NEXT LIVE AUCTION - 1pm Saturday March 21st

Our next live sale will be held online and at C11/372-428 Wattle Street, Ultimo on Saturday March 21st from 1pm. Viewing with drinks and nibbles will take place on Thursday 19th March from 5pm. Viewing is also available via appointment during the week prior. This sale will feature an incredible collection of material including scarce Australiana, indigenous Australian books, rare maps, art titles, juvenile and lovely ephemera.


October Sale Results

Our October 19th sale featured over 700 lots, with our usual mix of eclectic material ranging from maps and ephemera, to Australiana and juvenile titles. The auction room was a hive of activity, with a record number of online bidders also actively taking part.

The clearance rate was slightly down from our previous sale, with approximately 80% of lots being sold on the day and a further 10% trading in the week that followed. The key areas of interest were exploration, maps, Australian ephemera and rare first editions. Antiquarian books sold strongly, however ‘Books on books’ proved to be less desirable than past auctions.

Select highlights included a near complete set of Oz magazines achieving $2,600 (IBP), a Norman Lindsay pen drawing selling for $2,600 (IBP), a copy of Across Australia reaching $900 (IBP), a first edition Man From Snowy River went under the hammer for $3,600 (IBP) and a Henry Lawson First Edition going for $3,000 (IBP).

The popularity of rare and collectible printed material is on the rise, but as has always been the case, condition is extremely important. A poor copy of a particular rare book will often pass in at less than half the value achieved of the same title in good condition. This is particularly the case with Australian exploration. Also of note is the broadening of our market reach. In this auction we had approximately 20% of items heading overseas to countries ranging from the US and China, to England, Israel, Japan and France. Domestically, Sydney proved the strongest market, closely followed by Melbourne and regional NSW.


August Auction Highlights

Our August 24th sale featured our usual eclectic mix of material, ranging from highly collectible autographs and rare Australiana, to maps and ephemera. We had a full auction room and a lot of online activity, making for a lively and fast moving sale.

Early highlights included a signed first edition of Tarzan achieving $5,000 (ICB), a Sydney Harbour Bridge Contract selling for $7,450 (IBP), a copy of ‘I Me Mine’ by George Harrison reaching $2,050 (IPB) and a Sir Isaac Newton autograph going for $5,520 (IBP). The more contemporary maps were our weakest category overall in terms of percentage of sold lots, however there were strong results for the more collectible ones, including an 1888 Jamaica map achieving $600 (IBP), a 1635 Blaeu Map of India selling for $1,560 (IBP) and an 1872 map of Sydney Harbour going for $400 (IBP).

Once again ephemera proved to be one of the strongest areas. We had a varied range of material, from daybills and tourist brochures to art catalogues and souvenir items. It’s always difficult to value some of these things, as they can be quite obscure, with minimal information regarding previous sales or how many were printed. As a result we are occasionally surprised by some of the prices achieved. Highlights included an album of Tasmanian views selling for $570 (IBP), a lovely Sydney Souvenir album going for $840 (IBP) and an Albert Namatjira Art Catalogue reaching $450 (IBP).

The clearance rate on the day was approximately 85%, with many of the unsold items being sold in the days following. We attracted a record number of online buyers, with many of them coming from outside of Australia. It’s an indication of the increased reach of our auctions and confidence in international buyers to shop online for material that traditionally people preferred to see and handle prior to making a purchase. Our next live sale will once again feature a mix of items and is scheduled for October 19th. We also intend on having an online only sale of maps, posters and prints in the interim.

June 29th Sale Highlights

The catalogue for our recent auction featured numerous fantastic items, many being very scarce and collectible. The Norman Lindsay material proved highly popular, achieving strong results across the board. The three unprinted manuscripts each sold individually for $12,600 (IBP). Other Lindsay highlights included the sale of the original pen and ink drawings done by Lindsay for the book Dust or Polish. All nine of them sold for prices ranging from $2,000 to $3,000 (IBP). ‘Mother Goose Rhymes Censored’ with the Lindsay watercolour on the cover reached $3,720 (IBP) and the three works by Seaforth Mackenzie Inscribed to Norman Lindsay achieved $4,320 (IBP).

Once again, maps proved to be very popular. The 1728 map of the Ottoman Empire sold for $1,320 (IBP), the Mitchell Map of NSW reached $8,400 (IBP) and the 1900 Map of Sydney achieved $960 (IBP). Exploration titles also sold well, with a highlight being the ‘1744 Harris Voyages’ going under the hammer for $9,600 (IBP). Other featured results from the sale included the Kelly Gang CDV achieving $12,000 (IBP), the painting of Kate Kelly going for $3,600 (IBP), the ‘Holtermann’s Life Preserving Drops’ poster reaching $1,800 (IBP), a rare copy of artists book WIPE selling for $780 (IBP) and a copy of ‘The Cricket Match Schottische’ 1857 sheet music achieving $900 (IBP).

The clearance rate for the books, maps and prints was over 85%, many of them selling towards the upper end of their estimates or well beyond. The carte de visites that featured heavily early in the sale did not sell as well as we had hoped, however post sale offers has seen this result improve markedly. Once again, a key indication of this auction is that quality material of a rare and collectible nature continues to be highly sought after. Maps, exploration and scarce Australiana are strong categories, however condition of the items is paramount.

Our next sale is scheduled for early August.