Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - November - 2013 Issue

An Artistic Gallery from Peter Harrington


Gallery Christmas 2013.

Peter Harrington has issued a catalogue entitled Gallery Christmas 2013. While Harrington is primarily a bookseller, this catalogue is focused on art. Most items are various forms of printings of art work, though there are a few books, along with maps and such more readily associated with the book trade. However, these days, collectors tend to seek a broader swath of material, where the visual combines with the textual in forming collections. And, most of these items have the benefit of being suitable to hang on a wall. So, here we go with a few samples. We also note that Harrington has prepared a catalogue of books for Christmas as well, and we will review that in the next (December) issue of AE Monthly.


Item 17 is a book accompanied by a remarkable photograph: Montparnasse. Essays von Hans Irrek. Interviews von Ursula Trubenbach und Hans Irrek. The photograph was taken by Andreas Gursky, the subject being architect Jean Dubuisson's quarter-mile long housing block in the Montparnasse district of Paris. Built from 1959-1964, the housing is a tribute to rectangles, rectangular in shape with lots of rectangular windows. One can make their own judgments on the beauty of the building, but it, and Gursky's massive photograph, are certainly spectacular. These essays were prepared for an exhibition in 1995, and the photograph is signed by Gursky. Priced at £4,000 (British pounds, or approximately US $6,457).


Item 54 is one of a limited edition of 77 copies of a 1994 print of Ralph Steadman's Bats Over Barstow. If the title doesn't sound familiar, the title of the book in which it was featured and the image itself may be. The illustration was featured on the cover of Hunter Thompson's 1972 bizarre road trip novel Fear and Loathing In Las Vegas. It was an unforgettable journey by Thompson and Oscar Acosta in the drug-crazed era of the 1960s. Steadman's art is as bizarre as the book. Grotesque caricatures of Thompson, behind the wheel, and Acosta, riding alongside, are seen speeding down a desert highway, bats flying above. Steadman would remain an illustrator and friend of Thompson's for the remainder of his life, and this catalogue also contains an illustration Steadman created for the first anniversary of Thompson's self-inflicted demise. £7,250 (US $11,714).


This next item is a copy of John Lennon's Bag One Portfolio. Lennon produced a series of 14 sketches after his 1969 marriage to Yoko Ono. The first half represented scenes from events around the time of the marriage, including their legendary “bed-in,” where Lennon and Ono spent a week in bed in an Amsterdam hotel room for peace. They gave numerous interviews promoting peace from their bed, and thanks to Lennon's celebrity, the press was there en masse. The second, later group of sketches were more erotic in nature, though depicting the same couple (themselves). Three hundred copies of the portfolio were produced for public sale, but this is one of only 45 hors commerce (not for sale) copies produced. These were intended to be given to friends and associates of John and Yoko. This one went to Edward Booth-Clibborn, who was to produce and sell posters based on the art (it didn't happen because someone surreptitiously photographed the sketches and began selling cheap copies). This item is extremely rare in the trade. John's art is passable, but one can assume this would not be nearly so desirable were it not for his other career. Item 25. £85,000 (US $137,206).


Item 63 is a photograph featuring two of the best known figures of the 1960's-1970's, though they were as different as two people can be. The photograph features two large canvases Andy Warhol produced of boxer Muhammad Ali. Standing in front of the images is Warhol himself. The photograph was taken circa 1977 by Houston photographer Larry E. Lent. Both subjects, Ali and Warhol, have signed the front of the photograph, while Lent has signed the back. £3,500 (US $5,649).

