August 2017 Archives

1 Goya Leave it to Providence.jpgNew York, NY—The Thaw Collection is considered among the foremost private collections of drawings assembled over the last half century. It was first promised to the Morgan in 1975 by Eugene V. Thaw, now a Life Trustee, and the museum received the full collection of 424 works in early 2017. In honor of this extraordinary gift—one of the most important in the history of the museum—the Morgan presents Drawn to Greatness: Master Drawings from the Thaw Collection.

On view from September 29 through January 7, 2018, the exhibition includes more than 150 masterworks from the Renaissance to the twentieth century. A partial list of artists represented includes Mantegna, Rubens, Rembrandt, Canaletto, Watteau, Piranesi, Fragonard, Goya, Turner, Ingres, Daumier, Degas, Cézanne, Redon, Gauguin, van Gogh, Matisse, Picasso, and Pollock.

“It is difficult to summarize in a few words what the acquisition of the Thaw Collection means to the Morgan but ‘transformative’ may be the best single way to describe it,” said Director Colin B. Bailey. “The great range of artists, schools, and regions represented is remarkable. Moreover, the quality of the individual drawings reflects Gene Thaw’s exceptional critical eye—and his keen intellectual curiosity. Over the years Gene’s passionate commitment to the Morgan has never wavered and we can think of no better way to honor him and his late wife, Clare, than to present this exhibition of some of the greatest works from their collection.”

THE EXHIBITION 

The exhibition is organized in a series of sections that illustrate key moments in the history of draftsmanship while also highlighting the work of artists whom the Thaws collected in depth, among them Rembrandt, Goya, Redon, and Degas.

I. The Renaissance and the Rise of the Artist

During the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries, a dramatic shift occurred in the theory and practice of drawing. It came to be conceived not merely as a mechanical practice but as an intellectual one associated with invention. Artists made many more preparatory drawings than ever before, and even the most sketchy, exploratory sheets came to be sought and preserved by a new class of collectors and connoisseurs.

Andrea Mantegna (1431-1506) was among the leading lights in the new generation of intellectual artists in the Italian Renaissance. His study of Three Standing Saints in the Thaw Collection is one of the treasures not only of the Thaw Collection, but of the Morgan’s Italian drawings collection as a whole. In the later fifteenth century, sketching like that seen in this sheet would become the defining feature of Renaissance draftsmanship, but this is a notably early example, and a rare survival from one of the most important artists of the period.

Alongside the rise of the working drawing, Renaissance artists also created new categories of drawings that were independent pictorial works, and important examples by Albrecht Altdorfer (ca. 1480-1538) and Jörg Breu (ca. 1510-1547) are included in this section as well.

II. Looking at the World in the Seventeenth Century

While maintaining the intellectual approach to drawing that began in the Renaissance, seventeenth-century drawing represents a revitalized interest in both observation and imagination. Often specializing in a particular subject, artists looked closely at the world around them. This naturalism can be found in many genres ranging from Claude Lorrain’s landscapes to Saenredam’s church interiors to Nanteuil’s portraits. The greatest artists of the age, including Peter Paul Rubens (1577-1640) and Rembrandt van Rijn (1606-1669), focused not only on the appearance of their subjects, but also on the emotional states evoked in the stories of these figures.

Four Musicians with Wind Instruments (ca. 1638) shows Rembrandt’s experimentation with an elaborate technique that included pen, ink, wash, and a rare yellow chalk. The lively procession of musicians in old-fashioned costumes seems to celebrate a prominent wedding or festivity. Though Rembrandt’s bravura style suggests that he drew these lively figures from life in the street, recent evidence suggests that he recorded them in the studio by placing models in front of a mirror.

III. Contemporary Life and Fantasy in Eighteenth-Century Italy 

In the eighteenth century, Italian artists developed new and distinctive types of drawings. Infused with sparkling light and even, at times, a sense of humor, these works showcase subjects that dance on the edge between fantasy and reality. Artists were also eager to illustrate astonishing views of their cities along with many imagined scenes, or capricci. Giovanni Domenico Tiepolo (1727-1804) also produced sheets and series of independent drawings, which were avidly collected by a growing number of connoisseurs. In his series Scenes of Contemporary Life, The Picture Show (1791) illustrates an itinerant showman or storyteller with a guitar slung over his shoulder, attracting a crowd that contains both sailors and aristocrats. In this intriguing scene, the showman presents a picture mounted on the wall before him, but it is not clear what it represents or which story is being told. 

IV. Artists Drawing Everywhere: Rococo and Enlightenment in France

In Paris and at the French Academy in Rome, drawing was a firmly established element of academic practice, but it also became a valuable tool for artists who worked mostly outside the Academy, such as Antoine Watteau (1684-1721), who produced a vast repertoire of life studies that he kept in albums for future use. These artists grew to prefer natural chalks and the exquisite effects they produced. They developed an interest in the individual and the foreign as well, which can be seen in Watteau’s study of a Persian soldier. Watteau drew A Member of the Persian Embassy (1715) after the Persian envoy Mehmet Reza Bey and his retinue arrived in Paris to pay a visit to Louis XIV on February 7, 1715. Watteau sketched many of the members of the embassy during their six-month stay, vividly portraying their exotic clothing in drawings of red and black chalk. He drew this slender young man with a thin mustache wearing a peaked fur-trimmed cap and cloak at least twice. 

V. Visionaries: British and German Romantic Drawings

In the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, drawing in England and Germany became a forum for social issues and deeply subjective explorations. Artists valued expression over academic correctness. As drawing societies formed, it became common practice to produce, exhibit, and collect drawings. Artists embraced watercolor as a medium and investigated subjects related to literature, philosophy, history, and religion with a particular fervor. As Caspar David Friedrich (1774-1840), Philipp Otto Runge (1777-1810), and William Blake (1757-1827) began earnestly exploring spirituality, Samuel Palmer (1805-1881) and J. M. W. Turner (1775-1851) searched for the divine in sublime mountain landscapes or a single oak tree.

On a tour of Switzerland in 1842, Turner traveled the Gotthard Pass in the Alps and made a rapid sketch that he showed to John Ruskin on his return to England: Ruskin promptly commissioned a finished watercolor from Turner, a work that Ruskin later described as “the greatest work he produced in the last period of his art.” The Pass at St. Gotthard, near Faido (1843) illustrates the melting ice that would turn the Ticino River into a torrent capable of sweeping rocks downstream.

VI. Revolutionary Artists

After the disruptive political and social upheaval that followed the French Revolution in 1789, the traditional art world established by the ancien régime collapsed; in its place, new systems, paths, and possibilities for becoming a successful artist emerged. Artists fluidly adapted varied practices and materials of drawing to their individual circumstances. 

The prevalence of finished pictorial sheets suggests that drawing was held in high standing. In sketchbooks and independent sheets, Théodore Géricault (1791-1824) explored ideas for his ambitious projects, and Eugène Delacroix (1798-1863) produced scenes he would revisit and revise over the years. Francisco de Goya (1746-1828) made incisive and amusing vignettes for his private albums, such as Leave It All to Providence from the Black Border Album (1816-20). Although the caption may carry a sardonic tone, here Goya shows empathy for the downtrodden and an awareness of the larger forces at play in life. 

VII. From the Quotidian to the Sublime: Drawing in France After the Revolution

By the middle of the nineteenth century, many artists worked closely with dealers to produce a remarkable variety of finished drawings for sale at art markets and galleries in Paris. Artists were often politically engaged, creating scenes of modern life that were often infused with pathos or humor. In the same era, independent artists like Odilon Redon (1840-1916) experimented with materials and developed a personal and unconventional visual language that rejected realism and embraced dark visions and emotions. Beginning in the late 1870s, Redon entered an extremely productive creative period in which he worked almost exclusively in black chalk. These so-called noirs began to convey an esoteric symbolism, drawing on a broad range of sources and references. The Fool (1877) portrays a figure that has variously been described as an embodiment of intuition, the demon Mephistopheles, and an archetypal fool. It is one of Redon’s most enigmatic imagined portraits. Here, the fool subverts expectations: instead of looking comical, his penetrating gaze and threateningly lifted fingernail appear foreboding. 

VIII. Charting New Territory: Impressionist and Post-Impressionist Drawings 

Avant-garde artists in France during the late nineteenth century continued to use drawing for more varied purposes than ever: not only did they record observations from life and nature, but they also used drawing to replicate compositions, rework ideas, and produce finished works for exhibition and sale. They drew on diverse media, including modern manufactured materials such as the Conté crayon preferred by Seurat, which allowed for novel effects. Paul Cézanne (1839-1906) in particular used innovative techniques in watercolor and tested the boundaries of traditional materials, while Hilaire-Germain-Edgar Degas (1834-1917) expanded the definition of drawing: he used thinned oil paint and applied pastel over prints. Vincent van Gogh (1853-1890) developed a particularly modern role for drawing: he sent letters from Arles with sketches of paintings in progress to his Parisian friends. In a letter to Paul Gauguin (ca. October 17, 1888), Van Gogh extolled the attractions of Arles and chronicled his progress on one of his masterpieces from the period, Bedroom at Arles, even including a sketch. He described the colors and composition of the painting as well as his intention that it “express an absolute restfulness.”

IX. Modern Forms

Twentieth-century artists continued to depict traditional subjects in conventional materials—as is evident in the portraits of Pablo Picasso (1881-1973), the still lifes of Henri Matisse (1869-1954), and the landscapes of Piet Mondrian (1872-1944). But these artists also generated new forms as a response to modern life. They reflected new ways of seeing and thinking about space, time, and movement. Cubism perhaps best demonstrates this new approach, as Picasso, Juan Gris (1887-1927), and Fernand Léger (1881-1955) began to challenge the very notion of drawing with inventive techniques such as collage. 

This paved the way for artists like Jackson Pollock (1912-1956) to experiment with levels of abstraction and to explore the subconscious and the irrational. Untitled [Drawing for P.G.] (ca. 1943) is an important example of the fusion of primitivism and modernism that characterized Pollock’s art in the first half of the 1940s. This drawing reveals the wide range of his sources, from the masklike figures, mythic animals, and pictographs of primitive art to the imagery and style of Paul Klee (1879-1940) and Picasso. This sheet is dedicated to Peggy Guggenheim, who played a vital role in fostering Pollock’s career. The sheer diversity of his influences—from Native American art and Mexican mural painting to Picasso, Surrealism, and Jungian theory—indicates just how much drawing has evolved throughout the course of Western art. 

Eugene Thaw and the Morgan

One of the leading art dealers of his day, Eugene Thaw, who was born in Manhattan’s Washington Heights neighborhood, initially was drawn to contemporary artists before focusing on major masters of the first decades of the twentieth century. He soon expanded his range to include earlier work, with a particular penchant for nineteenth-century French artists. Not long after his marriage to Clare Eddy in 1954, he was encouraged by his wife to keep some of the drawings for which he was particularly enthusiastic, and their private collection began to take shape. 

Thaw acquired these great objects from a variety of sources: from art dealers and their galleries, through fellow collectors, at bookshops, and, perhaps most spectacularly, at auction. A major early purchase, in 1980, was the rare sheet by the Renaissance master Andrea Mantegna that set a record price for a drawing by the artist. Later, Thaw had the opportunity to acquire one of the last significant landscape drawings by Rembrandt still in private hands.

The Thaws first became involved with the Morgan in the 1960s. The relationship deepened during the tenures of Morgan directors Charles Ryskamp (1969-86) and Charles E. Pierce, Jr. (1987-2007). In 1975, on the occasion of the collection’s first exhibition at the Morgan, the Thaws announced that they were making a promised gift of their drawings.

Over the years Thaw has contributed other important works to the Morgan including a superb group of landscape oil sketches which the museum shares with the Metropolitan Museum of Art. He also gave a collection of early Medieval ornamental objects currently installed in the McKim building’s North Room, and a cache of nineteen illustrated letters by Vincent van Gogh to his protégé, Émile Bernard.

In addition to his gifts of art, Eugene underwrote the museum’s state-of-the-art Thaw Conservation Center, which opened in 2002. He also endowed two galleries in his wife’s name—most recently, the Clare Eddy Thaw Gallery in 2006. His donation in 2011 helped establish the Morgan’s Drawing Institute, a center for the study of works on paper. In 2013, an additional gift endowed the position of the Eugene and Clare Thaw Curator in the Department of Drawings and Prints.

In discussing his passion for collecting and his gift to the Morgan, Thaw said, “All true collectors want a group of works that reflects their own taste and judgement of what’s best. But critical to this drive or need to accumulate objects that excite the eye and mind, and to put them in order, is also the art of sharing them. I can think of no better place to do that than the Morgan Library & Museum.”

Image: Francisco Goya (1746-1828), Leave it all to Providence (Dejalo todo a la probidencia), 1816-20, black ink and gray wash, Thaw Collection, The Morgan Library & Museum, 1999.22.

26-Medical copy.jpgNew York—On Thursday, September 28, Swann Galleries will offer Printed & Manuscript Americana, with highlights that span nearly 500 years and several continents.

A fine selection of unique material features the archive of the Ponds, a missionary family living on the Minnesota frontier, valued at $30,000 to $40,000. Spanning nearly the entire nineteenth century, their correspondence recounts interactions with local Native Americans and attempts to convert them to Christianity.

A number of ships’ logs, both military and merchant, is led by an unpublished medical journal kept by physicians aboard the USS Deane and other ships in the Continental Navy from 1779 to 1788, estimated at $20,000 to $30,000. One of the doctors who contributed to the journal was a man named Peter St. Medard, who is additionally represented in the sale by the journal he kept between 1772 and 1822, during which he observed an American naval attack on Tunisia ($6,000 to $9,000). A whaling journal from a mutinous 1839-46 voyage to the South Pacific is valued at $8,000 to $12,000, while several logbooks feature ever-popular examples of whale stamps.

Making its auction debut is one of two known first editions of The Honolulu Merchants' Looking-Glass, an 1862 pamphlet printed and distributed anonymously that slanders many of the city's leading merchants and makes for a titillating glimpse into the lives of nineteenth-century Hawaiians. The present copy is believed to have belonged to the instigator’s compatriot, and passed by descent to the current owner ($6,000 to $9,000). Hawaiian material continues with The Second Interregnum: A Complete Resume of Events from the Death to Burial of His Late Majesty Lunalilo, 1874, with a tipped-in albumen portrait of the new King Kalakaua, expected to sell between $2,500 and $3,500.

A blossoming section of photography includes fine vernacular albums and portraits, led by a book of cyanotypes showing the construction of the Williamsburg Bridge from 1897 to 1903, compiled by W. Radford Bascome ($4,000 to $6,000). Also available is McClees' Gallery of Photographic Portraits of the Senators, Representatives & Delegates, 1859, one of the earliest photographically illustrated books published in the United States, valued at $10,000 to $15,000.

From the Revolutionary War, a New Hampshire broadside proclaiming the cessation of hostilities on April 24, 1783, is valued at $20,000 to $30,000.

Astonishingly, the first printed eyewitness report of the Wright brothers' flight appeared in the January 1, 1905 issue of the periodical Gleanings in Bee Culture. Amos Ives Root, the publisher and author of the magazine, confesses that he had asked the brothers how they got the plane back up to the top of the hill after flying it off ($1,500 to $2,500).          

An illustrated auction catalogue is available for $35. For further information and to make arrangements to bid, visit www.swanngalleries.com.

