New Oral History Interview – Simon Spero

Our lead volunteer, Chris Coles, interviewed the antique ceramics specialist dealer Simon Spero in London the other week – thank you both to Simon and to Chris for taking the time to do the interview!

Simon-Spero-shop 2

Simon Spero’s shop, London, c.2010. Image, wikicommons.

Here’s Simon’s shop in London (above) – the interview gives us a fascinating insight into the world of the specialist dealer.  During the interview Simon told us that he’s always been a collector, from his earliest age, and his dealing activities are clearly networked into personal conversations with collectors – he eschews the internet, for example.  Many of you will also know Simon as an author, and his published books on 18th century English ceramic factories are regarded as key reference works for collectors.

The interview includes Simon’s reflections on his first shop (in Kentish Town, London) and his recollections on influential dealers in ceramics such as Reg Andrade in Plymouth, and Robert Williams from Winifred Williams (London), as well as some of the major ceramics collectors he has sold to over the years.  It’s an amazingly detailed account of the world of the ceramic specialist dealer-scholar-collector and will be of considerable interest to those interested in the history of the antiques trade.

And, like all of the other interviews we are undertaking as part of the Antique Dealers research project, a version of the interview will be available via the project websites in the coming months.



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