Ettore Sottsass and the Milan-based Memphis group revolutionised design, introducing fun humour and strikingly bold colour combinations. This cutting-edge design with no limits, no boundaries was a fitting choice for one of the most radical musicians of his generation. 100 lots from David Bowie’s design collection were offered in a dedicated sale, raising a total of £1.4 million. Highlights included David Bowie’s record player, by Pier Giacomo and Achille Castiglioni, which fetched a record £257,000. This playful stereo cabinet is a definitive piece of 1960s Italian design, with examples in the V&A (est. £800-1,200, lot 446). Also featured was a design classic, Bowie's lipstick red "Valentine" typewriter by Sottsass, estimated at £300-500, sold for £47,500.
Bowie was a voracious collector of the works of eccentric Italian designer Ettore Sottsass and the Milan-based Memphis group. The final session of the sale series will comprise pieces such as the iconic Post-Modernist 'Casablanca' Sideboard, from the first Memphis collection of 1981, and the unconventional record player, the RR 126 Radiophonograph, designed in 1965 by the brothers Pier Giacomo and Achille Castiglioni for Brionvega, both of which are definitive pieces of cutting edge Italian design fitting for the most innovative and daring musician of his generation.
To view Parts I and II of the collection, please follow the links below: