Rare Book Monthly

Articles - January - 2021 Issue

Christie's Rare Books Taking the Plunge

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At Christie’s New York, the Books & Manuscripts department is plunging right in to the New Year with two important single-owner collections in January.  The first is Exceptional Prints and Broadsides from the Collection of Ambassador J. William Middendorf II, in a live Americana auction at 10am, January 22. This will be closely followed by the library of Mr. & Mrs. John H. Gutfreund with both a selection of books in the live, single-owner auction on January 27 and a dedicated online sale of books open for bidding from January 14-29. All of these sales are open for browsing now on Christies.com. The starting bids (reserves) for the online sale will be revealed when bidding opens on 14 January at 10am EST.

 

The Gutfreund sales will take place during Bibliography Week, so we’ll also take the opportunity to support the outstanding virtual program put together by our friends at the Bibliographical Society of America. The Annual Meeting is on Friday, January 29 with the keynote address on the vital theme of “Liberation Bibliography.”

 

Auction Calendar for Christie’s New York Books & Manuscripts:

 

EXCEPTIONAL PRINTS AND BROADSIDES FROM THE COLLECTION OF AMBASSADOR J. WILLIAM MIDDENDORF II features important prints and documents from the early history of the United States. Highlights such as a rare contemporary 1776 broadside edition of the Declaration of Independence and  a fine copy of Paul Revere’s iconic engraving of the Boston Massacre are supported by a diverse array of period broadsides and prints.

Ambassador Middendorf's passion for the early history of this nation is well known among Americana collectors. His groundbreaking 1969 survey, American Printmaking The First 150 Years, represented the first time that images of the most important historical prints in what is now the United States were assembled in a single catalogue. That volume was a compliment to a national touring exhibition that helped reignite interest in the field among both scholars and collectors. The text was by Middendorf's curator, Wendy J. Shadwell, and is frequently cited.

The current selection offers a parallel representation of early American visual culture. It ranges from John Foster's 1677 woodcut map of New England to a satirical print lampooning Andrew Jackson's administration, and from Revere's Massacre to the Declaration of Independence. The Ambassador's assessment of the significance of the pieces in his introduction for his 1969 catalogue holds true for the present selection: "Taken as a group these prints probably do represent the only consistent pictorial record that we have of the people and their way of life, and of historical events on these shores. Rarely do they reach significant artistic heights. But often in their very crudeness one sees a clear statement, a primitive directness that might be admired in the way one can find aesthetic satisfaction in a Hicks Peaceable Kingdom."

 

BOOKS FROM THE COLLECTION OF MR. & MRS. JOHN H. GUTFREUND FROM 834 FIFTH AVENUE will be sold both in the live collection sale, featuring a colored copy of Maria Sibylla Merian's work on the insects of Suriname alongside the furniture pattern books of the 18th century, classic works on landscape gardening and architecture, fine bindings, and a dedicated online sale. The online sale celebrates the beauty of the book arts writ large, featuring many fine French, Russian, and English bindings; notable presentation copies; and noble associations. The collection is dominated by festival books documenting the luxury of Versailles; herbals and botanicals whose engravings and lithographs capture the riches of the natural world; and copious curiosities of ornament, architecture, art, and design. Highlights include the monumental Description du Sacre et du Couronnement de leurs Majestes Imperiales l'Empereur Alexandre II et l'Imperatrice Marie Alexandrovna, depicting the sumptuous coronation of Czar Alexander II; Fontana's Templum Vaticanum in a green morocco presentation binding for Czar Paul I. Last but not least is the attractive group of finely bound Royal Almanacs in the live sale. What better way to ring in the New Year than by relishing these handsome tokens of years past?

 

We wish you a 2021 full of peace and prosperity! 

 

Christina Geiger (cgeiger@christies.com, contact for Rosenberg and Baum sales)

Peter Klarnet (pklarnet@christies.com, contact for Middendorf sale and manuscript consignments)

Fernando Peña (jfpena@christies.com, contact for printed book consignments)

Heather Weintraub (currently on maternity leave, congratulations Heather!)

