Andover Townsman, Andover, MA

March 7, 2013

What is that thing worth?

Historical Society guest can tell, and will, at March 15 event


The Andover Townsman

---- — People who have always wondered if an old possession is really worth something can learn the answer by attending an Andover Historical Society event fittingly named “What’s it Worth?”

The “What’s it Worth?” appraisal event with appraiser, auctioneer and owner of Royka’s Gallery in Boston Paul Royka will be held Friday March 15, from 7 to 9 p.m. at the Unitarian Universalist Congregation at 6 Locke St., within a block of the Historical Society.

Guests may bring one item to be appraised or come to listen and enjoy Royka’s appraisals, which the Historical Society describes as entertaining and enlightening. Tickets for the event are $15 for Andover Historical Society members and $20 for non-members.

Guests may bring items such as fine art, Chinese art, jewelry, art glass and Tiffany Studios items. Furniture may be brought in, although pictures will suffice. Firearms, coins and stamps will not be appraised at this event.

To register for the event, call the Historical Society 978-475-2236.

“What’s It Worth” is an open format appraisal event, allowing guests to hear as much about the items brought by other guests as they do about their own. As guests enter they register their appraisal item, place it on tables at the front of the hall, and then take a seat in the audience. Royka will examine and discuss each item on the tables, appraising up to 50 items during the event.

“Royka is an entertaining and informative speaker whose goal is to teach the audience something new with each item he examines,” according to a release.

Royka’s passion for objects, history and philosophy of art began at an early age. What began as a hobby for his parents, blossomed into a full time obsession. He consigned his first item to a major auction house at age 12.

He managed a premier 20th Century gallery in Boston and at age 25 joined Skinner Inc., the fourth largest auction house in the U.S. to appraise, auction and catalogue fine art and antiques. During his tenure at Skinner Inc., he set several world records and authored two highly acclaimed antique reference books entitled, “Mission Furniture” (now in its second edition) and “Fireworks: New England Art Pottery from the Arts & Crafts Movement.”

He is a former appraiser from the PBS series “Antiques Roadshow.” At age 26 he was invited to be an appraiser at the first show taped in Concord, Mass. and has appeared over 14 times on the program.

He has been featured or mentioned on HGTV’s Appraisal Fair, Business Week and Reader’s Digest and many other publications. Early in its development, he transitioned to the Internet as an auction consultant for major corporations such as Times Mirror’s AuctionUniverse.com and LiveBid.com which was acquired by Amazon.com. At Amazon.com, he was a consultant for online auction strategies and live Internet bidding technology including working with Sothebys.com. After Amazon.com, he consulted with venture capital firms I-Group Hotbank and Jafco Ventures creating the first eBay seller drop off model for an Internet company.

Royka lectures at museums, colleges and institutions across the United States.