Image: Lot 26: Medical journal kept by surgeons aboard the Continental frigate Deane and other vessels, 1777-88. Estimate $20,000 to $30,000.

WOPchabot 1 copy 2.jpg“Bill Kent is the world’s greatest living carver of wood.  There is not anyone else even close,” wrote the New York Times in rare superlative praise for a contemporary artist.

Born in 1919 in Kansas City, William Kent, the son of hard-working, modest-income parents, often felt himself a loner artistically and out of sync with mainstream art. He lived and worked, for much of his life, in a barn in Durham, Connecticut, where each year he created five or six large works often standing taller than he, carved from single pieces of wood purchased at local sawmills.  His subjects were morphic, life size figures, insects and sea creatures, and much later in his career, surreal political effigies and quirky monumental everyday objects such as giant shoe-horns, scissors, rubber chickens, light bulbs and spark plugs.

Deeply affected by the political and social upheaval of the early 1960s, Kent was driven to express his moral outrage, dissent and activism through his art. He created low relief slate carvings combining pithy slogans and political imagery, inking and pulling graphically striking colored prints from them with titles such as “Who Killed Kennedy “, “Mob Control, and “Chiefs of Staff”, along with nature many themed and erotic prints as well. Through the over 100 slate prints he created between 1963-1976, William Kent strove to express universally recognizable truths, condemn false or hypocritical political statements, and memorialize iconic moments in American history and American popular culture. 

At the upcoming Brooklyn Antiquarian Book Fair, September 8-10 at the Brooklyn Expo Center in Greenpoint, over twenty colorful slate prints by William Kent from the 1960s-70s will be available from exhibitor Marc Chabot, of Marc Chabot Fine Arts.  Among these is “Nation is in Good Shape,” based on a newspaper press photo with from left: House Speaker McCormack, Senate President pro tem Hayden and Senate majority leader Mansfield after meeting with President Johnson on U.S. security affairs.  A seismic graph below the text seems to reflect the steady pulse of the nation; or at least no inbound missiles. Over 50 years later the subjects of Kent's prints remain as fresh and relevant as when they were created. 

Image: HUAC (House Un-American Activities Committee) slate print by William Kent, is as relevant today as when it was created a half century ago.  Photo courtesy of:  Marc Chabot Fine Arts, an exhibitor in the new Works on Paper gallery section of the Brooklyn Antiquarian Book Fair.

LOCATION:

Brooklyn Expo Center

79 Franklin Street

Greenpoint, Brooklyn

ADMISSION PRICES:

Friday Night Preview Benefit $25.00

General Admission Weekend Pass for $15 or $10 on Sunday

HOURS:

Friday Preview, benefiting Rare Book School, September 8 - 5:00 pm to 9:00 pm.

Saturday, September 9 -11:00 am to 7:00 pm.

Sunday, September 10 - 11:00 am to 5:00 pm.

 

737209 copy.jpgNew York—On Tuesday, September 19, Swann Galleries will offer 19th & 20th Century Prints & Drawings. One of seven auctions the house devotes to prints and drawings annually, this sale is notable for its wealth of original artworks in addition to iconic multiples by great masters from the last 200 years.

A selection of works by the father of surrealism Salvador Dalí is led by the brilliant watercolor Elephant Spatiaux, 1965, with an estimate of $60,000 to $90,000. René Magritte’s Poisson fumé provides comic relief in the form of a flying cigar-fish ($10,000 to $15,000). Additional unique highlights include a pen-and-ink drawing by Paul Klee titled Durch Poseidon, 1940, and Space, 1954, an abstract watercolor by Lyonel Feininger ($25,000 to $35,000 and $20,000 to $30,000, respectively).

Portrait of Ralph Stackpole as a Young Man, 1932, is a pencil portrait by Diego Rivera of his friend, likely drawn from an earlier photograph. It was completed the year after Stackpole helped Rivera secure the commission at the San Francisco Stock Exchange, and is valued between $20,000 and $30,000. Also available are nude sketches by Henri Matisse and Pierre-Auguste Renoir, and a lively undated oil painting by Jean Dufy of the Place de la Concorde, estimated at $30,000 to $50,000.

Scarce lithographs by Pablo Picasso lead the sale, topped by the dramatic monochrome portrait Françoise sur fond gris, 1950, estimated at $70,000 to $100,000. A fine selection of works by artists of the Barbizon School will be offered, as well as innovative examples of woodcuts by Paul Gauguin, such as Mahna no Varua Ino, 1893-94 ($15,000 to $20,000) and lithography by Henri Toulouse-Lautrec. Celebrated masters Georges Braque, Marc Chagall, Käthe Kollwitz, Fernand Léger and Joan Miró will be represented by prints, drawings and sculptures. A color woodcut by Maurits C. Escher in his iconic style, Day and Night, 1935, is expected to sell between $20,000 and $30,000.

James A. M. Whistler leads an illustrious array of works from the American Etching Revival, with Nocturne, 1878, estimated at $40,000 to $60,000. Regionalist artists are well-represented with important works by Thomas Hart Benton and Grant Wood, providing a pastoral contrast to gritty urban scenes by protagonists of the Ashcan School, George Bellows and John Sloan. A run of prints by Martin Lewis includes his most beloved views, such as Rain on Murray Hill, 1928, as well as scarce works like Which Way?, 1932 ($15,000 to $20,000 and $30,000 to $50,000, respectively). Additional highlights by the visionary include Bedford Street Gang, 1935, which has been seen at auction only three times in the last 30 years ($20,000 to $30,000).

An illustrated auction catalogue is available for $40. For further information and to make arrangements to bid, visit www.swanngalleries.com.

Image: Lot 338: Pablo Picasso, Françoise sur fond gris, lithograph, 1950. Estimate $70,000 to $100,000.

 

The Library of Congress has put the papers of Alexander Hamilton online for the first time in their original format.

The Library holds the world’s largest collection of Hamilton papers—approximately 12,000 items concentrated from 1777 until Hamilton’s death in 1804, including letters, legal papers and drafts of speeches and writings, among other items. Now, for the first time, these original documents—many in Hamilton’s own hand—will be available for researchers, students or the generally curious anywhere in the world to explore, zoom in and read at loc.gov/collections/alexander-hamilton-papers/.

“The Library of Congress is home to millions of one-of-a-kind manuscripts that reveal America’s history directly from the minds of the individuals who helped shape it,” said Carla Hayden, Librarian of Congress. “Alexander Hamilton is certainly having his moment and I am so thrilled that people can learn more about him—actually read his descriptions of Revolutionary War battles, read letters to his wife, see the cross-outs in his draft of George Washington’s farewell address and so many other things. Sharing this history is what the Library is all about.”

Items in the collection include:

  • A letter written when Hamilton was 12 or 13 to his friend Edward Stevens describing his wish to raise his station in life;
  • The outline of Hamilton’s speech at the Constitutional Convention;
  • Hamilton’s draft of George Washington’s farewell address;
  • His draft of the infamous Reynolds pamphlet;
  • A letter to his wife, Eliza, written shortly before his fatal duel with Aaron Burr.

In addition, the Library recently acquired 55 items, previously privately held—mostly letters from Hamilton’s powerful father-in-law, General Philip Schuyler, to him and his wife—that have also been digitized and made available for the first time. Most of these have never been published.

Congress appropriated $20,000 in 1848 to buy the papers of Alexander Hamilton from his family, including his widow, Elizabeth Schuyler Hamilton. The papers were originally housed at the U.S. Department of State and came to the Library in 1904, along with all the department’s historical papers, at the direction of President Theodore Roosevelt.

The Library supplemented the collection over time with additional gifts and purchases. The papers cover almost every aspect of Hamilton’s career and private life: growing up in St. Croix, as George Washington’s aide-de-camp during the Revolutionary War, New York delegate to the Constitutional Convention of 1787, the first U.S. treasury secretary, New York lawyer, and more.

The papers also include correspondence with and among members of his family, including his wife Elizabeth Schuyler Hamilton, his sister-in-law Angelica Schuyler Church, and his father-in-law Philip Schuyler.

The Hamilton Papers are among collections newly available online during the past year. Others include the papers of U.S. Presidents Millard Fillmore, Franklin Pierce and William Henry Harrison; the papers of Sigmund Freud; a collection of more than 4,600 newspapers from Japanese-American internment camps; a collection of web-based comic books; and 25,000 fire insurance maps from communities across America, the first installment of 500,000 that will be accessible online.

The Library of Congress is the world’s largest library, offering access to the creative record of the United States—and extensive materials from around the world—both on-site and online. It is the main research arm of the U.S. Congress and the home of the U.S. Copyright Office. Explore collections, reference services and other programs and plan a visit at loc.gov; access the official site for U.S. federal legislative information at congress.gov; and register creative works of authorship at copyright.gov.

 

Vallard-Atlas_500.jpgSAN MARINO, Calif.— A sweeping international loan exhibition at The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens opens on Sept. 16, 2017 to explore how the depiction of Latin American nature contributed to art and science from the late 1400s to the mid-1800s. “Visual Voyages: Images of Latin American Nature from Columbus to Darwin,” presented in the MaryLou and George Boone Gallery through Jan. 8, 2018, features more than 150 paintings, rare books, illustrated manuscripts, prints, and drawings from The Huntington’s holdings as well as from dozens of other collections. Many of these works will be on view for the first time in the United States. It is complemented by a richly illustrated book, along with an array of other programs and exhibitions, including an installation created by Mexican experimental composer Guillermo Galindo. The exhibition is a part of the Getty’s Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA initiative, an exploration of Latin American and Latino art that involves more than 70 arts institutions across Southern California.

“Despite notorious depredation of people and resources during the period, the brilliant work of a number of Latin Americans and Europeans helped to illuminate our understanding of the natural world,” said Catherine Hess, chief curator of European art at The Huntington and co-curator of “Visual Voyages.” “We aim to shed light on this relatively unexamined piece of the story—to show how beautiful, surprising, and deeply captivating depictions of nature in Latin America reshaped our understanding of the region and, indeed, the world—essentially linking art and the natural sciences.”

“Visual Voyages” looks at how indigenous peoples, Europeans, Spanish Americans, and individuals of mixed-race descent depicted natural phenomena for a range of purposes and from a variety of perspectives: artistic, cultural, religious, commercial, medical, and scientific. The exhibition examines the period that falls roughly between Christopher Columbus's first voyage in 1492 and Charles Darwin’s publication of On the Origin of Species in 1859, a work based largely on Darwin’s own voyage to the region in the 1830s.

“Information and materials circulated at an unprecedented rate as people transformed their relationship to the natural world and to each other,” said Daniela Bleichmar, associate professor of art history and history at the University of Southern California (USC) and co-curator of the exhibition. “Images served not only as artistic objects of great beauty but also as a means of experiencing, understanding, and possessing the natural world. These depictions circulated widely and allowed viewers—then and now—to embark on their own ‘visual voyages’.”

Bleichmar, who was born in Argentina and raised in Mexico, is an expert on the history of science, art, and cultural contact in the early modern period. Her publications include the prize-winning book Visible Empire: Botanical Expeditions and Visual Culture in the Hispanic Enlightenment (University of Chicago Press, 2012).

The Huntington’s three collection areas—library, art, and botanical—all contribute to “Visual Voyages.” Its Library is one of the world’s greatest research institutions in the fields of British and American history, art, and the history of science, stretching from the 11th century to the present, and includes such treasures as the first European depiction of a pineapple and a rare 16th-century manuscript atlas that includes three stunning maps of the Americas. From The Huntington’s art holdings, Frederic Edwin Church’s monumental painting Chimborazo (1864) will be on display, depicting a Latin American landscape both real and imaginary. The Huntington’s 120 acres of gardens include several thousand plant species from Latin America, including pineapple, cacao, various orchids including vanilla, and succulents.

Visitor Experience

Designed by Chu+Gooding Architects of Los Angeles, “Visual Voyages” engages visitors through an evocative installation that includes interactive media, display cases of specimens and rare materials, and visually arresting depictions of botanical specimens and still lifes.

The exhibition opens with a display of taxidermy mounts to make vivid the rare animals that captured the imagination of Europeans and were avidly collected during the period.

“Visual Voyages” then begins with a section on “Rewriting the Book of Nature,” in which manuscripts, maps, and publications show how nature came to be reconsidered in the first century of contact. This section includes a copy of the 1493 letter Christopher Columbus wrote to the King and Queen of Spain while on the return leg of his first voyage to the New World. He writes that the region is “so fertile that, even if I could describe it, one would have difficulty believing in its existence.” This section highlights the many works by indigenous peoples to the exploration of New World nature, among them two large-scale maps painted by indigenous artists in Mexico and Guatemala; a volume from the Florentine Codex, a 16th-century Mexican manuscript on loan from the Laurentian Library, Florence; and a spectacular feather cape created by the Tupinambá of Brazil in the 17th century.

Next, a gallery called “The Value of Nature” explores the intertwining of economic and spiritual approaches to Latin American nature. Commercial interests resulted in the investigation, depiction, and commodification of such natural resources as tobacco and chocolate. Indigenous religions considered the natural world to be infused with the divine, while Christian perspectives led observers to envision Latin American nature as both rich in signs of godliness as well as marked with signs of the devil—and needing eradication. Various depictions of the passion flower, a New World plant, show how the flower’s form recalled to missionaries the instruments of Christ’s Passion.

A third section, “Collecting: From Wonder to Order,” shows how the “wonder” that European collectors held for the astonishing material coming from the New World became a desire to possess and, later, to “order” this material, following systems of taxonomy and classification. On view will be a set of large and impressive paintings depicting Brazilian fruits and vegetables by the Dutch painter Albert Eckhout (ca.1610-1665) as well as 20 artful, vivid, and detailed drawings of botanical specimens painted by artists from New Granada (present-day Colombia, Ecuador, Panama, Venezuela, Peru, northern Brazil, and western Guyana), never before seen in the United States.

The final section of the exhibition, called “New Landscapes,” examines scientific and artistic perspectives on Latin America created in the 19th century, a period when a new wave of voyagers explored the region and wars of independence resulted in the emergence of new nations. The Romantic and imperial visions of artists and scientists from Europe and the U.S. are juxtaposed with the patriotic and modernizing visions of artists and scientists from Latin America, who envisioned nature as an integral part of national identity. This juxtaposition can be seen visually in the pairing of The Huntington’s monumental Chimborazo by Church with the equally monumental Valley of Mexico (1877) by Mexican painter José María Velasco, on loan from the Museo Nacional de Arte in Mexico City.

Gallery text is in Spanish and English.

Exhibition Catalog

“Visual Voyages: Images of Latin American Nature from Columbus to Darwin” is accompanied by a hardcover book of the same title written by Daniela Bleichmar, co-curator of the exhibition. In a narrative addressed to general audiences as well as students and scholars, Bleichmar reveals the fascinating story of the interrelationship of art and science in Latin America and Europe during the period. Published by Yale University Press in association with The Huntington, the 240-page book contains 153 color illustrations. $50.00. Available beginning in September 2017 at the Huntington Store and online.

Related Exhibitions and Programs

“Human Nature: Sonic Botany”

Sept 16, 2017-Jan 8, 2018

Virginia Steele Scott Galleries of American Art

A mix of audio and visuals created by experimental composer, sonic architect, and performance artist Guillermo Galindo, this installation features a series of graphic representations of musical scores inspired by the “Visual Voyages” exhibition. The installation is part of USC Annenberg’s Musical Interventions, a series of public events organized for Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA by Josh Kun, historian of popular music and recently named MacArthur Fellow.

