Auctions | August 2, 2012

Original Work of Roger Tory Peterson to be sold by Guernsey's in NY

New York, NY - July 2012 - An unprecedented auction of hundreds of original paintings, drawings and photographs by Roger Tory Peterson (1908 - 1996) will be conducted by Guernsey’s on September 8th at New York City’s prestigious Arader Gallery, located at 1016 Madison Avenue.
Following in the tradition of the nineteenth century’s John James Audubon, Mr. Peterson was responsible for developing a system of bird identification in the wild which, until his work in the 1930’s, simply did not exist. His beautiful paintings of birds have filled the pages of the more than ten million copies of his famous Field Guides that reside on the bookshelves in homes across the United States, South America, Europe and beyond. This first major offering of Mr. Peterson’s original work is coming directly from the estates of Roger Tory Peterson and Virginia Marie Peterson. In the words of S. Dillon Ripley, former head of the Smithsonian Museum, Roger Tory Peterson was "the Audubon of the 20th century."
Inasmuch as so many comparisons have been made between Peterson and the 19th century master, John James Audubon, Guernsey’s has seen fit to include a wonderful collection of more than thirty beautiful and rare Audubon prints in this unprecedented event as well.
Roger Tory Peterson painted in the now-familiar vertical format useful in the field, with each of the two hundred works of art in the auction created for Field Guide pages consisting of from six to sixteen detailed images of birds. Reduced down to fit the books, the far larger actual paintings are magnificent. Additionally, the auction will contain many of the artist’s preliminary studies including a section devoted to Penguins, a family of birds that Mr. Peterson was most fond of.
Surprising to many is the fact that Mr. Peterson also was considered “the father of wildlife photography,” founding the North American Nature Photography Association which now consists of more than 2,500 professional members. Rounding out the auction will be two hundred of Roger Tory Peterson’s stunning photographic prints, each being printed for the very first time, Estate stamped and numbered 1/1.
Bidders will be able to participate in the event by bidding on line ( will be the online host of the sale), but fans of Mr. Peterson will certainly want to consider acquiring Guernsey’s handsome auction catalogue and attending the event in person.
Those interested in participating are encouraged to call the auction house (212-794-2280) or visit for more complete information.