Q: Where can I find information on and examples of "spirit art" created by artists who claim that spirits control their hands when painting?
A: Among those who create such art is Skip Grisham, whose work is on exhibit at his studio, Loft 207, 600 S. Dearborn St., Chicago, Ill. 60605. Phone (312) 922-4267 for an appointment. Also write Carl Hammer at Carl Hammer Gallery, 200 W. Superior St., Chicago, Ill. 60610, phone (312) 266-8512, about works by Mr. Imagination and other spirit artists represented by the gallery.
Spirit art goes far back in history. Information can be found in "Howard Finster, Stranger From Another World -- Man of Visions Now on This Earth," by Howard Finster, available for $37.50 postpaid from Abbeville Press Inc., 488 Madison Ave., New York, N.Y. 10022; phone (800) 227-7210. Another book, available from Abbeville for $78 postpaid, is the "Museum of American Folk Art Encyclopedia of Twentieth-Century American Folk Art and Artists," by Chuck and Jan Rosenak. It contains photos and biographies of many who created spirit art.
Q: We have numerous pieces of china dinnerware, figurines, plates and platters. How can we identify the markings and check out their age and value?
A: "Warman's English and Continental Pottery and Porcelain Encyclopedia of Antiques and Collectibles," second edition, by Susan and Al Bagdade, is available for $22.45 postpaid from Wallace-Homestead Book Co., 1 Chilton Way, Radnor, Pa. 19089; phone (800) 695-1214.
Q: We recently started to collect baby-related advertisements and trade cards with pictures of babies to decorate our baby's room. Where can we find baby-related information?
A: "The Baby Made Me Buy It! -- A Treasury of Babies who Sold Yesterday's Products," by Alice L. Muncaster, Ellen Sawyer and Ken Kapson, is available for $16 postpaid from Crown Publishers Inc., 201 E. 50th St., New York, N.Y. 10022.
Q: Where can I find Santa figures for a Christmas table decor?
A: Betty Young's Santa figures are available from Antiques & Uniques, 7214 Seeman Road, Huntley, Ill. 60142; phone (815) 923-4495. Ms. Young also makes Santa figures to order.
Q: How can I find out more about collectible flashlights?
A: Write to Flashlight Collectors of America in care of Bill Utley, 7616 Brookmill Road, Downey, Calif. 90241, enclosing an addressed, stamped envelope for newsletter information. Include a description of items you want to sell or check out. His phone number is (213) 861-6247.