Cantagalli Majolica Brackets, ca. 1905

Value (2008) | $4,000 Auction$6,000 Auction

GUEST:
My grandfather came from Italy after World War II and his business was bringing art in and antiques and he bought and sold all kinds of things over the years. But he kept very little. For some reason, this is what he kept. He got them in the '50s at an outdoor market. I think it was in Venice. I know one of them is a real piece and one of them is an imitation. He knew that when he bought them and that's all the information I have.

APPRAISER:
They're brackets made out of terra cotta and decorated with tin glaze. The tin in the glaze is what gives you the white. That is referred to in Italy as majolica. Stylistically, they're very much 16th-century objects. What you have is a very typical subject of a winged putto. That patch is not really a chip so much as a glaze loss. There is also on the corner a small chip to the edge of the bracket that shows you the orangish terra cotta inside. But other than that, they're in really great shape. They could do with a lot of the dark brown on them is just dirt. At auction I think that they would sell between $4,000 and $6,000, maybe more.

GUEST:
Wow, I'm shocked. Really? Amazing.

APPRAISER:
Really lovely examples.

GUEST:
I'm so happy to get this information because we've wondered for years.

APPRAISER:
They're fabulous. Thank you very much.

Appraisal Details

Appraiser
Christie's
New York, New York
Appraised value (2008)
$4,000 Auction$6,000 Auction
Event
Palm Springs, CA (June 07, 2008)
Period
20th Century
Form
Figurine
Material
Majolica

Executive producer Marsha Bemko shares her tips for getting the most out of ANTIQUES ROADSHOW.

Value can change: The value of an item is dependent upon many things, including the condition of the object itself, trends in the market for that kind of object, and the location where the item will be sold. These are just some of the reasons why the answer to the question "What's it worth?" is so often "It depends."

Note the date: Take note of the date the appraisal was recorded. This information appears in the upper left corner of the page, with the label "Appraised On." Values change over time according to market forces, so the current value of the item could be higher, lower, or the same as when our expert first appraised it.

Context is key: Listen carefully. Most of our experts will give appraisal values in context. For example, you'll often hear them say what an item is worth "at auction," or "retail," or "for insurance purposes" (replacement value). Retail prices are different from wholesale prices. Often an auctioneer will talk about what she knows best: the auction market. A shop owner will usually talk about what he knows best: the retail price he'd place on the object in his shop. And though there are no hard and fast rules, an object's auction price can often be half its retail value; yet for other objects, an auction price could be higher than retail. As a rule, however, retail and insurance/replacement values are about the same.

Verbal approximations: The values given by the experts on ANTIQUES ROADSHOW are considered "verbal approximations of value." Technically, an "appraisal" is a legal document, generally for insurance purposes, written by a qualified expert and paid for by the owner of the item. An appraisal usually involves an extensive amount of research to establish authenticity, provenance, composition, method of construction, and other important attributes of a particular object.

Opinion of value: As with all appraisals, the verbal approximations of value given at ROADSHOW events are our experts' opinions formed from their knowledge of antiques and collectibles, market trends, and other factors. Although our valuations are based on research and experience, opinions can, and sometimes do, vary among experts.

Appraiser affiliations: Finally, the affiliation of the appraiser may have changed since the appraisal was recorded. To see current contact information for an appraiser in the ROADSHOW Archive, click on the link below the appraiser's picture. Our Appraiser Index also contains a complete list of active ROADSHOW appraisers and their contact details and biographies.