“Visual Voyages in the Gardens”

Sept 16, 2017-Jan 8, 2018

Throughout the Botanical Gardens

Visitors can enrich their experience of “Visual Voyages” by strolling the botanical gardens in search of the real-life specimens of plants they have seen depicted in the gallery. Keep your eyes peeled for two dozen “Visual Voyages” signs, pointing to cacao, pineapple, tobacco, and other plants indigenous to Latin America.

“Nuestro Mundo”

Sept. 16, 2017-Jan. 8, 2018, weekends only

Floralegium gallery, Brody Botanical Center

The two dozen paintings in this installation are the work of young adults ages 18 to 26 who are mentored by Art Division, a nonprofit organization that provides training and support for Los Angeles youth from underserved communities pursuing careers in the visual arts. The students used “Visual Voyages” as inspiration.

“In Pursuit of Flora: 18th-Century: Botanical Drawings from The Huntington’s Art Collections”

Oct. 28, 2017-Feb. 19, 2018

Huntington Art Gallery, Works on Paper Room

European exploration of other lands during the so-called Age of Discovery revealed a vast new world of plant life that required description, cataloging, and recording. By the 18th century, the practice of botanical illustration had become an essential tool in the study of natural history. From lusciously detailed drawings of fruit and flowers by Georg Dionysius Ehret (1708-1770), a collaborator of Swedish botanist Carl Linnaeus, to depictions of more exotic examples by Matilda Conyers (1753-1803), “In Pursuit of Flora” reveals 18th-century European appreciation for the beauty of the natural world.

Taste of Art: Visual Voyages through Latin America

Sept. 30 or Oct. 7 (Saturday)

9 a.m.-12:30 p.m.

Explore connections among art, science, and the environment in the exhibition, then head to the kitchen to prepare a Latin American-inspired meal. Maite Gomez-Rejón of ArtBites leads the workshop. Members: $85. Non-Members: $100. Register online.

Talk and Book Signing: The Invention of Nature: Alexander von Humboldt’s New World

Oct. 15 (Sunday) 2:30 p.m.

Rothenberg Hall

Join best-selling author Andrea Wulf for a talk about the life of explorer, scientist, and early environmentalist Alexander von Humboldt (1769-1859), the subject of her most recent book, The Invention of Nature. Her talk will focus on Humboldt’s explorations of Latin America. Free; no reservations required.

Wark Lecture

Seeing and Knowing: Visions of Latin American Nature, ca.1492-1859

Oct. 16 (Monday) 7:30 p.m.

Rothenberg Hall

Historian Daniela Bleichmar, co-curator of the exhibition, discusses the surprising and little-known story of the pivotal role that Latin America played in the pursuit of science and art during the first global era. A book signing and coffee reception will follow the talk. Free; no reservations required.

Curator Tour: Visual Voyages

Oct. 18 (Wednesday) 5-6 p.m.

Join exhibition co-curator Daniela Bleichmar for a private tour of “Visual Voyages.” Members: $15. Non-Members: $20. Register online.

Guillermo Galindo Performance

Human Nature: Sonic Botany

Nov. 4 (Saturday), noon - 1 p.m.

Rose Hills Garden Court

Experimental composer, sonic architect, and performance artist Guillermo Galindo presents a work inspired by “Visual Voyages.” The program is part of USC Annenberg’s Musical Interventions, a series of public events organized for Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA by Josh Kun, historian of popular music and recently named a MacArthur Fellow. Free with admission.

Conference at the Getty Center

Indigenous Knowledge and the Making of Colonial Latin America

Dec. 8-10, 2017

This symposium will bring together an interdisciplinary group of scholars to explore the role of indigenous knowledge in the making of colonial Latin America. Curator-led visits to two related exhibitions—“Visual Voyages” at The Huntington and “Golden Kingdoms: Luxury and Legacy in the Ancient Americas” at The Getty—will allow participants to view examples of work by indigenous artists and authors, including several rare pictorial manuscripts (codices). The symposium is organized by Daniela Bleichmar, co-curator of “Visual Voyages” and Kim Richter, co-curator of “Golden Kingdoms” and senior research specialist at the Getty Research Institute, with funding from the USC-Huntington Early Modern Studies Institute, the Seaver Institute, and the Getty Research Institute. For registration and more information, visit getty.edu.

Lecture
Cochineal in the History of Art and Global Trade

Dec. 10 (Sunday) 2:30 p.m.

Rothenberg Hall

Alejandro de Ávila Blomberg of the Oaxaca Ethnobotanical Garden and Oaxaca Textile Museum will explore the historical and cultural significance of this natural crimson dye. Used from antiquity, cochineal became Mexico’s second-most valued export after silver during the Spanish colonial period. Free; no reservations required.

Image: Le vrais Bresil es province du Quito (The true Brazil, a province of Quito), in Vallard Atlas, Dieppe (France), 1547, tempera, gold paint, gold leaf, and black ink on parchment, 14 ½ × 18 ¾ in. The Huntington Library, Art Collections and Botanical Gardens.

 

Screen Shot 2017-08-21 at 9.01.34 AM.pngThe Folio Society is delighted to announce that six of their titles have been selected as finalists in five categories of the prestigious British Book Design & Production Awards 2017. 

Emily Dickinson: Selected Poems (illustrated by Jane Lydbury) in the Literature category 

The Folio Science Fiction Anthology (illustrated by Florian Schommer) in Best Jacket/Cover Design category 

The Malay Archipelago and Micrographia in the Scholarly, Academic and Reference Books category 

The Call of Cthulhu and Other Stories (illustrated by Dan Hillier) in the Limited Edition and Fine Binding category 

The Douglas Adams Hitchhiker’s Series (illustrated by Jonathan Burton) in the Brand/Series Identity category 

Kate Grimwade, Production Director at The Folio Society said: ‘We are delighted to be a finalist in five categories for the prestigious BBDP awards. Each of the books shortlisted reflect Folio’s aesthetic: to treat every book we publish as a unique object, to be innovative in design approach and the materials we select, and to continuously strive for the very highest quality in all aspects of its production.’ 

The British Book Design & Production Awards is one of the most prestigious literary events of the year, the awards recognise and promote the excellence of the British book design and production industry by celebrating the best books of the year. The judges look for exceptional design, free of typographical errors, with particular emphasis given to excellent layout and standards of typography. 

Entries for the awards must be published, designed, typeset, printed or bound by the entrant in the UK. The winners will be announced at a gala dinner to be held on Thursday 16 November in London. 

 

AntiquarianAuctions.com is an online auction site dedicated to the sale of rare and out-of print books, maps & prints, documents, letters, ephemera and vintage photography.

All pricing is done in US$. No buyer’s premium is charged.

Screen Shot 2017-08-21 at 8.55.22 AM.pngLot 1

Wharton (Edith) The Book of the Homeless

Published: Scribners, New York, 1916 Estimate: $2,500/3,500

Unbound in sheets, contributors include: Henry James, Joseph Conrad and Édouard Manet.

The Book of the Homeless (Le Livre des Sans-Foyer) edited by Edith Wharton. Original Articles in Verse and Prose Illustrations reproduced from Original Paintings & Drawings. The book is sold for the Benefit of the America Hostels for Refugees (with the Foyer Franco-Belge) and of the Children of Flanders Rescue Committee. [Introduction by Theodore Roosevelt]

Unique unbound, uncut and unopened copy of the limited edition: "Of this book, in addition to the regular edition, there have been printed and numbered one hundred and seventy-five copies deluxe, of larger format [all signed by Updike]. Numbers 1-50 on French hand-made paper ... Numbers 51-175 on Van Gelder paper." This copy on Van Gelder paper is numbered 65.

Lot 2

Cruikshank (George) Illustrator: The Life of Napolean

Published: T. Tegg and J.Dick, London and edinburgh, 1915 Estimate: $1,750/2,000

A Hudibrastic Poem in Fifteen Cantos, by Doctor Syntax, embellished with Thirty Engravings by George Cruikshank.

260 pages, 30 hand coloured aquatint plates (including the hand coloured title page), original grey paper boards without a title label on the spine - the backstrip has been expertly restored, edges uncut, some slight off-setting of the plates but otherwise the text and plates are crisp and free of foxing, contained in mauve cloth solander case titled in gilt on the spine, a very good copy.

 Lot 5

Coronelli (Vincenzo) L'Africa divisa nelle sue Parti secondo le piu moderne, relationi colle scoperte dell'origine e corso del Nilo

Published: Domenico Padouani, Venice, 1691 Estimate: $4,750/6,000

This is the first state of the beautiful map of Africa that was the first to show the origin of the Blue Nile. It was produced by Vincenzo Coronelli, a famous Italian cartographer.

This is a landmark map in the history of the mapping of Africa, and, in particular, of the Nile River which long had been depicted, according to the tradition of Ptolemy, to arise from lakes about the Mountains of the Moon. This beautiful map is in A+ condition; presented on two separate sheet and uncoloured - as issued. The halves readily can be joined so that there is no gap between them.

 Lot 62

Butler (Arthur G.) Birds of Great Britain and Ireland, Order Passeres, Complete in Two Volumes Published: Brumby & Clarke, Hull, 1904-1908 Estimate: $350/500

107 chromolithograph plates of birds and 8 of bird eggs with tissue-guards. A very attractive set of an informative text and classification. Hard to find complete sets as they were dis-bound for their decorative plates.

 Lot 150

Netto (Dr. Friedrich) Bubenstreiche in Lustigen Versen und Ulkingen Bildern

Published: [circa 1900]

Estimate: $1,500/2,000

Dr Friedrich Netto lived from 1868 -1926. The Children's Division of the Staatsbibliotek zu Berlin records 5 other books by him published between 1900 and 1915, but not this one. A biography written by Inge Laude: Ärzte als Schriftsteller - Ernst Philipp Lange and Friedrich Netto was published in Munich in 1970. No further details of his writing or his life have been traced. No copies of this title were retrieved in any international database.

Bubenstreiche is a children's book, which, translated into English means childish pranks. The text and images are satirical and the cameos portray the events of the Anglo Boer War in a rather derogatory light.

 Lot 158

War on Want Jigsaw Puzzle, Nelson Mandela and the ANC flag Published: London, no date [circa 1980's]

Estimate: $400/500

War on Want works to challenge the root causes of poverty, inequality and injustice through partnership with social movements in the global South and by running hard-hitting campaigns in the UK in support of radical change. War on Want's slogan is "poverty is political" and its stated focus is on the root causes of poverty rather than its effects; it raises public awareness of the root causes of poverty, inequality and injustice, and empowers people to take action for change.

Lot 181

In March 1947 the first issue of Piscator, the Society's journal appeared. A. C. Harrison was its editor and, in a tribute to AC in December 1977 when the 100th edition of Piscator was published, the then CPS President, the late Dr. Frank Bradlow, wrote: "There can be few people who have met "AC" whose lives have not been enriched; his direct courteous manner, his dry sense of humour, his encyclopaedic knowledge of nature and fishing, and his human and humane wisdom are but a few of the qualities which make those who know him realise they have been in the company of a very unusual individual; one of those rare human beings whose personality makes an indelible impression on one's memory".

Lot 235

Bhavnagar (India) Album of Captioned Architectural and Other Nineteenth Century Photographs Published: Faber & Faber, London, 1956

Estimate: $600/800

Buildings and Civil Engineering Works Designed and Built by Richard Proctor-Sims between 1875 and 1900, and the state visit to Bhavnagar by the Prince of Wales

Most of the photographs are of buildings - planned, under construction and completed - and civil engineering works, but include a sequence on the reception for the Prince of Wales and of Bhavnagar's horse-breeding activities, the organisation of which was one of the RPS interests referred to in the obituary below.. There is still a memorial to RPS in Bhavnagar town centre and tours have been arranged to inspect his architectural, building and civil engineering works, which have all been well maintained.

Cape Piscatorial Society, Piscator

Published: Cape Town, 1947 -1979 Estimate: $600/700

Lot 235

Myanmar (Burma) School, Red and Gold lacquered manuscript, Kammavaca. Published: Burma, c. 1900

Estimate: $800/1,200

A fine highly decorative early-20th-century Burmese Kammavaca (possibly eve late-19th century?). Considered to be one of the most sacred of Burmese religious texts, the Kammavaca was typically commissioned by lay-people, when their son entered a Buddhist monastery, as a work of merit.

In the 17th century, folios began to be made of pieces of cloth coated with lacquer and painted with cinnabar, and the square letters were written in thick, black lacquer. On rare occasions, folios were of ivory. Designs in gilt, which had been reserved for the ends of folios, end papers, and wooden coverboards, now began to appear between the lines of text. By the end of the 19th century, the lines of script on the folio increased to six or seven and sheets of brass or copper were introduced as folios.

AntiquarianAuctions.com is an online auction site dedicated to the sale of rare and out-of print books, maps & prints, documents, letters, ephemera and vintage photography. 

Dealers and collectors worldwide have been selling and bidding on the site since 2010.
Only established booksellers who are members of major national trade associations such as ABA, ABAA, PBFA or SABDA or are of good standing in the trade are permitted to sell on the site. 

Auctions are held every five weeks and run on the model of a timed auction for one week. 

All pricing is done in US$. No buyer’s premium is charged. 

Next auction: Auction #58: 25 May - 1 June 2017 

Contact:
Antiquarian Auctions: Paul Mills P.O. Box 186 7848 Constantia, Cape Town South Africa E-mail: support@antiquarianauctions.com Tel: +27 21 794 0600 

 

Twice signed Lincoln.jpgWESTPORT, Conn. - A fantastic selection of autographed documents, manuscripts, books and relics are up for bid in an internet-only auction already online by University Archives, based in Westport. The auction will go live on Tuesday, August 29th, on Invaluable.com. The catalog may be viewed right now by visiting the University Archives website at www.universityarchives.com

Choice offerings will include a larger-than-life portrait of inventor Thomas A. Edison, signed by Edison and the artist, Ellis M. Silvette; a letter hand-written and signed by Marilyn Monroe when she was just 17 and still Norma Jeane; a war letter twice-signed by President Abraham Lincoln in 1862, nicely framed; and a letter handwritten and signed by Morse code inventor Samuel Morse.

Also sold will be a pair of letters written and signed by the famously reclusive and enigmatic writer J. D. Salinger. Both were written to Joyce Miller, a lifelong friend and confidante. One is typewritten (except for the signature) and dated 1950, about the time he was finishing writing Catcher in the Rye and living in Westport. The other is a 1969 letter handwritten in New York.

Other items of interest will include a George Washington signed note with his original hand drawing, Winston Churchill’s Cuban cigar with case from 1954, John F. Kennedy’s family-owned oak press-back chair, George W. Bush’s worn pair of Mizuno sneakers, Muhammad Ali’s 1978 contract to fight boxer Ken Norton, and a Yale University track team photo from 1903.

“I love this sale for the breadth of material and the quality of the items,” said John Reznikoff, founder and president of University Archives. “Of course the Edison and the Morse are the best money can buy, but there are many little gems of fantastic content that would rate at the top of the autograph food chain. The Obama and Bush items cover both ends of the political spectrum.”

