Rare Book Monthly

Articles - November - 2013 Issue

Graham Arader: Defining the space between auction and retail

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The Arader Galleries this month continue to explore the relationship between the retailing of important images in their shops and their selling of them at auction.  The entire category of collectibles is in transition and the firm, the leading dealer in the printed images field, testing the dividing line between these two very different markets.  Interest in their material, Audubon and other exceptional prints, is unabated but increasingly buyers are looking for market confirmation for the prices they pay.

 

To manage this shift Mr. Arader has been offering, in a series of auctions, material with high estimates of $10,000 and less on an unreserved basis.  This has made it possible for conservative bidders to acquire very nice lots at very affordable prices.  It has also acquainted them with the Arader Galleries and opened paths for the firm to become, for these buyers, a regular source for many of the more expensive prints that rarely pass through the rooms.  It is a remarkable effort.

 

Illustrating this story are 10 of the lots that will be sold without reserve.  On most AE pages the Arader Galleries have also posted images, brief descriptions and links to other lots, in many cases more expensive lots.  The education that Mr. Arader is getting is not tuition free and he has prepared himself for the possibility of occasionally losing money on lots in exchange for the clarification such sales provide.   

 

For bidders, with the holidays at hand, it looks like Christmas, Hanukkah and Kwanzaa are arriving early.  If so, we now know that Santa lives in Pennsylvania.

 

The firm describes the sale this way:

 

‘A superb exhibition of nearly one third of the original hand-coloured aquatints from John James Audubon's magnificent double-elephant folio "The Birds of America", the single most important work on North American ornithology; about half of the original hand-colored lithographs from his Imperial folio "The Viviparous Quadrupeds", the first great all-American color-plate book; and some beautiful original watercolors on vellum from Pierre-Joseph Redoute's magnum opus "Les Liliacees."  All are currently on view at the Gallery at 1016 Madison Ave., NYC, NY 10021.’

 

The sale is on the 9th beginning at 1:00 pm at 1016 Madison Avenue in New York.  On the 8th, at 6:00 pm, Barney Lipscomb, the Leonhardt Chair of Texas Botany at the Botanical Research Institute Texas is giving an illustrated lecture “Art and Science:  A Botanist’s Eye:  Redoute and the Art of Floral Illustration.”  The public is invited.

 

To arrange to view lots in person or to learn about bidding options contact:

 

The Arader Gallery

1016 Madison Avenue [bet. 78th and 79th]

New York, New York 10021

 

View the entire sale on Live Auctioneers and on Proxibid

 

Arrange to Visit:  call 212-628-7625

 

Arrange to bid: Please contact Guernsey’s Auctioneers at 212-794-2280

 

Personally discuss your collecting interests with Graham Arader:  212- 628-3668

 

Descriptions for the numbered images accompanying this article.

 

Lot 12

John James Audubon
Red-tailed Hawk
Plate 51

Aquatint engraving with original hand color

37 5/8 x 25 ¼ inches

Retail price: $17,500

Estimate $4,000-5,000
No Reserve

 

Lot 13

John James Audubon

Chuck Will’s Widow

Plate 52

Aquatint engraving with original hand color

25 3/8 x 37 3/8 inches

Retail price: $25,000

Estimate: $6,000-8,000

No Reserve

 

Lot 90

John James Audubon

Ruddy Duck

Plate 343

Aquatint engraving with original hand color

38 1/8 x 26 5/8 inches

Retail price: $18,000

Estimate: $4,000-6,000

No Reserve

  

Lot 106

John James Audubon

Snow Goose

Plate 381

Aquatint engraving with original hand color

38 1/8 x 25 ¼ inches

Retail price: $18,000

Estimate: $5,000-7,000

No Reserve



Lot 113

John James Audubon

Red-breasted Merganser

Plate 401

Aquatint engraving with original hand color

38 ½ x 25 inches

Retail price: $45,000

Estimate: $7,000-10,000

No Reserve



Lot 140

John James Audubon

Canada Porcupine

Plate 36

Hand colored lithograph

21 ½ x 27 ¼ inches

Retail price: $14,000

Estimate: $3,000-5,000

No Reserve

 

Lot 169

John James Audubon

Common American Deer (Fawn)

Plate 81

Hand colored lithograph

21 x 27 1/8 inches

Retail price: $25,000

Estimate: $6,000-10,000

No Reserve

 

Lot 206

John James Audubon

American Black Bear

Plate 141

Hand-colored lithograph

20 ½ x 26 5/8 inches

Retail price: $22,500

Estimate: $7,000-8,000

No Reserve

 

Lot 221

Charles Lucien Bonaparte

American Ornithology; or, the Natural History of Birds Inhabiting the United States not Given by Wilson. Philadelphia: Carey, Lea & Carey; Carey & Lea, 1825-1833.

