Monthly Archives: February 2011

Austrian Postcards

I suspect that I will never exhaust my supply of vintage postcards. The latest job lot all feature Austrian scenes. These ones are almost all unused. Which makes them slightly more efficient to use  – less time trying to decipher the scrawl on the back. I bought a batch of Devon ones recently from the 60s and 70s, one of the correspondents (writing to an address in London) had used the space to decry the amount of Northerners in Paignton.

As an aside – the postcard bottom left is of Linz – my one and only experience of hitchhiking was from Salzburg to Linz. Alas . . . not the centre of Linz but some motorway services on the outskirts, from which we decided to walk, and then catch a bus to the train station . . . bad decision. The hitchhiking itself was ok; apart from the driver showing us that he could operate the steering wheel with his knees.


Leave a comment

Filed under Design


I went to an auction last week and got outbid on everything that I wanted except for one thing. It needs some research but was made by either Karl or Franz Hagenauer in Vienna in, I guess, circa 1930. The Hagenauer father and son team were part of the Wiener Werkstätte – a community of artists and designers that evolved from the Secession movement and predated the Bauhaus – Schiele, Kokoschka and Klimt were all on the fringes of the association. The item is basically a  hefty lump of brass. There’s something very nice about it.

Sometimes you sit in an auction room and everything goes your way. The items you don’t want have fierce bidding wars over them and the items you do want  you manage to secure for low estimate. The specialities and knowledge of a rural auction house can only run so far. In the sale last week was an African head rest – catalogued at £40-£60. It sold for something like £2,500 with all the bids originating from 3 people bidding on the phones; my seated neighbour in the sale room said that he had been prepared to go up to £250. It wasn’t to be his day.

Leave a comment

Filed under Craft, Design

Exit stage left

Even chickens get camera shy.

Unfortunately they don’t seem to be shy in other aspects of life. I can now open the front door at almost any point during the day and guarantee that there will be 3 chickens installed on the front step. If they could actually muster the enthusiasm to lay some eggs I may be more forgiving.

Leave a comment

Filed under Birds