December 2018 Archives

Lot 342-Currier & Ives.jpgNew York -- Swann Galleries closed out their fall season with a marathon sale of Maps & Atlases, Natural History & Color Plate Books on Thursday, December 13. The auction saw a sell-through rate of 89%, five records, and steady interest across categories.

The runaway top lot of the sale was Across the Continent, 1868, a Currier & Ives print depicting the changing landscape of the mid nineteenth-century American frontier upon the completion of the Transcontinental Railroads. Significant for its subject matter and memorable provenance, the work came across the block, by descent, from the noteworthy collection of Thomas Winthrop Streeter who was gifted the lithograph on his 80th birthday by his children. Across the Continent reached $62,500-a record for the print. 

Maps and atlases represented a generous portion of the sale with several lots taking top spots and setting records. Maps included Samuel de Champlain’s scarce 1664 record of his later discoveries in Canada with $22,500, and John Overton’s New and Most Exact Map of America from 1671 with $11,875. Additional cartographic material featured a chart of the middle Atlantic Coast including New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia and North Carolina by Joseph Frederick Wallet Des Barres ($13,750); Joan Vingboons’ Caarte van Westindien, circa 1700, a large engraved chart of Florida, Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean ($10,625); and a 1676 New and Accurate Map of the World by John Speed ($9,375). Atlases included George Woolworth Colton’s Atlas of America on the physical and political geography of North and South America and the West India Islands, which set a record with $11,250, and a first edition of a rare atlas of Spanish-controlled harbors in North America, Central America and the Caribbean, which earned $11,700. 

Perhaps in response to the political climate, satirical color plate books performed well: Caricaturana, 1836-38, Honoré Daumier’s collaboration with Charles Philipon, taking aim at French society sold for $18,750; and The Caricature Magazine, circa 1806, by George Moutard Woodward, which satirized various elements of nineteenth-century British social and political themes, garnered $16,250. Later in the sale, individual Gillray prints saw a 100% sell-through rate.

Additional highlights from color plate books included John James Audubon’s The Birds of America, 1859, which featured seven volumes and 500 tinted and hand-colored lithograph plates. The publication was offered together with Audubon’s The Quadrupeds of North America and reached $16,250. Michele Rene d’Auberteuil’s eighteenth-century weekly Parisian theatre journals, Costume et Annales des Grands Theatres de Paris, set a record with $11,875. Also from the selection was Thomas Say’s American Conchology, 1830, and a well-illustrated manuscript ciphering book from the eighteenth century by William Greene ($8,750 and $8,125, respectfully).

A run of Japanese material was led by a color woodblock map of Uraga and Edo Bay relating to Commodore Matthew Perry and His Black Ships at $15,600. Additional Perry material included a manuscript report on the arrival of the commodore, featuring two large portraits of Perry and Commander Henry A. Adams, which was sold for $6,500. A panoramic color woodblock map of the roadways, waterways, cities, towns and topography of the entire island chain of Japan; and a large Edo-period woodblock Japanese atlas and encyclopedia were won for $8,450 apiece.   

Caleb Kiffer, Specialist of Maps & Atlases, noted of the sale, “In many ways this sale showed a great confidence in the antique map market with more interest than has been seen and strong prices to back that up. It was also encouraging to witness a surge in the middle-market items. The highlight of the sale, Currier & Ives' Across the Continent was an exceptional result. It is a beautiful, historic image, but it was the fact that it was such a meaningful piece of Thomas Winthrop Streeter's personal collection that propelled it into record territory.”

The next auction of Maps & Atlases, Natural History & Color Plate Books at Swann Galleries will be on June 6, 2019. The house is currently accepting quality consignments.

Additional highlights can be found here.

Image: Lot 342: Currier & Ives, Across the Continent / Westward the Course of Empire Takes Its Way, formerly in the collection of Thomas Winthrop Streeter, New York, 1868. Sold for $62,500, a record for the print.

Roni_Peter.jpgNew York — No artist is an island. Harnessing wide-ranging interests to create striking works unconfined by limitations, Joseph Cornell's life and art are the inspiration behind Introspective Collective. Aspects of Cornell’s output—visual and lyrical poetics, collage, assemblage, found objects, and dance—provide a framework to show how the individual and the community interconnect to create art that can be reflective while also contributing to discussions about societal concerns.

Drawing on Cornell’s life and art as the framework, this exhibition seeks to explore the crosscurrents where the individual artist intersects with the wider community. The captivating artwork on display is well worth a visit to the gallery. A wall of shadow boxes addressing climate change hangs opposite an installation concerning Hurricane Maria. Scrolling images of ballerinas in unexpected places are projected alongside a collage of broadsides on loan from The Center for Book Arts.

Visit The Clemente through January 20th to catch this show!

Participating artists: Damali Abrams, Golnar Adili, Aravind Enrique Adyanthaya , Jose Ambriz, Tomie Arai, Milcah Bassel, Elizabeth Louise Castaldo, Ana Paula Cordeiro, Aurora De Armendi, Roni Gross and Peter Schell, Barbara Henry, Wennie Huang, James Kelly, KS Lack, Norah Maki, Colin McMullan DBA Emcee C.M., Master of None, Luis Pons, paul singleton iii, and Daphne Stergides 

Panel Discussion: Altruism and art-making: inherent contradictions - January 19th, 2019 at 2:30PM with Amanda Deutch, paul singleton iii and Aurora De Armendi, moderated by Drake Tyler

Project website https://introspectivecollective.home.blog/

Image: Undertow Roni Gross and Peter Schell

sothbook.jpgNew York — Sotheby’s December auctions of Books & Manuscripts concluded on Monday, with nearly 700 works sold across six live and online-only sales for a total of $6.1 million. From a newly-discovered manuscript of poems by John Donne, to the ‘dissolution of contract’ that formally ended the Beatles, below is a selection of highlights from the two online-only auctions at the center of this sales series. 

Richard Austin, Head of Sotheby’s Books & Manuscripts Department in New York, commented: “Building off the success of our online-only auction of Books & Manuscripts this June, whose $3.3 million total achieved the highest result for an online-only sale at Sotheby’s in any category, we are very pleased with the results of our December auctions both live and online. In particular, we were excited to see more than half of all sold lots in our online-only sales exceeding their high estimates. From classical music manuscripts to pop music history, rare first editions to newly-discovered autographed letters, we saw many strong prices across the diversity of our field.” 

NEWLY DISCOVERED MANUSCRIPT OF POEMS BY JOHN DONNE 

A previously unrecorded handwritten manuscript by 16th-century British poet, John Donne, which was recently discovered by a Sotheby’s specialist at Melford Hall in Suffolk, sold for $595,315 - marking Sotheby’s highest-ever price achieved in an online-only auction. Described by Sotheby’s book specialists as ‘one of the supreme literary achievements of the English language’, the manuscript is one of the largest contemporary collections of Donne’s poems. 

A contemporary of William Shakespeare, Donne was born into a Catholic household, and experimented with careers first as a soldier-adventurer, and then as secretary to the Lord Keeper in Elizabeth I’s court, a position from which he was promptly sacked, and briefly imprisoned, for eloping with his employer’s niece. His rakish life provided ample material for the poems in this collection - songs and sonnets, erotic elegies and satires. Converting to the Church of England, Donne rose to become Dean of St Pauls in the 1620s with the support of King James I. His extraordinary body of lyrics, full of frank eroticism, theatrical arrogance and jarring rhythms, were considered unlikely output from one of England’s leading priests. 

