by Brooke Kennedy
Marking the end of 2023 for RR Auction was our second annual Marvels of Modern Music event, shining a (spot)light on the greats of rock n’ roll. Acts like the Beatles, Prince, and Bob Dylan made this auction the perfect encore to an impressive year.
Though Bob Dylan has become well-renowned for his songwriting abilities, his expression also extended to fine art. While on tour between 1989 and 1992, Dylan found the inspiration to tell stories through black-and-white sketches. In 2007, he turned some of these drawings into paintings, entitled ‘The Drawn Blank Series.’ For this final auction of the year, RR Auction offered one of these special pieces titled ‘View from Two Windows’ – selling it for $70,248.
According to RR’s description, “The work depicts the inside of an upper-story room viewed from the perspective of a standing observer, with the foreground composed of a table, chair, and a television set, and the background featuring a large beige curtain and a pair of multi-paned windows that look down upon a house, greenery, and what appears to be a body of water.”
Various subjects were depicted in his paintings including landscapes, hotel rooms, people, animals, and – perhaps his best known works from this collection – train tracks. Just one in his series of more than 300, this particular painting went on to be exhibited at the Halcyon Gallery of London in 2008. The consignor noted that this painting was originally obtained from the Castle Fine Art Gallery, who are currently still in possession of several paintings from this series as well as many of Dylan’s other artworks.
After a two-year stint as a member of the Yardbirds, Jimmy Page was looking to start a new band. With Page himself as the band’s guitarist, he recruited vocalist Robert Plant, bassist and keyboardist John Paul Jones, and drummer John Bonham to become members of the New Yardbirds. Soon after, they would sign their first contract with Atlantic Records under their new name, Led Zeppelin.
In the lead-up to their self-titled debut album, Atlantic Records released several publicity packets to introduce the world to their new act. Photos of the band were distributed along with press releases discussing the group’s origins. Sold for $55,120, this signed photograph of the band from one of those press packets is likely one of the earliest the group signed together.
Led Zeppelin’s self-titled debut album reached number 10 on the Billboard chart and became certified gold in July 1969, six months after its initial release. Since then, Led Zeppelin I has been showered with praise – in 2004, it was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame and has gone platinum eight times.
As part of their 1965 American Tour, the Beatles made their historic first appearance at the Shea Stadium located in Queens, New York. At the time, America was in a state of Beatlemania, with many people flocking to their local stadiums and arenas to watch the Fab Four play. As part of the concerts, programs for the band were offered to audience members. Nowadays, programs from the 1965 tour are considered collector’s gems, but RR Auction finished the year off with an offering of one of those very programs – signed by all four members.
In his letter of authenticity accompanying the program, Beatles expert Frank Caiazzo goes into detail about its rarity, “these signatures are excellent and complete examples, and it would be almost impossible for them to have signed any nicer on that day…this tour program, autographed on that day, is extremely scarce and highly desirable.”
This is just the second uninscribed, fully signed 1965 American tour program that has come to market at RR, and it earned a final selling price of $37,963.
With this auction we close out 2023 on a high note thanks to you, our bidders and consignors. We’d like to say thank you for another great year making history selling history, and we’re looking forward to working with you again in 2024. We are currently seeking items for our February and March Fine Autographs and Artifacts auctions, and the deadline is still open for our Remarkable Rarities and Steve Jobs and Apple events. Looking to sell your items with RR Auction? The button below will take you to our auction estimate page or you can give us a call at 800-937-3880.
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