Jamaicans while almost celebrating the golden jubilee (50th anniversary) of their country, will be able to purchase items of special relevance as gifts, or collectibles for themselves. This weekend will mark two decades of the annual fair of the Antiques & Collectibles Fair held at Campion College. For this year’s 2011 Antiques & Collectibles slated for November 26 and Sunday, November 27, the doors open at 10.00 a.m., and again, especially Jamaica furniture makers will be highlighted for their intense skill internationally sought out in at least 60 years.
Over 30 dealers stationed locally will spread their wares, most of which detailing critical moments of Jamaica ‘s heritage, providing a rich educational experience. From the early colonial period to now, items from literally ‘ a pin to an anchor’ such as vessels, porcelain, cutlery, household machines, furniture and much more will be available for Jamaicans to purchase as antiques or collectibles to adorn their homes, and relate to early days of Jamaica’s history.
Started 1992 by Ainsley Henrique, Steve Solomon and Lorna Chung , the event was conceived after the impact of the first ever British Antique Road show to be held this side of the Atlantic in Kingston earlier that year. Wayne Nasralla is the newest member of the hosting Antique Fair group.
Today, Henriques says there is “vast improvement in way antiques and collectibles are preserved, displayed and interpreted in Jamaica.”
This vast improvement in standard of preservation and explanation of what collectibles and antiques he ascribes to the annually held Antiques & Collectibles Fair, happening at Campion College each year.
Henriques observes that Jamaicans are learning to appreciate the legacies of their foreparents who commissioned or collected these items in earlier times. “In the struggle to become independent there was a time when Jamaicans generally did not respect or preserve old things. This has now changed.”
Jamaicans now appreciate the craftmanship and aethestics of antiques and collectibles. This is evidenced by the increasing number of Jamaicans who turn out each year for the fair as well as the high anticipation expressed among even average Jamaicans at more private showings.
Up to 20 years ago items were collected by a small number of aficionados. Today, people from all walks of life are collecting according to dictates of pockets a wide range of items, says Henriques. He explains that ‘Collectibles’ is what anyone wishes to keep and buy items such as stamps, dolls, old (out of print, production) books, china. “Jamaicans collect all sorts of things, from furniture to clothes, jewelry and silver, china and crystal as well as many other items, stamps, coins, dolls, matchboxes, postcards and photographs and much more” all sorts of things, from furniture to clothes, jewelry and silver, china and crystal as well as many other items, stamps, coins, dolls, matchboxes, postcards and photographs and much more”
Antiques he summarises usually are 50-100 years old depending on category.
In the case of furniture… Jamaican furniture, in particular made from Jamaican mahogany, are highly desirable to own he boasts from his over 20-year observations.
For this 20th anniversary the antique fair group is hosting a ‘Early Bird’ preview on Friday evening with wine and cheese for those who afford tickets specially-priced at $1,000. Otherwise patrons can attend the show for only J$200.