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Program 104

Lochgilphead

Mid-Argyle Sports Center, LochgilpheadHighlightsLocation

In the Scottish town of Lochgilphead, host Michael Aspel and the ANTIQUES ROADSHOW UK experts find several objects with interesting tales. They include a painting by Scottish artist James Hamilton McKenzie of a little girl on a beach commissioned by the owner's family, a powerful image painted on an asbestos tile at an internment camp, and a carved-bone ship.



James Hamilton McKenzie painting appraised by Neil McRae

McKenzie painting The painting of a little girl on the beach is by Glasgow artist James Hamilton McKenzie. He was a friend of the owner's family and commissioned to paint it in the Solway Firth, where the family went on holiday each year. The painting is of the owner's sister, who she says was a reluctant model at the time and wanted to join her sisters playing on the beach. Expert Neil McRae says this is an unusual subject for McKenzie, who is better known for landscapes. Sadly, McKenzie died quite young when he accidentally fell out of a train. Neil says the painting is worth £3,000 to £4,000 ($4,500 to $6,000).

 

Asbestos tile painting appraised by Rupert Maas

Asbestos tile painting Rupert Maas looks at sketches and a painted asbestos tile belonging to the owner's father, who escaped from Germany in 1939. The owner explains that her father was interned when he reached England and although he wasn't a painter himself, he befriended many painters in the internment camp. Many of the sketches are signed by Kurt Schwitters, who was involved in the Dadaist movement in the 1920s and then established his own artistic movement, called Merz. Rupert says the painting on the tile, which the owner must have found lying around the camp, is a "powerful image," and with its provenance could fetch £2,000 to £3,000 ($3,000 to $4,500). The owner is very surprised.

 

Carved-bone ship appraised by Hilary Kay

Bone ship The owners of a carved-bone ship are delighted to see it out of its glass case for the first time. Hilary Kay explains that during the Napoleonic Wars, French prisoners of war were kept in prison hulks, where they managed to produce wares out of the materials they could get hold of, such as straw, wood and bones, and in fact created quite a niche market for themselves. She says the way to gauge the quality of the ship is to look at the deck details. This one has lots of nice detail. It is made out of mutton or beef bones and decorated with horn. The rigging is in surprisingly good condition and has been replaced at some time. It is valued at £7,000 to £10,000 ($10,500 to $15,000), but the owner says "it's much too beautiful to sell."

 

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