With an estimate of $70,000-$80,000, the large painting of Edison (1847-1931) by Silvette (Am., 1876-1940) could be the sale’s top lot. The work - 47 inches by 96 inches, in the frame - was commissioned by the New York State Chamber of Commerce in 1929 on the 50th anniversary of the invention of the light bulb and depicts Edison standing in the library of his New Jersey lab.

Marilyn Monroe was Norma Jeane Dougherty and already two years into her first marriage when she hand-wrote a four-page letter in January 1944 to her legal guardian from 1935-1942, Grace (McKee) Goddard. In it, the teenager enthuses about her Christmas purchase of a “Gold Coast monkey coat. Oh, it’s simply beautiful!” The signed letter has an estimate of $18,000-$20,000.

The single page handwritten letter signed by Samuel Morse (1791-1872) is believed to be the finest Morse handwritten letter available. Dated Nov. 11, 1862, the letter is written entirely in Morse’s hand, wherein he proclaims he was the inventor of the telegraph and describes its first use and operation. The lot includes a fine engraving of Morse and should bring $15,000-$20,000.

The Civil War-era letter twice signed by Lincoln is dated Dec. 15, 1862 and was written to Navy Secretary Gideon Welles, with Naval Academy content. Lincoln signed the letter, then added an addendum the following day, which he also signed and dated. The letter is nicely displayed to the left of a color engraving and bust portrait of Lincoln. The lot should gavel for $15,000-$20,000.

The excellent and well-used Kennedy family-owned chair is a classic black painted and stamped press-back oak chair, with a seat height of 17 ½ inches and an overall height of 38 ½ inches. It was made around the middle of the 20th century and would be wonderful as décor in an antique setting, especially considering all of the Kennedys who no doubt sat in it (est. $2,500-$3,000).

At a party held at 10 Downing Street in London, England on Dec. 21, 1954, Winston Churchill presented Roderic Bowen (England’s Liberal Parliamentary Deputy-Speaker) with a fine Cuban cigar and attractive custom case. Both have made their way to this auction, but not before a 19-year embargo. A letter by Bowen confirming the gift is included in the lot (est. $3,500-$4,500).

Owning a signed note handwritten by George Washington would be enough for most autograph collectors, but when the note includes a drawing by Washington of a hand pointing a finger at his message, that’s icing on the cake. The heavily penned note, 2 inches by 3 inches on laid paper, is not dated but it’s believed to have been written around 1789. It has an estimate of $6,000-$8,000.

In 1978 Muhammad Ali signed a four-page contract to fight his nemesis Ken Norton, but Ali’s loss to Leon Spinks that year in what was supposed to be a tune-up fight for Norton voided that contract (and a promised $12.5 million payday for Ali). The contract, actually a photocopy of the original, but still signed by Ali and promoter Bob Arum, is expected to command $3,000-$4,000.

George W. Bush’s personally owned and well-worn Mizuno sneakers, designed by Bush while he was president and showing the personal presidential stitched monogram on the tongue of each sneaker (“President / G.W. Bush”), no doubt graced golf courses, Camp David and elsewhere. The shoes come with a COA from Bush’s valet Samuel Sutton and should reach $2,000-$2,500.

The impressive gelatin silver print photograph of Yale University’s men’s outdoor track and field team from circa 1903 shows 44 varsity and junior varsity team members all dressed in black tanks and white shorts, standing and seated in four rows. All sport white “Y” letters on their tops. The 22 ½ inch by 30 ¾ inch photo is nicely matted and mounted on board (est. $1,500-$2,000).

The large, top-secret dispatch lock box with black leather covering and travel handle owned by David Lloyd George (1863-1945), a key figure in Great Britain during that conflict and the holder of several important government positions after the war, has a pre-sale estimate of $1,000-$1,200. The wood framed box has a beveled top with George’s name embossed, in rubbed gilt. 

John Reznikoff started collecting stamps in 1968, while in the third grade, and in 1979 he formed University Stamp Co., Inc. In 1984, he joined forces with Bryan Camarda, a specialist in philatelic material, and the two have been partners ever since. By the late ‘80’s and early ‘90’s, Reznikoff was exclusively dealing in manuscript material under the name University Archives.

For more information about University Archives and the Tuesday, August 29th auction, please visit www.universityarchives.com.

Image: Civil War-era letter twice signed by Abraham Lincoln, dated Dec. 15, 1862 and was written to U. S. Navy Secretary Gideon Welles, with Naval Academy content (est. $15,000-$20,000).

Madonna 7.jpgNEW YORK CITY, N.Y. - A complete set of 66 original Polaroid photos of Madonna, taken in 1983 by the noted portrait photographer Richard Corman (Am., b. 1954), just six weeks before the release of the young singer’s debut album and eventual skyrocket to fame, is for sale through Manhattan Rare Books, located inside Gallery 90 in New York City, at 1050 Second Avenue.

The sale price of the set is $350,000. “We are offering these unique Polaroids of Madonna until September 5th,” said Michael DiRuggiero owner of Manhattan Rare Books. “After that, if there is no buyer, the set will be dispersed and the images offered individually.” The photos are featured in Corman’s limited-edition fine art book Madonna 66, which was released in November 2016.

Harper’s Bazaar said of the book, “Corman’s Polaroids prove with utter certainty that Madonna was destined for icon status.” Mr. DiRuggiero added, “This is a unique opportunity for a serious collector to own a complete collection, documenting an important moment in art and cultural history, one that will be available only as a complete and intact collection until September 5th.”

The sale price includes all 66 original Polaroids, each one signed and numbered by Corman (1-66), housed in a custom case by the noted book artist Sjoerd Hofstra, plus a copy of Madonna 66. The book was widely praised by The New York Times, New York Magazine, Elle, Harper’s Bazaar, Vanity Fair and other newspapers and magazines. Corman signed the copy being sold. 

In the photos, Madonna (full name, Madonna Ciccone) is dressed in full Material Girl regalia, a look that launched a fashion revolution among young women of the time: white lace leggings under torn jeans, jean jacket with graffiti on the back and the sleeves cut off, and rubber bangles (or friendship bracelets). She sports bright red lipstick and a fake mole on the side of her face.

The 66 images were taken as test shots for a movie that Corman’s mother, a casting director, was screen-testing actors for but never got made. She saw in the budding star potential, and she urged her son to photograph her. “I knew this was somebody special right away,” Corman said of their first meeting, which took place in Madonna’s apartment on East 4th Street in Greenwich Village.

He remembered, “She was funny in the most beguiling way. As soon as I walked up, she served me espresso and bubblegum on a silver plate and tray.” Over a period of months and for several sittings, Corman photographed his subject, usually at Madonna’s brother’s house in Manhattan. The end result is the trove of 66 Polaroids Corman used for his book and which is now for sale.

Corman had previously worked for legendary photographer Richard Avedon (Am., 1923-2004), but observed that even with all of his experience around the celebrities who would parade in and out of Avedon’s studio, the Madonna spark was special. “When you look at somebody through a camera you either see behind somebody’s eyes or you don’t,” he said. “With her it was, ‘wow’.”

Corman said there is a looseness to the Madonna Polaroids that would be difficult to orchestrate today. “Now, we’d have 20 bodyguards and 30 assistants,” he said. “They’d have to cordon off the street. Beyoncé, Rihanna, Nicki Minaj - people like that, who I’d love to spend time with - it would be a much different experience nowadays. But Madonna was accessible. And it was raw.” 

Also for sale through Manhattan Rare Books is a set of three silver gelatin prints of photographs Corman took of the late boxing legend Muhammad Ali. It is the only set in which all three of the 11 inch by 14 inch prints is signed by Ali, in silver marker on the front of the image. Each image is also signed by Corman on the verso and marked (“1 of 1”). The set is priced to sell at $22,500.

Two autobiography books about the life Richard Avedon, Richard Corman’s mentor, are also for sale. One is a signed limited first edition copy (#44 of only 250 copies signed by Avedon), with a special engraver’s proof of his iconic image of the late Marilyn Monroe laid-in. The book, which is lavishly illustrated with 285 of Avedon’s most celebrated photographs, is for sale at $4,900.

The other book, titled Richard Avedon, An Autobiography, with: Evidence, 1944-1994, is a special limited edition boxed set, with two original hand-stamped engraver’s proofs. Although the limitation states 250 copies, only about 100 were actually produced. Signed and numbered in the box by Avedon, and chronicling his career over a 50-year span, the book is for sale at $6,500.

Manhattan Rare Books specializes in outstanding and rare books in fine condition. The firm only offers books that have been carefully selected to meet its stringent standards of high quality and importance. Anyone interested in discussing their collecting interests is encouraged to visit the gallery (hours by appointment); call (212) 326-8907; or, visit www.manhattanrarebooks.com

Image: Up on the roof and soon-to-be on top of the pop culture world, little does Madonna know in this devil-may-care shot the riches and fame that await her. Courtesy of Manhattan Rare Books. 

Lot 86, W.B. Olivia Shakespear letters copy.jpg18 August 2017—The collection of one of Ireland’s most important families of the last century will be offered for sale at Sotheby’s in London on 27 September 2017. Illuminating the private world of the Yeats family, the auction will comprise literary material, paintings, drawings and the personal effects of artist John Butler Yeats and his four children: poet W.B, embroidery designer Lily, printing press pioneer Lolly, and artist Jack. 

The sale will not only cast new light on the artistic development of these important figures, but also reveal a little of what life was like inside the Yeats family home. Alongside significant paintings, letters and drawings are unseen family sketch books, a family scrapbook, illustrated ‘scribbling’ diaries, photographs, hand-decorated furniture, Jack’s model boats, personalised silver, a top hat, a hand-painted trunk, and the family dining table.

With over 220 lots in total, estimates in the sale start at £80-120 (€100-150) for W.B.’s retractable telescope, and go up to £250,000-350,000 (€281,000-394,000) for the star lot: over 130 letters between W.B. and his life-long friend and first lover, Olivia Shakespear. 

Highlights from the collection will be unveiled for the first time in a public exhibition at the Royal Hibernian Academy in Dublin from 14-16 September, ahead of an exhibition in London from 22-26 September (please see further details in notes to editors). The majority of artworks in the collection have not been seen in public for over 30 years, and the personal effects have never been exhibited before. 

The collection has been cared for by the descendants of W.B. Yeats in the family home near Dublin for over 75 years. For three generations, the family has provided a huge wealth of material to the Irish nation, including last year’s donation to the National Library of Ireland of W.B. Yeats’s Nobel Prize medal, valued at €1.5 million. 

Ahead of Sotheby’s sale, Ireland’s national institutions were given the opportunity to acquire any of the items in the collection. Consequently, the National Library has made private purchases of a number of items, including correspondence between W.B. Yeats and James Joyce, the ‘Dream Diary’ of W.B. Yeats’s wife George, and the Yeats family library. The Art & Industrial Division of the National Museum of Ireland, following inspections of the Yeats Collection in March and April 2017 also acquired seven works (including a walnut reading/writing table owned and used by WB Yeats, WB Yeats’ home-made series of ‘occult’ artefacts, his series of Japanese Noh theatre masks and a silver box containing 8 coins, inscribed SAORSTÁT ÉIREANN. PRESENTED BY THE MINISTER FOR FINANCE TO W.B. YEATS ESQ. A MEMBER OF THE ADVISORY COMMITTEE ON DESIGNS FOR THE COINAGE, 1928.) for the national collection. The acquisitions by both institutions were made possible by the generous financial support of the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht.

Additional works from the Yeats family collection will be offered in Ireland by Fonsie Mealy Auctioneers, in November and December, at Castlecomer and Dublin. 

A spokesman for the family said: “Our family has enjoyed these items for many years. We are delighted that they will now be exhibited and available for everyone to see in Dublin and in London and for collectors to have the opportunity to acquire their own piece of Irish history.”

Charlie Minter, Head of Irish Art at Sotheby’s, said: “This is an intimate, personal collection of many never-before-seen works that shed light on the fabled Yeats family, their influence and personal connections. All the family are represented in this sale. There is a particularly impressive group of works by John, too often the forgotten father of the Yeats family. His work appears rarely at auction; this is our chance to revaluate his pictures and appreciate the great intimacy of his sketches.”

Sale Highlights

W.B.’s Letters to his life-long friend and first lover, Olivia Shakespear

This collection of over 130 handwritten letters spanning more than 40 years, from 1894 to 1936, is of the highest importance to literary history and of exceptional rarity on the open market (est. £250,000-350,000 / €281,000-394,000). Olivia Shakespear was Yeats’s first lover and the subject of early love poems, but over the decades their erotic entanglement transformed into one of Yeats’s most important and stable friendships. Following her death Yeats commented that “For more than forty years she has been the centre of my life in London”. She was a significant cultural figure in her own right and shared many of Yeats’s intellectual interests; she also introduced Yeats to Ezra Pound and to George Hyde-Lees, who became Yeats’s wife. In this extraordinary series of letters - totalling some 350 pages - Yeats sends her drafts of poems, gives advice on her novels, writes of his work, life, and reading, and describes the changes in Irish politics and society from before Independence through to the 1930s. 

The sale also includes W.B.’s writing bureau, on which he would have written many of these letters to Olivia (est. £20,000-30,000 / €22,500-33,800). It was used regularly for his correspondence in later years, a period during which he both wrote some of his most memorable verse, and was newly engaged in Irish political affairs. 

W.B. was, like the rest of the family, also a trained artist. The sale includes both an early sketchbook (which also contains very early poetic drafts) and two pastels of coole, the estate of Lady Gregory which Yeats described as ‘the most beautiful place in the world’ (est. £7,000-10,000 / € 7,900-11,300 and £8,000-12,000 / €9,000-13,500).

John Butler Yeats’ Sketchbooks and Final Self-Portrait

The sale will include the largest ever offering of works by John B. Yeats. He is best known for his drawings, of which over 85 are included in the sale along with 11 sketchbooks, depicting his family, the Irish countryside and celebrated contemporaries and friends, such as John O’Leary, Hugh Lane, Sarah Purser and Mary Walker (Máire NicShiubhlaigh). The paintings include his important final self-portrait, commissioned by the New York lawyer, collector and patron of the arts, John Quinn in 1911 (est. £30,000-50,000 / €33,800-56,500).

This self-portrait became somewhat of an obsession for the artist. Though work on the picture began in 1911, it would occupy Yeats for the rest of his life, until his death in 1922. “It fills my life. I have never an idle moment or idle thought. It is a long revel, just as satisfying to me as Gibbon’s Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, and I think I have been at it almost as many years.” - John Butler Yeats

Works by Jack Butler Yeats 

The Runaway Horseis the most valuable of the 35 artworks by Jack Yeats in the sale (est. £150,000-250,000 / €169,000-281,000). Painted in 1954, and one of his final works, the painting depicts a golden-haired child playing. Towards the end of his career, the theme of memory in his work became more enhanced - here the intoxicating impact of a youthful memory is conveyed not only though the artist’s choice of subject but also in the exuberant way in which he paints it.

The Sunset Belongs to You (1951), showing a dramatic encounter betweentwo anonymous figures, embodies a key theme in Yeats’s later work (est. £100,000-150,000 / €113,000-169,000). Transient meetings between travellers on the road fulfil an existential idea explored in the artist’s own novels and plays, and most notably in the plays of his friend, Samuel Beckett. The theatrical poses of the figures, with their bodies silhouetted against an expanse of sky, together with a dynamic application of paint, are evident of Yeats’s keen understanding of drama.

