20th Century & Contemporary Art & Design

James Nurse

Head of Department


James has over 20 years of experience selling 20th century and contemporary art and design. Initially specialising in mid-century furniture, James’ expertise now extends to include art, ceramics and sculpture from the early 20th century through to the present day.

The next 20th Century & Contemporary Art & Design auction will take place on Tuesday 17th October

Entries are invited for the October sale. To request a complimentary valuation or to discuss the market please send images of your items to James Nurse.


Specialising in offering rarely seen and privately owned individual works and collections, the department continues to witness exponential growth reflecting the global demand for 20th century and contemporary art, sculpture, ceramics and furniture.

Decorative Art

Glass and ceramics perform very well and regularly feature examples from the Art Nouveau, Jugendstil and Vienna Secession movements.  The 1930’s Art Deco period is well represented with ceramics and glass by makers including Lalique, Moser, Lenci, Essevi and Clarice Cliff.

Venini, Dino Martens, Barovier & Tosso, Orrefors and Whitefriars are among the mid- 20th century glass makers who continue to sell well whilst British studio pottery is dominated by names including Lucie Rie, Bernard Leach, John Ward and Gordon Baldwin.


The Post-War art market remains the second largest after Modern Art globally and there is consistent demand in the sales for original works and prints by recognised names such as John Piper, Bernard Buffet, Victor Vasarely and Andy Warhol.

Contemporary artists including Banksy, Damien Hirst and Marc Quinn have performed well in past sales and interest in both them and their contemporaries is strong.


The trend for mid-century Danish furniture continues to rise with designs by Hans Wegner, Mogens Kold & Arne Vodder selling well. Designers including Paul Evans and Paolo Buffa and makers such as John and Sylvia Reid for Stag and Robin Day for Hille consistently appeal to buyers. The sales also offer contemporary designs by B&B Italia, Minotti and Capellini.


View our past catalogues: 

July 2017 /  May 2017March 2017 


November 2016 / September 2016 / July 2016 / May 2016 / March 2016


December 2015 / September 2015 / July 2015 / April 2015



A Selection of 20th Century & Contemporary Art & Design Highlights




We are pleased to have showcased works of art donated by the artists to the Essential School of Painting to raise funds for improvements to the school in the 1st December 2015 sale.

Works included three large oil paintings by Gwen Hardie of which one example is shown below. Please use the link to the Essential School of Painting above for a list of contributing artist.


Highlights from previous sales:




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