THE FIRST BOOK TO DESCRIBE A STOCK EXCHANGE 

Sold to benefit the Rare Book Acquisition Fund of the Library of the Jewish Theological Seminary, a rare first edition of Joseph Penso de la Vega’s Confusion de Confusiones written in 1688 achieved $375,000 (estimate $200/300,000). Likely one of less than ten surviving copies, Confusion de Confusiones represents the first book ever to describe a stock exchange. It gives a detailed explanation of the Amsterdam stock exchange, and outlines practices such as puts, calls, pools and manipulations, which remain relevant in today’s exchanges. Despite its great accuracy and keen insights, Confusion was relatively unknown until German economist Richard Ehrenberg published an influential essay in the 1892 Jahrbücher für Nationalökonomie und Statistik, “Die Amsterdame Aktienspekulation un 17. Jarhhundert.” The historical significance of the work was further enhanced by translations into German and Dutch in 1919 and 1939, and in 1957 an abridged translation in English by Hermann Kellenbenz brought the text even wider recognition. 

SHAKESPEARE’S COMEDIES, HISTORIES AND TRAGEDIES 

Published according to the true Originall Copies, Shakespeare’s Comedies, Histories, and Tragedies brought $300,000 - double its high estimate of $150,000. The present edition was printed by Thomas Cotes, who had taken over Isaac Jaggard’s shop in 1627, for publishers Robert Allot, John Smethwick, William Aspley, Richard Hawkins, and Richard Meighen - each of whom had rights in one or more of the plays. 

THE DISSOLUTION OF THE BEATLES 

Marking the end of a global phenomenon, Apple Corps Limited Dissolution of Contract, Signed by All Four Beatles fetched $118,750, more than double its high estimate. While The Beatles had creatively parted ways in 1969, they had reached an accord to formally dissolve by 1974 following years of litigation, and the documents were meant to be signed on 19 December at a meeting at the Plaza Hotel in Manhattan. McCartney and Harrison were there in person, while Starr, having already signed the document, was on the telephone. Although Lennon lived a short distance from the Plaza, he left his former band mates waiting, purportedly giving the excuse: “the stars aren’t right” (in reality his absence was due to lingering concerns over taxation). 

On 29 December, a lawyer met a vacationing John with the amended contract in Disney World. The moment was captured by John’s partner May Pang, who remarked that Lennon “looked wistfully out the window” before signing underneath his band mates’ signatures. 

A RARE LETTER FROM THE FATHER OF MODERN GENETICS 

A remarkable letter written in German from Gregor Mendel to his parents mentioning Friedrich Franz reached $300,000, more than 20x its high estimate of $15,000, with 45 bids placed. Given the tone of the letter, it is assumed that it dates to the 1840s, when Mendel, upon the recommendation of his physics teacher Friedrich Franz, entered the Augustinian St. Thomas's Abbey in Brno. Mendel had not planned to be a monk, but the Augustinian's valued science, research, and education. Mendel was one of Franz's favorite students, and the two men eventually became good friends and often debated a number of topics including the origin of the solar system and of life as such, Goethe's philosophy, and the purpose of human life. Mendel passed away in complete obscurity, and as a result manuscripts relating to his life very rarely appear at auction, and no other autograph letters by Mendel are known to have appeared auction. 

Image: A rare first edition of the first book to describe a stock exchange, Confusion de Confusiones achieves $375,000. Courtesy Sotheby's.

Dallas, TX - Heritage Auctions’ Make Offer to Owner (MOtO) program, through which clients can make anonymous offers on lots previously sold at auction, has added an extremely useful new feature showing the amount and status of every resale offer ever made via HA.com.

Any Heritage member who sees a previously auctioned item of interest with a Make Offer to Owner button has the option of submitting an offer, after which the item’s owner can accept or decline the offer, or submit a counter-offer to the potential buyer. The new Make Offer to Owner Archive is sortable by Category as well as by Accepted, Rejected and Pending status. The Archive includes every MOtO offer made via HA.com since the feature was introduced first in 2009, with the most recent offers appearing first.

“This new, permanent archive increases our already market-leading transparency,” said Heritage Auctions Co-Chairman Jim Halperin, “and we hope it will encourage more MOtO competition on previously auctioned items by showing pending offers in one convenient place. Just type ‘HA.com/moto’ into your browser to access the main MOtO Archive page anytime, then pick a category and refine the list to see Pending, Rejected, Accepted or All offers. Our members will be amazed at how much information they can glean by accessing their favorite categories on a daily basis. Every listing includes a link to the entire item page. Members are encouraged to outbid any and all pending MOtO offers if they would pay more for that item than the pending high offer.”

Heritage’s MOtO program has become increasingly popular with both sellers and buyers. Most members who have made a purchase through the program have bought, or at least made offers, again. Using the program offers clients an added measure of security and comfort about the authenticity of a lot that cannot be replicated through a secondary outside seller.

The program has enjoyed tremendous growth, with combined sales in 2017 and 2018 - the program’s two most successful years - of more than $16 million. The MOtO program has been particularly popular among Sports and Comics collectors.

3f7db8c354cf83d542b33caa_1220x946.jpgNew York — The Morgan Library & Museum presents an exhibition of photographs from one of the most comprehensive repositories of photography on the continent, the collection at the National Gallery of Canada. The first in a series of three major photography shows at the Morgan in 2019, The Extended Moments: Photographs from the National Gallery of Canada is organized into a sequence of pairings that underline the persistence, over time and across space, of trends and tensions central to photography. The moment in each photograph in the sequence is “extended” by images neighboring it on either side, even as the exhibition as a whole presents the age of photography, from its beginning in 1839 to now, as a single “extended moment.” 

Included in the show are 68 works representing photography's role in art, journalism, science, exploration, activism, warfare, the chronicling of family and community histories, and many other subjects. Spanning a period of 180 years, the exhibition also features works by notable artists such as Edward Burtynsky, Julia Margaret Cameron, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Lynne Cohen, John Herschel, Richard Learoyd, Lisette Model, Zanele Muholi, Edward Steichen, and Josef Sudek.

Canada’s was the first national gallery to actively start collecting photography. In 1967 the Gallery began building a collection that chronicles the medium from its prehistory to the present, including major contributors to the field. The gallery’s holdings are distinguished by coverage of the complex history of photographic processes and by deep historical strengths, including the daguerreotype and early French and British photography. More recently, the Gallery has expanded the collecting mandate for photographs to take a more inclusive look at photography as a cultural phenomenon. 

“Photographs have influenced the human imagination in myriad, complex ways from the very beginning of the medium’s history,” said Colin B. Bailey, Director of the Morgan. “Images are made daily and document our national and global histories. Photography is also a deeply personal art that asks questions about how the world works. This is an incredible opportunity for the Morgan to familiarize visitors in the U.S. with one of the most distinguished photography collections on the continent.”

“The Morgan is at once the newest kid on the block. The Department of Photography here is only six years old—and a place where photography gets seen in long historical perspective among the arts of communication,” said Joel Smith, curator of the Morgan exhibition. “It is an honor to host the venerable collection of the National Gallery of Canada here; it also feels like a case of natural synergy.” 

Image: Zanele Muholi, ZaVa, Amsterdam, 2014. National Gallery of Canada. Courtesy of the artist, Yancey Richardson, New York, and Stevenson Cape Town / Johannesburg.

 

raw pcard front.jpgRaw is a new exhibition presented by Minnesota Center for Book Arts (MCBA). The exhibition is on view from December 14th - February 3rd in the Open Book Cowles Literary Commons. The opening reception for raw will take place on Thursday, January 10 from 6-8pm. Both the exhibition and opening reception are free and open to the public.

Raw features work by eleven MCBA Artist Cooperative members: Wendy Fernstrum, Georgia A. Greeley, Marvel Grégoire, Karen Kinoshita, Monica Edwards Larson, Raven Miller, Charles Nove, Paul Nylander, Bridget O’Malley, CB Sherlock, and Emily Umentum. Exploring the intersection of ideas, objects, and emotions, artistic methods represented include handmade lace paper, photogravure prints, monotype, intaglio, chapbooks, experimental books, and broadsides.