The extraordinary range of material in the sale produced by Jack encompasses original sets of broadside drawings, printed by Lolly and Lily’s Cuala Press, led by a group of four ink drawings (est. £15,000-20,000 / €16,900-22,500); his childhood sketchbook, aged 12, comprising numerous delightful drawings in pencil and pastel (est. £10,000-15,000 / €11,300-16,900); three of the artist’s scribbling diaries for the years 1888 and 1889, when he was a teenager during his second year in London, containing entries of great colour and detail recoding Jack’s new London life (each £8,000-12,000 / €9,000-13,500); a collection of early sketches and illustrationsdating largely from the time when he was beginning to make a career for himself as a contributor to various publications (est. £7,000-10,000 / €7,900-11,300).

Ahead of the publication of the catalogue, here is a glimpse of what to expect from the exhibition and sale, for items at all price points:

Items estimated at £500 and under

• Jack’s collapsible silk top hat (est. £500-700 / €600-800)

• A present to W.B. from his future wife, George: a silver box inscribed ‘Willy from George / July 1915’ (est. £100-120 / €150-150)

• John’s silver ring, engraved inside with his name (est. £400-600 / €450-700).

• Jack’s artist’s palette (est. £200-300 / €250-350)

• Photographs of W.B.’s greatest muse and love, Maud Gonne. He unsuccessfully asked her to marry him multiple times. She was the inspiration for more than eighty poems (est. £800-1,200 / €900-1,350).

Items estimated at £1,000 and under

• Jack’s collection of nine model boats or hulls (est. £1,000-1,500 / €1,150-1,700)

• W.B.’s rosewood monogrammed brushes (est. £800-1,200 / €900-1,350)

• A large pair of brass spiral twist altar-sticks, that stood before the great fireplace at W.B.’s castle in Galway, Thoor Ballylee (est. £800-1,200 / €900-1,350)

• A handmade boat by the Poet Laureate John Masefield, given to W.B. and his wife George (est. £700-900 / €800-1,050) 

• A portrait by W.B.’s muse and sometime lover Maud Gonne of her daughter Iseult (est. £2,000-3,000 / € 2,250-3,400)

Items estimated at £3,000 and under

• W.B.’s chess set, Canton, late 19th century (est. £2,500-3,500 / €2,850-3,950)

• The Yeats family dining table, acquired by W.B. with the money awarded to him from winning the Nobel Prize in 1923 (est. £1,500-2,500 / €1,700-2,850).

• W.B.’s metal deed box, painted “W.B. Yeats” on side (est. £2,000-3,000 / €2,250-3,400)

• A textile by Lily illustrating W.B.’s poem The Lake Isle of Innisfree (est. £1,500-2,500 / €1,700-2,850).

• Three embroideries by Lily Yeats (est. £3,000-5,000 / €3,400-5,700)

• Jack’s artist’s wooden box for pencils, decorated by Jack with a pirate theme, including a skull and crossbones together with the artist’s monogram (est. £3,000-5,000 / €3,400-5,700) 

• W.B.’s desk chair (est. £3,000-5,000 / €3,400-5,700)

• A sketch portrait of Jack, drawn by John in 1889 (est. £3,000-5,000 / €3,400-5,700)

• A self-portrait sketch by John, 1921 (est. £3,000-5,000 / €3,400-5,700)

Items estimated at £5,000 and under

• The Yeats Family Scrapbook, comprising 47 childhood drawings by William, Jack, Lily and Lolly. All the Yeats children had drawn, sketched, and painted since they were old enough to carry a brush. Alongside portraits of each other, is what can be considered Jack’s very first self-portrait aged eight, depicting him in a farmer’s field (est. £4,000-6,000 / €4,500-6,800)

• Eight photograph albums of the Yeats family, mostly assembled and captioned by Lily or Lolly Yeats (est. £5,000-7,000 / €5,700-7,900)

• A group sketches of family life by John, including pictures of W.B. as a baby and child, the children being read a story by their mother Susan (est. £5,000-7,000 / €5,700-7,900)

Image: William Butler Yeats. Highly important series of 133 autograph letters signed to his close friend and early lover Olivia Shakespear (£250,000-350,000).

Ukranian postcards - The children's book illustration.jpg“Two bears, two bears, thrashed the peas,

  Two roosters, two roosters took it to the mill,

  And the sparrow, a fine fellow, played the fiddle.”

Where had he seen them before?  Among the collection of a thousand books Emil Allakhverdov acquired at auction was a little gem - a children’s book titled “Fun World, A Folk Song,” The drawings, illustrating a song in the book, “Two Bears, Two Bears,” looked very familiar. And then, it dawned on him. 

Of the seven drawings in the children’s book, five were used as templates for a series of Ukrainian propaganda postcards entitled “Fun Work, A Folk Song in a New Way,” which Emil had acquired some time ago.  When Emil compared the postcard illustration to those in the children’s book, the resemblance was quite startling!  

The postcards seemingly cheerful illustrations for children were actually powerful anti-Soviet and Anti-Nazi political cartoons printed shortly after the defeat of Nazi Germany in 1945 - a time when Ukrainian nationalists were equally intent on seeing the demise of the Soviet regime as well.  Their origin had been unknown to Emil.  Here was a piece of the puzzle. 

At the upcoming Brooklyn Antiquarian Book Show, Emil will be making this historically important set of Ukrainian language propaganda postcards available to the public.  The cover postcard in the set shows two tattered bears, symbolizing Russia and Germany, carrying Bolshevism and Nazism to the trash heap of history. These delicate, exquisitely drawn illustrations, printed on the front side of the postcards, carry a heavy message of moral resistance.

It was thought that the artist of these propaganda postcards was likely Sudomora, the same illustrator of the small children’s book, although it was uncertain.  A Ukrainian born in 1889, Sudomora was a celebrated illustrator, having studied at the Kiev Art School.    He worked with Kiev publishers on a wide variety of books and magazines, including “Oktober” and the Soviet youth organization’s “Pioneer” magazine. 

He moved to Lviv, but after the city was captured by the Soviet army, continued his commercial artistic work in Kharkov.  He was arrested in 1949 on charges of anti-Soviet activities and sentenced to 25 years in prison.  He was granted amnesty in 1955 and returned to Kiev where he lived with his wife and children until his death in 1965.

The unique and beautifully illustrated set of postcards may have been inspired by a charming children’s book, but the underlying message is a serious call to resistance.  The Ukraine’s liberation in 1945 by the Russian army brought no relief for the hard-pressed Ukrainians.  The long struggle for independence, not yet achieved today. The postcards, marrying art and history, document a pivotal time in Ukrainian 20th century experience. 

Image: The children’s book illustration on the left and a vivid example on the right of how the drawing was altered for propaganda purposes.  The Russian bear (right), identified by the hammer-and-sickle armband, is threshing victim nations like the Ukraine, Bulgaria, Lithuania, among others.  The Anti-Nazi, Anti Soviet Ukrainian postcard collection will be available at the upcoming Brooklyn Antiquarian Book Fair, September 8-10 at the Brooklyn Expo Center in Greenpoint.

PBA Galleries saw strong prices realized in their August 10th sale of Americana - Travel & Exploration - World History - Cartography. A number of lots sold for well over the presale high estimate and many lots saw spirited bidding, including an autograph letter by the first African-American Harvard graduate, early 20th century photographs of Hangzhou, China, and Captain F. Brinkley’s ten volume set of Japan: Described and Illustrated by the Japanese; Written by Eminent Japanese Authorities and Scholars.

A fascinating and rare album with 46 gelatin silver photographs of Hangzhou, China sold for $2,400, three times the presale high estimate. The prints depict various locales around the area in the early 20th century. Hangzhou, formerly Romanized as Hangchow, is the capital and most populous city of the Zhejiang Province in eastern China. Each view has an accompanying tissue guard and a paragraph of detailed description both in Chinese and English.

Another lot about the mysterious East, a limited Edition de Luxe of Captain F. Brinkley’s ten volumes on Japan sold for $3,300, more than four times the presale high estimate. Dating from the late 19th century the set is illustrated with classic hand-colored albumen photographs of various Japanese views, including tea ceremonies, bridges, gardens cherry blossoms, flower and produce vendors, temples and the Bronze Buddha at Kamakura. Also pictured is Mt. Fuji, theatre scenes, city and rural life, rickshaws, fishermaidens, and women in traditional dress.

A WWII French map of Germany, almost certainly a battlefront map, sold for $1,560, triple its presale estimate. The map was possibly used by U.S. Intelligence officers watching Soviet movements in German-held territory as there are red pencil writings indicating Soviet Russian troop movements in Germany and Czechoslovakia. Also appearing are names of Russian commanders and the date May 6 [1945], which is the day the Soviet battle for Prague began, just before the Nazi German capitulation.

Richard T. Greener was the first African-American graduate of Harvard and the first black faculty member at the University of South Carolina. An autograph letter signed by him on hotel stationery, written while he furiously campaigned among black voters in Ohio for the Republican presidential candidate James G. Blaine, sold for $1,440. Greener was considered an African-American visionary and was well-regarded by Republican Party managers whom he served as an orator of black audiences during the campaign. Despite his work, Blaine lost the election to Grover Cleveland.

Other lots doing well in the sale were a rare first edition of the first Peter Parley book, selling for $6,000, a respectable price despite lacking one leaf and being rebound in modern morocco & cloth; an early copy of the subscriber’s edition of Anson’s famous voyage around the world, selling for $3,600; the Pioneers Edition of The World in the Air: The Story of Flying in Pictures, signed by important figures in aviation history and selling for $3,300; the striking clipper ship sailing card Wild Rover! with iconic image representing sail versus steam selling for $1,800; and a Custer fight survivor's copy of Longstreet’s Civil War memoir From Manassas to Appomattox, selling for $1,680, well over the presale estimate.

PBA Galleries holds sales of fine, rare and collectible books every two weeks.  For more information regarding upcoming sales, consignments, or auction results, please contact PBA Galleries at (415) 989-2665 or pba@pbagalleries.com.

DALLAS, Texas (Aug. 15, 2017) - Singer/songwriter Graham Nash’s collection of Underground Comix art realized more than $1.1 million to lead Heritage Auctions’ summer Vintage Comics & Comic Art Auction in Dallas. The $6.3 million auction presented fresh-to-market art and key books to more than 2,800 bidders in person and via HALive!. 

“The market for original comic art continues to show its strength - especially for works by Robert Crumb,” said Ed Jaster, Senior Vice President Heritage Auctions. “This is the second auction in a row in which we achieved six-figure selling prices of Robert Crumb’s art for our clients.”

The highlight of Nash’s collection was art by Crumb. The artist’s 1967 Original Cover Art for ZAP Comix #1 soared to $525,800 (the cover was never was used for the publication and was thought lost for years). The People's Comics Complete Four-Page Story Original Art sold for $203,150. Even Crumb’s later works bested high estimates as Weirdo #22 Complete 4-Page Story Original Art from 1988 sold for $131,450 and Crumb’s 1991 ID #2 Original Cover Art ended at $101,575, to round out the collection’s top six-figure lots.

Additional examples of Crumb’s art continued to beat expectations as Your Hytone Comics #nn Complete 9-Page Story "Pete the Plumber" Original Art sold for $89,625 and Mr. Natural #2 Complete 6-Page Story Original Art hammered for $77,675.

Key Comics Command Five Figures

An important private collection from Mister Magik Woo offered several key books in outstanding condition: The Amazing Spider-Man #14 (Marvel, 1964) CBCS NM/MT 9.8 sold for $71,700 and The Amazing Spider-Man #1, with a verified Stan Lee signature (Marvel, 1963) CBCS VF/NM 9.0, ended at $65,725.

A copy of Detective Comics #35 (DC, 1940) CGC VG+ 4.5, shot to $56,165 and 17 bidders competed to own All Star Comics #8 (DC, 1942), CGC VG 4.0 - featuring Wonder Woman's first appearance and origin - and pushed the auction price to $53,775. A coveted copy of Amazing Fantasy #15 (Marvel, 1962), CGC VG/FN 5.0, sold for $38,240. 

Additional highlights include, but are not limited to:

·         From the Eric Sack Collection, Robert Crumb Snoid Comics One-Shot Complete Nine-Page Story Original Art (Kitchen Sink Press, 1980): realized $74,687 

·         Steve Ditko’s Original Art from Strange Tales #141 Story Page 8 featuring Doctor Strange (Marvel, 1966): realized $65,725

·         Steve Ditko’s Original Art from Amazing Spider-Man #22 Story Page 17 Original Art (Marvel, 1965): realized $52,580

·         Barry Windsor-Smith’s Original Cover for Marvel Comics Presents #83 featuring Wolverine/Weapon X (Marvel, 1991): realized $52,580

Consignments are now welcomed for Heritage Auction’s Nov. 16-17 Comics Auction in Beverly Hills. To consign and to learn more about the upcoming auction, please visit the Comics Auction Portal on HA.com.

Heritage Auctions is the largest fine art and collectibles auction house founded in the United States, and the world’s largest collectibles auctioneer. Heritage maintains offices in New York, Dallas, Beverly Hills, San Francisco, Chicago, Palm Beach, Paris, Geneva, Amsterdam and Hong Kong.

The Internet’s most popular auction-house website, HA.com, has over one million registered bidder-members, and searchable free archives of four million past auction records with prices realized, descriptions and enlargeable photos.

3384-09.jpgThe August 12, 2017 sale at National Book Auctions (NBA) featured a broad range of rare and collectible books and ephemera.

Figuring prominently were titles relating to travel, exploration, and opening of the American West as well as vellum-bound books dating back to the early 17th century. Other standout offerings were a portfolio of folding geological surveys of England and Wales by Sir Roderick Impey Murchison ($1,812) and Cornelius Gurlitt's profusely illustrated architectural study "Die Baukunst Konstantinopels" ($1,312).

Image: From Sir Roderick Impey Murchison geological survey

Further complementary material will be featured in NBA's upcoming sales throughout the year. For more information about bidding or consigning, email mail@nationalbookauctions.com or call 607-269-0101.

BOW TIES copy.jpgPHILADELPHIA, PA - On September 18, Freeman’s will present at auction works from the Patricia and John Roche Collection, including 100 paintings, prints and watercolors from highly regarded European and American artists. Proceeds from the sale of the collection will go to fund the Patricia Kelly Roche Scholarship at St. John’s University in New York. Mrs. Roche was herself the beneficiary of a scholarship to St. John’s, awarded by the Catholic Diocese of Brooklyn. She was the first of her family to go to college, an opportunity that would not have been possible without the financial assistance her scholarship provided. 

Patricia and John Roche were married just out of college in 1957. After graduating from Harvard Law School, Mr. Roche began his legal career at the firm of Shearman & Sterling in New York in 1963. He became a partner in 1971, specializing in banking law. In 1989, Mr. Roche left Shearman & Sterling to become the chief legal officer of Citicorp and Citibank. He retired in 2000 as the co-general counsel of Citigroup. 

Mrs. Roche received a Master’s degree in English from New York University. It was while raising their two children, Janet and Keith, and reading to them at the family’s home in Brooklyn Heights, that Mrs. Roche discovered she wanted to tell stories of her own. She took courses in art and writing children’s books at the New School and, combining her interest in drawing and painting, began to write and illustrate stories for children, many of which were inspired by her deep love for her own son and daughter. Mrs. Roche found a receptive editor at Dial Press in New York, and began her career as an author. She has since published seven books.