Rhiannon Knol (rknol@christies.com, contact for Gutfreund sales)

Gillian Hawley (gillianhawley@christies.com, sale coordinator)

 

Rare Book Monthly

  • <b><center>Swann Auction Galleries<br>View Our Record Breaking Results</b>
    <b>Swann:</b> Gideon Welles, <i>Extensive archive of personal and family papers of Lincoln’s Secretary of the Navy,</i> 1791-1914. Sold September 29 — $281,000.
    <b>Swann:</b> Charles Addams, <i>Rock Climbers,</i> cartoon for <i>The New Yorker,</i> watercolor, ink and gouache, 1954. Sold December 15 — $37,500.
    <b>Swann:</b> Charlotte Brontë, <i>Jane Eyre. An Autobiography. Edited by Currer Bell,</i> three volumes, first edition, 1847. Sold June 16, 2022 — $23,750.
    <b>Swann:</b> Geoffrey Chaucer, <i>The Workes of Geffray Chaucer Newlye Printed,</i> London, 1542. Sold October 13 — $106,250.
    <b><center>Swann Auction Galleries<br>View Our Record Breaking Results</b>
    <b>Swann:</b> Dorothea Lange, <i>Migrant Mother, Nipomo, California (Destitute pea pickers in California. Mother of seven children. Age 32),</i> silver print, 1936. Sold October 20 — $305,000.
    <b>Swann:</b> George Washington, Autograph Document Signed, with two manuscript plat maps in holograph, 1751. Sold October 27 — $37,500.
    <b>Swann:</b> Winfred Rembert, <i>Winfred Rembert and Class of 1959,</i> dye on carved & tooled leather, 1999. Sold October 6 — $233,000.
    <b>Swann:</b> M.C. Escher, <i>Relativity,</i> lithograph, 1953. Sold November 3 — $81,250.
  • <b><center>Sotheby’s<br>Original Film Posters<br>27 January - 10 February 2023</b>
    <b>Sotheby’s, Jan. 27-Feb. 10:</b> Vertigo (1958), poster, US. The ultimate poster on this classic Hitchcock title, one of three known examples. £40,000 to £60,000.
    <b>Sotheby’s, Jan. 27-Feb. 10:</b> Lawrence of Arabia (1962), roadshow poster, US. £8,000 to £12,000.
    <b>Sotheby’s, Jan. 27-Feb. 10:</b> Star Wars (1977), style C poster, printer's proof, US. £7,000 to £10,000.
    <b>Sotheby’s, Jan. 27-Feb. 10:</b> The Navigator/ La Croisiere du Navigator (1924), re-release poster (1931), French. £5,000 to £8,000.
    <b>Sotheby’s, Jan. 27-Feb. 10:</b> Bullitt (1968), special test poster, US. £3,000 to £5,000.
  • <b>Old World Auctions (Feb 8):</b> Lot 817. Bellin's complete five-volume maritime atlas with 581 maps & plates (1764). $24,000 to $30,000.
    <b>Old World Auctions (Feb 8):</b> Lot 325. An early and important map of the Republic of Texas (1837). $11,000 to $14,000.
    <b>Old World Auctions (Feb 8):</b> Lot 45. De Bry's early map of North Pole depicting Willem Barentsz' expedition (1601). $3,500 to $4,250.
    <b>Old World Auctions (Feb 8):</b> Lot 154. Poignant map of the United States documenting lynchings (1931). $250 to $325.
    <b>Old World Auctions (Feb 8):</b> Lot 457. Extremely rare matching set of pro-German propaganda from WWI (1914). $2,000 to $2,400.
    <b>Old World Auctions (Feb 8):</b> Lot 815. Homann's world atlas featuring 110 maps in contemporary color (1751). $14,000 to $16,000.
    <b>Old World Auctions (Feb 8):</b> Lot 60. Miniature pocket globe based on Herman Moll (1785). $3,500 to $4,500.
    <b>Old World Auctions (Feb 8):</b> Lot 8. Visscher's rare carte-a-figures world map (1652). $14,000 to $16,000.
