That's the full title of my book , but it quickly shortened itself to simply "Collecting Quimper".
Nothing in print really followed that path.
My ideas clarified when I was asked to appraise several collections at that time: I stayed first in the charming guest house of a gorgeous estate in upstate New York
In each place, my collector-hosts entertained me lavishly and gave me free rein to admire their surroundings as I documented their Quimper collections. Somehow, I wanted to share that experience with other collectors, and, more importantly, erstwhile collectors. I felt that a book that showed real collections, and how people incorporated them into their lives and homes would be of lasting value for newcomers to the field.
The other major problem to sort out was giving values. That is something everyone, with even the slightest interest, wants to know: "What is it worth?" That took a great deal of reflection, and I finally (thankfully!) came up with a formula that I believe is still valid today, forty years later. I did not give values in named $$$ amounts, but rather pegged things, using terms like: Museum Range,
Very High,all the way down to Inexpensive and Current Retail.
Why "Thankfully"? Because in these forty-some years that I have been involved in this field, I've seen prices rise , shoot through the roof, and then fall way, way back down, as interest in all but the most extraordinary things has waned.
There are many books now, both in French and in English. For a while, books became a kind of
mini-industry offshoot of collecting the faience itself. However, I can say that even now, no other book has shown what this one does: how to live with your passion!
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© Photos: Joan Datesman