• <center><b>Case Antiques<br>Two-Day Winter Auction<br>Jan. 30 & 31, 2021</b>
    <b>Case Antiques, Jan. 30-31:</b> Rare 1778 Engraved map of Colonial Philadelphia after George Heap (1714-1752) and Nicholas Scull (1687-1761). $10,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Case Antiques, Jan. 30-31:</b> Author signed and inscribed <i>THE FOUNTAINHEAD,</i> stated First Edition, by Ayn Rand, published by The Bobbs-Merrill Company, Indianapolis, New York, 1943. $2,000 to $2,400.
    <b>Case Antiques, Jan. 30-31:</b> John James Audubon (American, 1785-1851) hand-colored aquatint engraving, "Yellow-billed Magpie, Stellers Jay, Ultramarine Jay and Clark's Crow," Plate Number CCCLXII. $1,800 to $2,200.
    <center><b>Case Antiques<br>Two-Day Winter Auction<br>Jan. 30 & 31, 2021</b>
    <b>Case Antiques, Jan. 30-31:</b> Andrew Jackson (1767-1845) autograph letter, signed, as President, to Nathan Reid detailing Jackson’s intervention on behalf of Reid's grandson. $1,800 to $2,200.
    <b>Case Antiques, Jan. 30-31:</b> Edward Steichen (Luxembourg/American, 1879-1973) portfolio of photographs, "The Early Years 1900-1927, 12 Hand-Gravure Prints" #41/1000, printed in 1981. $1,400 to $1,600.
    <b>Case Antiques, Jan. 30-31:</b> President John Fitzgerald Kennedy, TLS, one-page typed letter on The White House, Washington, D.C., stationary to John Marshall Butler. $1,400 to $1,600.
    <center><b>Case Antiques<br>Two-Day Winter Auction<br>Jan. 30 & 31, 2021</b>
    <b>Case Antiques, Jan. 30-31:</b> Two Pre-Civil War slave related letters, including one written by Mariah, a female domestic slave of James Vincent Musgrove (1814-1890) to her daughter. $1,000 to $1,200.
    <b>Case Antiques, Jan. 30-31:</b> Two author signed and inscribed Ayn Rand related books, including one Rand signed <i>WE THE LIVING,</i> London 1940 edition. $1,000 to $1,200.
    <b>Case Antiques, Jan. 30-31:</b> PLAN DE LA VILLE DE MEMPHIS (ETATS-UNIS) 40,000 HABITANTS pen and ink with watercolor hand drawn drainage system map, circa 1870. $700 to $900.
    <center><b>Case Antiques<br>Two-Day Winter Auction<br>Jan. 30 & 31, 2021</b>
    <b>Case Antiques, Jan. 30-31:</b> Scarce Mezzotint portrait of Thomas Pownall, Colonial Governor of the Province of Massachusetts Bay (1757-1760) and South Carolina (1760). $600 to $700.
    <b>Case Antiques, Jan. 30-31:</b> VIEW OF NORFOLK FROM COSPORT, VIRGINIA, John Hill, engraver, after John Shaw (U.K., 1776-1832). $600 to $700.
    <b>Case Antiques, Jan. 30-31:</b> THE BURNING OF THE MERCHANT'S EXCHANGE, NEW YORK CITY -THE GREAT FIRE OF DECEMBER, 1835. Scarce color lithograph, a 1909 reissue of the original 1836 print. $500 to $700.
  • <center><b>Il Ponte Casa d'Aste<br>Books and Manuscripts<br>26 January 2021</b>
    <center><b>Il Ponte Casa d'Aste<br>Books and Manuscripts<br>26 January 2021</b>
    <center><b>Il Ponte Casa d'Aste<br>Books and Manuscripts<br>26 January 2021</b>
  • <b><center>Christie’s<br>Paul Destribats:<br>Une Bibliothèque des Avant-gardes<br>Part III<br>2-3 and 4 February 2021</b>
    <b><center>Christie’s<br>Paul Destribats:<br>Une Bibliothèque des Avant-gardes<br>Part III<br>2-3 and 4 February 2021</b>
    <b><center>Christie’s<br>Paul Destribats:<br>Une Bibliothèque des Avant-gardes<br>Part III<br>2-3 and 4 February 2021</b>
    <b><center>Christie’s<br>Paul Destribats:<br>Une Bibliothèque des Avant-gardes<br>Part III<br>2-3 and 4 February 2021</b>
  • <center><b>Forum Auctions<br>Fine Books, Manuscripts<br>and Works on Paper<br>28 January 2021</b>
    <b>Forum Auctions, Jan. 28:</b> Schedel (Hartmann). <i>Liber Chronicarum,</i> first edition, Nuremberg, Anton Koberger for Sebald Schreyer and Sebastian Kammermeister, 1493. £30,000 to £50,000.
    <b>Forum Auctions, Jan. 28:</b> [Greek Orthodox Church].- <i>Menaion,</i> manuscript in Greek, on paper, in Greek letters, [Eastern Mediterranean], [c. 1400]. £5,000 to £7,000.
    <b>Forum Auctions, Jan. 28:</b> American Revolution.- Loyalist's cow powder horn, engraved with the cypher "GR" for George III surmounted by a crown, an inscription, and on reverse an engraving of the "North River" [Hudson River], 1777. £5,000 to £7,000.
    <center><b>Forum Auctions<br>Fine Books, Manuscripts<br>and Works on Paper<br>28 January 2021</b>
    <b>Forum Auctions, Jan. 28:</b> Illuminated prayer book.- <i>Maria Carcer y Trigueros... Santa Misa y Oraciones,</i> illuminated manuscript in Spanish, on paper, [c. 1850]. £5,000 to £7,000.
    <b>Forum Auctions, Jan. 28:</b> Hardy (Thomas). <i>The Mayor of Casterbridge,</i> 2 vol., first edition in book form, original cloth, 1886. £2,000 to £3,000.
    <b>Forum Auctions, Jan. 28:</b> [Austen (Jane)]. <i>Emma: A Novel,</i> first edition, Printed for John Murray, 1816. £7,000 to £10,000.
    <center><b>Forum Auctions<br>Fine Books, Manuscripts<br>and Works on Paper<br>28 January 2021</b>
    <b>Forum Auctions, Jan. 28:</b> Brontë (Charlotte). <i>Jane Eyre. An Autobiography,</i> 3 vol., first edition, Smith, Elder and Co., 1847. £10,000 to £15,000.
    <b>Forum Auctions, Jan. 28:</b> Cruikshank (George). <i>The Road to the Derby,</i> one of two proof copies, Raphael Tuck & Sons, 1882. £600 to £800.
    <b>Forum Auctions, Jan. 28:</b> Meunier (Charles, binder).- Gruel (Leon). <i>Manuel Historique et Bibliographique de l'Amateur de Reliures,</i> 2 vol., Paris, 1887.-1905. £3,000 to £4,000.
    <center><b>Forum Auctions<br>Fine Books, Manuscripts<br>and Works on Paper<br>28 January 2021</b>
    <b>Forum Auctions, Jan. 28:</b> Burne-Jones (Sir Edward). <i>The Work of Edward Burne-Jones,</i> edited by Philip Burne-Jones, one of 200 copies, [c.1900]. £4,000 to £6,000.
    <b>Forum Auctions, Jan. 28:</b> Nazraeli Press.- <i>Six by Six,</i> 36 vol. [a complete set], one of 100 sets, each with signed photograph, Portland, Or., 2010-16. £10,000 to £15,000.
    <b>Forum Auctions, Jan. 28:</b> Australasia.- Péron (Francois) and Freycinet. <i>Voyage de Découvertes aux Terres Australes,</i> 5 vol. including Atlas, second edition, Paris, 1824. £6,000 to £8,000.

