Country Life previews Olympia 2014

Many antiques fairs have sponsored lectures, along with curated loan exhibitions, but I believe that the first to organise a full seminar was the International Ceramics Fair from 1982-now subsumed into Art Antiques London (see p178). This year’s summer Olympia, tomorrow to June 15, has a remarkably ambitious lecture programme as well as a 150th-anniversary show featuring the largest collection of Archibald Knox’s metalwork and jewellery ever assembled in one spot.

There will be up to three talks daily on a wide variety of art-world subjects and lecturers include curators from the British Museum, the National Galleries of Scotland, the National Portrait Gallery, the V&A, Royal Museums Greenwich and the Yorkshire Sculpture Park.

The final day is given over to VIEW: A Festival of Art History, organised by the Institut français du Royaume-Uni on the theme of ‘Makers: Stories of Craftsmen and Craftswomen who Revolutionised Decorative Arts’: the potter Bernard Palissy (1510-90), Thomas Chippendale (1718-79), Emile Gallé (1846-1904) and Eileen Gray (1878-1976). The first VIEW Festival, in February, was very well received (

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