Madrid auction house Durán Arte y Subastas is offering the Marcelino López Nieto collection in its October 25 sale. It has dubbed this group “the best Spanish private guitar collection”. López Nieto started to work as a luthier in 1947 and since then, until he died this year, he collected antique guitars with a historical sense of evolution for this musical instrument.
The collection is itself a selection of guitars, lutes, vihuelas and other related instruments from the 17th-20th centuries, displaying a high standard of workmanship. It is made up of more than 150 items including antique ones as well as concert and flamenco guitars, medieval and baroque replicas and other instruments made by López Nieto.
Classical 'golden couple'
One was the world’s greatest cellist, and conductor, the other, the electrifying principal soprano of Moscow’s Bolshoi Theatre. Mstislav Rostropovich and Galina Vishnevskaya, the world-renowned golden couple of classical music - both exiles from the Soviet Union - were exceptional in their talents and vehement in their belief of artistic freedom.
On November 28, Sotheby’s London will offer for sale the private collection of Rostropovich and Vishnevskaya. The dedicated sale will feature over 300 lots, including furniture, personal jewellery, Russian works of art, books, and even musical instruments played by the maestro, and by some of the most prevalent contemporary composers and musicians of the era - including Henry Dutilleux, Witold Lutoslawski, Alfred Schnittke, Arthur Rubinstein and numerous others.
The collection is offered with an estimate in excess of £3.5m.
Jo Vickery, Sotheby’s international director of Russian art and head of the sale, said: “We are thrilled to be instructed by Olga and Elena Rostropovich [the daughters of Rostropovich and Vishnevskaya] to sell works from their parents’ personal collection. We have a long-standing relationship with the family having sold their legendary collection of Russian art in 2007 which is now housed in Konstantinov Palace in Russia.
“Mstislav Rostropovich and Galina Vishnevskaya both loved taking part in auctions and were frequent visitors to Sotheby’s in the 1990s and we are delighted to work with the family once again.”
A passionate advocate of human rights, Rostropovich became famous throughout the Western world for his intense opposition to censorship in the arts. Stripped of their Soviet citizenship in 1978 the couple lived between their homes in London and Paris, only returning to Russia after the collapse of Communism. The family’s Russian citizenship was reinstated in 1990.
A rare autographed copy of The Beatles' 1965 vinyl album Rubber Soul is one of the highlights of Bonhams’ New York rock and roll memorabilia auction on November 19.
The Parlophone PMC 1267, second UK mono pressing, the back cover signed in blue ballpoint by John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr.
This copy of Rubber Soul was signed on Sunday, July 28, 1968, during what has become known as the Beatles’ ‘Mad Day Out’. In the afternoon and early evening of that day, the Beatles, accompanied by the well-known war photographer, Don McCullin, together with photographers Ronald Fitzgibbon, Stephen Goldblatt, Tony Bramwell and Mal Evans, visited some seven different locations around London. Also in the entourage were Yoko Ono, Mal’s young son Gary and Paul's then girlfriend, Francie Schwarz.
The sixth stop of the day was at Wapping Pier Head in the London Docks area. A number of now-well-known photographs emanated from this stage of the day’s sessions, including Paul, stripped to the waist and draped in a chain, posing by the edge of the River Thames and John, wearing McCullin’s camouflaged jacket, lying on the ground with the other three Beatles standing over him.
Several local residents became aware of their famous visitors, including a female fan who presented this album to the band for signature and who was photographed by Goldblatt as John was adding his autograph (a copy of which is present with this lot).
According to Bonhams, genuine sets of Beatles’ autographs post-1967 are “extremely rare indeed, let alone from such an historic event, and it is no exaggeration to say that only a handful of like examples are known”.
This album, which was sold at Sotheby’s in 2002, is estimated at $100,000-150,000 at Bonhams.
Get into the groove
The personal collection of musical instruments formerly belonging to a man who is well known in the music industry as being the co-founder and owner of Groove Tubes value amps is a highlight of an October 25 auction.
The musical instruments 166-lot sale at the Peter Wilson saleroom in Nantwich, Cheshire, includes items owned by Mike Cooper, whose introduction to the industry was as a musician.
He was a skilled trombone player gigging around the country in various bands from the early 1980’s onwards and from here he started buying and selling instruments with various band members.
Cooper co-founded the Scott Cooper company selling a wide range of guitars in American, Spain and also the UK and from this company the famous Groove Tubes brand was founded with partner Aspen Pittman.
A stand-out lot is the G & L Broadcaster Leo Fender presentation electric guitar presented to Cooper by Leo Fender, finished in black, serial number DB00049. It is estimated at £1500-2500.
Duck with a pluck
Fancy something a bit different? An ideal present for a guitarist would be this 1960s cartoon duck pendant on offer at Fellows in Birmingham on October 18.
The duck is shown with shell helmet, playing an electric guitar, and the 3.5cm pendant has Italian marks. Estimate £100-150.