Rare Book Monthly

  • <b>Bonhams: Fine Books and Manuscripts. 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. $80,000 to $120,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> Violin belonging to Albert Einstein, presented to him by Oscar H. Steger, 1933. $100,000 to $150,000
    <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. $100,000 to $150,000
    <b>Bonhams: Fine Books and Manuscripts. 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. $10,000 to $15,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> NEWTON, ISAAC. Autograph Manuscript in Latin, being detailed instructions on making the philosopher's stone. 8 pp. 1790s. $200,000 to 300,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> 1869 Inauguration Bible of President Ulysses S. Grant. $80,000 to $120,000
  • <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>Forum Auctions: Fine Books, Manuscripts and Works on Paper. March 22, 2018</b>
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Jenner (Rev. George Charles). <i>The Evidence at Large...Respecting Dr Jenner's Discovery of Vaccine Inoculation,</i> presentation copy from Edward Jenner to Rev. Rowland Hill, 1805. £4,000 to £6,000
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Houdini (Harry).- Maggi (Girolamo). <i>De tintinnabulis liber postumus...de equuleo liber,</i> Harry Houdini's copy, Amsterdam, H. Wetstein, 1689. £600 to £800
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Meyer (Henry Leonard). Coloured Illustrations of British Birds, and their Eggs , 7 vol. in 2 plus Illustrations of British Birds, 4 vol., 1842-50 and [1835-51]. £5,000 to £7,000
    <b>Forum Auctions: Fine Books, Manuscripts and Works on Paper. March 22, 2018</b>
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Dickens (Charles). <i>An Entirely New Romantic Drama, in Three Acts, by Mr. Wilkie Collins, called The Frozen Deep,</i> 1857. £3,000 to £4,000
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Lighthouses and Islands of Ireland, c. 125 drawings, 1867. £6,000 to £8,000
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Shelley (Lady Jane). Diary, 1853 & 1860. £1,500 to £2,000
    <b>Forum Auctions: Fine Books, Manuscripts and Works on Paper. March 22, 2018</b>
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Scottish Binding.- The Holy Bible, Containing the Old and New Testaments, bound in contemporary brown polished calf decorated with the figure of a Chinese spearman, by ?James Scott of Edinburgh, 1778. £2,000 to £3,000
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Greene (Graham). <i>The Man Within,</i> first edition, signed by the author, 1929. £4,000 to £6,000
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Mellan (Claude, 1598-1688). The Holy Face, or the Veil of St Veronica, [c. 1649 and later]. £800 to £1,200
    <b>Forum Auctions: Fine Books, Manuscripts and Works on Paper. March 22, 2018</b>
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Desaguliers (John Theophilus). <i>A Dissertation concerning Electricity,</i> W. Innys, and T. Longman, 1742. £2,000 to £3,000
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Le Jeune (Paul). <i>Relation de se qui s'est passé en la Nouvelle France en l'anné 1636 enuoyée au R.Pere Provincial de la Compagnie de Iesus en la Province de France,</i> 1637. £2,000 to £3,000
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Stumpf (Johann Rudolph). <i>Gemeiner loblicher Eydgnoschafft Stetten, Landen und Völckern Chronicwirdiger thaaten beschreibung, </i> Zurich, Froschauer, 1586. £3,000 to £4,000
  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29: Printed & Manuscript African Americana</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29:</b> Malcolm X, Autograph Letter Signed, from prison, 1950. $20,000 to $30,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29:</b> Letter from Moses Walker, an enslaved Georgia man, to his mother at another plantation, 1854. $12,000 to $18,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29:</b> Signed cabinet card of Frederick Douglass, albumen photograph, Boston, circa 1879. $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29: Printed & Manuscript African Americana</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29:</b> Placard from the Memphis Sanitation Worker's strike, 1968. $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29:</b><br><i>The North Star,</i> volume 1, issue 27, Rochester, NY, 1848. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29:</b> Hand-tinted tintype of John Brown, circa 1860. $4,000 to $6,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29: Printed & Manuscript African Americana</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29:</b> Poster signed & inscribed by Huey Newton, circa 1967. $4,000 to $6,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29:</b> Album of aerial views of the march on Montgomery, taken by federal troops, 1965. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29:</b> Poster for the SNCC, photograph by Danny Lyon featuring John Lewis, circa 1962. $3,000 to $4,000.

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