Luxury, VIPs and Records
Hamburg (kk) - Max Schmeling, Sergei Rachmaninov, Arturo Toscanini and Louis Trenker - they were all on board the fast transatlantic liner Bremen, where they were captured for posterity by Richard Fleischhut and other photographers. A collection of 600 original photographic prints, which not only record life on board, is to go under the hammer at the Ketterer Kunst auction of Rare Books - Manuscripts - Autographs - Decorative Prints at Meßberg 1 in Hamburg on 13/14 November 2006.
A unique collection of black-and-white photographs dating from 1929 to 1939 and amassed by a member of the ship’s orchestra is to go under the hammer, carrying an estimate of € 5,000. It includes private snapshots, photographic postcards and photographs taken by ship’s photographers H. Tschira, F. Marutzky and P. Cwoijdzinski.
As the transatlantic flagship of Norddeutscher Lloyd, the Bremen was not only luxuriously appointed and decorated but set new standards in her day for technical innovation and speed. On her maiden voyage in 1929 from Bremerhaven to New York - the collection of photographs begins here chronologically - the Bremen was awarded the coveted Blue Ribbon for the fastest transatlantic crossing.
Comprising a great many long shots and close-ups of details, the collection documents the interior decoration of the Bremen and life on board, distinguished passengers and special events, such as the spectacular action staged by the managing director of Goodyear in 1930. During the crossing, he had himself picked up by the firm’s private Zeppelin from the deck of the liner and whisked away to New York
Other impressive shots show catapult planes, launched by a catapult mechanism from on board ship on the high seas to shorten by a whole day the time letters needed to reach New York from Bremerhaven.
The collection ends chronologically with some photographs taken during the first weeks of the second world war. At that time the Bremen had to stay in New York, prevented by the British fleet from sailing home by the direct route. In August 1939, however, she managed to break the blockade by sailing to Bremerhaven via Murmansk, a voyage known in Germany as the “Victory Voyage of the Bremen”. Prohibited photographs show the Bremen being made ready with a coating of camouflage paint.
A high point is the separate catalogue Tournaesiana, a Special Catalogue featuring 100 books from the programme of the celebrated de Tournes family of printers. The overall estimate for these works, most of which were published in Lyon between 1530 and 1590, is € 50,000.
Pre-sale viewings of all books are scheduled for the following dates and times at Ketterer Kunst, Am Messberg 1, Hamburg:
November 1-3:   11 am-5 pm
November 6-10: 11 am-5 pm
and on November 12 by appointment.
The three auction catalogues can be ordered for € 20 directly from Ketterer Kunst or on the internet at The auction begins on both 13 and 14 November at 10 am. The evening auction with a separate catalogue, at which the collection of photographs will also go under the hammer, begins at 6 pm on 13 November.
Since it was founded in 1954, Ketterer Kunst has been firmly established in the front ranks of auction houses dealing in art and rare books. While the Munich headquarters in the Prinz-Alfons-Palais is responsible for the two traditional annual auctions of Modern Art & Post War, the Meßberghof in Hamburg is the venue for two auctions a year, each based on the following fields: Old Masters and Art of the 19th Century / Marine Art and Rare Books - Autographs - Manuscripts - Decorative Prints as well as Modern Art & Post War, with a focus on works on paper. In addition, exhibitions, special auctions and benefit auctions for charity are regular events at Ketterer Kunst.
Hamburg, October 31, 2006