This winter, Sotheby’s partners with David Korins, set designer of the Tony Award-winning musical 'Hamilton' to create an exhibition concept for Americana Week 2017. Joined by specialist Selby Kiffer, Korins examines the documents to be offered in our 18 January sale Alexander Hamilton: An Important Family Archive of Letters and Manuscripts that helped inspire the groundbreaking broadway production.
NEW YORK – When he made his pitch to design the set for Lin-Manuel Miranda’s hip-hop musical Hamilton in 2015, Korins made no bones about it to director Thomas Kail. Quoting the show’s taglines, Korins told Kail that he deserved the job because he was “young, scrappy and hungry.” His choice of words was clever, but what clinched the deal was the reputation of Korin’s New York-based production company and impressive credits, which now include shows ranging from Annie on Broadway to Kanye West at Coachella. To research his Hamiltonset – an ingenious arrangement of wooden stairs, ropes, pulleys and bricks – Korins visited Albany’s Schuyler House (Hamilton married one of the Schuyler sisters and flirted with another) and read Ron Chernow’s 800-plus-page biography as well as letters by the man himself. “The authenticity of the words resonates with me,” says Korins of Hamilton’s writings. Given his deep knowledge, it was natural that we ask him for his picks from our upcoming Americana Week, which includes a sale devoted to Alexander Hamilton. Click ahead to discover Korins’s personally curated selections. LAUNCH SLIDESHOW
On 18 January 2017, Sotheby’s New York will offer Alexander Hamilton: An Important Family Archive of Letters and Manuscripts. With a meteoric rise in recognition and popularity over the last fifteen years, Hamilton’s story has captured the popular imagination to an extent almost unprecedented for an historical figure. The sale, the first of its kind, will tell the story of his brief but momentous life through hundreds of documents that have descended in the family for the last two centuries. A LOCK OF ALEXANDER HAMILTON'S HAIR, WITH A LETTER OF PRESENTATION FROM HIS WIFE, ELIZA. ESTIMATE $15,000–25,000. PHILIP SCHUYLER, CONDOLENCE LETTER SIGNED, TO HIS DAUGHTER ELIZA HAMILTON, FOLLOWING ALEXANDER HAMILTON'S DEATH IN THE DUEL WITH AARON BURR. ESTIMATE $15,000–25,000.
In Paris’s first sale of 2017, our annual Bande Dessinée (Comics) auction, works by some of the masters of Europe’s golden age of comic strips join sought-after pages from well-known American cartoonists. Click ahead to discover 8 highlights from the sale, including pages from Tintin’s creator Hergé and Peanuts artist Charles Schulz. LAUNCH SLIDESHOW
With the holiday season in full swing and current best-sellers all jostling for position on gift lists, we take a look back at works and memorabilia from the world's most celebrated authors sold at Sotheby's. First editions of famous classics sit alongside letters, notebooks and items that tell the stories of the authors' lives as well as that of their famous characters. From Ian Fleming's first introduction to his enigmatic secret agent James Bond in Casino Royale, to J.K. Rowling's hand-drawn personalised manuscript for The Tales of Beedle The Bard, many works that have made literary history have passed through the doors of Sotheby's. Click through to see highlights from our various Books and Manuscripts sales. VIEW SLIDESHOW
NEW YORK – There are few images that sum up punk rock and the New York City music scene as succinctly as the CBGB logo, emblazoned on the famous club's awning. Opened by Hilly Kristal in 1973, CBGB – known formally as CBGB’s OMFUG "Country, Bluegrass, Blues and Other Music For Uplifting Gormandizers" – quickly became the world's most celebrated venue and “underground” rock scene, welcoming legendary acts such as the New York Dolls, Blondie, the Ramones, Patti Smith, the Talking Heads, Elvis Costello, the Cramps, the Dead Boys, the Misfits, the Voidoids, the Runaways and Joan Jett and the Blackhearts. As part of the 10 December auction A Rock & Roll Anthology: From Folk to Fury, Sotheby's will offer a piece from the iconic club – one of the original awnings, which has been in the care of CBGB's former manager Drew Bushong. We spoke with Bushong about its history. LOT 25. CBGB. ORIGINAL HAND-PAINTED VINYL AWNING AS DISPLAYED ABOVE THE ENTRANCE OF HILLY KRISTAL'S CBGB OMFUG VENUE AT 315 BOWERY, NEW YORK CITY. ESTIMATE $25,000–35,000.
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