• NEW YORK, New York
  • /
  • February 15, 2011

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Pair of Chinese three color glaze Buddhist lions Ming Dynasty, from Peter Vallin.

The inaugural Art and Antique Dealers League of America (AADLA) Spring Show NYC stands up for our four-legged friends with an opening night preview, on Wednesday, April 27, at the Park Avenue Armory that benefits ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®). Guests at the preview will discover a special selection of animal-themed artworks at each of the sixty dealer booths, with a portion of proceeds from those works going to the ASPCA.  It’s an art bash with a wild side.

A PAIR OF SETTERS by Alexander Pope, American, 1849 ‐ 1924. Oil on canvas. Framed: 43 x 55" Canvas: 36 1/4 x 48" From Hyde Park Antiques.

Honorary Co-chairs of the Connoisseurs Committee are Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump. The committee co-chairs include: Michael Bruno, Mario Buatta, David Patrick Columbia, Celerie Kemble, Brian McCarthy, Miles Redd, Ellen and Chuck Scarborough, Michael Smith, Bunny Williams, and Vicente Wolf. (, the online luxury marketplace for antiques, 20th and 21st century design, estate and fine jewelry, vintage couture, and fine art is the show’s sponsor.

Here are some of the show’s highlights:

Ancient and modern cultures alike have recognized the totemic power of animals to symbolize specific character traits or cultural values, and animal motifs figure into many ritual and ceremonial objects as a result. At Douglas Dawson, an enigmatic earthenware figurine from 20th-century Nigeria, used as a burial marker, bears both human and animal features; at Arnold Lieberman, a 19th-century statue of Ganapati, the beloved part-human, part-elephant Hindu deity, is fashioned from gilt brass and hails from Nepal. Animals might also signify more pragmatic attributes like power and wealth, as evidenced in a lustrous carpet in gold and blue from 19th-century China that depicts the eight horses of Zhou dynasty emperor Mu Wang. Find it at M. Topalian Fine Antique Carpets.  And for a wall adornment, Vojtech Blau offers a beautiful six and half foot high late 17th century Flemish Game Park wool and silk tapestry panel.

Japanese sake ewer, formed of pure silver and shaped by the artist from a single sheet of silver! The elephant's trunk forms the spout, and a curious monkey (a beautiful silver sculpture in itself) forms the finial. Japan, Taisho period, 9.8" H. From Orientations Gallery.

Other pieces approach their animal subjects in a more playful manner. Take, for example, the artfully sculpted dog figures on offer at a handful of dealers. Clinton Howell has a painted terra cotta bullmastiff with lifelike glass eyes (Austria, c. 1870) that begs for a new home. O’Sullivan Antiques stocks a similar piece from 19th-century Austria, this one of a seated pug. And at R.M. Barokh, a lovably shaggy white-haired mutt from 19th-century England stands at attention, ready to be adopted. If dogs aren’t enough, try a pair of French bookends (c. 1885) from Charles Cheriff galleries, which feature a lively cat-and-pup duo in patina bronze, each atop their own gilt-bronze pouf. Or perhaps a princely pair of Late Regency gilt bronze stirrup cups (c. 1840) from N.P. Trent Antiques, one sporting the head of a lion and the other a fox; or from Orientations Gallery, a late-19th century life-like Japanese ivory sculpture of an Akita, the eyes inlaid with horn for a realistic effect. Hyde Park Antiques offers a handsome pair of Irish William IV Elm Armchairs, Circa 1830, with the unusual feature of dog-form arm supports.

Still, fine art caves to the canines with a lovable pet portrait, A Sporting Dog Lying Down (c. 1800), by German painter Johann Christoph Rincklake, on view at L’Antiquaire & The Connoisseur. And at Jack Kilgore & Co., German genre painter Fritz Von Uhde’s Les Chiens Savants (The Performing Dogs) (1880) centers on a pack of precocious poodles in party hats entertaining an appreciative pack of tavern-goers. Bring this one home and who knows—your own pet pup might just learn a few new tricks.

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The Art and Antique Dealers League of America, Inc., is the oldest and principal antiques and fine arts organization in America. The purpose for organizing the league was to bring the various members of the art and antiques trade closer together to promote a greater understanding among themselves and with the public, and generally to devote itself to the best interest of dealers and collectors of antiques and works of art.

ABOUT 1STDIBS.COM, the Spring Show NYC sponsor, is an online luxury marketplace that presents a carefully curated selection of highly coveted items from the most prestigious dealers in high-end antiques, 20th- and 21st-century

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