Auctioneers in the Cotswold were stunned when photography specialists from the USA and Europe bid against each other via telephone pushing the price of five rare Fenton photographs up to £100,000, over five times their combined estimated value.
Dominic Winter auctioneer, Chris Albury, said "I had no idea that these photographs were so rare when I first saw
them but it seems likely that there are no more than a handful of each. It was only when I spotted an export ban story on one of these that I realised we had a variant of the same photograph, albeit smaller and without Fenton himself in the photograph."
- as reported by the BPH blog creator here
One of the Oriental-genre photographs by famed Crimean War photographer Roger Fenton carried a top estimate of £5,000-8,000, and fetched £32,000.
Mr Albury added: "The current owner believes his father had them at least fifty years ago and possibly they have been languishing in a damp-stained folder in the attic since Victorian times. When I told him the results he sounded close to tears with emotion saying how much difference this was going to make to him and his family."
The full report of the auction which was held last Thursday (17th June 2010) can be found here, and the sale catalogue, with full description of the photos and hammer prices, is located here.
Photo: Effendi & Musician by Roger Fenton from 1858 sold for £27,000, nine times its expected price of £3,000.