MCBA’s Artist Cooperative is a community of artists dedicated to book arts. Co-op membership is open to artists with demonstrated interest in papermaking, bookbinding, letterpress printing, screen printing, or related arts. Membership offers 24/7 access to a wide range of equipment in MCBA’s studios, exhibition opportunities, class tuition discounts, peer support, and more.

As the largest and most comprehensive center of its kind in the nation, Minnesota Center for Book Arts celebrates the book as a vibrant contemporary art form that takes many shapes. From the traditional crafts of papermaking, letterpress printing, and hand bookbinding to experimental artmaking and self-publishing techniques, MCBA supports the limitless creative evolution of book arts through book arts workshops and programming for adults, youth, families, K-12 students, and teachers. MCBA is located in the Open Book building in downtown Minneapolis, alongside partner organizations The Loft Literary Center and Milkweed Editions. To learn more, visit www.mnbookarts.org.

Image: Laima by Emily Umentum

5639a46bda86eabb9e15e422_884x1100 copy.jpgNew York — This winter, the Morgan Library & Museum offers a once-in-a-generation opportunity to see a remarkable collection of materials related to one of the world’s most beloved authors, John Ronald Reuel Tolkien (1892-1973). Tolkien’s adventurous tales ignited a fervid spark in generations of readers. From the children’s classic The Hobbit to the epic The Lord of the Rings, Tolkien’s stories of hobbits and elves, dwarves and wizards have introduced millions to the rich history of Middle-earth. Opening January 25, Tolkien: Maker of Middle-earth—a new exhibition at the Morgan organized in collaboration with the Bodleian Libraries, University of Oxford—celebrates the man and his creation. 

This exhibition provides the largest collection of Tolkien material ever assembled in the United States. First presented at the Bodleian Libraries in 2018, the 117 objects on view include family photographs and memorabilia, Tolkien’s original illustrations, maps, draft manuscripts, artefacts, and designs related to The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, and The Silmarillion. The exhibition guides visitors through Tolkien’s development as a writer and artist, from his childhood and student days, through his career as a scholar of medieval languages and literature, to his family life as a husband and father. It presents a unique opportunity to understand the intensely visual imagination, the dedicated scholarship, and the aspects of daily life that shaped Tolkien’s most treasured works. 

Notable objects in the exhibition include draft manuscripts of The Hobbit and the original manuscripts of The Lord of the Rings and The Silmarillion, displayed alongside striking watercolors, dust jacket designs, and drawings. Other highlights are the photographs and letters from Tolkien’s childhood and student days. Drawn from the collections of the Tolkien Archive at the Bodleian Libraries (Oxford), Marquette University Libraries (Milwaukee), the Morgan, and private lenders, the objects on display introduce visitors to Tolkien’s creative process from his early abstract paintings in The Book of Ishness and the letters written and illustrated for his children to his epic fantasy novels.

The exhibition also offers a rare look at Tolkien’s artistic output, which was wide-ranging and experimental, naturalistic and abstract. In his landscapes of Middle-earth and intricate designs, visitors can catch a glimpse of Tolkien world-building and working out his ideas on paper. 

Since the publication of his novels, Tolkien has amassed a variety of admirers including poet W.H. Auden and singer Joni Mitchell,” said Colin B. Bailey, director of the museum. “This exhibition helps us see what was so extraordinary and universally appealing about his gifts as a storyteller and his ability to combine the scholarly with the artistic. The show presents an intimate look at Tolkien’s world through his handwritten and drawn works. We are grateful to the Bodleian Libraries, The Tolkien Estate and The Tolkien Trust for this landmark collaboration.”

“It is exciting to see so much material in Tolkien’s own hand,” said John McQuillen, Associate Curator of the Printed Books and Bindings Department. “It’s as if we are looking over his shoulder while he composes and illustrates his vision of Middle-earth. We get to glimpse moments in the creation of the narrative, such as when he changes the wizard’s name to Gandalf or suddenly comes up with the idea of the One Ring. It is almost voyeuristic: we have the opportunity to see the creative process that brought us the books with which we are so familiar.”

Image: J. R. R. Tolkien (1892 - 1973), Dust jacket design for The Hobbit, April 1937, pencil, black ink, watercolor, goache. Bodleian Libraries, MS. Tolkien Drawings 32. © The Tolkien Estate Limited 1937. ® TOLKIEN is a registered trademark of The Tolkien Estate Limited. 

eedfemeejcaehclf.jpgNew York­-Swann Galleries’ auction of Illustration Art on December 6 saw a bustling auction room as well as live bidding from the newly launched Swann Galleries app. Original works from children’s literature and Peanuts comic strips from Charles M. Schulz were among highlights. Of the sale, Illustration Art Specialist Christine von der Linn noted, “We had a strong turnout and set records for six illustrators. The breadth and quality of the material enabled us to further the appreciation and enjoyment of this specific category of art.”

Illustrations from children’s literature saw outstanding results, boasting five of the six records: Eric Carle’s The Very Hungry Caterpillar with $20,000; H.A. Rey’s color pencil work for Cecily G and the 9 Monkeys, 1939-the first book to introduce Curious George-earned $17,500; a watercolor and ink alternate version of the title page for Angelina Ballerina by Helen Craig saw $5,460; and Leonard Weisgard’s double-page illustration for The Golden Christmas Tree brought $5,000. Two archives from Helen Stone found buyers: a rich collection of production material from Tell Me, Mr. Owl, 1957, which included sketches, studies and thoughtfully composed finished drawings garnered $3,500, a record for the artist; and the 50-page mockup of Watch Honeybees with Me, 1964, with numerous illustration, was collected by an institution for $688. Also present was Jerry Pinkney’s special holiday watercolor for a 2009 cover of School Library Journal, which realized $7,000.

The runaway top lot of the sale was a pen and ink drawing of the Marx Brothers by famed cartoonist Al Hirschfeld. The illustration for the cover of Why a Duck?, 1971, which features Chico, Harpo and Groucho in classic Hirschfeld style, barreled through its high estimate of $7,500 selling for $26,000 after a bidding war.Charlie Brown, Snoopy and the Peanuts gang took the spotlight with five original Peanuts comic strips by Charles M. Schulz earning top spots in the sale. The Years are Going by Fast, 1979, which put Schroeder, his piano and Lucy’s fussbudget personality on display; along with Everyone Needs to Have Hope, 1971, with Snoopy atop his doghouse, were sold to collectors. Eventually, That Could Wear Out My Nose, 1971, Woodstock is Searching for His Identity, 1972-each featuring Snoopy and Woodstock; and Neighborhood Dog of the Year, 1973, with Linus and his ever-present security blanket, were won by an institution. Each of the five strips brought $12,500. 

Additional cartoons included an original 11-panel Doonesbury strip, Is Rufus Ready for his Lesson? by Garry Trudeau. The comic was dedicated and inscribed to the influential psychologist, educator and civil rights activist Kenneth B. Clark ($5,750).

Illustrations from The New Yorker performed well, with a cartoon by Charles Addams of a couple passing a giant bird house which sold for $16,250, and a 1926 New Yorker cover by James Daugherty-the earliest cover for the publication offered at Swann to date-realized $3,750.

Other notable lots included: a previously unknown work by Rockwell Kent, To All Fascists for the League of the American Writers ($6,500); and Mary Mayo’s illustration for a General Mills Wheaties advertisement ($3,000, a record for the artist). Scottish illustrator Sir William Russell Flint found success with a watercolor and gouache scene from Homer’s Odyssey of Penelope weaving her shroud selling for $22,500. 

The next auction of Illustration Art at Swann Galleries will be on June 4, 2019. The house is currently accepting quality consignments.

Additional highlights can be found here.