4 volumes

Folio (15 2/8 x 12 inches)

27 fine hand-colored engraved plates

Retail price: $13,750

Estimate: $8,000-10,000

No Reserve

 

Lot 256
George Brookshaw
Plate LXI-Grape Lady Bathurst Tokay, from Pomona Brittanica

Stipple engraving

Single sheet: 18 x 22 ½ inches

Image size: 13 ¼ x 17 inches

Retail price: $7,000

Estimate: $1,000-2,000

No Reserve

 

Rare Book Monthly

  • <b>19th Century Shop:</b> Charles Darwin on sexuality and the transmission of hereditary characteristics: Autograph Letter Signed to Lawson Tait. Down, 17 January [1877].
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> MILTON, JOHN. <i>Paradise Lost. A Poem written in ten books.</i> London: 1667. A very rare example with the contemporary binding untouched and with a 1667 title page.
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> Hamilton secures the ratification of the Constitution: <i>The Debates and Proceedings of the Convention of the State of New-York, assembled at Poughkeespsie, on the 17th June, 1788.</i>
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> The social contract “Man is born free, and everywhere he is in chains”: ROUSSEAU, JEAN-JACQUES. <i>Principes du Droit Politique [Du Contract Social]</i>. Amsterdam: Michel Rey, 1762
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> “The first English textbook on geometrical land-measurement and surveying”: BENESE, RICHARD. <i>This Boke Sheweth the Maner of Measurynge All Maner of Lande…</i>
  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:<br>Early Printed, Medical, Scientific & Travel Books</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b> Caius Julius Hyginus, <i>Poeticon Astronomicon,</i> first illustrated edition, Venice, 1482. $15,000 to $20,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b> Giovanni Botero, <i>Le Relationi Universali... divise in Sette Parti</i>, Venice, 1618. $3,000 to $5,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b> <i>L'Escole des Filles</i>, likely third edition of the first work of pornographic fiction in French, 1676. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:<br>Early Printed, Medical, Scientific & Travel Books</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b> Illuminated Book of Hours in Latin on vellum, Flanders, early 16th century. $6,000 to $9,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b> Johannes Regiomontanus, <i>Calendarium,</i> Venice, 1485. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b> Pedro de Medina, <i>Libro d[e] gra[n]dezas y cosas memorables de España,</i> Alcalá de Henares, 1566. $3,000 to $5,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:<br>Early Printed, Medical, Scientific & Travel Books</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b><br>Luis de Lucena, <i>Arte de Ajedres,</i> Salamanca, circa 1496-97. $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b> Andrés Serrano, <i>Los Siete Principes de los Ángeles, válidos de Rey del Cielo,</i> Spain, 1707. $800 to $1,200.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b> Johannes de Sacrobosco, <i>Sphaera mundi,</i> first illustrated edition, Venice, 1478. $15,000 to $20,000.
  • <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> A Rare 3-rotor German Enigma I Enciphering Machine. $70,000 to $90,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> Important collection of correspondence between Werner Heisenberg and Bruno Rossi. $40,000 to $60,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> Walt Whitman Autograph manuscript containing his thoughts on death. $20,000 to $30,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> David Roberts. <i>Holy Land</i>. Six volumes. 1842-1849. First edition. $15,000 to $25,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> Extensive collection of Ray Bradbury's primary works, most signed or inscribed. $15,000 to $20,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> Peter Force. Declaration of Independence. $12,000 to $18,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> Steinbeck. <i>Grapes of Wrath</i>. A fine copy of the first edition. $10,000 to $15,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> Lewis & Clark. <i>Travels to the Source of the Missouri River</i>... First English edition, extra-illustrated. 1814. $10,000 to 15,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> Manuscript document signed by Nuno de Guzman relating to Hernan Cortes, 1528. $8,000 to $12,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> “Nos los inquisidores..." The first book in English printed West of the Mississippi. [1787]. $5,000 to $8,000.

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