I got it from Russia, sourced directly from the descendants of the original designer.
Austin, Texas (PRWEB) September 07, 2013
With items ranging from a historic rocket ship model to a full-sized Wells Fargo replica stagecoach, legendary video game developer and astronaut Richard Garriott will be offering pieces from his eclectic personal collection at an estates auction of significant artifacts and antiques. The auction includes a grand selection of antiques, fine art, oriental art, silver and china at Austin Auction Gallery at 10 a.m. on Saturday, Sept. 21.
Items from Garriott’s collection also include early antique automobiles, a Harley Davidson Sportster 1200 motorcycle, a planetarium projector, a full-sized fortune telling machine and space-related pieces.
“I collect and I look at these demonstration toys or things such as the model rocket ship – and other electromechanical items to inspire the work I do,” Garriott said. “As a collector, these are personally important to me.”
Garriott said the 3-foot-tall model rocket ship is a historical piece as it is a model of the design done by Russian scientist Konstantin Tsiolkovsky. “I got it from Russia, sourced directly from the descendants of the original designer,” he said. “I rewired it to 110 volt as it was originally set up on Russian power.”
“Space flight was envisioned long ago, but if you look at fiction writers like Jules Verne, who envisioned it with parachuting back to Earth, it would kill you,” he said. “So, Tsiolkovsky, who was a grade-school math teacher in the late 1800s, was the first (person) to show it scientifically. He made the first practical model rocket design No. 1. He did calculations for space flight and this is a model of his own original design and is the basis for how and why it works.”
All of Garriott’s auction items are from his private collection at Britannia Manor, his Austin-area home. Garriott is an entrepreneur and cutting-edge pioneer of computer role-playing games, a magician, and a world-class collector of automatons. He’s also the host of the Austin Shakespeare Festival at his Elizabethan-style theater “The Curtain” on the shores of Lake Austin. Garriott is a board member of the XPrize and Space Adventurers.
Besides the 1903 Tsiolkovsky model and Wells Fargo stagecoach replica, Garriott is offering at auction a 1911 Ford Tin Lizzie and a 1923 Ford T-Bucket. Both of these antique automobiles date back to company founder Henry Ford’s early entry into the automobile-making market.
Three orreries are also up for auction. For clarification, an orrery is a mechanical device that illustrates the relative positions and motions of the planets and moons in the solar system in a heliocentric model.
Other auction items from Garriott include a life-sized “Swami Fortune Teller” machine, automatons including a carved, custom-built “Nottingham” scene with Robin Hood shooting an arrow and another with a full-sized man and woman playing instruments, a French 1894 glass globe that shows ocean currents when filled with water and cranked, 3-foot-long hand tooled leather character masks by Richard Thompson, a hand cranked organ, underwater scooters, a vintage Olympic Medieval Castle siege Catapult Game, 16-millimeter movies including “Dracula,” “Frankenstein,” and “The Wizard of Oz,” a boxing championship belt from the 1930s with badges, and large, unusual Edison phonograph cylinders.
From other estates there is a collection of silver, including several scarce and unusual pieces. The collection is comprised of American coin silver, Georgian silver, German and other Continental pieces. Of note is an extraordinarily fine German silver tea and coffee service, a large Spanish Colonial hammered silver two-light candelabra and an American coin silver pitcher by Peter L. Krider, Philadelphia, c. 1850-1860, retailed by and bearing further marks of John Akin, Danville, Ky. (active c.1820 - c.1860) and a Paul Storr salver.
Another unusual collectible to be offered in this auction is a scarce black Regency TR-1 Transistor radio from the 1950s, housed in a book-form case and presented by late film and theatre producer Michael Todd (also former husband of Elizabeth Taylor) as gifts to commemorate his 1958 Academy Award-winning film “Around The World in 80 Days” based upon Jules Verne’s book written in 1873. The TR-1 was the first portable and commercially-sold transistor radio manufactured by the Regency Division of the Industrial Development Engineering Associates (I.D.E.A.). These “Mike Todd” versions were given to actors and family friends including playwright Arthur Miller, actress Shirley MacLaine, Lou Berg, Bill Shawn, and others. Todd continued in the film industry until his tragic death in a 1958 plane crash.
The auction will feature an incredible six piece French bedroom suite bearing an original price tag of $96,000, a stunning French Erard Louis XVI-style grand piano with lacquered rosewood plus lavish gilt bronze castings applied to the sides of the case, a full-sized church confessional, four extraordinary 19th century 8-foot-by-11-foot-high paintings depicting different aspects of St. Vincent de Paul’s life, a YO Ranch commemorative Colt revolver made for YO’s 100th anniversary, an unusual 5-foot-high stained class chandelier, a Black Forest table and chairs, an 1829 sampler, fine jewelry, Ivory collectibles, and leather-covered furniture.
Austin Auction Gallery has conducted fine antique and estate auctions in Northwest Austin since 1983. They handled last November’s auction of late University of Texas football coach Darrell Royal’s private collection and memorabilia from his coaching and playing days.
The live auction will be held at 8414 Anderson Mill Road, Austin, TX, 78729. If you cannot attend the auction absentee and telephone bidding are available with a 15% buyer’s premium. Live online and absentee bidding is also available via Live Auctioneers, http://www.liveauctioneers.com with an 18% buyer’s premium.
For more information on any lot in the auction please visit http://www.AustinAuction.com or contact the gallery directly at 512-258-5479. Ross Featherston, #8069.