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This profile was last updated on 9/16/07  and contains information from public web pages.

Personal Ambassador

Majesty
 
Background

Employment History

Education

  • English
Web References
Sitting in Gerald Godfrey's ...
www.exero.com, 16 Sept 2007 [cached]
Sitting in Gerald Godfrey's Marine Deck private showroom, surrounded by a scholarly and opulent collection of exquisite Asian treasures, one could be forgiven for thinking that here was a man raised on a jade pillow.Gerald's life story seems charmed.Yet it borrows from the spirit of the Chinese who built their fortunes from nothing in colonial Hong Kong.
Born and educated in England, Gerald escaped the wartime ambience of post-war London in the late 40s to savour the vitality of the Orient.The richness of his life's great journey, through Bangkok to Hong Kong, is reflected in his business - a treasure trove of Asian antiques and reproductions which represents one of the world's largest inventories of Asian art.
Convinced that England in the late 40's was shabby and depressed and not about to foreseeable improve young Gerald, an English graduate from Oxford who had served a brief stint in the army, picked himself up and went "to the furtherest place from London he could think of"."Bangkok in 1950 was everything a young man dreamed of", says Gerald, "there were practically no cars only rickshaws, canals like in Venice down every street and unpolluted quiet".Posted by the Shell Oil Company, Gerald soon assumed responsibility for oil exploration and marketing in the Golden Triangle area of Northern Thailand.
After three years Gerald found the serene lifestyle at the edge of the opium trade had become monotonous.Yet his favourite diversion - tracking the country in search of ancient oriental art - had set his eye on a new path.
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Attracted by Hong Kong's energy and vitality during several trips to the colony, Gerald decided that this would be his new home.He found the city virtually unchanged since the war except for the influx of Chinese refugees sleeping under colonnades in the streets.
On Jim Thompson's advice he decided to enter a partnership with Charlotte Horstmann, who left China in 1951 to open a gallery of Chinese and Thai artefacts in Bangkok.Horstmann moved her gallery to Hong Kong in 1955 where Godfrey joined her.
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"In those days much of the business was Chinese objects and lacquerware which flooded out of China with all the refugees", Godfrey reminisces.
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Godfrey and Horstmann sold their treasures in Hong Kong, which was a very select and exotic place to visit.
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"Hotel room doors had no locks", recalls Gerald."I used to go to bed about eight o'clock and an hour later in would walk two Chinese officials.They would sit on the bed and give me an hour-long lecture about English Imperialism.At the end of the lecture, they would say 'please convey what we have said to the authorities', salute and walk out".
But for Gerald this period is most memorable as a time of unearthing treasures."Peking was the best", he says emphatically.
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Business in China has lost some of its early day charm for Gerald."There is a real reluctance in the East to get down to brass tacks", he observes.
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For Gerald Godfrey the antique business he stumbled into by accident has become a ruling passion.It has changed greatly since he started."The antique business is a limited business because there are only so many things made and surviving", he says.
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Nevertheless, Godfrey predicts a brighter future for Chinese and Japanese art than for the arts of South East Asia and India.
Collecting is itself a difficult art."Going back a few hundred years there were great collectors and antiquities were not so expensive", Godfrey explains."With the diminishing of supplied and the upsurge of auction houses precious objects reappeared.People began to collect a wider range of things and a much broader market of collectors became established.Antiques are now more widely dispersed and more difficult to find".Despite the increasing scarcity of antiques the Horstmann-Godfrey partnership built what is now generally regarded as the largest selection of Asian Art anywhere in the world, a vast collection of exquisite antiques and works of art from every Asian culture.Charlotte Horstmann's retirement in 1981 did not dull Gerald Godfrey's strong entrepreneurial instincts.
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As sole proprietor Godfrey further expanded the company, rapidly moving into progressively larger premises.
