April - Market place and other things

Google rankings
It is almost exactly two years since this --- Artists and Ancestors --- Miniature Portrait Art Collection website commenced. I do not keep a record of how many visitors there have been, but there must have been a quite a number.

It must also be fulfilling a useful function of some nature, as "Artists and Ancestors" has now reached the top of the Google rankings in three of the four relevant searches.

It is currently ranked top for:
miniature portrait
"miniature portrait"
"portrait miniature"
and ranks second, after the Victoria and Albert Museum for:
portrait miniature

I will try to maintain these rankings and keep it interesting for future visitors!

The market place
There have not been many interesting American miniature items sold at auction so far this month, apart from the Benjamin West miniature separately described at View

If other American miniatures are sold during April which seem worth commenting on, I may add them to this post later in the month.

However there has been a fine miniature sold which was painted by Charles Fraser (1782-1860) the famous Charleston artist.

It was offered at auction by Charlton Hall Galleries, with good provenance and was described as being "JUDGE MITCHELL KING (1783-1862) watercolor on ivory, framed, unsigned, engraved: verso of frame, Mitchell King Born 1783 Painted by Charles Fraser Charleston, October 1822 H4" W3 1/4".

As can be seen in the smaller image, the miniature has been reframed in a chased frame from the early 20C which is a minor drawback.

The estimate was $7000/$9000, but it achieved a hammer price of $17,000, which when the buyer's commission is added, equates to a price of around $20,000. This may be a record for the artist.

Jewelry Symposium

I mentioned in an earlier post that I had turned down an opportunity to earn income by have advertisements on the website. However, I do not mind mentioning occasional events that are related to the subject in some way.

As an example, I have been contacted by an organiser for a conference which is a two day lecture series about jewelry. It is being organized by the chief curator of jewelry from the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Yvonne Markowitz, and Elyse Karlin, a noted jewelry historian and author.

It is the Third Annual Conference on Jewelry & Related Arts, entitled "Ahead of Its Time: Artistic Jewelry in the Milieu of 1900" and will examine personal ornament as a decorative art against the background of the turn of the 19th into the 20th century.

It will explore a number of emergent jewelry movements, including Arts & Crafts, Art Nouveau, and Jugendstil. All stood in stark contrast to mainstream jewelry and represent an exciting phase in jewelry history. Speakers will examine the philosophical and inspirational sources for these changes; the political, and social climate of the time; and the popular motifs and technological innovations that characterize the various movements.

The conference will be held at The Massachusetts College of Art in Boston, Massachusetts in October. Tickets are limited so if you are interested, you should investigate it further at the website. Here is a link to the site at

Young artist
Although I have not seen examples of her work, I note a reference to a young artist, Catalina Viejo Lopez De Roda who paints miniatures as well as larger portraits, see Portrait of the artist as a young woman

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