Later, as her interest turned to landscape painting in watercolors, the couple began collecting watercolors and prints. On their trips to London for vacation or for Mr. Roche’s business, Mrs. Roche visited art galleries and fell in love with the work of artists of the 19th century, the “golden age” of English watercolors. 

Mr. Roche was a willing partner in acquiring what was to become a large and varied collection of artists such as William Lionel Wyllie, Charles Bentley and William Cornwallis Harris. Her interest was also sparked by contemporary artists in England, Scotland and the United States. Soon, their collection expanded to include works by American painter and printmaker, Wayne Thiebaud and, in a nod to Mrs. Roche’s background in children’s book, the drawings of Maurice Sendak. 

Highlights of the collection include a group of six works on paper by Wayne Thiebaud. Two, ‘Bow Ties’ and ‘Dark Cake’, are prints from published editions. Executed in lithography, the first is a quintessential Thiebaud composition, comprised of rows of brightly patterned subjects. The medium showcases Thiebaud’s skill as a draftsman, and presents his delight in color and repetition, a style and subject that echoes fellow pop artist, Andy Warhol. Packed tightly together and extending beyond the picture plane, each tie is offered up like so many bespoke cupcakes or desserts for our delectation. ‘Dark Cake’ is another joyful exercise for the artist. This time, however, he executes the print in a lush, richly layered woodcut process which showcases the artist’s hand and the three dimensionality of the cake. Here, one of the oldest modes of printmaking is manipulated in a way that reveals Thiebaud’s delight in process as well as subject.

In his forward to a 2013 exhibition featuring his hand-colored prints, Thiebaud writes, “When is a work finished? And how does that differ from work that feels complete?” The four additional works from the Roche collection are examples of the artist’s quest to answer these questions. Three of the four are unique works executed in watercolor, gouache and other media over existing printed matrices. Each work represents the artist’s exploration of an image after and beyond a ‘finished’ print. In one, an etching of a songbird momentarily poised on a perch, the background has been richly colored with pastels and gouache focusing our attention on the bird itself. In another, extensive watercolor additions bring to life the interplay of light and sky upon a sunny California hillside. And finally, in what may well be the jewel of the collection, a jar of brightly candy sticks pops off the paper in a hand-colored triumph, ‘Glassed Candy.’

After decades of collecting, Mr. and Mrs. Roche have decided to part with their lovingly curated collection and, with the proceeds, fund a scholarship in Mrs. Roche’s name, as it was her artistic talent that was the guiding force behind the selection of many of the individual works.

As with the recent Kaplan Collection in April, and the Forbes and Brewster Collections in December of 2016, Freeman’s understands the art and passion of collecting, and has long held that keeping a collection together and offering it as a whole allows the vision of the collector to shine through. Freeman’s is honored to steward the Patricia and John Roche Collection to auction this fall.

Image: WAYNE THIEBAUD (AMERICAN, B. 1920), “BOW TIES”, Color lithograph on wove paper, $20,000-30,000.

hihi.jpgNew York - Christie’s announces Photographs from The Museum of Modern Art, a selection of over 400 photographs to be sold at Christie’s New York starting with four highlights in the October 10th Photographs Day Sale. A subsequent series of online auctions will be held in October, concurrently with the live Day Sale, and in December 2017, as well as January and April 2018. The online sales are carefully curated to encompass several important themes and genres of the medium, including Pictorialism into Modernism, Women in Photography, and several sales on individual photographers will be featured. 

The works offered include iconic photographs by many of the most well-known names from the early 20th century to the post-war period, including Alfred Stieglitz, Edward Steichen, Man Ray, Edward Weston, Henri Cartier-Bresson, and Walker Evans, to name a few. The selection is led by two unique Rayograph works by Man Ray from 1923 and 1928, to be offered in the live auction in New York on October 10. All proceeds from the sales will go into an acquisitions fund for the Museum’s Department of Photography.

Highlights will be previewed during a multi-city tour, with exhibitions in San Francisco, Los Angeles and New York starting in September 2017. Cataloguing and complete details of the sales will be available on Christies.com in September 2017.

Darius Himes, International Head of Photographs, Christie’s, remarks: “Christie’s is honored to offer for sale a selection of photographs from The Museum of Modern Art, New York. In 1940, the Museum became the first in the country to form a Department of Photography. Many of the artists represented in this series of live and online auctions will be deeply familiar to any student of photography, and are beloved on an international scale. These auctions represent a unique opportunity to support the Museum and own a piece of photographic history.”

Tour Dates and Locations:

Los Angeles | Highlights Exhibition | September 5-9

San Francisco | Highlights Exhibition | September 19-23

New York | Auction Preview | October 5-9

Upcoming Auctions:

October 5-11/12, 2017

MoMA: Pictorialism into Modernism

MoMA: Henri Cartier-Bresson

December 2017

MoMA: Women in Photography

January 2018

MoMA: Garry Winogrand

MoMA: Bill Brandt

April 2018

MoMA: Walker Evans

MoMA: Tracing Photography's History

Image: MAN RAY (1890-1976), Rayograph, 1928. Image/ sheet: 15 1/2 x 11 3/4 in. (39.2 x 29.8 cm.) Estimate: $150,000-250,000.

2012-03.jpgThe July 29, 2017 sale at National Book Auctions (NBA) featured a broad range of rare and collectible books and ephemera.

Figuring prominently were titles relating to the opening of the American West as well as vellum-bound books dating back to the early 17th century. Other standout offerings included a first Canadian edition of Mark Twain's "Adventures of Huckleberry Finn" ($2,375) and a first edition of Paul Allen's "History of the Expedition under the Command of Captains Lewis and Clark" ($1,250).

Noteworthy ephemera lots included a c. 1780 map of ancient Germany by De Vaugondy and Groux; a c. 1936 photogravure print of Dorothea Lange's iconic image "Migrant Mother;" and an extensive archive of manuscript records from the Ilion Bank that incorporated several documents signed by Eliphalet Remington, founder of both the bank and of the legendary Remington Arms Company.

Further complementary material will be featured in NBA's upcoming sale on August 12, 2017. NBA's cataloged live sales take place in the Galleries at Worth Asset Brokerage in Freeville, New York (just six miles north of Cornell University) and are simulcast to a global bidding audience via Invaluable. NBA's sister company, Worth Auctions, will be holding a sale the following morning that will include a 1965 Buick coupe, an important Bauhaus porcelain dinner service, the contents of two private binderies, and much more. For more information about bidding or consigning, email mail@nationalbookauctions.com or call 607-269-0101.signing, mail@nationalbookauctions.com or call 607-269-0101.

The Center for Book Arts, the nation’s first institution dedicated to teaching and promoting the art of the book and related arts, is pleased to announce that it is the recipient of a New York City Cultural Tourism Grant, presented on August 9, 2017 by Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer. The grant program promotes culture and the arts across all of New York City’s five boroughs by supporting the promotion of cultural events and exhibits and increasing visitor awareness of each borough’s cultural offerings.

Stephen Bury, Board Chair of the Center for Book Arts and Chief Librarian at the Frick Reference Library, remarked that “we are especially pleased to see these funds awarded to the Center as a way to encourage New Yorkers to re-discover one of this city’s cultural jewels-the only organization offering instruction and exhibitions in book art is a short walk from Penn Station and the Flatiron building. This is good news for culturally curious New Yorkers and all lovers of the book.”

“Funds from the Cultural Tourism Grant are vital to marketing book art and the Center to New Yorkers,” said Alexander Campos, Executive Director & Curator of the Center. He added, “On our busy New York City block, our visitors, who are amazed by our exhibitions and antique equipment, tell us that our street banner convinced them stop by. Funds from this award will replace the banner and pay for a new stanchion and for printing program inserts.”

Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer presented a check for $2,000 to Mr Bury, Mr Campos, and other members of the Center’s board on August 9. Ms Brewer thanked the Center for its contributions to New York’s cultural life.

“Manhattan’s greatest wealth is its array of cultural gems, and not just our massive institutions known all over the world but our neighborhood museums, studios, and cultural institutions that both preserve old traditions and incubate innovative new works and artists,” said Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer. “The Center for Book Arts does exactly this important work. I know that exposing visitors to the true diversity of experiences in our borough’s neighborhoods increases tourism, enhances local neighborhoods and businesses, and reveals the true breadth of what our city has to offer the world.”

Fred Dixon, President and CEO of the NYC & Company Foundation added that, “Supporting new cultural opportunities keeps New York City exciting and vital. Encouraging cultural tourism increases visitor spending and job creation essential to the local economy.”

About the Center for Book Arts

The Center for Book Arts is dedicated to exploring and cultivating contemporary aesthetic interpretations of the book as an art object, while preserving the traditional practices of the art of the book. The Center seeks to facilitate communication between the book arts community and the larger spheres of contemporary art and literature through exhibitions, classes, public programming, literary presentations, opportunities for artists and writers, publications, and collecting. Founded in 1974 and still located in Manhattan, it was the first not-for-profit organization of its kind in the nation, and has since become a model for others around the world. Visit our website for up-to-date details on all events and programs:  www.centerforbookarts.org

About New York City Cultural Tourism Development Grants

New York City Cultural Tourism Development Grants are privately funded by donations to the NYC & Company Foundation, the mission of which is to support tourism in all five boroughs by promoting local cultural events and institutions. The grant program is administered by the Borough President’s Office, and cultural groups are invited to apply for funding annually through the Borough President’s online grant portal. Recipients are selected by the Borough President based on the merit of the program.

 

Unknown-1 copy.jpgThe oldest, continually running regional Antiquarian Book Fair in the U.S. takes place in downtown Rochester, N.Y. at the Main Street Armory on Saturday, September 9, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

            Presented by the Rochester Area Booksellers Association (RABA) and RIT Press, annually the Fair attracts an increasing number of visitors and exhibitors. Currently, nearly 50 dealers from across the nation and Canada will bring rare antiquarian titles along with good secondhand books of wide subject breadth and reader interest, including scholarly texts. Additionally, exhibitors will feature prints, maps, photographica and collectible ephemera embracing equally diverse subject categories.

            The Book Fair also features readings and book signings by local authors. And, for the second time, displays by several special collections libraries will be presented. For six hours, the Armory reverberates with a lively, festive atmosphere populated by those who appreciate the aesthetic and intellectual dimensions of the book.

            The Fair’s venue is the castle-like turn-of-the-century Armory. Spacious (35,000 square feet) and well-lit, the building’s assembly room - originally used as a drill floor - comfortably accommodates the casual reader as much as the fussiest and most demanding collector.

            The Rochester Antiquarian Book Fair is co-sponsored by the 10-member Rochester Area Booksellers Association and RIT Press. The scholarly book publishing enterprise of the Rochester Institute of Technology, RIT Press will feature selections from their impressive catalogue of books on typography, printing and the history of the book.

            The Rochester Antiquarian Book Fair is held at the Main Street Armory, 900 East Main St., Rochester, N.Y. from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Admission is $5, and is free to students who present a current student ID. Coupons offering a $2 discount on admission are available at area libraries, bookshops and cafes.

            This year advance admission tickets are available online through RABA’s website: (www.rochesterbooksellers.com) . And discount tickets for couples and families are available.

            For more information, visit www.rochesterbooksellers.com or call Jonathan Smalter (of Yesterday’s Muse Books) at 585-265-9295.

Image: A customer peruses one exhibitor’s inventory at last year’s Rochester (N.Y.) Antiquarian Book Fair. (Photo by A. Sue Weisler)

image002.jpgIOLA, WI - Featuring more than 300 outstanding objects gathered from private and public collections, Harry Potter - The Unofficial Guide to The Collectibles of Our Favorite Wizard provides the first comprehensive survey of the rich art, books, and memorabilia created during the last 20 years of Pottermania. First-edition copies of J.K. Rowling’s epic now command nearly $50,000 and special items created for collectors are rising in value every day. The esoteric knowledge, visual symbols, and moral teachings revealed in Rowling’s writings have inspired an entire generation of readers young and old and have formed an important facet of American popular culture.

In this beautifully illustrated and lavishly designed book, author Eric Bradley introduces readers to the broad world of these collectibles and explores the fandom surrounding the mystique behind the world’s boy-wizard. From the Holy Grail chair Rowling used to write her epic series, which sold for a spellbinding $394,000, to a $40,000 Potter-themed wedding and those who tattoo their bodies with symbolism from the books, this guide appeals to dedicated Harry Potter fans and the curious alike.

   “Twenty years on, the world of Harry Potter is expanding quickly, and with it comes the usual flurry of new films, books, plays, amusement parks, and more on the horizon. Each one will come with a blur of collectibles, posters, figurines, and limited-edition items (not to mention movie props!) available for collectors. In fact, the season for Harry Pottery never has been hotter. It’s easy to see why.

   Don’t worry if that phrase is new to you: Harry Pottery is the collecting genre that includes all things related to this wizarding world. Whereas rare items sell between $10,000 (a complete set of all seven UK Harry Potter titles) and $43,000 (a first edition, first printing of the first book, Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone), values for mass produced Harry Potter collectibles are also on the rise...” —From the book’s introduction

Telling the story behind Harry Potter through its art and collectibles, Bradley examines how fans and the marketplace contribute to the enduring love behind these enigmatic characters and the books that launched a million imaginations.

Harry Potter - The Unofficial Guide to The Collectibles of Our Favorite Wizard opens the door to private collections and invites the reader to explore the compelling world of wizardry now coveted by collectors.

Eric Bradley is the author of several collectibles books, including the critically acclaimed Mantiques: A Manly Guide to Cool Stuff and Antique Trader Antiques & Collectibles, the No. 1 selling guide on the market. He has appeared in The Wall Street JournalGQFour Seasons Magazine and PARADE, among others. Bradley is the Public Relations Director at Heritage Auctions, ha.com, the world's largest collectibles auctioneer. He lives near Dallas with his wife and three children.

Harry Potter - The Unofficial Guide to the Wonders of Our Favorite Wizard

By Eric Bradley
8 x 8, hardcover, 208 pages, $22.99
250+ color photos
ISBN-13: 978-1-4402-4802-3
Krause Publications
www.krausebooks.com

Prints, rare first editions, and out-of-print books from the 17th-19th centuries headline StoryLTD’s Antiquarian Books and Prints online auction on 29-30 August. Estimates range from INR 15,000-20,000 to 16-18 lakhs for the 81 lots on offer. Replete with battle accounts and travels across India, Afghanistan, Burma and Sri Lanka, the books on auction cover themes including observations of local customs and architectural wonders, as well as lighter ones on cookery. Many feature lavish illustrations, and are presented in attractive leather binding with rich gilting and lettering. This is StoryLTD’s third auction in the category, with two highly successful auctions held in past years. The auction is preceded by viewings at Saffronart, Mumbai.

Auction Highlights

Screen Shot 2017-08-10 at 9.22.12 AM.pngScenery, Inhabitants, and Costumes of Afghaunistan , a book with detailed accounts and illustrations of individual battles, Afghan cities, local people and customs, geographic features, and indigenous soldiers, authored by James Rattray and published in 1848 by Hering & Remington. James Rattray was a lieutenant in the British Bengal Army, who recorded his experiences and produced sketches during the first Anglo-Afghan War (1839-1842). Published after the war, the text and illustrations are autobiographical and recount many of the positive aspects and pitfalls of an ultimately unsuccessful campaign. Featuring 29 coloured plates with a descriptive letterpress, it has a contemporary dark green half morocco binding.

