Laurence Mitchell, known as the Meissen Man
Laurence Mitchell’s interest in collecting began at a very early age with his many visits to his mother’s antique shop in London’s Camden Passage. By his early teens he had also developed a passion for stamp collecting and by the age of sixteen had left school to pursue a career as a philatelic dealer. It was not until his early twenties that he bought his first piece of rare Meissen and from then on he was hooked.
For over thirty five years Laurence has travelled the globe in his quest to become a world authority in Meissen porcelain. His encyclopaedic knowledge of the subject is the result of his visits to the great wealth of Meissen in both leading museums and private collections in London, Los Angeles, Chicago, New York, St Petersburg, Amsterdam and countless other major cities. All these have been contributory to Laurence, the Meissen Man’s acquiring an unsurpassed knowledge of his subject.
Among Laurence’s treasured memories are time spent with the CEO of Meissen in Dresden, opening the Kathy Gilmeister Collection at the Crocker Art Museum in Sacremento and filming the priceless Meissen displayed at the Ceil Higgins Art Gallery in Bedford. While one of his most treasured memories is of spending ten days in the home of Roy Brynes in 2010, shortly before Christies sold Roy’s priceless Meissen collection. Laurence has been a consultant to HSBC High Net Worth Insurance Underwriting and is currently the leading consultant for one of London’s premier auction houses, Criterion Fine.
His Meissen Collector’s Catalogue, published by the Antique Collector’s Club, is a much sort after work of reference containing listings and illustrations of hundreds of the most popular Meissen pieces produced. Laurence is pleased to announce his exciting 2nd edition to be published. Details to follow.
Even those with many years of collecting these treasured items can fall foul of wrong attribution, fraudulent provenance, poor restoration or downright forgery. The Meissen Man’s information and advice can help both the novice collector and the experienced buyer avoid costly errors where Meissen porcelain is concerned.
Without the Meissen Man’s encyclopaedic knowledge of the different types of painting, glazing and modelling, it would be extremely difficult for anyone to actually gauge the age and authenticity of a piece, to say nothing of its possible value. Laurence Mitchell is generally acknowledged as a world expert in the history of Meissen porcelain, as well as the perils and pitfalls that an ill-informed collector may fall prey to.
If you wish to meet the Meissen Man in person you can do so at Lesley Burton Arcade Westbourne Grove Portobello Road London between 10am and 3pm every Saturday. You may also reach him on 020 7183 5167