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My dad’s paintings on The Antiques Roadshow

October 16, 2008

The Sunday before last I was sitting in front of the PC, idly wasting my life, when I got a text message:

“Your dad’s artwork is on the Antiques Roadshow”

I had to read it twice before it sunk in. I rushed across the room and excitedly turned on the telly. The Antiques Roadshow expert was standing next to a nice young couple. Behind them were a number of works of art including, remarkably, two of my dad’s paintings from the 70s. It was very bizarre. I looked at my telly: my dad’s paintings. I looked at the wall opposite my telly: my dad’s paintings.

I phoned my mum. I phoned my sister. I told everyone. Then I waited for the show to be available on Iplayer and downloaded it. There it was in all its technicolor glory.

The backstory: Some fellow was working as an electrician in London, gutting someone’s flat. The owner was chucking out a load of paintings and prints, so the electrician rescued them. The artwork sat about for a while before the electrician’s girlfriend persuaded him to take them onto the Roadshow. And among the artwork – all from Argentina – were two of my dad’s pictures.

The ‘expert’ appraising the artwork was a bit of a knob. He mispronounced my dad’s name, and theorised that the works had been done by some kind of Argentine artistic commune – which sounded terribly exotic, but the truth was that my dad was living and painting in Dollis Hill, north London, when he completed the paintings in question. Still, it was quite thrilling to hear a man in a bow-tie talking about my dad. My dad! When I managed to tell my dad about it, he was less excited than I was, which I understand. When family members spotted stuff about my book/website in the press, they were always more thrilled than I was.

The expert then said that properly framed and promoted, my dad’s paintings would fetch between £1200 and £1500. If only that were true.

The following Monday I phoned up the Antiques Roadshow and corrected some of the incorrect information, and passed my email address onto the couple who found the paintings. Maybe they’ll get in contact. I hope so.

My dad lived in London from about 1969 to 1989, when he moved back to Buenos Aires, the city of his birth. During his time here, he worked in import and export (mainly antiques) and painted and did lino-cuts in his spare time. He had quite a few exhibitions, but was never really keen on lots of self-promotion. He sold work – never a lot, but regularly enough. All fathers are heroes, and despite his many flaws, my dad is a big hero of mine. And it was very moving to see his artwork on primetime TV, watched by millions. Well done dad.

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2 comments

  1. Well done indeed!! All very impressed. Send some more prints down here.


  2. God!, that was a suprice in did.Incredible.
    I just to saw that show on cable,like 10 years ago, it was illarious.
    Perecelis…incredible and in my opinion a total crap.I really dontlike him at all.
    Very good for your dad.



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