Historic Leica cameras to be auctioned in celebration of WestLicht’s 15th anniversary

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Here is the official press release on the upcoming Westlicht camera auctions (already covered here):

Historic Leica Cameras to be Auctioned in Celebration of WestLicht’s 15th Anniversary

November 7, 2016 – To celebrate the 15th anniversary of WestLicht, Leica Camera will hold its 30th WestLicht camera auction, opening at 11 a.m. on November 19, 2016. Of the items for auction include the rarest and most prized of the Leica historic collection.

On November 18 at 5 p.m., the day before the camera auction, avid collectors will also have an opportunity to bid for photographs and portraits by famous photographers at the WestLicht Photo Auction.

Among the highlights of the anniversary auction are two versions of the RIFLE sets, manufactured by E. Leitz New York, which were first publicly presented in July 1938. The RITOO set, with a 20 cm Telyt lens and the original case, is expected to value $165,000 and $200,000 USD. Bids for the second version, a RITEL with a 40 cm Telyt lens and also in its original case, are expected to be in the range of $190,000 to $225,000 USD.

Herbert List’s black paint Leica M3 (No. 915252) from 1958 is also up for auction (estimated hammer price: $45,000 to $55,000 USD). For many years, the famous German Magnum photographer and master of light (1903-1975) shot assignments for magazines like Vogue, Harper's Bazaar and Life with this camera. This early black paint version of the camera from an unofficial series is one of the rarest Leica cameras. Around 90 were built, and very few of them have survived.

The prototype of a special edition Leica camera, produced to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the Leica Store in Vienna, will also be auctioned. The special commemorative edition of 25 Leica M-A analogue cameras and a reworked Leicameter MR-4 in grey hammertone lacquer, as well as a silver Leica Noctilux-M 50 mm f/0.95 ASPH. in the classic design of the first Noctilux 50 mm f/1.2 with specially engraved edition numbers were released to celebrate this silver jubilee. The hammer price for the prototype of this special edition is expected to be between $17,000 and $22,000 USD.

In addition to Leica products, visitors to the anniversary auction will also have an opportunity to bid for numerous collectors’ pieces and rarities from other camera manufacturers. Bids can be placed online, on the phone, by fax, live from around the world at www.liveauctioneers.com, and in person in the WestLicht auction rooms at Westbahnstrasse 40, 1070 Vienna, Austria.

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