Sometimes we are really proud when a piece is bought by a nice person, or a well known collector, or a museum, or sold at an auction with nice result, but also when it goes from hand to hand, proving it's importance.
Especially when the provenance is documented as:
Provenance: Delta 98 Den Haag
In 1992 we bought this pianolamp from the estate of
Willem Retera (1890-1955)
We knew what it was, a so called Gispen Pianolamp, designed by J.J.P. Oud. After thorough research and a visit to study a similar piece and the original drawings of the design in the collection of Museum Boijmans van Beuningen in Rotterdam we could conclude that it was a first edition piece, from 1927. Only a few were made because Oud started a lawsuit against W.H.Gispen who started to produce this design without permission by Oud. Eventually they reached a settlement and in the years after Gispen excuted several types, known as the Giso 404, of these lamps. But thoose all differ from the original design and the first few executed.
In the years following nobody in Holland was willing to pay the price we asked for it. Dutch Gispen and design collectors thought we were mad. Because of that, and because a similar piece was already in a Dutch museum, we offered it in 1999 to Mark (-), a well-known dealer from New York on his yearly visit to The Netherlands, together with a so called Dames Bureau Lamp, Ladies Desk Lamp produced by Gispen in 1928. And the deal was done.
Shortly after Mark offered the pianolamp to Christie's New York, and they placed it in their important auction: Masterworks 1900-2000, in June 2000.
In the catalogue, not only a beautiful picture of the lamp, a picture of J.J.P.Oud the designer himself, a short textual illustration on Oud, Gispen and the lamp, but also a provenance:
Galerie Delta 98 The Hague.
The price realized was nice too ! We were really proud !
Three years later we received a Sotheby's catalogue and there it was,
"our" pianolamp, now presented at the Sotheby's Auction:
The next lot was probably "our" desklamp !
Again a nice price was realized ! Proud again !
Thank you Mark, thank you Christie's, thank you Karl Lagerfeld, thank you Sotheby's and thank you New Owner !
We will always refer and remember this super object.