The history of our shop in seven points:
- c.1930 – Jaume Clavell Noguera (1914 – 1998), a young carpenter trainee, meets Josep Puig Cadafalch and become friends. Puig showed him the field of decorative arts and he is bewitched by it all.
- c. 1965 – As times goes on he became an expert in the field and many renowned art collectors asked him for his councel in order to build their art collections. However, he kept his family carpetentry.
- 1979 – Narcís Clavell, his son, made the acquaintance of Montserrat Morgades. They decided to become business partners and they established their Antique store in the old house and carpentery of Clavell’s family.
- 1979 – 1990 – Little by little his business grew until the point of becoming a meeting point for those who were regulars in the art market.
- 1993 – This expansion helped them to have a stand in the principal national antiques fair as ‘Feriarte’ and ‘Almoneda’ in Madrid and Antiques Fair Exhibition in Barcelona.
- 1995 – Narcís Clavell became a member of the board of directors of the Catalan Antique Dealers Union for several years and he was also member of the organising committe of the Antiques Fair Exhibition in Barcelona.
- 2008 – His son, Sergi Clavell, became CEO of the business. He also sits on the board of directors of GAC where presently he is its secretary.
Jaume Clavell i Noguera, was born in 1914 and heir of the family carpentery, discovered the thrilling world of the history of the decorative arts, which was still unknown at that point, thanks to his Argentona neighbour and good friend (notwithstanding the age difference) Josep Puig i Cadafalch. His interest brought him to look into the history of ceramics, glass, iron and, later on, furniture.
Through his studies he engaged with many of the catalan leaders at the time and he help them to build some of the most important decorative art collections of the 20th Century. For instance, the imposing selection of Manisses’ ceramics (15th and 16th Centuries), Catalan polychrome ceramics from the 17th Century, great medieval irons, Limoges gothic pieces and carvings from the 16th and 17th Centuries.
These friendships and his desire to make available the rich patrimony of the decorative arts, brought him to organise a bed exhibition to show its evolution and styles from the 16th Century until the present time, and later on, to create the Jug Museum in Argentona, which is still open today.
Establishment of the business
At the end of the 70s Jaume Clavell’s fourt son, Narcís Clavell, started to work in a well-known auction room in Barcelona, where he met Montserrat Morgades. Over time and seeing they were both willing to work hard and had a good collective knowledge, they decided to create their own business and to that end they bought the place that had been up until then half home of the Clavell family and half carpentery.
They transformed the carpentery in a place suitable for exposing and preserving pieces and, starting from scratch, Clavell & Morgades, bit by bit, they won the trust of art collectors and the respect of their colleagues. The half of the place that used to be home of the Clavell’s family has been kept unaltered until now and it has become the workspace of the business and also a meeting room.
Evolution and Present
As time went by, the support of our colleagues, art collectors and friends has made of our business a meeting point for art lovers and it has allowed us to be part of hundreds of pieces’ history. Some of these are now in museums and public institutions and many others have found its place in art collectors’ homes. We can proudly say that we have contributed, even though it might just be an infinitesimal part, to discover the beauty of objects to a numerous number of people who, over the years, have revealed themselves as great art collectors, academics and art protectors. We have been able to realise and to show to others that a 17th Century table is much more than a four-leg piece of furniture: it was also the meeting point where family meals, discussions, nights of drinks and dinner for two took place. It is our understanding that an art dealer cannot just be the intermediary or an advisor. He needs to understand every piece and be able to explain it to others so that when he hands over a piece he gives an immaterial component where one can find the origin of bewilderment. He also has to create in others the thirst to know more.
Presently the business is run by Sergi Clavell, Narcís Clavell’s son, and beyond what is our cornerstone and our reason for being, purchasing and selling, we are working intensely in cataloguing, assessment and art collection distribution.