Image: Lot 233: Al Hirschfeld, The Marx Brothers, illustration for the cover of Why a Duck?, pen and ink, 1971. Sold for $26,000. (Pre-sale estimate: $5,000-7,500).

Shackleton Landing Party (1024x692).jpgAn important private library of polar exploration, travel and local history books, including many rare and important volumes, is to be auctioned at Tennants Auctioneers in North Yorkshire on 10th January in a single-owner sale. 

The library was put together over many years by the late Roger Casson, an architect from North East England, and is notable for the outstanding condition of much of the collection. The focus of the library is Polar Exploration in the 19th and early 20th century, which accounts for over 200 lots in the sale. Of particular note are a good collection of works recounting the ill-fated final expedition made by Sir John Franklin in 1845 to find the North-West Passage, and the numerous search missions that followed the disappearance of his ships and their crew. 

One of the most valuable lots in the sale is a limited edition of The Heart of the Antarctic, Being the Story of the British Antarctic Expedition 1907-1909 by Ernest H. Shackleton. Published by Heinemann in 1909, the two-volume set, which includes two panoramas and three folding maps, in one of only three hundred sets bound in vellum. Also included in the lot, which is offered with an estimate of £7,000-10,000 (plus buyer’s premium), is the accompanying The Antarctic Book, Winter Quarters, 1907-1909, which contains sixteen signatures of the Shore Party from the famous expedition. 

Other highlights include a copy of the three-volume The South Polar Times, published by Smith, Elder between 1907-1914, of which a numbered limited edition of 250 were produced, and in this case includes two of the very rare dust wrappers (Estimate: £4,000-8,000 plus b.p.). Also of note is a copy of James Murray and George Marston’s Antarctic Days, Sketches of the homely side of Polar life by two of Shackleton’s Men (Andrew Melrose, 1913). The limited deluxe edition is signed by Murray, Marston and Shackleton, and is being offered with an estimate of £3,000-5,000 (plus b.p.).

The sale will also include numerous books on other travel, including early voyages, and exploration of the Middle East, the history of the North East and architecture. 

A fully illustrated catalogue for the sale will be available on our website, www.tennants.co.uk, two weeks before the sale, alternatively, please contact the salerooms for further details. 

Image: The Antarctic Book, Winter Quarters, 1907-1909 with signatures of the Shore Party: Estimate - £7,000-10,000

DS Gunners copy.jpgLondon--A sketchbook showing the original hand-drawn costume designs for key characters in Star Wars - including Darth Vader, Chewbacca and the Stormtroopers - sold for an impressive £125,000 at Bonhams, New Bond Street, on Tuesday 11 December 2018.

The sketchbook was part of the 73-lot sale: Designing an Empire: The John Mollo Archive, and in the collection belonging to the family of John Mollo, the double Oscar®-winning costume designer for Star Wars, Gandhi, Alien and Chaplin.

Katherine Schofield, Head of Bonhams Entertainment Memorabilia department, said, “John Mollo’s personal sketchbook provides a unique insight into the creation of the Star Wars universe. We are delighted that his historic work has been celebrated with bidders from around the globe eager to own this piece of cinematic history.” 

The story began in 1975, when Mollo was commissioned by George Lucas to work on the Star Wars series. Lucas urged Mollo to avoid the stereotypical space-age look of earlier science fiction productions and instead to focus his designs on the pivotal concept of light versus darkness - ‘I just want to see light versus dark,’ he said. 

The sketches include mechanical diagrams exploring how Darth Vader’s helmet would allow the actor to breathe, the first drawing of Chewbacca’s legendary suit and detailed sketches revealing every detail of the stormtroopers’ costumes. It was these, and other, designs that give John Mollo iconic status in Hollywood.

Other highlights of the sale included:

  • Napoleon: A fine collection of costume designs by John Mollo from Stanley Kubrick’s unfinished production, 1970, sold for £14,375
  • Star Wars Episode IV - A New Hope: pre-production line drawing of Princess Leia in her white hooded gown sold for £10,625

Bonhams Entertainment Memorabilia sale also took place on Tuesday 11 December  with 161 lots on offer.

Highlights from the sale included:

  • Ken (K.K) Downing/ Judas Priest: A Gibson Flying V guitar, 1967, sold for an astonishing £150,000 (Estimate £15,000-18,000), a world record result for a ‘lead heavy metal guitar’
  • The HeliosCentric Helios console: constructed in 1996 through an amalgamation of part of the Island Records Basing Street Studio 2 Helios Console (1970-1974) sold for £112,500.
  • Ken (K.K) Downing/ Judas Priest: A Gibson Flying V Medallion Guitar, 1971 sold for £81,250 (Estimate £12,000-14,000).
  • Ian Fleming/ James Bond: A second draft treatment carbon copy for ‘James Bond of the Secret Service’ from Ian Flemings office, October 1959 sold for £35,000.

artfulwords1(1) copy 2.jpgLos Angeles - The written word was a major art form in the premodern world. Calligraphers filled the pages of manuscripts with scrolling vines and delicate pen flourishes, and illuminators depicted captivating narratives with large letterforms. These decorative embellishments reveal the monetary, cultural, and spiritual value placed on handmade books at the time. Offering an exploration of decorated letters, Artful Words: Calligraphy in Illuminated Manuscripts, provides insight to the artistic trends that shaped calligraphic practice from England to Central Europe and beyond for nearly one thousand years.

Three types of decorated letters were employed in the handwritten book arts of the Middle Ages: ornamented letters, formed by abstract foliate motifs; inhabited letters, in which strokes of the letter are made up of animal, human, or hybrid forms; and historiated initials, in which the letter includes figures or other content related to the text.

The alphabetic adornments in this exhibition appear in manuscripts that range from a Bible and a Qur’an to books of prayer, law, and history. The calligraphers who made them combined script and ornament to embellish pages, while illuminators developed original and complex strategies for fitting miniature stories into individual letters. Several of the manuscripts feature signatures by the scribes, calligraphers, or artists.

“We consume words in a variety of ways—in handwritten, printed, and digital media—decoding messages that are communicated not just by the combination of phrases but also by their design and styling,” said Bryan C. Keene, associate curator of manuscripts. “Among the highlights in the exhibition is a grouping of manuscripts penned by the famous scribe David Aubert for Duchess Margaret of York, as well as a Qur’an paired with an Italian ceramic vase with imitation Arabic script.”

Artful Words: Calligraphy in Illuminated Manuscripts will be on view December 18, 2018, through April 7, 2019 at the J. Paul Getty Museum. The exhibition is curated by Keene and Katherine Sedovic, former graduate intern in the Manuscripts Department. Related programming will include gallery talks, lectures, and more. Additional information can be found at getty.edu/360.

Image: Butterfly, Marine Mollusk, and Pear, 1561 - 1562; illumination added 1591 - 1596, Joris Hoefnagel (Flemish / Hungarian, 1542 - 1600) and Georg Bocskay (Hungarian, died 1575). Watercolors, gold and silver paint, and ink on parchment. Leaf: 16.6 × 12.4 cm (6 9/16 × 4 7/8 in.). 86.MV.527.118. The J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles, Ms. 20, fol. 118

Frederick Law Olmsted Central Park Letter Signed 56429a_lg.jpegLos Angeles - A handwritten letter from renowned landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted to a Central Park volunteer will be auctioned by Nate D. Sanders Auctions on December 13, 2018.  

Olmsted is known as the father of American landscape architecture. He was most famous for co-designing Central Park, which opened in 1858.

The letter was written while Olmsted was Superintendent of Central Park and was managing the construction of the open space he designed. The letter requests volunteer participation from a local musician to help draw the public to the city’s most famous green space. In the letter, Olmstead describes his social perception, tremendous commitment to egalitarian ideals and how these beliefs translate to his obligation to provide managed open space for passive recreation and enjoyment.

