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Swann Galleries announces Fine Photographs & Photobooks Auction on April 18
Imogen Cunningham, Magnolia Blossom, Tower of Jewels, 1925, (estimate: $25,000 to $35,000).

NEW YORK, NY.- On Thursday, April 18 Swann Galleries will conduct an auction of Fine Photographs & Photobooks with examples from photography’s earliest days up to the work of artists employing the medium in the 21st century.

Among the earliest photographs in the sale is a circa 1850 hand-tinted oversized daguerreotype by Southworth and Hawes of a blue-eyed woman in an elegant lace-trimmed dress that descended through the Hawes family (estimate: $30,000 to $45,000).

From the 1860s-90s is a collection of 179 American tintypes containing images of everything from occupational portraits of tradesmen to outdoor scenes to humorous vacation shots ($20,000 to $30,000).

There are also early views of the Holy Land by Francis Frith, Felix Bonfils and others, panoramas of China by Felice Beato, and albums filled with views of China, Japan and other Asian countries, many of which are from the Estate of Fong Chow, noted ceramicist and curator at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

From the early 20th century are social documentary images by Lewis W. Hine of laborers, most of which are children; snow crystal studies by Wilson A. Bentley; and luminous views of Native Americans by Edward S. Curtis.

A vintage print of Imogen Cunningham’s Magnolia Blossom, Tower of Jewels, 1925, serves as a glowing representation of her work with flowers and her artistry as a printmaker ($25,000 to $35,000); while a Paul Outerbridge still life with suitcases and an umbrella, circa 1924, is a study in contrasts ($8,000 to $12,000); and Edward Weston’s Charis (nude), 1935, is considerably avant-garde for the artist ($35,000 to $45,000).

Striking modernity examples include Paul Strand’s White Horse, Rancho de Taos, New Mexico, silver print, with an inscription, 1932, printed later ($20,000 to $30,000); André Kertész’s Distortion No. 166, Paris, silver print, 1933, printed late 1950s ($10,000 to $15,000); and Minor White’s Windowsill Daydreaming, Rochester, N.Y., silver print, 1958, printed 1970s ($10,000 to $15,000).

Photojournalistic images of note are Alfred Eisenstaedt’s eternal V-J Day Kiss, Times Square, New York City, 1945, printed 1980s ($15,000 to $25,000); W. Eugene Smith’s well known World War II image of a U.S. soldier holding an ill baby, Saipan, with extensive hand written notations on the back and stamps from Time Life, 1945 ($9,000 to $12,000); and a group of 260 photographs from the Vietnam War, with printed captions attached, late 1960s-early 1970s ($1,500 to $2,500).

Famous faces are seen in Garry Winogrand’s Marilyn Monroe, on the set of “The Seven Year Itch,” silver print, 1955 ($3,000 to $4,500); Flip Schulke’s Muhammad Ali, Miami, silver print, 1961, printed 1990s ($3,000 to $4,500); Annie Leibovitz’s Demi Moore, Los Angeles, cibachrome print, 1992 $4,000 to $6,000); and Andy Warhol’s photobooth self portraits (two) of himself in a tuxedo, early 1960s ($12,000 to $18,000).

The auction offers ten lots from the Polaroid Collection. These include several Ansel Adams photographs such as Stump and Ferns, Redwoods, Bull Creek Flat, California, silver print, 1964, printed before 1970 ($9,000 to $12,000) and a pair of circa 1962 photos of industrial landscapes, one a silver print, the other from a Polaroid Type 55 negative ($8,000 to $12,000); as well as two unique self portraits by Jim Dine, large-format Polaroid prints, 1979 ($7,000 to $10,000 for the pair); and images by Walter Chappell and Danny Lyon.

Among a selection of works by Diane Arbus is a print of Waitress, Nudist Camp, N.J., 1963, printed before 1967, with an inscription on the back that mentions the artist’s 1967 exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art, and also with the original hand-addressed mailing envelope ($15,000 to $25,000).

Striking works by contemporary artists include Mike and Doug Starn’s Double Rembrandt with Steps, collage with multiple toned silver prints, kodalith, plywood, nails, Plexiglas and wood moulding, 1987-91 ($4,000 to $6,000); Hiroshi Sugimoto’s Time Exposed, portfolio with 50 plates, one of 500 copies, 1991 ($7,00 to $10,000); Adam Fuss’s Untitled, oversized daguerreotype of a skull, 2002 ($10,000 to $15,000); and Hellen van Meene’s Untitled #201, Tokyo, Japan, chromogenic print, 2005 ($2,500 to $3,500).

The auction will begin at 1:30 p.m. on Thursday, April 18.

The photographs and books will be on public exhibition at Swann Galleries on Saturday, April 13, from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m.; Monday, April 15 to Wednesday, April 17, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; and Thursday, April 18, from 10 a.m. to noon.

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