Auction of the Week: Bonhams Entertainment Memorabilia Sale, July 18, 2018



2018-06-21 12:09:21

Our features sale this week is Bonhams' Entertainment Memorabilia auction, which takes place in London on July 18.

The sale offers a treasure trove of memorabilia from some of rock's biggest names, from The Beatles and Bowie to The Clash and Nirvana. Here are 10 of our favourite lots...

Charlie Watts' embroidered jacket

Estimate: £1,000 - £1,200

This embroidered jacket, labelled Iranian Handicrafts Centre, was originally worn in the 1970s by Rolling Stones drummer Charlie Watts.

Throughout his career Watts has become known as one of the best-dressed men in rock and roll, with a taste for perfectly-tailored jackets and suits – and this colourful jacket is certainly no exception.

Uncensored album cover for David Bowie's Diamond Dogs

Estimate: £3,000 - £5,000

The 1974 cover for David Bowie's 8th studio album Diamond Dogs featured artwork by Belgian artist Guy Peellaert, who depicted the star as a strange hybrid between man and dog.

But when record label bosses noticed that the dog in question was undoubtedly a male dog, they quickly censored the artwork with an airbrush before the album could be released.

However, a handful of copies had already been pressed before the change and sent out for promotional purposes. Today these copies are exceedingly rare, and considered amongst the most sought-after of all David Bowie's albums.

Vivienne Westwood and Malcolm McLaren 'Let It Rock' T-shirt

Estimate: £2,500 - £3,000

This unique custom-made 'Let It Rock' T-shirt was made by Vivienne Westwood and Malcolm McLaren in 1972, during the earliest development of the punk aesthetic.

Let It Rock was the name of the first shop opened by Westwood and McLaren on the Kings Road in Chelsea in 1971, years before the birth of punk rock.

Back then their clientele were Teddy Boys, and this T-shirt was created using leftover stock from the 1972 Wembley Rock 'n' Roll Show. It is one of the couple's earliest designs to feature zips, rips and repurposed imagery which would later become a trademark of the punk style.

Hindu Goddess Lakshmi doll from the cover of The Beatles' Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band

Estimate: £4,000 - £6,000

This delicate fabric doll depicting the Hindu Goddess Lakshmi featured on the most famous album cover of all time, The Beatle's classic Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band.

The Lakshmi doll is pictured in the bottom-centre of the cover, beneath the 'T' of 'Beatles', and was one of the dozens of famous props and cardboard standees used by artist Peter Blake and his wife Jann Haworth to design the iconic cover in 1967.

Years later, Haworth's daughter gave the doll as a gift to her friend Steve Ridder, a bass guitarist from California who moved to the U.K in the late 1980s to join the band The Corn Dollies. Ridder then gifted the doll to a friend back in the U.S as a unique wedding gift, and it has remained in the same family ever since.

Nirvana setlist written by Kurt Cobain

Estimate: £2,500 - £3,000

This Nirvana set list was handwritten by Kurt Cobain, and dates from a live performance circa 1992, following the release of their album Nevermind, which catapulted the band from cult popularity to international mainstream stardom.

The list features three of the singles released from the album - Lithium, In Bloom, and Smells Like Teen Spirit – along with other classic Nirvana tracks such as 'Polly', 'Sliver' and 'Territorial Pissings'.

David Bowie self-portrait

Estimate: £6,000 - £8,000

This original pastel and charcoal self-portrait was drawn by David Bowie, and exhibited in his first-ever solo art exhibition at The Gallery on Cork Street, London in 1995.

Entitled 'David Bowie: New Afro/ Pagan and work 1975-1995', the exhibition was attended by stars of the art world such as Damien Hirst and Charles Saatchi. Two of Bowie's paintings were purchased by The Saatchi Gallery, and three others for important British collections.

This sketch was also acquired by the consignor directly from the exhibition, and now comes to auction for the first time.

Joe Strummer's custom Clash shirt

Estimate: £8,000 - £10,000

This custom-made shirt was worn by Joe Strummer of The Clash, during the first UK TV broadcast about the punk rock scene in November 1976.

The Clash first wore hand-painted shirts featuring stencilled slogans as an expression of punk's 'DIY' aesthetic – and also because they couldn't afford anything else at the time.

When they later signed a record deal they could finally afford to employ a seamstress and a designer to help make their clothes, and the band became renowned for constantly reinventing their style.

Strummer later gave the shirt to Mark Jay, a film-maker who ran fanzines during the earliest days of punk and was present at many of its seminal moments.

John Lennon hand-drawn birthday card to Pattie Boyd

Estimate: £8,000 - £12,000

This unique, hand drawn birthday card was a gift from John Lennon to George Harrison's wife Patti Boyd in 1968.

The circular card features several sketches of Lennon sat in a variety of cross-legged meditation poses, and is signed "HAPPY BIRTHDAY PATTIE from John and Cyn".

Lennon gave the card to Boyd whilst the group and their families stayed together at the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi's ashram in Rishikesh, India.

Highly rare Beatles Belfast concert poster

Estimate: £25,000 - £28,000

This highly rare original Beatles poster was created to promote a show at the King's Hall on November 2, 1964.

The date had originally been marked as a rest day during the band's gruelling UK tour schedule, but at the last minute promoter Arthur Howes made a booking for two shows, and they flew from London to Belfast that afternoon.

During the shows they performed 10 songs, including Twist And Shout, Can't Buy Me Love, If I Fell, I Wanna Be Your Man, and A Hard Day's Night. The shows marked the last time The Beatles ever performed in Belfast.

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