Rare Book Monthly

Articles - October - 2019 Issue

What Type of Books Does Gwyneth Paltrow collect?

3c435a08-4ffe-4957-a8a0-14ed252e9a59

An example of what can be done with book jackets (from Juniper Books' Facebook page).

In a time when the role of books in society is in a state of flux, it is always reassuring to learn that a celebrated, well-known person is a book collector. What could be better than a famous actress, superbly talented, beautiful, and a household name, a star many times over? Such describes Gwyneth Paltrow, extraordinary actress, book collector. However, she is not your traditional book collector and this may make some uncomfortable. She is more of a sort of collector we have seen develop in this century, focused on aspects of books other than edition, age, rarity, or any of those factors that usually lead book collectors to pay crazy amounts of money for a particular copy.

 

We learned about Ms. Paltrow's collecting courtesy of Town & Country magazine. They did not interview the collector herself, but rather, her curator, Thatcher Wine. Mr. Wine founded Juniper Books in 2001. It's not a typical book store. Instead, it offers all sorts of services to collectors beyond simply selling books. They will provide specialty covers or jackets to suit your taste, perhaps following a color or fabric scheme. They specialize in helping form collections, but not so much finding first editions as in finding books that fit a collector's personality. For example, rather than building a collection around a specific author or subject, they build one that describes who the collector is. There is no expectation that the owner will ever actually read the books, but perhaps one could say if they did decide to read some books, these would be ones they would likely select. As Wine told Town & Country, "they are a reflection of where you’ve been and where you want to go."

