Lyon & Turnbull’s Photography auction specialists have extensive experience in dealing with a wide range of photographic genres, selling both through our Scottish auction house in Edinburgh, and via online auctions. Each member of the department has a particular area of interest when it comes to photography, a personal passion that has driven successful results across the field from early daguerreotypes and 19th century travel photography; to the works of modern art photography, fashion and pop culture.
The specialist team take pride in cataloguing items with care and enjoys liaising with, and responding to, collectors, institutions and curators. As a department they relish the interaction with owners and agents, whether seeking to buy or sell. Whenever possible the specialists try to meet the client to discuss options surrounding the auction of material that fits best with his or her wishes and the expectations of collectors and photography dealers worldwide.
Scotland is renowned for its strong photographic history, from the pioneering work David Octavius Hill and Robert Adamson carried out in their Edinburgh workshop on the city’s famous Carlton Hill in the 1840’s to the hugely successful commercial operations of George Washington Wilson, a photographer who started out in Aberdeen in 1850 that by the 1880’s had built – through a combination of technical excellence and business acumen – one the largest and best-known photographic companies in the world. Work by Scottish photographers such as Thomas Annan, James Craig Annan and James Valentine also attracts a significant amount of interest.
From the Highlands of Scotland to the pyramids of Egypt, fine examples of travel photography, by such photographers as Roger Fenton and Francis Frith, always attract a premium at auction. Highlights from past sales have included a series of images recording the Younghusband expedition to Tibet dating from 1903-4, selling for £20,000, and a collection of early photographs of Shanghai, attributed to Pierre Joseph Rossier, again selling for over £20,000.
Our specialists have also handled work by some histories finest portrait photographers including Cecil Beaton, Andre Kertesz, Eve Arnold, Edward Steichen and David Bailey. A recent highlight, a set of David Bailey’s Box of Pin-ups, bursting with iconic images of stars such as Mick Jagger and Michael Caine, reached nearly £3,000 demonstrates perfectly the broad range of periods and material successfully sold in our specialist auctions.
We currently host three specialist photography auctions a year 19th and 20th century travel, art and historical photography, alongside Rare Books, Manuscripts & Maps, in January, May and September. Each sale is held in our main Edinburgh saleroom and via our live online auctions. To find out more about our upcoming auctions or to talk further about a potential consignments please do not hesitate to contact one of our specialist team.
All prices premium inclusive.
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