When I collected furniture and art, I had a weekly ritual of visiting antique dealers and vintage shops looking for pieces that fit my specific area of interest. 15 years ago, very few people were interested in mid-century modern design. I had to educate dealers as to what I was looking for. I made a photo collage of images of works by Meis, Eames, Bruer, Scandinavian and space age design. I had this collage xeroxed and handed it out with my number to all the antique dealers in town. My efforts paid off. The market started to grow and other collectors also joined the pursuit of such pieces.
In one of my mid-century hunting expeditions, I met a a Lawyer, also aggressively collecting in the same area. We developed a friendship and we actually swapped some pieces. Little did I know, he also loved architecture. When I saw his vision creations, it was clear we were “birds of a feather”. He wanted wide wood planks, natural stone and authenticity. He ended up purchasing houses full of Kaufman travertine to clad every surface from the steps, deck, walls and interior floor. Nothing in these houses was made in China. Everything was real and had history.
This prominent and famed lawyer is not into buy and sell. But the irony is when people see a house he has built for himself and offer an amount he couldn’t refuse. This was not unlike Manny Pacquiao offering triple what was invested in the Lorenzo Tan house in Forbes. This lawyer too was offered similar ridiculous figures and got his arm twisted to sell his house. Sometimes he agrees. That is the power of authenticity in attracting people. People are sick and tired of China fakes and low cost copies. Discerning folk are drawn, like a magnetic pull, to what is natural and authentic.