Auction Update Review


The Temperature Rises


For the week ending Saturday March 1st 22 auctions were archived to the AED; 2 in euros, 4 in British pounds, and 16 in US dollars.  Turnover was $9,425,842 as 8,253 lots were offered and 7,093 sold for a robust 86% success rate.  There was strength across the globe.

<--- A suite of 12 photographs by Bernd Becher [lot 95] in Swann's sale on the 27th brought $125,000 

1 auction saw their total proceeds reach a million dollars: 

HeritageAuctions. Comics on February 22nd: $4,706,304 

<--- Lot 7 at Bloomsbury Auctions brought GBP 3,968 against a high estimate of GBP 1,500 in their Photo Opportunities on February 28th.

2 auctions saw total sales exceed 100% of the high estimates of all lots offered:

Ferraton. Books - Old and Modern on February 22nd: 147.03%
Bloomsbury Auctions. Library of a Gentleman on February 27th: 120.79%

13 sales saw at least 80% of their lots sell:

Heritage Auctions. Celebrity Art: Doodle for Hunger on February 24th: 100.00%
Heritage Auctions. Lomasney Vintage Movie Art Posters Benefiting Lifebeat Monthly Internet Charity Auction - bidstart 2 on February 27th: 100.00%
Heritage Auctions. Comics -Internet bidstart 2/16 on February 23rd: 99.46%
Heritage Auctions. Comics on February 22nd: 99.42%
Cowans Auctions. The World at War on February 25th: 96.88%
Heritage Auctions. Movie Posters - Internet bidstart 2/16 on February 23rd: 94.97%
Bloomsbury Auctions. Library of a Gentleman on February 27th: 92.74%
Heritage Auctions. Rare Books - Internet bidstart 2/20 on February 27th: 90.99%
Lancaster Mennonite Historical Society. Rare and Used Books on February 14th: 89.01%
Ferraton. Books - Old and Modern on February 22nd: 86.25%
Bruun Rasmussen. Modern and Contemporary Prints on February 25th: 83.33%
Eldreds. Antiques and Accessories - Books and Prints on February 22nd: 81.58%

For the week ahead 21 sales are scheduled:

Mon. Mar. 3rd
Skinner. Boston. Americana: Prints - Internet bidstart 2/24. 21 lots

Tue. Mar. 4th
Neret Minet and Tessier. Paris. Posters. 485 lots
Bruun Rasmussen. Copenhagen. Prints. 55 lots
Bonhams. San Francisco. Asian Decorative Arts - Woodblock Prints, Reference Books. 13 lots
Bruun Rasmussen. Copenhagen. Modern and Contemporary Prints. 42 lots
Bearnes Hampton and Littlewood. Exeter. Books, Prints, Ephemera. 52 lots

Wed. Mar. 5th
Bonhams. London. Single Owner Law Sale Part 1. 472 lots
Dominic Winter Book Auctions. Gloucestershire. Printed Books, Maps and Historical Documents. 675 lots
Sothebys. London. 1000 Ways of Seeing - Prints. 52 lots
Ader. PARIS. Historical Memories. 31 lots

Thu. Mar. 6th
Bloomsbury Auctions. London. Antiquarian Books. 230 lots
Swann Galleries. New York. 19th & 20th Century Prints & Drawings. 661 lots
ALDE. Paris. Library of Amateur Architecture, from Vitruvius to Ledoux. 148 lots
Heritage Auctions. Dallas. Rare Books - Internet bidstart 2/27. 353 lots

Fri. Mar. 7th
Dominic Winter Book Auctions. Gloucestershire. Prints and Books. 23 lots
Rossini. Paris. Prints. 245 lots

Sat. Mar. 8th
Neret Minet and Tessier. Paris. Comic Strips. 447 lots

Sun. Mar. 9th
Heritage Auctions. Dallas. Comics - Internet bidstart 3/2.
Heritage Auctions. Dallas. Movie Posters - Internet Bidstart 3/2.
National Book Auctions. Ithaca. Books and Ephemera - Monument Men, Law, Autographs, etc..

The market is absorbing the higher volume of lots, and as Mike Stillman reported a few days ago, bringing higher prices.  It's been five years since the financial melt-down and finally it feels like its lingering effects are slipping away.


