6:00pm – Sunday, June 3 on ABC1
Host William McInnes takes us back to the much-loved Melbourne institution The Collector, an auction house in the eastern suburb of Murrumbeena. The theme of this auction is blokey: sport, tools, military and ‘pubanalia’.
Bruce Rogers is an inveterate collector who describes himself as a ‘picker’, constantly acquiring items he likes the look of, and then on-selling them so he can buy yet more stuff, as he puts it.
He is selling a Victorian-era Magic Lantern, an early version of the slide projector. It is made of steel and brass, and projects a powerful beam of light through glass photographic slides. Bruce is also selling a Tantalus, which is a type of decanter in which the bottle stoppers are locked down tightly by a metal bar.
This was to prevent the theft of the contents by servants.
Meanwhile, Helen Bernard is a bowel cancer survivor who had a long, hard battle before beating the disease.
Before her sickness, she and her husband Ross were enthusiastic collectors of antiques and decorative arts pieces. After feeling overwhelmed by their collection, they are clearing the decks because materialism now means absolutely nothing to them.
They have started with two decorative pieces, both of ethnic origins. The first is an impressive Japanese Shibayama vase. The inlay is mother-of-pearl and ox bone and the piece is 61cm tall. Although slightly damaged, it is nonetheless very handsome.
Their other offering is an African carved ebony female head and torso, 30-cm tall and very heavy, as ebony is an extremely dense timber.
Please be advised that auction results are embargoed until broadcast