The first ‘selfie’ in space, an out-of-this-world portrait of Buzz Aldrin, looks set to be an auction highlight in a London auction this autumn.
Astronauts Edwin “Buzz” Aldrin and Jim Lovell were part of the Gemini Missions and the photograph of Buzz Aldrin from 1966 (pre-selfie sticks), carries an estimate of £800-£1,200.
The sale at Bloomsbury Auctions celebrates the study and observation of the physical and natural world in The Glory of Science. The auction, taking place on September 14, will include striking photographs, maps prints and autographs, alongside the single owner collection of vintage NASA photographs from the Gemini missions 1965-1966.
The Gemini program was the bridge between the Mercury and Apollo programs and was created in order to test equipment and mission procedures in Earth orbit and to train astronauts and ground crews for future Apollo missions. There were also 14 scientific, medical and technological experiments on board.
Also in the auction is a rare astronomical reference work dated 1681 and compiled by Stanislaw Lubieniecki, which provided information about recent comets of the day as notified by contemporary astronomers to Lubieniecki. The Theatrum Cometicum contains numerous engraved illustrations, many folded, and is bound in contemporary mottled calf. The book carries an estimate of £10,000-15,000.
The correspondence of Nikola Tesla, the Serbian-American inventor best known for contributing to the design of the alternating current electricity supply system, is another auction highlight. In a typed letter, signed ‘N. Tesla’ and dated 1898, he explains to the Editor of The Photogram that he regrets ‘not to be able to oblige you in the matter at present’, (estimate £1,500-1,800). And, in a fragment of an autograph letter, signed ‘Ch. Darwin’, the world-famous naturalist and geologist writes to George Cupples, the author of Scotch Deer Hounds and their Masters (1894), and signs off with ‘Pray give my very kind remembrance to Mrs Cupples’, (estimate £2,000-3,000).
Subscribe to Antique Collecting
If you’re looking for advice on how to start buying antiques and art, why not take out a subscription to Antique Collecting magazine and get all the best antiques and arts news delivered straight to your door?
The latest antiques news
Packed with news from the auction houses, top events, expert advice and opinion, and in-depth antiques buying guides, Antique Collecting has been at the heart of the antiques and art market for 50 years. An annual subscription starts from just £32 a year – find out more about how to subscribe here.
Sign up to our newsletter
And why not join our newsletter and be kept in the loop about our latest offers and news – sign up here