Olmsted famously advocated “common green space” must always be available to everyone, and was to be defended against private encroachment. These principles are now considered fundamental to the idea of a "public park," but was considered groundbreaking thinking in 1858. Olmsted's tenure as New York City’s park’s commissioner and later as an architect for public green spaces throughout the United States was a long well-documented struggle to preserve these ideas.

Auction owner Nate Sanders said, “This letter is incredibly timely and it is being auctioned in the midst of today’s national conversation regarding the value of open space and parks. The letter provides a beautiful example of Olmsted’s advocacy and is very prescient, as the importance of open federal lands are being debated in Congress.”

Olmsted’s 1859 letter was composed on Central Park stationery and was embossed “Office of the Arch’t in Chief / CENTRAL PARK / 5th Avenue and 79th St.” It reads in full, “It is proposed to provide by subscription a band of music upon the finished portion of the park for a few hours during one or two afternoons a week, for the purpose of increasing its immediate value to those who cannot leave the city. It is believed that after this year the Commissioners of the Park will be able to furnish the means for this purpose without drawing upon their construction fund, but their arrangements cannot be completed at present without the aid of voluntary contributions from citizens who will be influenced by motives of kindness toward those who have no means to go into the country for relief from the heat and turmoil of the city. [Signed] Fred. Law Olmsted. / Superintendent.”  

Bidding for Olmsted’s letter begins at $35,000. 

Additional information on Olmsted’s letter can be found at 
https://natedsanders.com/LotDetail.aspx?inventoryid=51270

7673632dd7c16ca4ecb40184_560x502.jpgNew York — The 2019 winter season at the Morgan Library & Museum continues to celebrate visual artists and writers whose experimental methods and innovative creative processes have transformed our understanding of drawing, illustration, writing, and photography. Over the course of January and February, the Morgan will open a series of varied exhibitions, ranging from a look at the creative enterprise of J.R.R. Tolkien, to a focused examination of unconventional practices in contemporary drawing, to the first display in the United States of the storied photography collection of the National Gallery of Canada, to a survey of celebrated early Italian Drawings from our collection.

By Any Means: Contemporary Drawings from the Morgan

January 18, 2019 through May 12, 2019

Contemporary approaches to drawing are often experimental and expansive. By absorbing and building upon the legacy of avant-garde experimentation in the first half of the twentieth century, artists from the 1950s to the present have pushed beyond the boundaries of traditional draftsmanship through their use of chance, unconventional materials, and new technologies. Emboldened by the accessibility, scale, and relative affordability of paper, and informed by the developments of Cubist, Futurist, Dada, and Surrealist predecessors, these artists have pursued drawing by any means--whether by pouring, pressing, rolling, rubbing, folding, pasting, printing, plotting, or pushing. By Any Means brings together about twenty innovative works from the Morgan’s collection, including many recent acquisitions, by artists such as John Cage, Sol LeWitt, Vera Molnar, Robert Rauschenberg, Betye Saar, Gavin Turk, and Jack Whitten.

By Any Means: Contemporary Drawings from the Morgan is made possible with the support of Louisa Stude Sarofim and Nancy Schwartz.

Tolkien: Maker of Middle-earth 

January 25 through May 12, 2019

“In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit.” With these words the Oxford professor J.R.R. Tolkien ignited a fervid spark in generations of readers. From the children’s classic The Hobbit to the epic The Lord of the Rings, Tolkien’s adventurous tales of hobbits and elves, dwarves and wizards have introduced millions to the rich history of Middle-earth. Going beyond literature, Tolkien’s Middle-earth is a world complete with its own languages and histories. Tolkien: Maker of Middle-earth celebrates the man and his creation. The exhibition will be the most extensive public display of original Tolkien material for several generations. Drawn from the collections of the Tolkien Archive at the Bodleian Library (Oxford), Marquette University Libraries (Milwaukee), the Morgan, and private lenders, the exhibition will include family photographs and memorabilia, Tolkien’s original  illustrations, maps, draft manuscripts, and designs related to The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, and The Silmarillion.

Tolkien: Maker of Middle-earth is organized by the Morgan Library & Museum in collaboration with the Bodleian Libraries, University of Oxford, and with the support of The Tolkien Estate, The Tolkien Trust, and members of the Tolkien family.

The exhibition is made possible through the generosity of Fay and Geoffrey Elliott.

®TOLKIEN is a registered trademark of the Tolkien Estate Limited.

Invention and Design: Early Italian Drawings at the Morgan 

February 15 through May 19, 2019

The Morgan’s impressive collection of Italian Drawings documents the development of Renaissance drawing practice from its beginnings in the fourteenth century and over the following two centuries. From the influence of medieval manuscript and painting workshops to the new practice of sketching, artists gradually moved away from imitation of standard models and to the invention of novel ways of thinking on the page and representing traditional subjects. As artists came to be recognized more as intellectuals than as craftsmen, a new class of collectors and connoisseurs created a market for autonomous drawings of classical subjects and other compositions. Portrait drawing emerged as an independent genre during this period, while artists invented new ways approaches to landscape drawing. Invention and Design explores these developments and celebrates more than a century of innovation in drawing. This exhibition will be the first to focus on this material, featuring works by artists such as Mantegna, Filippo Lippi, Filippino Lippi, Botticelli, Leonardo da Vinci, Raphael, Fra Bartolomeo, and Andrea del Sarto.

Invention and Design: Early Italian Drawings from the Morganis made possible with generous support from the Scholz Family Charitable Trust, the Eugene V. and Clare E. Thaw Charitable Trust, the Alex Gordon Fund for Exhibitions, and the Andrew W. Mellon Research and Publications Fund.

The Extended Moment: Photographs from the National Gallery of Canada 

February 15 through May 26, 2019

Through a selection of around seventy works, The Extended Moment reveals the historical, technological, and aesthetic richness of the photography holdings of the National Gallery of Canada, a major collection little known in this country. In the exhibition’s presentation at the Morgan, works of far-flung origins appear side-by-side in a sequence that highlights recurring trends and tensions in the history of the medium. Surprising parallels and hidden histories link images drawn from the worlds of art, fashion, journalism, propaganda, scientific research, social activism, and beyond. Thus on one hand, the “moment” in each photograph is “extended” into collaboration with its immediate neighbors; on the other, two centuries of history emerge as an “extended moment” in which the unifying element is photography in its many manifestations. Artists include Edward Burtynsky, Julia Margaret Cameron, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Lynne Cohen, John Herschel, Richard Learoyd, Lisette Model, Edward Steichen, and Josef Sudek.

The Extended Moment: Photographs from the National Gallery of Canada is made possible through the generosity of the Thompson Family Foundation, Inc. 

Organized by the Canadian Photography Institute of the National Gallery of Canada in collaboration with the Morgan Library & Museum, New York.

Image: Giovanni Agostino da Lodi (active ca. 1467 - ca. 1524), Head of a Youth Facing Left, 15th century, red chalk on paper. The Morgan Library & Museum, 1973.35:2

9886 Lot 74.jpgNew York - Sotheby’s Geek Week auctions concluded Friday in New York with a total of $7.4 million, featuring sales dedicated to Space Exploration and The History of Science & Technology.

Cassandra Hatton, Vice President & Senior Specialist in Sotheby’s Books & Manuscripts Department commented: “It was so exciting to see such enthusiasm for our first ever ‘Geek Week’ auctions. I am incredibly honored to have been entrusted with the sale of the Nobel Prize, papers, and books of Richard P. Feynman, one of my personal heroes, and I am thrilled with the outstanding results. The depth of bidding and impressive prices achieved are a clear indicator that Feynman’s work and legacy continue to resonate with collectors today, and in particular, the prices achieved for the manuscripts would indicate that Feynman’s scientific work is more precious than gold. It was also especially exciting to become one of only two people, along with Sotheby’s former Vice-Chairman David Redden, to have sold the only known documented samples of the moon available for private ownership.”