Estimate: Rs 16-18 lakhs ($25,000-$28,125)

Select Views in India , authored by William Hodges and published in 1786 by J Edwards. Hodges was the first Englishman to document India. This is an excellent copy of his pioneering work on India’s architecture and landscape. It features 48 aquatint plates, and is beautifully presented in period calf leather and embellished with a Greek key scroll border. Hodges also served as an inspiration to Thomas Daniell, the illustrious English landscape painter who became known for his aquatints.

Estimate: Rs 16-18 lakhs ($25,000-$28,125)

Portraits of Princes and People of India , authored by Emily Eden and published in 1843 by Dickinson & Son. With 24 coloured lithographic plates depicting the lives of Indian rulers and their families, it is presented in an original contemporary half moroccan and cloth cover.

Estimate: Rs 11-14 lakhs ($17,190-$21,875)

Scenery and Reminiscences of Ceylon, authored by John Deschamps, Esq., and published in 1844 by by Ackermann & Co. With coloured lithographic plates, this is a significant and ambitious survey of mid-19th century Sri Lanka, where Deschamps spent nine years as an officer in the Royal Artillery. It is presented in a contemporary green cloth binding.

Estimate: Rs 4.5-5.5 lakhs ($7,035-$8,595)

Set of Two Highly Decorated Books: “Sakoontala, or The Lost Ring ” , and “Folk Tales of Bengal”.  Sakoontala , Kalidasa’s famous Sanskrit play, was translated into English by Monier Williams and published in 1855 by Stephen Austin. The book is bound in full calf, with decorated endpapers and gilt edges.  Folk Tales of Bengal by Lal Behari Dey was published in 1912 by Macmillan & Co., Limited. Each tale is beautifully illustrated in colour by Warwick Goble.

Estimate: Rs 50,000-60,000 ($785-$940)

Set of Two Early Indian Cookery Books:  Indian Domestic Economy and Receipt with Hindustanee Romanized Names  by R Riddell, published in 1871 by Thacker Spink & Co., comprises directions for both Western and Indian cookery, while also instructing the reader on more practical matters connected with household affairs of the time.  Culinary Jottings for Madras by Colonel Arthur Robert Kenney-Herbert “Wyven”, was published in 1883 by Higginbothams & Co. Colonel Wyvern’s book offers an intriguing look into Anglo-Indian cuisine, instructing readers on how to produce English and French food using locally available and imported ingredients, as well as managing and running a kitchen.

Estimate: Rs 30,000-50,000 ($470-$785)

Women Travellers in India (Set of Three Books)

This is a set of three fascinating accounts by women travellers who accompanied their husbands to India.  The Diary of a Civilian's Wife in India, 1877-1882,  by Mrs. Robert Moss King, published in 1884 by Richard Bentley & Sons, is a two-volume set with drawings made by her. In  Our Visit to Hindostan, Kashmir & Ladakh,  published in 1879 by W H Allen & Co., Mrs J C Murray Ayensley describes her impressions of the cities she travelled to, with brief mention of tea cultivation in Kulu, an opium factory in Ghazipore, Sikh festivals, camp life in Kashmir, and sheep as beasts of burden.  The Indian Alps and how We Crossed Them  was authored  by Nina Elizabeth Mazuchelli, the first Englishwoman to have travelled far into the eastern Himalayas. Published in 1875 by Dodd, Mead & Co., it is an early mountaineering classic of Himalayan travel, and one of the few early exploration books that was not primarily a hunting expedition.

Estimate: Rs 60,000-80,000 ($940-$1,250)

A Discoverie of the Sect of the Banians,  authored by Henry Lord and published in 1630 by F. Constable. The oldest book in this auction, it is one of the earliest accounts of Hinduism and Zoroastrianism by Europeans. The book is bound in a modern brown calf cover with marbled boards and a red morocco label.

Estimate: Rs 2.5-3 lakhs ($3,910-$4,690)

Views in Burman Empire  is a collection of ten plates by Captain James Kershaw and William Daniell that illustrates Prome, Rangoon, Melloon and Pagham-Mew. Published in 1831 by Smith, Elder & Co., each print is individually mounted and presented in a yellow cloth Solander box.

Estimate: Rs 11-14 lakhs ($17,190-$21,875)

Views in the Himalayan Mountains,  a set of four aquatints, was touted by Godrej & Rohatgi as “the finest aquatints of mountain scenery ever produced”, and was published in 1820 by Messrs. Rodwell and Martin.

Estimate: Rs 5-5.5 lakhs ($7,815-$8,595)

The Glorious Conquest of Seringapatam  is a striking triptych depicting Tipu Sultan’s magnificent but failed attempt at defending the fortress of Seringapatam from British troops. Each section of the triptych is a hand-tinted mezzotint by J. Vendramini (after Robert Ker Porter), made in 1802-03.

Estimate: Rs 7.5-8.5 lakhs ($11,720-$13,285)

About StoryLTD and Saffronart

Launched in 2013, StoryLTD is an e-commerce and auction service offered by Saffronart, India’s leading auction house. StoryLTD provides a unified and convenient shopping experience encompassing diverse categories. Our fixed price collections include prints, paintings, photography, design and jewellery, offered at accessible price points. We have held several successful auctions of modern and contemporary Indian art, antiquarian books and prints, ephemera on Indian art, folk and tribal art, and sports and film memorabilia.

Founded in 2000 by Minal and Dinesh Vazirani, Saffronart is a leading international auction house, and India’s most reputed, with over a hundred auctions to its credit. It is headquartered in Mumbai, with offices in New Delhi, London and New York. At the forefront of selling Indian art, we hold online and live auctions, exhibitions, and prime property sales throughout the year. Our focus is to bring transparency to the auction process, and provide easy access to bidders around the world.

Saffronart’s services go beyond auctions to include private sales, art storage, appraisals and valuations for our clients, and supporting the efforts of the Indian art world by holding fundraiser auctions. We have set several global benchmarks for online auctions, and were the subject of a case study at Harvard Business School in 2005.

Website:   storyltd.com 

Facebook:   @storyltd 

Instagram:   @storyltd

ITHACA, NY—Worth Auctions, located in Dryden, NY, announces the launch of their next auction catalog.   

This auction features a broad range of art and antiques from multiple estates and collections nationwide.

Leading off the sale is a 1965 Buick Wildcat. Consigned to us by the initial owner, this classic American sport coupe is in pleasing garaged condition with 59,000 original miles and plenty of deluxe options including power steering and brakes.          

Another exceptional lot is an important porcelain dinner service manufactured by KPM Berlin under the direction of Bauhaus designer Marguerite Friedlaender Wildenhain. This thirty-nine piece set was brought to the United States by a judge involved in the Nuremberg trials.

Also showcased in this auction will be the contents of two private binderies. Tools include an Altair laying press, four wooden finishing presses, a Duplo mini-collator, numerous leather carving and stamping tools, hand-marbled endpapers, and more.                      

Of interest to antique firearms collectors is a Colt Model 1849 cartridge revolver and a collection of powder horns and flasks.

Fine art offerings of note will include a monumental autumnal landscape by Walter King Stone, a Lincoln campaign lithograph by Currier & Ives, a suite of paintings by Miriam Ruchames, a large-scale Calder lithograph, an albumen photograph by William Henry Jackson, and an extensive collection of photogravures by prominent photographers dating from the 1920s to the 1970s.    

Other items of interest are a pre-1927 Martin ukelele, several sets of contemporary furniture, a colorful hanging textile from Colombia, nineteenth-century decorative glassware, vintage Bakelite bangles, Disney collectibles, NASA memorabilia, a large Coca-Cola sign, various wind-up toys, a squirrel cage, a marble headstone, early Wonder Woman comics, antique astronomy tools, a robot dial radio, historical firefighting equipment, and much more.

Further complementary material will be featured in future sessions in 2017. These cataloged live sales will take place in the Galleries at Worth Asset Brokerage in Freeville, New York and will be simulcast to a global bidding audience via Invaluable, LiveAuctioneers, and eBay Live.  

Worth Auctions is a public auction service specializing in estate work and collections.  The company conducts fully cataloged auctions with global bidding activity over three platforms. The upcoming auctions will feature a wide assortment of items, from pencils to airplanes. For more information, please contact the gallery at 607-330-0358 or email mail@worthauctions.com.

 

ITHACA, NY—National Book Auctions, located in Ithaca, NY, announces the launch of their next auction catalog.  

This catalog features rare, antique and decorative books as well as select additions of ephemera. Travel and exploration figures prominently across the catalog, include titles relating to the opening of the American West.  A fine selection of important first editions will be offered, alongside special signed and limited editions.           

Antique and rare books in this catalog include numerous titles.  Among the earliest examples are the 1678 printing of la Fayette's "Memoires de Hollande," "Pontificale Romanum Clements VIII and Urbani VIII," published in 1683, and the 1641 printing of Sibbes' "The Returning Backslider."  Additional rare selections include a signed copy of Andy Warhol's "Philosophy of Andy Warhol," in the original dust jacket, an 1883 first printing of Twain's "Life on the Mississippi," and the decorative "Personal Memoirs of U. S. Grant," produced in two volumes in 1885.                       

Several pleasing collections will also be showcased.  Highlighted is a sizable group of antique volumes relating to travel and exploration, featuring such examples as the 1881 first edition of Ellis' "On a Raft and through the Desert," produced in two volumes, and a variety of antique titles chronicling expansionism in Africa.  Early exploration in the American West is covered by scarce works such as Stevens' "Narrative and Final Report of the Explorations for a Route for a Pacific Railroad," printed in 1860 with folding maps, and Fremont's "Report of the Exploring Expedition to the Rocky Mountains in the Year 1842 & Oregon and North Carolina in the Years 1843-'44."  Other vintage and antique works also include decorative bindings, books-on-books, military history, theology, travel & exploration, art history, special printings (Folio Society, Easton Press, etc.), Civil War, children's, multi-volume sets, and much more.   

Found throughout this catalog are interesting ephemera offerings. These lots include bound compilations of Civil War issues of "Harper's Weekly" and important autographs such as Henry Morton Stanley, Richard Evelyn Byrd and others.  Additional ephemera categories include rare photographs, antique scrapbooks, black Americana, antique magazines, vintage comic books and more.   

National Book Auctions is a public auction service specializing in books, ephemera, and art. National Book Auctions is a targeted service offering experience and expertise unique to marketing antique and modern books and ephemera for consignors and collectors alike. The upcoming auctions will feature a wide assortment of collectible, signed, and first edition books. For more information, please contact the gallery at 607-269-0101 or email mail@nationalbookauctions.com.

BLOOMFIELD, N.J. - Paintings by the Russian Federation artist Kharlampi Kostandi (1868-1939), Reginald Marsh (Am., 1898-1954) and Ogden Minton Pleissner (Am., 1905-1983), plus items from the collection of Academy Award-nominated actress Grayson Hall (1925-1985) and her writer-husband Sam Hall (1921-2014) will all come up for bid on Wednesday, August 16th.

They’re part of what awaits bidders at Nye & Company Auctioneers’ Summer Estate Treasures Auction, online and in the firm’s gallery at 20 Beach Street in Bloomfield, just north of Newark and not far from New York City. For those unable to attend live, online bidding will be provided by LiveAuctioneers.com and Invaluable.com. Phone and absentee bids will also be accepted.

Around 700 lots will come up for bid, including about 50 lots of silver, Mid-Century Modern furniture, doctors’ and medical books, and property from a member of the Russian Royal Family, prominent New York and New Jersey estates, and property from a UN Plaza private collector.

“As a result of local estate liquidation, the August auction has some unexpected highlights,” said John Nye, president and principal auctioneer of Nye & Company Auctioneers. “They’re the type of strong lots usually associated with a fall sale. We anticipate international interest in the major paintings, both from the internet and phone bidders.” The sale will begin at 10 am Eastern time. 

The oil on canvas painting by Russian Federation artist Kharlampi Kostandi, a pretty moonlight seascape measuring 24 inches by 30 inches, is a strong candidate for top lot of the auction, with a pre-sale estimate of $40,000-$60,000. The work, artist signed, and has just some small paint loss.

Reginald Marsh was an American painter who was born in Paris and is best known for his depictions of life in New York City in the 1920s and ‘30s. His watercolor and ink rendering of tugboats at sea, titled simply Tugs, is signed and dated (1944) and should bring $8,000-$12,000.

Ogden Minton Pleissner was an American painter specializing in landscapes and war art related to his service in World War II. But the watercolor depiction of homes in a bucolic countryside setting is anything but warlike. His signed painting, titled Avallon, is estimated at $2,000-$4,000.

Also offered will be a large-size Manhattan riverscape engraving, 32 inches tall by 51 inches wide, from a painting by J. W. Hill titled New York. The framed piece, engraved by C. Mottram and published by F. & G.W. Smith (N.Y.), has some tears and is expected to hit $800-$1,200.

The items from the estate of Sam and Grayson Hall came out of the 1799 house the couple bought together on the Hudson River in Rhinebeck, N.Y. The home was a showplace, featured in the January 1983 issue of Architectural Digest. Many of its appointments are in the auction.

Grayson Hall was nominated for an Academy Award for her performance in John Houston’s 1964 film Night of the Iguana. But she’s best remembered as Dr. Julia Hoffman, the doctor who fell in love with the vampire character Barnabas Collins on the cult classic soap, Dark Shadows. Sam Hall was a writer on the show; he was also head writer for the soap opera One Life to Live.

The Mid-Century Modern furniture will feature tables by Gilbert Rohde (1894-1994) for Herman Miller. Rohde’s career as a furniture and industrial designer helped define American Modernism during its first phase, from the late 1920s to World War II. He is credited today for inaugurating Modern design at Herman Miller, Inc. Rohde lived in and around New York City his entire life.

Rohde’s tables in the sale include a Paldao coffee table (stenciled #4186), having a biomorphic top supported on one tapering leg and one curved support, both covered in tan, circa 1940 (est. $800-$1,200); and a Cloud occasional table (model #4187, stenciled #4186, circa 1940s), with acacia burl, brass nailheads and vinyl wrapped wood legs. It’s expected to finish at $400-$600.

Additional furniture pieces in the sale will include a Dutch Baroque-style inlaid chest of drawers with mirror, produced in the late 19th or early 20th century, with four drawers on bun feet (est. $800-$1,200); and a figural steel bistro set consisting of two “he-she” barstools and a table, designed by Fred Garbotz and manufactured by Rockledge Design Studios (est. $500-$700).

Other items up for bid will include an 18th/19th century French Louis XV gilt wood oval mirror, 73 inches tall by 49 inches wide, with two candlearms (est. $1,500-$2,500); a 14kt yellow gold diamond and sapphire necklace, stamped Italy, with 35 small round prong set diamonds (est. $1,500-$2,500); and a J.E. Caldwell sterling silver teapot with stand and burner (est. $500-$800).

John Nye had a long and fruitful career at Sotheby’s before he and his wife, Kathleen, acquired Dawson’s in 2003 and started Dawson & Nye. With the move to Bloomfield seven years later, they renamed the business to Nye & Company (Auctioneers, Appraisers, Antiques). The firm is nationwide, but the vast bulk of the business comes from trusts and estates in the tri-state area.

