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Weird and wonderful art to go on sale in Paris

Monday, September 26, 2011 - 01:21

A large collection of vintage fairground art is exhibited in Paris ahead of an auction next week.Sharon Reich reports.

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One of France's biggest fairground art collections is set to go under the hammer at Drouot Montaigne in Paris later this week. The auction includes all kinds of weird and wonderful objects from wooden horses to anatomical pieces showing the consequences of sexually transmitted diseases and infections. But among the merry-go-round mopeds and other souvenirs the exhibition is also interesting because it presents an unknown form of art. French couple Francois and Fabienne Marchal have spent 40 years gathering 900 fairground art pieces from countries all over Europe. SOUNDBITE: Fabienne Marchal, art collector, saying (French): "These objects were all linked to the fair so considered as not interesting, they were despised. So a lot of them were destroyed because at that time this kind of equipment was too cumbersome to be kept in storerooms. Some of the objects included in the sale date back to the 19th century. The couple started the collection by accident, buying a wooden horse on a market. Today, they are selling 80 horses, as well as 160 other animals, decorated sets, carousels, and wax fortune-tellers. The most expensive item is valued at almost 35,000 euros. Sales of such items are relatively recent, with a similar sale having taken place in 1997 in London when the Tussaud collection was auctioned by Christie's in London. Sharon Reich, Reuters

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Weird and wonderful art to go on sale in Paris

Monday, September 26, 2011 - 01:21