Below is a look at some of the highlights that drove these results.

THE HISTORY OF SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY

Auction Total: $4.9 Million 

Sotheby’s second annual History of Science & Technology auction was led by the Nobel Prize, papers and books of the brilliant, inspiring, and much-beloved theoretical physicist Richard P. Feynman, which were offered across 42 lots. Spanning the full length of his career - from his early days at Los Alamos and Cornell through his final days at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech), and covering topics such as the atom bomb, QED, Nanotechnology and Computing - the remarkable and enlightening collection of papers are the only known archive of Feynman manuscripts to exist outside of the archive at Caltech, where he taught for nearly 4 decades.

In the year of the centenary of Feynman’s birth, his 1965 Nobel Prize in Physics achieved $975,000. The prize was awarded to Feynman along with fellow physicists Julian Schwinger and Shin’ichiro Tomonaga, “for their fundamental work in quantum electrodynamics, with deep-ploughing consequences for the physics of elementary particles.” The three physicists independently developed different ingenious methods to reconcile the electromagnetic field theory of the 19th century with the quantum mechanics theory of the 20th. Feynman’s method involved his invention of the revolutionary ‘Feynman Diagram’ - innovative pictorial representations that provided a clear visual explanation of every possible interaction between electrons and photons. 

Leading the collection of Feynman manuscripts was a group of papers showing his derivations of the Schrödinger Equation via the Feynman path integral. Illuminating the equivalence of these distinct but complementary formulations of quantum mechanics, the papers fetched $399,000.

Another top lot of the collection was an autographed draft for Feynman’s famous lecture "There's Plenty of Room at the Bottom; An Invitation to Enter a New Field of Physics." Widely credited with sparking the field of Nanotechnology, the draft sold for $387,000. In his address Feynman imagined "that we could arrange atoms one by one, just as we want them," and in this spirit he posed two challenges that would lead to the development of the field of Nanotechnology, offering $1,000 dollars each to whomever could 1) construct a tiny motor, and 2) to whomever could fit the entire Encyclopedia Britannica on the head of a pin.

SPACE EXPLORATION

Auction Total: 2.5 Million 

Held just a month before the 50th anniversary of Apollo 8 - the first mission to orbit the moon - Sotheby’s second-annual Space Exploration sale was led by the only known lunar samples with clear and documented provenance to be available for private ownership - three moon rocks returned to earth from the unmanned Soviet Luna-16 Mission in 1970, which sold for $855,000. That price nearly doubles the amount achieved when the samples were offered at auction in Sotheby’s iconic Russian Space History sale in 1993. 

The present lunar samples have remained in the same private American collection since Sotheby’s iconic Russian Space History auction in 1993, when they sold for $442,500 - marking the first time that a piece of another world had ever been offered for sale to the public. The samples were consigned to the 1993 sale by Mme. Nina Ivanovna Koroleva, widow of Sergei Pavlovich Korolev - the former “Chief Designer” and director of the Soviet space program and had been presented to her as a gift on behalf of the USSR in recognition of her late husband’s incalculable contributions to the program.

Another highlight of the auction was the exceptionally rare full Gemini Spacesuit - the only known complete American spacesuit to come to market, which fetched $162,500. Built specifically for conducting spacewalks the present suit features gloves that were made for Pete Conrad, the 3rd man to land on the moon, and boots that were made for Frank Borman, one of the first men to ever orbit the moon.

Image: Lot 74. Feynman, Richard P. “Two Objectives. (1) To Point out the Peculiar Point. (2) To Formulate a Me in a Definite Number of Assumptions (Non-Relativistic Schröd),” ca 1946-51. Autograph Manuscript. Sold for $399,000. Property from the family of Richard P. Feynman. Courtesy Sotheby’s. 

spectacularmysteries9(1) copy.jpgLos Angeles - During the Italian Renaissance—the period from about 1475 to 1600 that is often seen as the foundation of later European art—drawing became increasingly vital to the artistic process just as it grew dramatically more sophisticated in technique and conception. Today, Italian Renaissance drawings are considered some of the most spectacular products of the western tradition. Yet, they often remain shrouded in mystery, their purpose, subjects, and even their makers unknown.

Featuring drawings from the Getty Museum’s collection and rarely seen works from private collections, Spectacular Mysteries: Renaissance Drawings Revealed, on view December 11, 2018—April 28, 2019, at the J. Paul Getty Museum, highlights the detective work involved in investigating the mysteries behind master drawings.

“The Getty’s collection of Italian drawings counts among the greatest in this country, and this exhibition will surprise many visitors with how much we still have to learn about these rare works of art,” explains Getty Museum Director Timothy Potts. “This display, which includes some of our best Italian drawings, provides many insights into the methods curators use to investigate the purpose and meaning of these superlative works of art, and some of the revelations they have disclosed.”

The practice of drawing flourished in Italy during the Renaissance, due to a surge in patronage for paintings, sculpture, and architecture, which went hand in hand with the rise of artists’ studios and a rigorous production process for these works. Many of the drawings produced at the time tell stories of their creation and the purposes they served, yet sometimes even the most seemingly simple question—who drew it?—is a mystery. Given the ease and informality with which a sketch can be made, its purpose and other information about it must be discovered from the only surviving evidence: the drawing itself. 

Clues about the artist can be uncovered by comparing a drawing with the stylistic characteristics of other sheets. In 1995, for example, a Sotheby’s expert looked at Study of a Mourning Woman (about 1500-05), and immediately recognized the distinctive penwork and handling of the drapery of Michelangelo. Subsequent study confirmed this attribution. The Getty acquired the drawing in 2017.

Inscriptions can sometimes also be a useful clue to the artist, but should be treated with caution since they often reflect the over-optimistic attribution of a past owner. One work in the exhibition - Exodus (about 1540) - features many inscriptions. It took some time and much research to decipher which inscriptions belonged to past owners and which was that of the artist. Eventually, the drawing was attributed to Maturino da Firenze.

Mysteries about the sitter, subject, and purpose can sometimes be revealed by linking a drawing to a painting, sculpture, or print. The purpose of Two Male Standing Figures (about 1556) was unknown until 2001 when the work was auctioned and identified as the work of Girolamo Muziano. At that time, it was determined to be a study for figures in an altarpiece the artist painted for the cathedral in Orvieto.

“As I try to learn more and more about these captivating works, I sometimes feel like a detective,” says Julian Brooks, senior curator of drawings and curator of the exhibition. “In the end, this exhibition is the story of what we know, what we don’t know, what we might know, and what we can’t know about these extraordinary works of art and their world.”

Spectacular Mysteries: Renaissance Drawings Revealed will be on view December 11, 2017 -April 28. 2019, at the J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center. The exhibition is curated by Julian Brooks, senior curator in the Department of Drawings.

Image: The Head of a Young Man, about 1539 - 1540, Parmigianino (Francesco Mazzola) (Italian, 1503 - 1540). Pen and brown ink. 16 × 10.5 cm (6 5/16 × 4 1/8 in.). The J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles

50e1cccab8438dc767c7ed043464920e25f428ef.jpegBoston—A Charles Dickens handwritten signed quotation from “A Christmas Carol” sold for $23,597 according to Boston-based RR Auction

Immensely desirable quotation on an off-white stationery sheet, which reads, in full: "And so, as Tiny Tim observed, God bless us every one!' Charles Dickens, Knebworth, Tuesday Eighteenth June, 1861." 

Housed with a handsome engraving of Dickens inside a red leather presentation folder, with attractive gilt text and design to cover and interior boards.