Bruce McKinney



  • <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 Apr 26:</b> Jacques-Émile Ruhlmann, wallpaper sample book, circa 1919. $15,000 to $25,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b> Archive from a late office of the Breuer & Smith architectural team, New York, 1960-70s. $3,500 to $5,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b> William Morris, <i>The Story of the Glittering Plain or the Land of Living Men,</i> illustrated by Walter Crane, Kelmscott Press, Hammersmith, 1894. $2,500 to $3,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b> Gustave Doré, <i>La Sainte Bible selon la Vulgate,</i> Tours, 1866. $15,000 to $25,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b> Gustav Klimt & Max Eisler, <i>Eine Nachlese,</i> complete set, Vienna, 1931. $15,000 to $25,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b><br>Eric Allatini & Gerda Wegener, <i>Sur Talons Rouges,</i> with original watercolor by Wegener, Paris, 1929. $5,000 to $7,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b><br>C.P. Cavafy, <i>Fourteen Poems,</i> illustrated & signed by David Hockney, London, 1966. $5,000 to $7,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b> Jean Midolle, <i>Spécimen des Écritures Modernes...</i>, Strasbourg, 1834-35. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b><br>E.A. Seguy, <i>Floréal: Dessins & Coloris Nouveaux,</i> Paris, 1925. $3,000 to $4,000.
  • <b>Bonhams: Results from Fine Books and Manuscripts on March 9, 2018</b>
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> BEETHOVEN, LUDWIG VAN. Autograph Manuscript sketch-leaf part of the score of the Scottish Songs, "Sunset" Op. 108 no 2. [Vienna, February 1818]. Inscribed by Alexander Wheelock Thayer. SOLD for $131,250
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> Violin belonging to Albert Einstein, presented to him by Oscar H. Steger, 1933. SOLD for $516,500
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> EINSTEIN, ALBERT. Autograph Letter Signed ("Papa") to his son Hans Albert, discussing his involvement with the atomic bomb, September 2, 1945. SOLD for $106,250
    <b>Bonhams: Results from Fine Books and Manuscripts on March 9, 2018</b>
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> HAMILTON, ALEXANDER. Autograph Letter Signed, to Baron von Steuben, with extensive notes of Von Steuben's aide Benjamin Walker, June 12, 1780. SOLD for $16,250
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> NEWTON, ISAAC. Autograph Manuscript in Latin, being detailed instructions on making the philosopher's stone. 8 pp. 1790s. SOLD for $275,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> 1869 Inauguration Bible of President Ulysses S. Grant. SOLD for $118,750
  • <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> E.H. SHEPARD, Original drawing for A.A. Milne’s The House at Pooh Corner.<br>$40,000-60,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> BERNARD RATZER, Plan of the City of New York in North America, surveyed in the years 1766 & 1767. $80,000-100,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> THOMAS JEFFERSON, Autograph letter signed comparing Logan, Tecumseh, and Little Turtle to the Spartans. Monticello: 15 February 1821. $14,000-18,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> JOHN C. FREMONT, Narrative of the Exploring Expedition to the Rocky Mountains, in the Year 1842.. Abridged edition, the only one containing the folding map From the Sporting Library of Arnold “Jake” Johnson. $3,000-5,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> ZANE GREY, Album containing 94 large format photographs of Grey and party at Catalina Island, Arizona, and fishing in the Pacific. From the Sporting Library of Arnold “Jake” Johnson. $5,000-$8,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> WILLIAM COMBE, A History of Madeira ... illustrative of the Costumes, Manners, and Occupations of the Inhabitants. produced by Ackermann in 1821; From the Sporting Library of Jake Johnson. $2,000-$3,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> ERIC TAVERNER, Salmon Fishing... One of 275 copies signed by Taverner, published in 1931,From the Sporting Library of Jake Johnson. $2,000-$3,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> JOHN WHITEHEAD, Exploration of Mount Kina Balu, North Borneo. Whitehead reached the high point of Kinabalu in 1888. Part of a major group of travel books from the Sporting Library of Jake Johnson. $2,000-$3,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> JOHN LONG, Voyages and Travels of an Indian Interpreter and Trader, describing the Manners and Customs of the North American Indians... The first edition of 1791. $3,000-$5,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> SAMUEL BECKETT, Stirrings Still. This, Beckett’s last work of fiction with original lithographs by Le Brocquy, limited to 200 copies signed by the author and the artist. From the Estate of Howard Kaminsky.. $1,500-$2,500