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Godfrey has contoured this environment for collections that share some of London's reserve - featuring the ancient and the dignified.
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A frequent visitor to Morocco, Godfrey was recently appointed Honorary Consul General for the Kingdom of Morocco in Hong Kong.Friend to the Royal Family since meeting his Majesty's Personal Ambassador during his travels, Godfrey now promotes Moroccan interests as well as its art in Hong Kong.
Ever flamboyant in his artificially lit, windowless office in the bowels of the Terminal, Godfrey radiates an irresistible energy as he takes the visitor through his life's travels cast in ancient jade, wood and bamboo roots.His personal style has become imprinted on the business of collecting antiquities and objects d'art.His natural eye for good design and both Eastern and Western aesthetics has pleased ambassadors, corporations, banks and individuals around the globe and distinguished his exotic and colourful galleries.As he explains, "I am surrounded by beautiful things which I choose myself.
Marysville Advocate - News
www.mvleadvocate.com, 14 Aug 2003 [cached]
Jerry, Rhonda and Tyler Godfrey are the newest partner family for the Marshall County Habitat for Humanity affiliate.
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Jerry Godfrey has worked at Landoll Corp. for five years.He is a veteran of nine years in the Army and has worked in construction.
Gerald Godfrey ...
www.exero.com, 16 Sept 2007 [cached]
Gerald Godfrey
Gerald ...
www.exero.com, 16 Sept 2007 [cached]
Gerald GodfreyVive La Vie
AN EYE ON THE ORIENT
Sitting in Gerald Godfrey's Marine Deck private showroom, surrounded by a scholarly and opulent collection of exquisite Asian treasures, one could be forgiven for thinking that here was a man raised on a jade pillow.Gerald's life story seems charmed.Yet it borrows from the spirit of the Chinese who built their fortunes from nothing in colonial Hong Kong.
Born and educated in England, Gerald escaped the wartime ambience of post-war London in the late 40s to savour the vitality of the Orient.The richness of his life's great journey, through Bangkok to Hong Kong, is reflected in his business - a treasure trove of Asian antiques and reproductions which represents one of the world's largest inventories of Asian art.
Convinced that England in the late 40s was shabby and depressed and not about to foreseeable improve young Gerald, an English graduate from Oxford who had served a brief stint in the army, picked himself up and went "to the furtherest place from London he could think of"."Bangkok in 1950 was everything a young man dreamed of", says Gerald, "there were practically no cars only rickshaws, canals like in Venice down every street and unpolluted quiet".Posted by the Shell Oil Company, Gerald soon assumed responsibility for oil exploration and marketing in the Golden Triangle area of Northern Thailand.
After three years Gerald found the serene lifestyle at the edge of the opium trade had become monotonous.Yet his favourite diversion - tracking the country in search of ancient oriental art - had set his eye on a new path.
Gerald Godfrey Hyde Park ...
www.eluxuria.com, 7 June 2001 [cached]
Gerald Godfrey Hyde Park LowyWildenstein
Would you like to be featured in VIVE LA VIE?
...
Born and educated in England, Gerald escaped the wartime ambience of post-war London in the late 40s to savour the vitality of the Orient.The richness of his life's great journey, through Bangkok to Hong Kong, is reflected in his business - a treasure trove of Asian antiques and reproductions which represents one of the world's largest inventories of Asian art.
Convinced that England in the late 40s was shabby and depressed and not about to foreseeable improve young Gerald, an English graduate from Oxford who had served a brief stint in the army, picked himself up and went "to the furtherest place from London he could think of"."Bangkok in 1950 was everything a young man dreamed of", says Gerald, "there were practically no cars only rickshaws, canals like in Venice down every street and unpolluted quiet".Posted by the Shell Oil Company, Gerald soon assumed responsibility for oil exploration and marketing in the Golden Triangle area of Northern Thailand.
After three years Gerald found the serene lifestyle at the edge of the opium trade had become monotonous.Yet his favourite diversion - tracking the country in search of ancient oriental art - had set his eye on a new path.A lasting interest in ancient temples and pagodas, in Thai and Khmer art had developed in the company of his friend Jim Thompson - a name now synonymous with Thai silk.
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