Leonard Joel

Life Imitates Art in the Evolution of an Antiques Empire

Single Owner Auctions 19 Dec 2014

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The physical and cultural landscape of Melbourne’s High Street, Armadale, will be forever changed when the stock in trade of Graham Geddes Antiques is dispersed over two sessions in a relocation auction in March 2015, owing to the redevelopment of the property the business has occupied for over 40 years. Since 1972, 877 High Street Armadale has been a focal point for local and international collectors of fine antiques, art and antiquities. It has also been the scene of riotous parties and philosophical debates, thanks to the gregarious – and at times mercurial – nature of larger-than-life proprietor, Graham Geddes.

114During this time, the footprint of the business has grown to encompass three palatial shop fronts with adjoining galleries and workshops, housing a vast inventory which has become renowned as an encyclopaedic catalogue of styles, spanning Asian and European antiquities through to early European and English furniture and objects. Practical motivations aside, Geddes’ decision to part with his tightly held stock in trade is as much a demonstration of the foresight which has driven one of the most diverse and enduring large scale antiques business in Australia, as it is a reflection of the dynastic machinations associated with many of the ancient artefacts held in his collection. His eldest daughter, Lilly, will assume management of the statuary and antique hire divisions of the business, with Graham focussing on dealing in high-end Asian works of art, enjoying his personal collection and holding fundraising events. But whatever the future holds for this enigmatic elder statesman of the Australian antiques industry, it is sure to be embarked upon with the same passion and vigour which has been a hallmark of his life’s work and will surely be something to behold.

The Graham Geddes Antiques Relocation Auction will be held on  21-22 March 2015

Enquiries
Guy Cairnduff
Head of Classic Furniture & Objects
03 8825 5611
guy.cairnduff@leonardjoel.com.au