NEW YORK, NY.- Christies
presents the Pop Culture online-only sale, showcasing 100 lots of memorabilia celebrating the past 100 years of popular culture. Bidding opened on Tuesday 26 November and will run until Thursday 5 December 2013. Charting the history of cinema, pop and rock & roll, estimates for individual items range from £800 to £30,000. Highlights include a Medieval-style gown worn by Hepburn in Paris When it Sizzles (estimate: £8,000 12,000), a trumpet once owned by Louis Armstrong (estimate: £6,000 8,000), and a collection of photographs taken by John Lennon for the controversial cover of his and Yoko Onos album Two Virgins (estimate: £6,000 8,000). All items on offer are available to view in a public exhibition at Christies Old Brompton Road galleries in South Kensington, London, from 30 November 2013 to 5 December 2013.
The sale features memorabilia dating from 1900 to 2012, with the earliest lots including a British theatre poster for HARRY HOUDINIS The Handcuff King tour at the Argyle, Theatre of Varieties Birkenhead in 1905 (estimate: £2,000 3,000).
A signed black and white publicity photograph of the famous comedy duo LAUREL & HARDY dates to 1935 (estimate: £800 1,200). Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy were the most critically-acclaimed comedy act of the early Hollywood era and were known for their slapstick comedy.
Tommy Cooper's trademark fez has become an icon of British comedy. The sale features a fez owned and worn by Cooper in the 1950s which he gifted to a friend (estimate: £2,000 3,000). It is believed that Cooper first adopted wearing a fez after his service as a Horse Guard in the Middle East during World War II. While in Cairo he was due to perform in front of an audience of soldiers at a local bar, only to realise he had forgotten to wear a hat. In his desperation he grabbed the nearest hat to him, a fez from a passing waiter's head.
1960s & 1970s
Among a wide selection of THE BEATLES memorabilia is a programme for The Beatles U.S. Tour, 1965, signed on the cover in black ballpoint pen by George Harrison, John Lennon, Ringo Starr and Paul McCartney (estimate: £8,000 12,000). These signatures were obtained on 15th August 1965 just before The Beatles record breaking performance at Shea Stadium, New York.
One of the style icons of the 20th century, Audrey Hepburn, starred in Paris When It Sizzles in 1964. The sale features a Medieval-style gown worn by Hepburn as Gabrielle Simpson/Gaby in the film (estimate: £8,000 12,000). The couture floor length gown of champagne brocade with black velvet collar and hem is by Givenchy and the Paramount label is inscribed Audrey Hepburn.
A collection of original photographs and proofs, the photographs taken by JOHN LENNON with a time-delay camera for the album cover for John Lennon and YOKO ONO's 1968 LP Unfinished Music No. 1, Two Virgins is a rare lot (estimate: £6,000 8,000). Two Virgins was the result of an all-night recording session by John Lennon and Yoko Ono at Lennon's home, Kenwood. The photographs were taken by Lennon with a time-delay camera at Ringo Starr's flat where Lennon and Ono were staying at the time. E.M.I. refused to distribute the album so it was distributed by Track in the U.K. and Tetragrammaton in the U.S., with the controversial image concealed in a brown paper bag. Lennon claimed that the albums title came from the couples feeling that they were two innocents, lost in a world gone mad and because after making the recording, the two consummated their relationship.
A K-Modified Selmer trumpet once owned by LOUIS ARMSTRONG is a rare item within the sale (estimate: £6,000 8,000). Engraved Louis Armstrong, this trumpet was gifted by him to Leo Armstrong (Sonny), the son of his adopted son Clarence Hatfield Armstrong. Clarence was the son of Louis cousin Flora Hatfield. When Flora died, the teenage Louis adopted Clarence. Louis was a proud father to Clarence, and treated him like a son throughout his life. Clarence married Evelyn Allen, known as Lillian, who bore him a child Sonny. Clarences friend Tom Cosentino recalled that they had a son who used to play the trumpet out of his window all the time.
George Lucass epic film franchise STAR WARS is one of the most well-known in popular culture. The sale presents a brown wool Tatooine desert poncho with khaki braided wool trim, worn by Mark Hamill as Luke Skywalker in the 1977 Lucasfilm/20th Century Fox production Star Wars: A New Hope (estimate: £20,000 30,000). The auction will also offer the chance to acquire one of the most recognizable props from Star Wars: a Storm Trooper helmet (estimate: £3,000 5,000).
1980s & 1990s
Highlighting a selection of memorabilia form the 1980s is a flamboyant stage costume worn by FREDDIE MERCURY during The Works tour 1984-1985 including during Queen's performance at Rio De Janeiro's Rock in Rio festival, January 1985 (estimate: £8,000 12,000). During the tour, Queen headlined two nights at Rio De Janeiro's Rock in Rio festival in January 1985, performing in front of a crowd of 350,000, a record for the time. The show was broadcast and watched by 200 million people in 60 countries. The sale will also feature a rare set of handwritten lyrics in Freddie Mercury's hand for the Queen song Fat Bottomed Girls (estimate: £4,000 6,000).
A bronze moiré underwire stage bra, embellished with gold, pink, green and orange rocaille beads in a floral motif, designed by Dolce and Gabbana and worn by MADONNA during the Girlie Show tour, 1993 epitomises the Queen of Pops stage style (estimate: £8,000 12,000).
2000 - NOW
Highlights of this section include the outfits of two contemporary pop icons: BRITNEY SPEARS AND LADY GAGA a two-piece lycra stage costume by Karen LeSage worn by Britney Spears during the Crazy 2K tour, 2000 (estimate: £800 1,200), a black lace Jean-Paul Gaultier evening gown worn by Lady Gaga on the red carpet for the MTV Video Music Awards, Radio City Music Hall, New York, 13 September, 2009 (estimate: £2,500 3,500). Lady Gaga wore a total of 6 outfits that evening but this is the gown she chose to wear on the red carpet before the show when she arrived with Kermit The Frog. This gown was accessorized with a feathered collar, gold neck piece, gold mask and black hat.
The 23rd and most recent film in the JAMES BOND franchise is represented by a pair of black enamel coat-of-arms cufflinks by Tom Ford, each circular plaque with central Bond family coat-of-arms bearing the motto Orbit Non Sufficit (The World Is Not Enough) (estimate: £3,000 5,000) and a two-piece wool suit in Prince of Wales check by Tom Ford worn by Daniel Craig in Skyfall (estimate: £8,000 12,000). Daniel Craig as James Bond wears his coat-of-arms cufflinks throughout a number of scenes in the film, including with his Prince of Wales check suit in the MI6 underground bunker, at The National Gallery with 'Q', when chasing Silva through London's underground tunnels and when driving 'M' to his childhood home Skyfall in Scotland in his Aston Martin DB5. Approximately 30 pairs of these cufflinks were made by Tom Ford for the film and only 9 pairs are known to have survived. Bond's family coat of arms was first seen in On Her Majesty's Secret Service. Both of these lots have been donated by Eon productions and are being sold to benefit Oxfam.