Boasting bold handwriting and a crisp, neat signature, this handwritten quote captures the final line of Dickens’s classic 1843 novella A Christmas Carol. 

"This is only the third autographed signed quotation we have offered from the great Victorian scribe, and the very first from what is perhaps his most enduring and celebrated work," said Bobby Livingston, Executive VP at RR Auction. 

Also up for auction was an Al Capone signed Christmas and New Year's card that sold for $13,581.  

The front of the card featuring a serene artistic portrait of the Virgin Mary cradling baby Jesus in a meadow, that is signed and inscribed inside, "Your Dear Friend, Al Capone, Regards to Frank & Joe.”

Capone grew up in a Catholic family, and had attended a strict Catholic school until the age of 14—after that, he seems to have had little to do with the church. Still, Capone was known to be especially charitable at Christmas, delivering boxes of candy, fruit baskets, turkeys, and gifts to students and teachers at local schools, in addition to dressing up as Santa Claus for family and friends. The notorious gangster's autograph is scarce in any format, and this outstanding personal Christmas card offers a unique glimpse into his softer side.

Additional highlights from the sale include, but are not limited by:

Rare Beatles-signed 1963 PYX program with classic Hoffman cover sold for $17,762.

Beatles limited edition set of six oversized color 'outtake' photographic prints for the cover of the Abbey Road album sold for $14,826.

Robert E. Lee handwritten letter from May 11, 1861 sold for $13,021.

Pearl Harbor archive including items recovered from the USS Arizona after Pearl Harbor attack sold for $12,154.

Original handwritten score for the 1971 classic Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory sold for $10,003.

The Fine Autographs and Artifacts auction from RR Auction began on November 16 and concluded on December 5. More details can be found online at www.rrauction.com

 

vcsPRAsset_3568579_76629_949a39f0-bbba-40f4-ae55-b6acd8a06be8_0.jpgNew York - Christie’s December 13 sale of Fine Printed Books and Manuscripts realized a total of $5,425,625 achieving 75% by lot and 81% by value. Selling in a stand-alone sale ahead of the various owner auction, Albert Einstein: The God Letter realized a total of $2,892,500 and set a world auction record for an Einstein letter after a four-minute bidding battle between two clients on the phones. The bid was won by Books and Manuscripts Senior Specialist, Christina Geiger. Other great results in the Fine Printed Books & Manuscripts sale were achieved for a collection of original printing blocks for the first editions of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland which realized $81,250 against an estimate of $20,000-30,000, Charles Darwin’s On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection which realized $162,500 and the rare true first edition of Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone which achieved a world auction record for Harry Potter and more than doubled its high estimate realizing $162,500.

Quote from Sven Becker, Head of Books & Manuscripts: “Collectors worldwide competed very strongly, in the room, over the phone and online, for this finely curated auction which comprised masterpieces and fresh-to market property across a wide range of subjects: from Copernicus to Harry Potter by way of Darwin, Washington and countless other signposts of written culture. The New York Books Department is thrilled to close this year with such a strong auction, as market leaders for fine books and manuscripts.”

Image: Einstein, Albert (1879-1955), Autograph letterto Eric Gutkind, Princeton, 3 January 1954. In German. Price Realized: $2,892,500 

638.jpgChicago — Potter and Potter's December 1st Vintage Travel Poster Sale was first class all the way, attracting eyeballs and bids from around the globe. After the hammer fell for the last time, 94 lots realized between $500-999; 39 lots made between $1,000-2,999; and six lots broke the $3,000 barrier. Prices noted include the company's 20% buyer's premium.

Travel posters for Disney destinations held the keys to the kingdom at this sale. Lot #634, a Stanley Walter Galli United Air Lines Disneyland example was the top lot in the sale, selling for $6,000 on its $500-700 estimate.  This 1950s era piece, which generated 31 bids, was charmingly illustrated with a ferry full of families riding through a swamp safari. Lot #640, a 1983 Fly Eastern Walt Disney World poster soared to $1,320.  It featured a welcoming Mickey Mouse pointing out all the resort highlights at Walt Disney World.  A lucky bidder will soon feather their nest with lot #638, a United Air Lines Presents Walt Disney's Enchanted Tiki Room poster from 1968.  This color offset litho depicted Jose the Macaw - one of the four masters of ceremonies and the main Tiki Bird at the attraction - and made $4,320. And lot #636, a 1960s-era Los Angeles Disneyland Go Greyhound poster took the wheel at $2,880.

Posters representing India as a destination were also hot ticket items in this sale. Lot #391, a 1950s era See India Mysore Madras example produced by Associated Printers made $3,120 on its $400-600 estimate.  It featured the Nandi Statue, which is situated outside Mysore in the Chamundi Hills, and the devotees that travel to make offerings and pray.  Lot #388, an India Car Festival At Puri poster produced by the M/S Bombay Fine Art Offset & Litho Works in 1957 raced its way to $3,120.  Millions of devotees gather to drag the chariot and be blessed at this annual event.  Also making a big impression was lot #400, a Taj Mahal Visit India Bangalore/Madras poster from the 1950s. This offset litho was issued by the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting of the Government of India and traded hands at $2,880. And lot #393, a poster illustrated with an Indian woman with intricate face jewelry hiking in the mountains with two chickens under her arm, and lot #389, a poster featuring a colorful illustration emblematic of the culture in Udaipur, added a touch of foreign intrigue to the sale.  Each was produced in the 1950s and realized $2,640. 

Travel posters illustrated by David Klein (1918 - 2005) also took off at this auction event.  Klein was talented artist best known for his work with TWA and Howard Hughes in the 1950s and 1960s.  Lot #23, a c. 1958 Fly TWA San Francisco example featuring a vibrant mid-century view of the Golden Gate Bridge, spanned its $800-1,200 estimate to make $3,120. Lot #17, a New York World's Fair Fly TWA Jets from 1961 sold for $2,640.  This example, which simply explodes with its fireworks themed illustration, is considered one of the rarest of all New York World's Fair posters. And lot #8, a Fly TWA Hollywood poster featuring a Lockheed Constellation plane flying over the Hollywood bowl, with searchlights streaking the night sky, was also a breakout star in this sale.  This c.1955 masterpiece more than doubled its high estimate, selling for $3,120. 

According to Gabe Fajuri, President at Potter & Potter Auctions, "We saw strong interest in mid-century designs in this sale, which is no surprise considering current collecting trends in all fields. Chicago-related posters also did quite well, and we're happy to offer more in this genre early next year, so collectors should take note." 

Potter & Potter, founded in 2007, is a Chicago area auction house specializing in paper Americana, vintage advertising, rare books, playing cards, gambling memorabilia, posters, fine prints, vintage toys, and magicana - antiques and collectibles related to magic and magicians. The company's next sale, an online only magic sale, will be held on December 15, 2018. For more information, please see www.potterauctions.com.  Follow us on Facebook (potterandpotterauctions), Twitter (PnPAuctions), and Instagram (potterauctions). 

Image: United Air Lines Walt Disney's Enchanted Tiki Room. Disneyland. Sold for $4,320

Oakland, CA - The 52nd California International Antiquarian Book Fair, recognized as one of the world's largest and most prestigious exhibitions of antiquarian books, returns to Northern California, Friday, February 8 through Sunday, February 10, 2019 at the Oakland Marriott City Center. Sponsored by the Antiquarian Booksellers’ Association of America (ABAA) and the International League of Antiquarian Booksellers (ILAB) and featuring the collections and rare treasures of nearly 200 booksellers from over 20 countries around the world, the three-day Book Fair offers a rich selection of manuscripts, early American and European literature, modern first editions, children’s books, maps and autographs, as well as antiquarian books on history, science, law, architecture, cooking, wine and a wide range of other topics.