For more information about Nye & Company Auctioneers and the Summer Estate Treasures Auction scheduled for Wednesday, August 16th, please visit www.nyeandcompany.com.

Shanghai Luggage Label copy.jpgIn the mid-1850s, ocean liners began attaching labels to passenger luggage to indicate the passenger’s cabin class and travel destination, making it easier for porters to sort luggage upon arrival. Hotels quickly followed suit, particularly Grand hotels in exotic cities that provided great comfort, elegance and luxury for their guests. The hotel label not only facilitated baggage handling, it became a status symbol. Functional labels quickly evolved into beautiful, sophisticated graphic design.  

A single collection of over three thousand international travel labels, selected for their graphic appeal and quality, from grand hotels, luxury steamship lines and romantic train routes such as the Orient Express, will be featured at the Brooklyn Antiquarian Book Fair, September 8-10, 2017 at the Brooklyn Expo Center in Greenpoint. Exhibitor Sheryl Jaeger of Eclectibles is showcasing labels from the private collection of Jane Goodrich, world traveler and co-founder of Spectrum Publishing. 

Ms. Goodrich’s collection of 3,550 labels, dating from the 1920s to World War II  include colorful labels from such wonderful old hotels as the Luna House in Venice, the Grand  Continental Hotel in Cairo, the Mayfair Hotel in London, and many more. Lovers of Agatha Christie’s famous novel, Murder on the Orient Express, will find a label from this iconic line, which epitomized the ultimate in luxury train travel. 

The 1920s marked the Golden Age of luggage labels due to a huge economic boom just prior to the Wall Street Crash of 1929. It was the age of the steamer trunk and travel was associated with comfort, luxury and adventure.  Many of the artists who designed these distinctive and beautiful labels belonged to the Art Deco period. Italian painter and decorator Mario Borgoni, for example, designed labels for the Swiss printing firm of Richter and Co. during this period.  His use of elegant lettering and red/orange shading became a trademark of the Richter Co. 

Labels helped not only to promote hotels and steamship lines, but attracted tourists to great cities such as Cairo and the pyramids, St. Moritz in the Winter snow, Luxor amid the ruins, and the hotel Le Meurice in the City of Light, Paris. It could be said that travel labels became advertisements for the location more than the hotels themselves. For example, a Hotel Viking label depicts a colorful streetscape with a crossing guard stopping traffic for a family of ducks. The title is “Wonderful Copenhagen.”

Image: International luggage labels, such as this one from the Cathay Hotels in Shanghai, circa 1920s, makes one dream of faraway lands with their iconic sites and luxurious grand hotels.  A single collection of over 3,000 luggage labels will be made available by exhibitor Sheryl Jaeger, at the upcoming Brooklyn Antiquarian Book Fair, which returns to the Brooklyn Expo Center in Greenpoint, Sept. 8-10, 2017.

218-KeepCalm.jpgNew York— More than 600 colorful advertisements and announcements crossed the block at Swann Auction Galleries’ sale of Vintage Posters on Wednesday, August 2. The encyclopedic selection represented a century’s worth of development in graphic design, history and technology.

In honor of the centennial anniversary of the U.S.’s entry into WWI, the sale featured the largest selection of war propaganda the house has ever offered. According to Nicholas D. Lowry, Swann Galleries’ President and Director of Vintage Posters, the varied designs from 1917 are the result of the government giving illustrators free rein to create striking imagery that continues to resonate today. Highlights from this category include works by James Montgomery Flagg, lead by I Want You for U.S. Army, which sold for $14,300*, and Wake Up America Day ($5,250).

The top lot was the iconic British directive Keep Calm and Carry On, 1939, which was purchased by a collector for $15,000. Additional highlights from WWII included Join the ATS, 1941, a poster by Abram Games considered so scandalous it was never published ($6,500), and a suite of patriotic works by Leo Lionni, titled Keep ‘Em Rolling!, 1941, purchased by an institution for $8,750. Lowry added, “As expected, the war posters and propaganda sold exceptionally well, with nearly 80% of lots offered finding buyers.” War poster sales accounted for nearly half of the total revenue of the auction.

Fin de siècle works performed well, with a pencil drawing by Alphonse Mucha nearly doubling its estimate to sell for $10,400. The Art Nouveau master was also represented by Zodiac, 1900, Job, 1898, and Salon des Cent, 1896 ($11,250, $6,563 and $6,500, respectively). A monumental circa 1905 advertisement for Abricotine liqueur by Eugène Grasset reached $8,125, while Ausstellung für Amateur - Photographie, a 1908 ad for cameras by Burkhard Mangold, was purchased for $4,750, a record for the work. Walter Schackenberg’s complete 1920 portfolio of striking costume designs, Ballet und Pantomine, reached $11,250.

Posters promoting performers spanned a century and encompassed a variety of acts. One of the oldest works in the sale depicted the heavily tattooed Captain Constentenus at P.T. Barnum’s New American Museum in 1876; it reached more than five times its high estimate, finally selling to a buyer on the phone for $6,750. Nearly 100 years later, Rick Griffin created the well-known eyeball design for the Jimi Hendrix Experience, 1968 ($11,875). An undated, life-size advertisement for Danté, often considered the last Golden Age magician, was purchased by a collector for $12,500.

The next sale of Vintage Posters at Swann Galleries will be Rare & Important Travel Posters on October 26, 2017. For more information or consign quality materials, contact Nicholas D. Lowry at posters@swanngalleries.com.

Image: 218 Keep Calm and Carry On, designer unknown, 1939. Sold August 2, 2017 for $15,000. (Pre-sale estimate $12,000 to $18,000)

 

CHICAGO, August 3, 2017 - The Chicago Tribune today announced Marilynne Robinson as the recipient of its prestigious 2017 Literary Prize.

Robinson will receive the award and open the 28th Annual Chicago Humanities Festival on Saturday, October 28. She will appear in conversation with Chicago Tribune columnist Heidi Stevens. The recipients of the Heartland Prize for Nonfiction and the Heartland Prize for Fiction, Matthew Desmond and Colson Whitehead, will also appear at the Humanities Fest, receiving their awards on Saturday, November 11. The Heartland awards were announced earlier this year. 

Chicago Tribune Literary Prize

Marilynne Robinson will be honored with the 2017 Chicago Tribune Literary Prize at 11 a.m. Saturday, October 28, at Alice Millar Chapel, 1870 Sheridan Road, in Evanston.

One of the most revered writers in America, Robinson transcends genre in her fiction and essays, speaking to the arc of history and the ambiguities of the human connection. 

When Rev. Clementa Pickney died tragically in South Carolina, President Barack Obama quoted his friend Marilynne Robinson in the eulogy, calling on others to find “that reservoir of goodness, beyond, and of another kind, that we are able to do each other in the ordinary cause of things.”  

Through her astonishing powerful use of language, with its special cadences, Robinson eloquently segues between the magisterial and the quotidian. 

Robinson’s Pulitzer Prize-winning novel Gilead, was previously awarded the Tribune’s Heartland Prize. She has also won the National Humanities Medal, the Library of Congress Prize for American Fiction, and two National Book Critics Circle Awards.

In addition to her fiction, Robinson’s far-ranging, insightful essay collections deal with subjects ranging from the relationship between science and religion, to nuclear pollution and American politics.

“Marilynne Robinson, like many of the winners of the Chicago Tribune Literary Award, has international stature and deep ties to the Midwest,” said Chicago Tribune publisher and editor-in-chief Bruce Dold, who will make introductory remarks at the event on Oct. 28. “She’s a wonderful fiction writer and a brilliant essayist. She challenges every reader to respect the deep mystery of faith. We’re honored to recognize her with this award.” 

The Chicago Tribune Literary Prize was established to honor a great writer whose work has had a great impact on American society. First awarded in 2002, previous recipients of the Literary Prize include the late Arthur Miller, Elie Wiesel, August Wilson and E.L. Doctorow. More recently, the award has gone to Margaret Atwood, Joyce Carol Oates, David McCullough, Stephen Sondheim, Patti Smith, Salman Rushdie, and last year, Philip Glass. 

Chicago Tribune Heartland Prize for Nonfiction and Fiction

Matthew Desmond will be honored with the 2017 Heartland Prize for Nonfiction for Evicted: Power and Profit in the American City at 11 a.m. Saturday, November 11 at the First United Methodist Church at the Chicago Temple, 77 W. Washington St.

In Evicted, Desmond followed the lives of eight Milwaukee families to show how mass evictions are less a consequence of poverty than a cause of it. Through his immersive reporting, Desmond transforms our national understanding of poverty and the profoundly devastating process of losing a home, and offers solutions to this widespread problem.

Evicted won the 2017 Pulitzer Prize for Nonfiction, the National Book Critics Circle Award, the PEN/John Kenneth Galbraith Award for Non-Fiction, and the Andrew Carnegie Medal.

Colson Whitehead will be honored with the 2017 Heartland Prize for Fiction for his novel, The Underground Railroad, at 3 p.m. Saturday, November 11 at the Art Institute of Chicago’s Rubloff Auditorium, 230 S. Columbus Drive. 

Whitehead’s novel uses both realism and allegory to reimagine the Underground Railroad as a train through American history, and recounts the horrors of slavery and the elusive search for freedom that still echoes today.

The Underground Railroad won the 2017 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, National Book Award and the Carnegie Medal. 

“Evicted and The Underground Railroad reset the conversation about poverty and race. They are written with eloquence that elevates them into great literature,” said Elizabeth Taylor, Chicago Tribune literary editor at large. “These are ambitious, brave books that speak to American promise in profoundly resonant ways.”

Chicago Tribune established the Heartland Prizes in 1988 to annually recognize a novel and work of nonfiction that reinforce and perpetuate the values of heartland America. 

The Literary and Heartland Prizes are a part of the Tribune's steadfast support of literacy and the written word.

These awards, along with the Nelson Algren Short Story Award and Young Adult Literary Prize, reflect the Tribune's ongoing commitment to inspiring reading and readers through literary coverage in the Chicago Tribune, on chicagotribune.com, and at the annual Printers Row Lit Fest.

BOSTON, MA - The annual fall gathering for booklovers, the Boston International Antiquarian Book Fair, will return to the Hynes Convention Center in Boston’s beautiful Back Bay for its 41st year, November 10-12, 2017. More than 120 dealers from the United States, England, France, Germany, Netherlands, Spain, Denmark, Argentina and Australia will exhibit and sell a vast selection of rare, collectible and antiquarian books, as well as illuminated manuscripts, autographs, maps, atlases, modern first editions, photographs, and fine and decorative prints.   

One of the oldest and most respected antiquarian book shows in the country, the event offers the top selection of items that are available on the international literary market. Whether you are buying or just browsing, the Fair offers something for every taste and budget—books on art, politics, travel, gastronomy, and science—to sport, natural history, literature, music, children’s books, and an increasing representation of graphic and art works on paper.

The Fair gives visitors the opportunity to see, learn about, and purchase the finest in rare and valuable books and ephemera. Attendees who want to start collecting without breaking the bank can browse the booths of select dealers offering “Discovery” items priced $100 or less and attend a “Discovery” panel on Saturday to learn tips for starting a personal collection.  

Tickets are $20 for Friday night’s exclusive Opening Night preview event, an opportunity for the public to get a first look at items for sale at the Fair, and admission is free on Saturday and Sunday.

“We were so thrilled with last year’s attendance, that we’ve decided to continue to offer free weekend admission at this year’s event,” says show producer Betty Fulton. “We especially saw an increase in younger audiences, who are discovering that holding a book with an amazing history in their hands is a uniquely satisfying experience.“

Seminars and events will be featured throughout the weekend, including the annual Ticknor Society Collectors’ Roundtable. More events will be announced in early fall, and folks can visit www.bostonbookfair.com for up to the minute details.

Friday, November 10           5:00-9:00pm           Tickets: $20.00 - Opening Night

Saturday, November 11     12:00-7:00pm          Free Admission
Sunday, November 12       12:00-5:00pm         Free Admission

Hynes Convention Center
900 Boylston Street
Boston, MA
www.mccahome.com 

The Boston International Antiquarian Book Fair is sponsored by the New England Chapter of the Antiquarian Booksellers’ Association of America. A portion of the ticket sales will benefit the Boston Public Library and the American Antiquarian Society. Tickets will be sold online at www.bostonbookfair.com and at the show’s box office during Friday evening show hours. For more information, please visit www.bostonbookfair.com or call 617-266-6540

The Fine Literature and Fine Books auction at PBA Galleries on July 27th showed an upswing in prices of modern literature. Sales were strong with nearly 80% of lots sold and heating bidding on a number of the high spots.  It appears from these results and strong sales at other auction houses, the 19th & 20th century literature market has recovered from the lows of a few years ago. 

The first American edition of Moby-Dick; or, the Whale, though rebound in 20th century full brown levant morocco, sold for a healthy $9,600. Melville’s book is considered to be one of the most important American novels of the 19th century and is based on his experiences at sea and the actual sinking of the whaling boat, Essex, by a sperm whale in 1820. This edition followed the English edition by a month and contains thirty-five passages and the “Epilogue” omitted in the London printing. 

Selling for its presale high estimate of $6,000 was a first edition of J. D Salinger’s Catcher in the Rye in a first issue jacket in very good condition. The jacket has the original "$3.00" printed price present and the photo credit of Salinger's portrait by Lotte Jacobi on rear panel, and with Salinger’s hair just touching the top edge of the rear panel. One of the best novels of the 20th century, it tells the classic story of the "cynical adolescent" Holden Caulfield.

The Works of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle in 24 volumes topped its presale estimate, selling for $5,400. Quite rare in the original paper dust jackets, this is one of 750 copies of the “Crowborough Edition,” signed by Doyle on the limitation page. The set has all of Doyle's major works, including The Sherlock Holmes series, The Lost World, The White Company, Sir Nigel, The Refuges, Memories, etc.

Other highlights of the sale selling above the presale high estimates include Estelle Doheny’s copy of The Red Badge of Courage. The first edition, first issue of Stephen Crane’s most enduring work about the American Civil War and a true high spot of American literature sold for $5,400. A First Edition, first issue of The Two Towers, by J. R. R. Tolkien sold for $5,100. A near fine copy of the second title in the high fantasy series Lord of the Rings trilogy, it contains a folding map of the Middle Earth tipped to the rear endpaper. A First edition of F. Scott Fitzgerald's great masterpiece, The Great Gatsby, sold for $5,100, nearly twice its presale estimate. Considered to be the epitome of the Jazz Age in American literature, this copy is a first issue in the original dark green cloth housed in a custom cloth box.

PBA Galleries holds sales of fine, rare and collectible books every two weeks.  For more information regarding upcoming sales, consignments, or auction results, please contact PBA Galleries at (415) 989-2665 or pba@pbagalleries.com.

About PBA Galleries

PBA Galleries is a San Francisco-based auction house rooted in nearly 60 years of service to the collectors’ community. Auctions are held every-other week in a variety of specialties and genres, including rare books, manuscripts, maps, Americana, and related materials. For information regarding bidding or consignment, please call 415.989.2665 or email pba@pbagalleries.com. PBA Galleries is located at 1233 Sutter Street, San Francisco, CA 94109.

Auction Guide