Bruce Crissy's Object Lessons

By Carol Tisch Photography by Rod Millington August 1, 2011

Bruce CrissyBruce Crissy has conducted a quiet hometown “antiques roadshow” ever since Crissy Galleries opened in downtown Sarasota in 1978.

“We do five to 10 free verbal appraisals every day. It’s a good practice because Sarasota has been so good to us—and it’s a great way to share stories with collectors,” he says.

Crissy offers those collectors a rare blend of big-city expertise and small-town service—plus a cache of decorative arts and estate jewelry by coveted artisans from Tiffany to Buccellati. Always ahead of the curve with the next hot collectible, Crissy says furniture and decorative objects are driving the market. “There’s been a huge movement toward mid-century modern, but it is starting to soften: People now want an eclectic mix.”

His advice to collectors: “Buy the best you’re able to handle. It doesn’t matter if it’s a $50,000 or $200 example. Anything that’s just an average example will come down significantly in price moving forward,” he says.

Crissy Galleries, 640 S. Washington Blvd., Sarasota, (941) 957-1110.


Hand-turned wood bowlGet Bruce’s Look

Well-curated eclectic style is Crissy’s stock in trade. “Our typical client owns a Guy Peterson [Sarasota architect] modern house with great oriental rugs, Impressionist paintings, French art glass and mid-century Barcelona chairs.” Crissy discovered artist Dustin Coates and personally collects pieces like this hand-turned wood bowl ($750), left.

Can’t live without Andrea’s Restaurant—I love his cooking. I usually just let Andrea bring out whatever he wants, but my favorite menu item is his mother’s veal with tuna appetizer. You either love it or you don’t. My wife Charlie hates it, but I think it’s wonderful.”

What this town needs: “I think Sarasota is fantastic—great the way it is. But I would say repeal the parking meters. The downtown merchants are already having a hard enough time. Why make it even harder?”

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