SOUTH KENSINGTON.- Christies announce that they will offer the fascinating private collection of Roger Warner at South Kensington on 20 and 21 January 2009. One of the most renowned and admired British antique dealers of the 20th century, Roger Warner ran his legendary shop in Burford, Oxfordshire for 50 years between 1936 and 1986, and during this time attracted an impressive list of visitors and customers including Queen Mary, Princess Margaret, Walt Disney, Peter Ustinov, John Fowler, Bruce Chatwin, Christopher Gibbs and the Mitford sisters. In the 1960s and 1970s, he regularly appeared as an expert with Arthur Negus on the BBCs Going for a Song, the forerunner of The Antiques Roadshow. The auction will offer approximately 700 lots from the private collection of Roger Warner, passionately assembled throughout his lifetime, and is expected to realise in excess of £800,000.
Roger Warner built a reputation for championing regional and vernacular arts, especially early oak furniture, treen, medieval metalware, Delft pottery, pictures and textiles. He was responsible for ensuring that an impressive number of rare survivals were placed in institutional stewardship at The Victoria and Albert Museum, Temple Newsam House in Leeds and The Ashmolean Museum in Oxford.
Roger enjoyed living with his most treasured purchases and was fascinated with the rare and unusual. He kept his favourite discoveries at his home in Burford and delighted in placing a simple domestic candlestick next to the grandest of Elizabethen portraits. He enthusiastically attended Country House sales and fostered an appreciation of the unique, the humble and the naïve, always keeping a meticulous record of the provenance of his purchases.
Andrew Waters, Director of the Private collection and Country House sale department, Christies: Christies is honoured to have been asked to oversee the auction of Roger Warners private collection. Rogers discernment gave him a legendary reputation and a lasting importance. This auction will open the doors to an astounding treasure trove of fascinating pictures furniture and works of art - the very personal and private collection of a modest but remarkable man.
Highlights of the auction include William Wordsworths desk chair from Rydal Mount, a Dolls House decorated by Charlotte Brontë, a remarkable botanical still life collected by Lawrence Johnston at Hidcote Manor, a Royal Tudor coat of arms from Gillingham Castle, rare Lambeth Delft chargers and Reniassance gold-ground portraits of saints. Further details will be announced at a later date.