Oakmont Kerr Museum to benefit from antiques show
By Cynthia Bombach Helzel
Published: Friday, March 1, 2013, 8:07 p.m.
In 1897, the first doctor in Oakmont commissioned a comfortable Queen Anne-style home that accommodated his family living spaces as well as his medical office. The home, now open to the public as the Kerr Memorial Museum, is the inspiration for next weekend's antiques show at Oakmont Country Club.
“Every single penny of profit goes straight through to the museum,” show manager Jack Squires says. Both the Kerr house and Oakmont Country Club are on the National Register of Historic Places.
Squires, an experienced antiques dealer, carefully screened the 25 participating vendors, most of whom return to the show every year. “They have a wonderful range of things, from china to porcelain to furniture, whimsy, paintings and books,” Squires says. “And it's all guaranteed. We stand behind everything.”
Squires estimates that about 1,000 people will attend the show. He says that most dealers are happy to discuss with curious shoppers the history and origins of their pieces. “Don't be afraid to talk to the dealers,” he says.
One of the dealers who is eager to discuss her wares with the public is Jane Langol of Medina, Ohio. Langol approaches the business with an artist's eye, seeking unique items and displaying them in a gallery-like setting. “I look for strong visual material that stands alone,” she says. Her offerings this weekend will include oil paintings, art pottery, textiles and a smattering of Native American and African pieces.
Langol does 15 shows to 16 shows a year throughout the eastern half of the country, including Nashville, Saratoga Springs, N.Y., and New England, but the Oakmont show is one of her favorites.
“This venue is a quality show of a smaller size that is well-managed in a beautiful setting. ... Plus, it's great fun,” she says. “There is a wonderful sense of anticipation and excitement before the show.”
Steve White has traveled from Skaneateles, N.Y., each of the past eight years to participate in the antiques show. He credits the museum committee and the country-club staff for creating an event that caters to dealers and buyers alike.
“The club is superb, and they bend over backwards to make sure everything is right,” he says. White deals primarily in American furniture and paintings from 1700 to 1950. He'll be bringing a selection of paintings and furniture, including a mid-18th century Queen Anne chest of drawers on cabriolet legs.
Michael Malley of East End Galleries credits the show's vitality to the planning committee, led by Jan Shupe. “The committee is a 12-month committee,” Malley says. “They're working all year long, and their dedication is evident.”
Malley specializes in silver and “one-of-a-kind things,” he says. This weekend, his offerings will include a North African folding screen inlaid with bone, miniature furniture and a mahogany campaign chair with dog-head carvings.
There will be a preview party for the show from 6:30 to 9 p.m. March 8 at Oakmont Country Club. Tickets for this event are $75.
Cynthia Bombach Helzel is a contributing writer for Trib Total Media.
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