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    Marcello Fantoni Ceramic Figure, ca. 1955

    Appraised Value:


    Appraised on: August 18, 2007

    Appraised in: Las Vegas, Nevada

    Appraised by: Stuart Slavid

    Category: Pottery & Porcelain

    Episode Info: Las Vegas, Hour 2 (#1217)

    Originally Aired: May 19, 2008

    slideshow IMAGE: 1 of 1  

    More Like This:

    Form: Figure
    Material: Ceramic
    Period / Style: 20th Century
    Value Range: $3,000

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    Appraisal Video: (2:23)


    Appraised By:

    Stuart Slavid
    Decorative Arts, Pottery & Porcelain, Silver
    Vice President & Director, Fine Ceramics & Director, American Furniture and Decorative Arts
    Skinner, Inc.

    Appraisal Transcript:
    GUEST: I bought it in '61.

    APPRAISER: Where did you buy it?

    GUEST: Macy's in New York City. It was something I saw that I liked.

    APPRAISER: What do you know about Marcello Fantoni?

    GUEST: Well, from what I've gotten on my computer, I looked it up and I was surprised to see that he was a well-known artist.

    APPRAISER: Do you see a strong influence-- a Picasso influence-- in this?

    GUEST: A little.

    APPRAISER: Yeah. He got a lot of his stylized designs, form, of Picasso's works.

    GUEST: Oh, he did? Oh, good, I hope he's worth as much as Picasso.

    APPRAISER: Well... Let's talk about that. Very unique in his glazes. The stylized designs-- he took a lot of classical designs, and by using different glazes and unique ways of putting the pottery together, you have a very modernistic-looking piece. He didn't do a lot, up until this period, in figures, so what we're looking at is actually a quite unique design and the most desirable of what he made.

    GUEST: Oh, great.

    APPRAISER: He did a little dishes and bowls, more commercial pieces.

    GUEST: Yeah.

    APPRAISER: And today, in most major museums, you'll find one or two examples of his works.

    GUEST: Oh, great.

    APPRAISER: It was produced in Florence, Italy, just around 1950 and maybe a little bit later. It was manufactured to be sold through retail outlets, and the largest group of it was sold in retail outlets in the United States by all of the major department stores.

    GUEST: Oh, good... so Macy's was a good place to look.

    APPRAISER: Exactly. Now, this is in absolutely perfect condition.

    GUEST: Oh, great.

    APPRAISER: And absolutely beautiful colors. And this speaks of him; you don't need to see his signature to know that it's his work.

    GUEST: Yes.

    APPRAISER: And his workshop was quite famous for this type of enamel design.

    GUEST: Oh, great.

    APPRAISER: So let's just swing it all the way around here, and I'd like to show you the mark.

    GUEST: Mm-hmm.

    APPRAISER: He signed in different ways. Sometimes he does his whole first name and you will see "Marcello" imprinted there.

    GUEST: Uh-huh.

    APPRAISER: In this case, you just have the last name and the word "Italy" there. Now, tell me, what did you pay for it back then?

    GUEST: $15.

    APPRAISER: And what do you think it's worth today?

    GUEST: On the computer, I had seen that something similar was offered, I think, for $1,500 or $1,600, I'm not really sure.

    APPRAISER: Yeah, yeah. A major collector would be willing to pay upwards of $3,000 retail.

    GUEST: Oh, my, oh, my. That's a nice return on my money, isn't it?

    APPRAISER: Excellent return. Certainly, the hindsight would want you to have bought more.

    GUEST (laughing): Yeah, I wish I had.

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