Auctions | March 17, 2016

Never-before Sold Contact Sheet of David Bowie by Helmut Newton at Heritage Auctions

Bowie.jpgDALLAS - A never before seen Contact Sheet of David Bowie  - shot by Helmut Newton in 1983 at the very peak  of his widespread success - is expected to sell for $20,000 to $30,000 in Heritage Auctions’ April 17 Photographs Auction in New York. Only two of the 36 frames on the sheet have ever appeared at auction outside of Newton’s studio, said Nigel Russell, Director of Photography at Heritage.

“This contact sheet represents a rare convergence between two of the world’s greatest artistic talents at the height of the careers,” Russell said. “By the 1980's Newton was considered one of the world's top fashion photographers and Bowie’s album Let’s Dance was a critical success and ensured his lasting popularity.”

The photographs were shot in Monte Carlo for Vogue magazine and has remained in a single-owner collection since 1984. Newton himself preserved the unedited sheet and enlarged it to 48-¼ by 53-¾ inches. “Curiously, it is signed and numbered 1/15, but we know of no others that have ever appeared at auction so we wonder if the edition was ever finished,” Russell said.

The April 17 auction’s rich diversity of photograph artworks includes an unusually large group of photographs by the masters of photography, including 17 examples by Alfred Eisenstaedt, including his classic Children at a Puppet Theatre, Paris, 1963 (est. $20,000-$30,000); 13 works by Edward Weston; and eight photographs taken by Bernice Abbott, among others.

A rare offering of 15 examples by Ansel Adams includes the collector-coveted Moonrise, Hernandez, New Mexico, 1941, (est. $30,000-$50,000). The owners acquired the work in the late 1970s and later worked directly with Adams to have the piece re-mounted and personally signed at that time. Additional artworks by Adams on offer is Mount Williamson, Sierra Nevada from Manzanar, California, 1944, (est. $15,000-$25,000); El Capitan, Sunrise, Winter, Yosemite, pl. 10 (from Portfolio VII), 1968, (est. $15,000-$20,000); and Aspens, Northern New Mexico, 1958 (est. $15,000-$20,000).

An important photograph titled Nan and Brian in bed, NYC, 1983, by Nan Goldin, celebrated for her intimate depictions of the transgender subculture, as well as her images of friends dying of AIDS, is a signed and inscribed artist’s proof (est. $25,000-$35,000).

Hi-Way 39 Drive-In, Orange, 1993 by the acclaimed Japanese photographer Hiroshi Sugimoto is numbered 4/25.  Sugimoto is respected for his conceptual and philosophical aspects of his work and his unique view of a California drive-in exemplifies his captivating photography (est. $18,000-$24,000).

The auction’s Reflections of Childhood Collection, Part II, spans a group of 375 lots that capture the contradictions, mysteries, and even the pain of growing up. Kicking off the group is Birth Announcement of the Artist's Son, 1930, by El Lissitzky (est. $15,000-$25,000); Children with a Broken Mirror, NYC, circa 1940, by Helen Levitt (est. $15,000-$25,000); and Vinland, 1992, by Sally Mann (est. $12,000-$18,000).

Additional highlights include, but are not limited to:

A group of 15 photographs of and relating to Marilyn Monroe, including Marilyn Quad, 2008, by Robert Silvers (est. $10,000-$15,000).

Camera Work: A Photographic Quarterly, No. 14, April 1906 by Alfred Stieglitz, a rarely-seen magazine with six photogravures and halftone prints by Edward Steichen (est. $7,000-$10,000).

Henri Cartier-Bresson’s Alicante, Spain, 1933, (est. $6,000-$8,000).

Heritage Auctions is the largest auction house founded in the United States and the world’s third largest, with annual sales of approximately $900 million, and over 950,000+ online bidder members. For more information about Heritage Auctions, and to join and receive access to a complete record of prices realized, with full-color, enlargeable photos of each lot, please visit

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