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David Bowie’s furniture collection of Memphis set to be auctioned in London

United Kingdom Architecture News - Oct 19, 2016 - 17:15   22932 views

David Bowie’s furniture collection of Memphis set to be auctioned in London

David Bowie, late British musician and actor, also was a voracious collector of the works of eccentric Italian designer Ettore Sottsass and the Milan-based Memphis group. David Bowie collected more than 100 pieces during his lifetime and his distinctive furniture collection is set to be auction at Sotheby’s auction house in London on November 11, 2016.  

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.

David Bowie’s furniture collection of Memphis set to be auctioned in London

Ettore Sottsass and Perry King ‘Valentine’ Portable Typewriter. Designed 1969. Moulded ABS plastic, metal, rubber. Image courtesy Sotheby’s

''The works produced by the historical avant-garde design collaborative Memphis Milano, led by Ettore Sottsass, could not have found a more receptive and tuned-in audience than David Bowie,'' said Cécile Verdier, co-head of 20th-century design at Sotheby’s.

''This is design with no limits and no boundaries,'' she added. ''When you look at a piece of Memphis design, you see their unconventionality, the kaleidoscope of forms and patterns, the vibrant contrasting colours that really shouldn’t work but really do.''

David Bowie’s furniture collection of Memphis set to be auctioned in London

Pier Giacomo and Achille Castiglioni Brionvega Radiophonograph, model no RR 126 circa 1966. Wood, laminate, polycarbonate, painted aluminium. Image courtesy Sotheby’s

The auction takes place on 11 November at Sotheby’s auction house in London. Two other ‘Bowie/Collector’ auctions will focus on his collection of art – accompanied by an exhibition, taking place from 1 to 10 November 2016 at Sotheby’s. The lowest value of one piece is expected to be $70, while the Carlton Bookcase is expected to be sold for $8,600 from the collection. 

David Bowie’s furniture collection of Memphis set to be auctioned in London

Ettore Sottsass (1917-2007) ‘Casablanca’ Sideboard. Designed 1981 wood, laminate. Image courtesy Sotheby’s

David Bowie’s furniture collection of Memphis set to be auctioned in London
Martine Bedin (born 1957) ‘Super' Lamp. Designed 1981. Lacquered fibreglass, metal, rubber. Image courtesy Sotheby’s

David Bowie’s furniture collection of Memphis set to be auctioned in London

Malabar Sideboard, designed 1982, plastic-laminated wood, lacquered metal. Image courtesy Sotheby’s

David Bowie’s furniture collection of Memphis set to be auctioned in London

D'Antibes cabinet by George J. Sowden, designed in 1981. Image courtesy Sotheby’s

David Bowie’s furniture collection of Memphis set to be auctioned in London

Metropole clock by George J. Sowden, designed 1982. Image courtesy Sotheby’s

David Bowie’s furniture collection of Memphis set to be auctioned in London

Adesso Pèro bookcase by Ettore Sottsass, designed in 1992. Image courtesy Sotheby’s

Top image: Peter Shire, 'Big Sur' sofa, designed 1986, lacquered wood with wool upholstery. Image courtesy Sotheby’s

> via Sotheby's