An installation view from the Arts of the Islamic World preview in New York.

NEW YORK - If only we could be in two places at once! As half of our Middle East Dept team heads for ArtDubai, the other half are in New York showing highlights of our upcoming April 24 Arts of the Islamic World sale. Benedict Carter, head of this sale, relayed back the following information:

“Sharing the galleries with the many other exhibitions currently on view during Asia Week in New York has given us an exciting new opportunity to show London highlights to a host of new faces—collectors, academics, and members of the public. The exhibition has had a healthy influx of visitors, with one popular piece being the very rare and complete album of Company School miniatures which comprises 35 beautiful character paintings from south India. Also popular has been the cut-brass calligraphic ‘alam from the 17th century Deccan.

Sotheby's Benedict Carter and Edward Gibbs with cut-brass calligraphic 'alam.

Standing prominently in the centre of the gallery, visitors have been walking around this finely-crafted piece which has a great sculptural elegance and presence. We’ve been lucky enough to exhibit alongside our London highlights a number of carpets from the William A Clark Collection, Corcoran Gallery of Art (auction in NY, 4th June!), including the famous Clark “Sickle Leaf” Vine Scroll and Palmette Carpet from 17th century Persia. This has attracted many admiring viewers, with many more yet to come before we return to London. An important Mihr Ali portrait of Abbas Mirza is a special part of this travel exhibition which will remain at Sothebys New York until tomorrow.”

 There will no doubt come a time when faster air travel will allow presence at every fair and art week, but for now we have to choose between Asia Week in New York and a host of art events in the Gulf.