Dear John: I enjoy your column in our Citrus County Chronicle and hope you can evaluate the history and value of my solid brass, Danish I believe, mortar and pestle that I received from my grandparents. The one photo shows a date of 1590. Could that be the casting date? Are you aware of a market for such Danish brass? Thanks for your reply and expertise. — R.E., internet
Dear R.E.: I think your decorative mortar and pestle is made of bronze because of the pinkish color of the metal. Yes, there is collector interest in Danish brass. The hot spot of interest is 20th century decorative arts. The piece you have was made in the 20th century in the style of the 16th century and is of no specific collector value.
Dear John: I have an authentic Japanese Geisha umbrella. It was purchased in an antiques store in New York City in the early 1920s. It is in great condition. Is there any value in this item? — R.Z., internet
Dear R.Z.: Yes, there is likely to be some interest in your Geisha umbrella. If the handle is decorative, include a photograph of it. Make sure the photographs of the umbrella are nice and clear. Include the dimensions, both open and closed, and look it over closely for any kind of labels, etc., then perhaps I can help you.
Dear John: I live in Massachusetts; my deceased uncle lived in Inverness and had Asian artifacts that maybe you could help me with. I have no idea of the worth and do not want the stuff, but do not want to dispose of it either. I am sending some pictures. I would appreciate any advice you can give us. — G. & M.C., internet
Dear G. & M.C.: There is very little interest in the mid-Eastern brassware as well as the African items. There may be some specific collector interest in the Chinese and Japanese ceramics. I suggest you contact Asian antiques specialist Lark Mason, who makes regular appearances on the Antiques Roadshow television show. His auction company website is www.igavelauctions.com. Good luck.
John Sikorski has been a professional in the antiques business for 30 years. Send questions to Sikorski’s Attic, P.O. Box 2513, Ocala, FL 34478 or firstname.lastname@example.org.