 

While choosing books by color or for specialty dust jackets may seem odd, people choose other features of their homes based on look, such as paint, cabinets, rugs. Why not their books? As Thatcher Wine explains, "someone can have the complete works of Jane Austen, but in a certain Pantone chip color that matches the rest of the room or with a custom image...Why settle for books that a publisher designed?"

 

So, what sort of a collection did Wine develop for Gwyneth Paltrow? He explains that when she moved into her home a few years ago, she discovered she needed another 500 or 600 books to fill her shelves. Wine looked at her existing collection and determined her interests were focused on art, fashion, culture, photography and architecture. She also wanted books her children would like, so some children's classics they might want to read as they grow older were included. For the family room, he integrated books into her collection that "felt very light, inviting, and easy to grab off the shelves." For the dining room, he selected "a more rigid color palette of black, white and gray," since that is a room in which they are less likely to be pulling books off the shelves to read.

 

Looking at books this way is not without controversy, even derision. It can be seen as an offshoot of "books by the foot," something which Juniper also offers. That is where someone orders ten feet of red books and five feet of blue books to fill their shelves. They have no idea what books they are getting nor do they care. They will never be read or even opened. The owner simply wants to see red and blue on the shelves. It can make people who see books as fountains of knowledge and wisdom cringe. Similarly, there is the current fashionable style of putting books on the shelves backwards, that is, with their fore-edges exposed rather than their spines. Obviously, these won't be read since you can't even tell what is the title of any book.

 

But, is it really fair to criticize the use of books this way because it ignores what many of us think is the purpose of books? Is this really a new phenomenon, or a new iteration of something that goes back almost as far as books themselves? Some early collectors commissioned magnificent bindings for their books. Jean Grolier, the 16th century collector for whom America's oldest and largest bibliophile society is named, is not renowned for his selection of the texts he collected. It's for his beautiful bindings. The fine press movement is not noted for its extraordinary texts either, but for beautiful books. Collectors are not paying $50,000 or more for a Kelmscott Chaucer because William Morris' edition of Canterbury Tales is easier to understand than other editions. It is just as incomprehensible to English-speaking readers as a $10 used copy. What, exactly, is the difference? While Gwyneth Paltrow may make her selections for different reasons than I would, she is still a book collector, and I'll bet her shelves look nicer than mine, and nicer than they would if lined with electronic readers and tablet computers. And, what's more, she just may turn her children into book readers along the way.


Posted On: 2019-10-01 15:42
User Name: rtreed

There used to be a café attached to the Museum of Sex here in NYC. It was lined with books, all of which were given plain brown dust-jackets — a gimmick, but an effective one. On any given day, about a quarter of the people there were reading from the library. There were mysteries, and gardening books, but most of the books were about sex, a pretty fascinating topic, which many people are remarkably ignorant about.
My point is that switching up the dust-jackets and covers can enhance, or obscure, meanings and purposes of a book.


Rare Book Monthly

  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries Jan 28:</b> Joseph F. Kernan, <i>College Football,</i> oil on canvas, <i>The Saturday Evening Post</i> cover, 1932. $25,000 to $35,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Jan 28:</b> Joseph C. Leyendecker, <i>Golfer Lighting a Cigarette,</i> oil on canvas, c.1920. $7,000 to $10,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Jan 28:</b> Howard Chandler Christy, <i>In the Field,</i> charcoal & watercolor, published in <i>Scribner’s,</i> 1902. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Jan 28:</b> N.C. Wyeth, <i>Standish Reading,</i> pen & ink, for <i>The Courtship of Miles Standish,</i> 1920. $5,000 to $7,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Jan 28:</b> Johnanna Stewart Mapes, <i>A Fairy Book,</i> conté crayon, for <i>St. Nicholas Magazine,</i> 1907. $2,500 to $3,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Jan 28:</b> Arnold Lobel, pen & ink, for <i>The Frog & Toad Coloring Book,</i> 1981. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Jan 28:</b> Antonio Lopez, <i>Today’s Fashions,</i> study for <i>The New York Times,</i> 1981. $2,500 to $3,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Jan 28:</b> Charles Schulz, <i>“I’ll have to go back to the house…I forgot my rubbers…”</i> pen & ink, original 4-panel <i>Peanuts comic,</i> 1960. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Jan 28:</b> Constantin Alajalov, <i>Family Tree,</i> watercolor and gouache, cover for <i>The New Yorker,</i> 1938. Estimate $3,000 to $4,000.

Article Search

Archived Articles

Ask Questions