    <b>Old World Auctions (Feb 8):</b> Lot 158. Matching satirical maps of the US by McCandlish: "Ration Map" & "Bootlegger's Map" (1944). $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Old World Auctions (Feb 8):</b> Lot 820. One of the finest English atlases of the early 19th century (1808). $4,750 to $6,000.
    <b>Old World Auctions (Feb 8):</b> Lot 59. Important milestone in preparation for 1969 moon landing (1963). $750 to $900.
    <b>Old World Auctions (Feb 8):</b> Lot 805. Superb bible leaf with image of crucifixion of Jesus with gilt highlights (1518). $800 to $950.
  • <center><b>Potter & Potter Auctions<br>Fine Books & Manuscripts,<br>including Americana<br>February 16, 2023</b>
    <b>Potter & Potter, Feb. 16:</b> [KELMSCOTT PRESS]. CHAUCER, Geoffrey. <i>The Works…now newly imprinted.</i> Edited by F.S. Ellis. Hammersmith: Kelmscott Press, 1896. $100,000 to $125,000.
    <b>Potter & Potter, Feb. 16:</b> [EINSTEIN, Albert (1879–1955)]. –– ORLIK, Emil (1870–1932), artist. Lithograph signed (“Albert Einstein”). N.p., 1928. $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Potter & Potter, Feb. 16:</b> TOLKIEN, John Ronald Reuel. <i>[The Lord of the Rings trilogy:] The Fellowship of the Ring.</i> 1954. –– <i>The Two Towers.</i> 1954. –– <i>The Return of the King.</i> 1955. $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Potter & Potter, Feb. 16:</b> CLEMENS, Samuel Langhorne ("Mark Twain") and Charles Dudley WARNER. <i>The Gilded Age: A Tale of Today.</i> Hartford and Chicago, 1873. $6,000 to $8,000.
    <b>Potter & Potter, Feb. 16:</b> LOVECRAFT, Howard Phillips. <i>Beyond the Wall of Sleep.</i> Collected by August Derleth and Donald Wandrei. Sauk City, WI: Arkham House, 1943. $2,000 to $3,000.
  • <center><b>California International Antiquarian Book Fair<br>February 10-12, 2023<br>Pasadena Convention Center<br> abaa.org/cabookfair
    <center><b>California International Antiquarian Book Fair<br>February 10-12, 2023<br>Pasadena Convention Center<br> abaa.org/cabookfair
    <center><b>California International Antiquarian Book Fair<br>February 10-12, 2023<br>Pasadena Convention Center<br> abaa.org/cabookfair
    <center><b>California International Antiquarian Book Fair<br>February 10-12, 2023<br>Pasadena Convention Center<br> abaa.org/cabookfair
    <center><b>California International Antiquarian Book Fair<br>February 10-12, 2023<br>Pasadena Convention Center<br> abaa.org/cabookfair
    <center><b>California International Antiquarian Book Fair<br>February 10-12, 2023<br>Pasadena Convention Center<br> abaa.org/cabookfair
    <center><b>California International Antiquarian Book Fair<br>February 10-12, 2023<br>Pasadena Convention Center<br> abaa.org/cabookfair
    <center><b>California International Antiquarian Book Fair<br>February 10-12, 2023<br>Pasadena Convention Center<br> abaa.org/cabookfair
    <center><b>California International Antiquarian Book Fair<br>February 10-12, 2023<br>Pasadena Convention Center<br> abaa.org/cabookfair
    <center><b>California International Antiquarian Book Fair<br>February 10-12, 2023<br>Pasadena Convention Center<br> abaa.org/cabookfair
    <center><b>California International Antiquarian Book Fair<br>February 10-12, 2023<br>Pasadena Convention Center<br> abaa.org/cabookfair

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