To everything there is a season, and winter is antiques-buying season among the folks who do such things. A slew of shows, big and small, inexpensive and not, are crammed into the next few weeks.
Winter Antiques Show
Park Avenue Armory
67th St. & Park Avenue
Jan. 21-30; $20
The high-society grande dame, now in its 57th year. Not cheap, the event is strong on Shaker furniture, classic American folk art, globes, gilt-edged mirrors, 18th-century clocks and the kind of tables the Founding Fathers might have supped at.
Dealers include: Philip Colleck, W. Graham Arader II, Kenneth Rendell autographs.
Highlight: Beyond the swanky annual gala, which benefits East Side Settlement House, there are ample opportunities for celeb-spotting. Martha Stewart, Oprah Winfrey, Michael Douglas and Woody Allen have shopped here in the past.
Americana & Antiques at the Pier
12th Avenue and 55th Street
Jan. 22-23; $15
This pier by the Hudson is a less swanky location than those that host some of the other antiques shows, but it makes up for it in sheer volume of material. This blockbuster features about 200 dealers, many from New England.
Dealers include: 20th Century Design, Johnnycake Books, Robert Perry, Philip Chasen Antiques.
Highlight: The show this year adds a “Book Alley,” a section devoted to vintage volumes and art books. For shoppers who really want to get on the tea-table/duck-decoy circuit, there’s a free shuttle to take visitors to sister antiques fairs.
The Atlantic City Antiques and Collectors Show
Atlantic City Convention Center
One Convention Boulevard
March 19-20; $18
This huge flea market replaces the veteran “Atlantique City,” canceled last year by organizers. The sheer volume of merchandise is the draw. The event is strong on toys, jewelry, vintage kitchen gadgets and supplies. There’s also a wide variety of mid-century Christmas and Halloween material, for those nostalgic types trying to replicate holidays at Grandma’s.
Dealers include Vintage fashion and advertising.
Highlight: An appraisal center, staffed with Antiques Roadshow-style experts, will estimate the value of items brought in. The cost is $5 per item.
American International Fine Art Fair
Palm Beach Convention Center
650 Okeechobee Boulevard
West Palm Beach, Fla.
Feb. 5-13; $15
Perhaps the lushest of the antiques fairs (thick carpets, copious caviar, old New York money), this one features a good mix of U.S., British and European dealers offering high-end jewels, pretty pictures, Asian art and antique furniture. The well-attended Feb. 4 opening party benefits the Norton Museum of Art.
Dealers include: Graff Jewelers, Mallet, Michael Goedhius.
Highlight: Spotting celebrities and captains of industry like Donald Trump, Regis Philbin and Wilbur Ross haggling.
Master Drawings New York
66th to 81st Streets off Madison Avenue
Here, the antiques are of an artistic nature. One week every year about two dozen Upper East Side dealers in works on paper (and their European partners) hold extended hours and special exhibitions. A quick walk up Madison can yield a Rembrandt, Tiepelo or Pissarro.
Dealers include: JIll Newhouse, Richard Feigen, David Tunick.
Highlight: The free Friday, Jan. 21, when openings from 4 p.m. on are delightful, clubby parties.
Outsider Art Fair
7 West 34th Street, off Fifth Avenue
Feb. 11-13; $20
“Outsider art” is a broad moniker for works that can be folk art, art by self-taught artists, “visionary” art or so-called art brut. But, whatever you call it, it’s a booming category that has gotten the reputation of being underpriced.
Dealers include: Ames Gallery, Maxwell Projects, Ricco/Maresca Gallery.
Highlight: A preview Feb. 10 will benefit Creative Growth Art Center and Fountain Gallery, which work with artists dealing with disability or mental illness.
The American Antiques Show
The Metropolitan Pavilion
125 West 18th Street
The event is celebrating its 10th year, and its exhibitors-which include some big names in the field-are offering items from the past 300 years. Categories include folk art, American Indian art, ceramics, silver. Jan. 19 is the de rigueur annual benefit for the American Folk Art Museum.
Dealers include: John Molloy, Galerie St. Etienne, Gemini Antiques, Judith and James Milne Inc.
Highlight: Museum members can sign up (at extra cost) for a Jan. 21 “insider’s day” that will include tours of private collections.