Ralph Steadman drawing cooks up a storm

A rare drawing by the original ‘gonzo’ artist, Ralph Steadman, was among the stars of The Cotswold Auction Company’s recent sale of Modern Art and Design, Vintage Fashion and Textiles.

Illustrator Steadman is best known for his satirical work with pioneering American journalist Hunter S Thompson, including the iconic Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, which was adapted by ex-Monty Python stalwart Terry Gilliam into a film starring Johnny Depp and Benicio del Toro.

A drawing of chefs by Ralph Steadman

Original drawings by Steadman rarely come up for sale so it was no surprise that his picture of chefs at work in a kitchen sold for a hammer of £2,400, well above its modest estimate of £200 to £300.

Another hot seller was a 1970s Ziggy Stardust dress by legendary fashion designer Ossie Clarke. The flowing design and vivid colours were inspired by David Bowie’s famous alter-ego. Clarke, who was a close friend of artist David Hockney while still at college, produced a body of work which inspired a host of other fashion luminaries, including Yves Saint Laurent and Tom Ford.

A dress designed by Ossie Clarke

The dress sold for a hammer of £1,200, again well above the estimate of £500 to £700. A similar example is in the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.

Works by Irish artist Graham Nuttell also proved popular. An acrylic on canvas by Knuttel of a woman holding a cat was the top seller in the auction, hammering down at £3,200.

The Cotswold Auction Company director Liz Poole said: “There were several stand-out sellers this time round. Original work by Ralph Steadman is quite rare, so there was considerable interest in the ink and wash drawing, Chefs in a Kitchen. Classic designs by Ossie Clarke and Celia Birtwell are also highly collectable, and we were thrilled to have their iconic ‘Ziggy Stardust’ dress in our sale.”