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Auction PR Publicity Announcements News and Information

Ketterer Kunst Rare Books Auction Results

Realizing total proceeds of € 1,2* million, the two day auction of Rare Books at Ketterer Kunst on 17/18 May in Hamburg was a real success. With 83 percent lots sold, the special evening auction was a true highlight. “This clearly shows that the market for rare books is extremely stable and reliable, a fact that also makes this exciting section interesting for art lovers“, said Robert Ketterer, auctioneer and owner of Ketterer Kunst.

The TOP 5
No. 24: Fleurs du Printtemps et de l’Este Manuskript-Florilegium. Anf. 17. Jh. Result Euro 70.000*, Call-up price: Euro 35.000
No. 2: Lateinisches Stundenbuch. Frankreich oder Flandern. 2. Hälfte des 15. Jhs. Result Euro 33.600*, Call-up price Euro 12.000
No. 23: Flora Danica. Kopenhagen. 1766-1825Result Euro 28.000*, Call-up price Euro 11.000
No. 17: Johannes Stoeffler – „Von künstlicher Abmessung…“. Frankfurt. 1536. Result Euro 20.400*, Call-up price Euro 9.000
No. 71: Biblia hispanica. Valencia. 1790-93. Result Euro 16.800*, Call-up price Euro 8.000

The baroque flower book “Fleurs du Printemps et de l’Este“ (lot: 24), lavishly illustrated with 166 original pastel drawing, clearly leads the auction with a result of € 70.000* (call-up price: € 35.000). A Greek collector made the race for this lot. It may have also been due to a liking for France that shortly before made him acquire the first edition of Michel Eugène Chevreul‘s main work on color theory “De la loi du contraste simultané des couleurs…“ (lot: 14). The price for this book, first released in Paris in 1839, climbed from an initial € 4.000 to a final result of € 10.800*, and thus relegated phone bidders from London and Paris second place and beyond.

A private collector from the US made a Latin Book of Hours (lot: 2) from the second half of the 15th century, which also adorned the cover of the catalog, sure for himself at the beginning of the evening auction. Called up at € 12.000, the competition could only stop the bidding zeal at € 33.600*.

The “Flora Danica“ (lot: 23), acknowledged as one of the greatest botanic publications by De Belder, did not only remain in Germany, it even stayed right in Hamburg. Called up at € 11.000, a private collector granted a final price of € 28.000* for the series that is the most comprehensive depiction of the Danish, Norwegian and Northern German flora up until today.

Another great increase was realized by Johannes Stoeffler‘s “Von künstlicher Abmessung aller grösse, …“ (lot: 17), a fine copy of the first edition in an old coloring. The instructions for astronomic measurements soared from a call-up price of € 9.000 to a result of € 20.400*. A book dealer from France made the race for this lot.

A German collector allowed twice the estimate for a contemplative-resumptive letter by Lyonel Feininger (lot: 80) to the collector Otto Ralfs and his wife Käthe. He acquired the typewritten letter with an India ink drawing with watercolors for € 15.600*, and thus stood up to an international competition.

The bidding frenzy broke out when Juan Eduardo Cirlot‘s book on “Lucio Fontana“ (lot: 100) with a signed original etching and a silkscreen in gold and silver was called up. English, Dutch and Italian could be heard on the nine phones. A British antiquarian carried away the victory for some € 3.400* and thus offered a fourteen-fold of the call-up price.

A small series of almost a dozen expressionist woodcuts by Karl Lorenz (lots: 108, 109, 1126-1134) was sold entirely. The works entered the race with estimates between € 400 – € 1.500 and grossed € 13.000*. The highest single result was achieved by “Die Gesänge der Nacht“ (lot: 1128) with some € 3.000*.

The following lots are definitely more than just worthwhile mentioning:

Lot 47: Thomas Whichcote, A plan of mathematical learning…, Call-up price Euro 12.500, Result Euro 15.000*
Lot 81: Rainer Maria Rilke, Eigenhändiges Gedicht … Call-up price Euro 2.800, Call-up price Euro 6.360*
Lot 832: Alexej von Jawlensky, Gästebuch der Künstlerpension … Call-up price Euro 2.000, Result Euro 4.560*
Lot 94: Lajos Kassák, MA-Buch. Gedichte. Call-up price: Euro 540, Result Euro 4.080*

A highlight in the auction of Maritime and North German Art, which is traditionally held in Hamburg and for a short time right before the Rare Books auction, was Franz Karl Herpel‘s “Dreimastbark auf hoher See“ (lot: 1914). The three-master straight entered the port of a new customer from Bavaria under lug sail. He allowed a result of € 6.200*.

*The result is the hammer price + 22 percent buyer’s premium.

Further interesting lots can be acquired in the post auction sale up until 16 June 2010.
Since it was founded in 1954, Ketterer Kunst has been firmly established in the front ranks of auction houses dealing in art and rare books, with its headquarters in Munich and a branch in Hamburg. Gallery rooms in Berlin as well as representatives in Heidelberg and Krefeld have contributed substantially to the company’s success. Ketterer Kunst has further rounded off its portfolio with the prestigious Ernest Rathenau Verlag, New York/Munich. In addition, exhibitions, special theme and charity auctions as well as online auctions are regular events at Ketterer Kunst.

Image: No. 24: Fleurs du Printtemps et de l’Este Manuskript-Florilegium. Anf. 17. Jh. Result Euro 70.000*


Ketterer Kunst
Joseph-Wild-Str. 18
81829 München
Tel. +49-(0)55244-444
Fax.: +49-(0)55244-177
E-mail: [email protected]

For Rare Books:

Christoph Calaminus
Telefon: +49-(0)40-374961-11, Fax:-66
E-Mail: [email protected]

For press enquiries:

Michaela Derra M.A.
Telefon: +49-(0)89-55244-152 (Fax: -177)
E-Mail: [email protected]