This year’s Book Fair will include a special exhibit by the Book Club of California, an active association of over 800 major California collectors with interests in rare books and manuscripts of all types. Founded in 1912, the Club’s library is dedicated to collecting and sharing works of California fine printers; resources on book making, book design, and book history; and books of historical significance. One side of this bi-faceted exhibit will display a selection of materials by California women printers and book artists, with a spotlight on Jane Grabhorn’s test prints for the illustrations of the Grabhorn Press’ Shakespeare plays. Also on display will be some of the Club’s oldest and most sought-after books, including a beautifully ornamented Virgil printed by Miscomini in 1476 and Ansel Adams’ Taos Pueblo.

Joel Harris, a local member of the International Wizard of Oz Club, will be loaning a portion of his collection for a curated exhibit of first edition books by L. Frank Baum and the subsequent authors of the “Wizard of Oz” series. The theme of a Saturday lecture jointly sponsored by the Antiquarian Booksellers' Association of America and the Bibliographical Society of America will be Cyclone on the Prairies: The Magic of the Land of Oz.

In recognition of the next generation of bibliophiles, the California Book Fair is pleased to announce The California Young Book Collectors’ Prize. The competition is open to collectors aged 35 and under who are living in California. All collections of books, manuscripts, and ephemera are welcome, no matter their monetary value or subject. The collections will be judged on their thoroughness, the approach to their subject, and the seriousness, with which the collector has catalogued his or her material.

The winner of the competition will be awarded the opportunity to exhibit and showcase the winning collection at the 52nd California International Antiquarian Book Fair; a gift certificate of $500 to spend at the Fair; a $250 stipend for exhibition travel and other expenses; plus a one-year membership to the Book Club of California, the Bibliographical Society of America, and a one-year subscription to The Book Collector. Additionally, in celebration of young collectors, all students with current valid student ID will be admitted to the Book Fair for free.

The deadline to enter is December 1, 2018 and the winner will be notified by January 5, 2019. For further details, rules, and to participate, please visit cabookfair.com or email Ben Kinmont, Chair of the Northern California Chapter of the ABAA, at bkinmont@gmail.com

Designed with the budding collector in mind, "Book Fair Finds" is a program in which dealers spotlight items priced at $100 or less. Visitors can look for the Book Fair Finds sign in participating booths.

Other highlights of the Book Fair include an interactive and entertaining exhibition that showcases local artists and organizations specializing in book arts. Local libraries and universities will be exhibiting one-of-a-kind works from their collections. Calligraphers, bookbinders and a small press operator will once again be creating unique souvenirs for attendees to take home.

The Book Fair’s schedule will also include the following events and special exhibits, free with Fair admission:

Saturday, February 9:

1:00 pm - : Cyclone on the Prairies: The Magic of the Land of Oz

Peter E. Hanff, Deputy Director of The Bancroft Library, will be presenting a lecture on L. Frank Baum jointly sponsored by the Antiquarian Booksellers' Association of America and the Bibliographical Society of America.

More programming will be announced soon.

Sunday, February 10

9:30 am: Zamorano Celebrates 90

(Please note that this panel takes place at the Oakland Marriott City Center prior to the Fair opening and is open to the public)

A panel discussion organized by the ABAA Women’s Initiative with project coordinator/editor Jean Gillingwators; first woman president of the Zamorano Club Judy Sahak; and contributors Jen and Brad Johnson who will speak on fine press printer Lillian Marks of the Plantin Press and bookseller Peggy Christian. The Zamorano Club is Southern California’s oldest organization of bibliophiles and manuscript collectors. Founded in 1928, it sponsors lectures and publications on bookish topics. Most noteworthy is the Zamorano 80 (1945)—a member-selected and -written catalogue of the most significant books in California history. The event is free and open to the public. 

12:30 - 1:15 pm: Book Collecting 101

Learn from ABAA president Vic Zoschak, Jr., Tavistock Bookshop to create a strategy for collecting books, as well as how to spot a “first edition,” judge a book’s condition, and learn bookish terms and jargon. 

1:15 - 2:00 pm: What’s This Book Worth?

Vic Zoschak, Jr., Tavistock Books will discuss the primary factors that give books commercial and monetary value, as well as strategies for appraising and selling books.

2:00 - 3:30 pm: Discovery Day

This is the public’s chance to discover if those old books gathering dust are worth something. The public will receive free, expert oral appraisals on up to three books. Appraisals are limited to a first come, first served basis - within the scheduled times.

The Book Fair is BARTable! The event’s venue in downtown Oakland is an added convenience for bibliophiles. The Oakland Marriott City Center is just steps away from the 12th Street BART Station, making it easily accessible to attendees from San Francisco and all over the East Bay. Out-of-town visitors will appreciate staying onsite at the Marriott, plus fair visitors arriving at both Oakland and San Francisco airports can take BART directly to the new venue.

Sponsors for the Book Fair include: KQED, ABC7, The San Francisco Chronicle/Datebook and BART.

Tickets and Information

The 52nd California International Antiquarian Book Fair will be held at the Oakland Marriott City Center at 1001 Broadway in downtown Oakland from 3 p.m. - 8 p.m. on Friday, February 8; 11 a.m. - 7 p.m. on Saturday, February 9; and 11 a.m. - 5 p.m. on Sunday, February 10.

Friday Opening Day admission tickets are $25; Saturday and Sunday tickets are $15. Tickets allow return admission for the remainder of the fair. For more information about tickets or exhibiting, visit www.cabookfair.com. Free admission for all students with a current valid student ID.

For more information about the 52nd California International Antiquarian Book Fair, please visit the website at www.cabookfair.com or contact Fair Managers  Doucet Productions at info@cabookfair.com, (415) 919-9220.

Oxford, England — The Bodleian Libraries will present novelist Sir Kazuo Ishiguro with the Bodley Medal, the Libraries’ highest honour. Sir Kazuo will receive the award at the FT Weekend Oxford Literary Festival on 3 April 2019, when he will deliver the annual Bodley Lecture.

Sir Kazuo is an award-winning British novelist, screenwriter, short story writer and songwriter. He is widely considered one of the greatest contemporary fiction authors in the English-speaking world.

He was born in Nagasaki, Japan, in 1954 and moved to Britain at the age of five. His eight works of fiction have earned him many awards and honours around the world, including the Nobel Prize in Literature (2017) and the Booker Prize (1989). His work has been translated into more than 50 languages. His novels The Remains of the Day and Never Let Me Go were made into acclaimed films. Sir Kazuo was given a Knighthood for Services to Literature in 2018, and also holds the French decoration, Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres, and the Japanese decoration, Order of the Rising Sun, Gold and Silver Star.

The Bodley Medal is awarded by the University of Oxford’s Bodleian Libraries to individuals who have made outstanding contributions to the worlds in which the Bodleian is active including literature, culture, science and communication. Past winners include biographer Claire Tomalin, novelist and screenwriter William Boyd, classicist Mary Beard, physicist Stephen Hawking, film director Nicholas Hytner, novelist Hilary Mantel, the late poet Seamus Heaney, writer and actor Alan Bennett and inventor of the World Wide Web Sir Tim Berners-Lee.

Sir Kazuo will appear in conversation with Richard Ovenden, Bodley’s Librarian, at 6 p.m. on 3 April in the University of Oxford’s Sheldonian Theatre as part of the FT Weekend Oxford Literary Festival. Following the event, Ovenden will present him with the Bodley Medal.

The Bodleian Libraries is a cultural partner of the FT Weekend Oxford Literary Festival, which runs from Saturday, 30 March to Sunday, 7 April 2019. Events will take place at the Bodleian’s Weston Library and Divinity School as well as at venues across the city. For more information, and to book tickets for the Bodley Lecture, visit the FT Weekend Oxford Literary Festival website at: http://oxfordliteraryfestival.org/

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