Charles Catteau Boch Frères Vase, ca. 1930
I went to a flea market and there was a piece laying on a blanket, and it just got me off and running. And I just had the fever.
Is this one of the first pieces of Charles Catteau that you bought?
It... I bought this in '84.
And, so, I'd been collecting for about two years then.
This is a work of the best-known Belgian potter, certainly of the inter-war years, Boch Frères. I would date it to 1930 or '31. At the time this was made, Catteau was the artistic director of the Boch Frères works. He was a Frenchman. Whenever you have exotic animals, elephants, and so on, you're going to increase the value. I would estimate this piece of Boch Frères to be worth at least $5,000 today, and perhaps $6,000 or $7,000.
More than its ever been. This is an exceptional piece. It's got the right kind of subtle, sophisticated Art Deco look. And thanks very much for bringing it in.
Thanks, Nick, I really appreciate you appraising it for me.
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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."
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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.
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