Chinese export porcelain, and this year’s exhibit will fittingly showcase Chinese porcelain decorated with coats of arms and Ms. Gordon’s contribution to this field. Porcelain in the exhibit will chronicle more than a century of coats of arms, offering glimpses into the world of 18th century life. On loan from the museums, private collections and the Reeves Center at Washington and Lee University in Lexington, Virginia, the coats of arms each tell their own story—whether the person was married, what their rank or status was and information about their genealogy. These coats of arms will be displayed in an exceptional museum-quality exhibit curated by Ron Fuchs, curator of the Reeves Collection.

“We are thrilled to announce our loan exhibit this year, A Call to Arms: Chinese Armorial Porcelain for the British and American Markets, 1700-1850,” said Ms. Cavanaugh-Kerr. “This year’s loan exhibit takes a personal turn by honoring one of our own, as a tribute to Elinor Gordon’s time with us and contributions to the world of antiques.”

Hours and Ticket Information

The show is open Saturday: 11 a.m.-8 p.m.; Sunday: 11 a.m.-6 p.m.; Monday and Tuesday: 11 a.m.-8 p.m. General Admission is $18 at the door; Guided Show Tours, 10-11 a.m. Saturday through Tuesday, are $25, including admission and show catalog. For more information visit www.philaantiques.com or call (215) 387-3500.

A Preview Gala, to be held on Friday, April 16, at The Navy Yard, will inaugurate the four-day show and sale. Advance tickets required.

Special Events

World Collectors Night
April 17, 6-10 p.m.; sponsored by Anthropologie, Inc., World Collectors will travel to booths to get special passports stamped and enjoy food, cocktails and shopping. After-party next door at the Urban Outfitters Corporate Campus. $125. 

ADA Award of Merit Dinner
April 17, 8-10 p.m.; dine with experts as the Antiques Dealers Association honors Richard and Jane Nylander,  2010 recipients of the ADA Award of Merit. Info.: (203) 364-9913. $85. 

McNeil Curator Lecture: A Call to Arms
April 18, 1:30-2:30 p.m.; Ron Fuchs II, curator at The Reeves Center and Lee University, will discuss the export of Chinese porcelain to the British and American markets between 1700 and 1850, highlighting many of the examples in the loan exhibit. Free with general admission.

Bullion and Tassels and Frogs—Oh My!
April 19, noon-2 p.m.; Edward Goodman, director of Trim at Scalamandré, will discuss artisan-made Passementerie. $70 includes lecture, lunch and admission. 

Complimentary Shuttle Service

The Philadelphia Antiques Show will provide complimentary shuttle service from Amtrak’s 30th Street Station to The Navy Yard beginning with the Gala Preview Reception on Friday, April 16 through Tuesday, April 20, 2010. Shuttles will depart from 30th Street Station every 15 minutes on the hour from the corner of John F. Kennedy Boulevard and 30th Street. 

The Philadelphia Cruise Terminal at Pier One in The Navy Yard is located at 5100 South Broad Street in Philadelphia.


Almanac - April 13, 2010, Volume 56, No. 29