OGDEN — Not everyone has actually seen an authentic Picasso painting, or even a Rembrandt for that matter, according to Bill Arrowsmith, the owner of a new antique shop on 24th Street in Ogden.
But Arrowsmith claims he can do just that for anyone who wants to see his two original Picasso’s and one Rembrandt sketching in the shop.
“I am hoping to bring some culture to this cowboy town and to help educate locals,” the 56-year-old Arrowsmith said.
The shop owner wants to help people learn about the history and quality of antique paintings, china, and clocks at his store, 24th Street Antiques. He has accrued nearly 100 antiques, having started his collection more than 40 years ago when he grew up with his family in Germany while his father was stationed at an air force base.
For him, searching out and finding a quality antique is by far the most exciting part of the business.
“Doing the research behind a piece, and then all of a sudden finding it, is like getting a trophy. Then you go on to the next thing that is just as good or better,” Arrowsmith said.
What makes antiquing enjoyable is the history behind each item, he said. Arrowsmith has a clock he picked up in New York that dates back to the 1650s.
“You don’t find clocks very often from that time period because they were only available to the wealthy back then,” Arrowsmith said.
Even more intriguing about the clock is that is was built with only an hour hand and no minute hand. Onlookers have to see where the hand lands on the dashes in between the hour numbers to see what time it is.
When it comes to his painting collection, most of them from Europe, the art and beauty of the pieces are the main reasons Arrowsmith enjoys collecting them. Fine pieces of art do come with expensive price tags, though Arrowsmith said he can prove their authenticity and has done extensive research to show clients the reason behind his listed price.
The key to buying antiques is making sure they aren’t fake, Arrowsmith said. Paintings are notorious for receiving amateur repairs, he said, which are easy to spot.
“You will think it is a fabulous Rembrandt, Monet, or Picasso painting, only to inspect it with a black light, and you can see where it glows,” Arrowsmith said. “The black light glows where there is water, which means they have tried to match colors to repair the painting. It’s very disheartening when I discover that.”
It takes many years of researching and learning the trade to be able to identify fakes, he added.
“The worst thing out there are fakes, which is why we want people to be knowledgeable. If you have a suspicion of something being a fake, it is better to pass on it,” Arrowsmith said.
Before deciding to open up the shop, Arrowsmith spent 35 years as a mental health care professional, collecting and repairing antiques in his spare time.
“My love has really been for antiques and clocks. So I am looking forward to having some fun in the upcoming years,” Arrowsmith said.
Arrowsmith said his shop sees a lot of clients who want to repair ceramic or china pieces that are chipped or cracked.
“They have almost no value to them when they are damaged, so when they are restored, it looks beautiful and gives them some value,” said Arrowsmith. “Besides, you don’t want anything busted in your house that looks crappy.”
In addition to providing antiques and ceramic repair, Arrowsmith said his shop also has experts on hand for antique clock repair.
Arrowsmith can be reached either at 24th Street Antiques or by calling 801-675-0210.