A CUP OF TEA WITH: LUCY RYDER RICHARDSON, FOUNDER OF THE MIDCENTURY MODERN SHOW
I absolutely love the Midcentury Modern show. If you haven't been, it's a showcase of the best dealers who specialise in midcentury furniture, art and collectables, always hosted in fabulous buildings with some great price ranges, from a tenner to the high hundreds. I've been to two shows, one at Oval cricket ground and a the most recent at Dulwich College. If you, like me, love anything midcentury then you need to come along to May's show in Haggerston (more details below)!
I interviewed one of the founders of the show, Lucy Ryder Richardson, to find out the motivation behind starting the show and if she had any inside tips for finding a bargain! Before you go on to read the full interview, get an overview of the Midcentury Modern show in this short video...
Where did the idea for first setting up the MCM show come about?
We both (Petra, the other founder and I) lived in 60s houses, and there was nowhere we wanted to shop around here. So we thought, well, why don't we do it? We had no knowledge of the industry we just had a complete passion for Scandinavian furniture. We didn't want it to be like a typical antiques fair, so what Petra and I decided to do was mix midcentury and modern, because that's how you would have it in your home.
What is it that you love about the period?
I love the patinas of all the different woods from that time and the organic nature of so much of what was going on from Cherner's work to Alto and Bruno Mathsson. If you look at midcentury and look at what we are buying from home stores today so very little has changed, so why not buy the original and lessen the impact on the planet?
I couldn't agree more! What are your top tips for anyone trying to find a bargain at the show?
Go for what you love. Talk to the dealers and get the story behind the pieces that catch your eye and get them to write it down on the receipt. Pieces with a story always hold more resale value.
Writing it on the receipt - great tip. Do you have any dealers' stands that you would recommend we check out?
We love all the dealers or we would not have handpicked them over so many others who apply for the show. David Tatham of Modern Warehouse has a lot of knowledge, Augustus Greaves has a great eye for an unusual piece, especially Dutch and Danish. We love Russell of London Timepiece. His clocks are always in such great condition. Sophie from Osi Modern has some lovely Danish pieces. Twentieth Century Marks, Pink Flamingo and Danish Homestore sell at good prices.
What is your favourite piece that you have bought yourself, or didn't buy and regretted later?
I wish I had bought a Penguin donkey I once saw on a dealers stand. David Tatham bought it and it turned out to be one of the Isokon flat originals.
I bought an early Eames DCW at the last show that I love. I love everything I have bought at the show from my Charley Harper posters to the Tapio Wirkkala ceramics and rare Barbara hepworth print. Petra and I get very good deals as the dealers want to come back and show again, so we are building up quite a nice collection of pieces ourselves. My only regret so far has been an Yvnge Eckstrom sheepskin pernilla I bought that got scratched up by my cats the minute it entered the house!
Check out some images from past shows to see the type of items on offer...
I'll be heading along to the show at the Erno Goldfinger designed Haggerston school on Sunday May 11th. If you haven't seen the design of this school, be prepared to be blown away...
So have I convinced you to come along yet? Or have you been before? Leave a comment below, I might see you there!