July 22nd, 2008

carole lombard 02
  • vp19

Expensive images

If, as the old proverb goes, a picture is worth a thousand words, then under this criteria words describing the following picture should be eight dollars apiece. We'll hold off on charges for now, though, in order to show you this photo, the highlight (from a Carole Lombard perspective) of the latest Profiles In History memorabilia auction through eBay:

Bidding on this portrait, taken by Paramount mainstay Otto Dyar (http://community.livejournal.com/carole_and_co/78273.html), begins at $8,000. I'll repeat that number...$8,000. And it could reach five figures.

Why the super-high price? It's not autographed by Lombard (or Dyar, for that matter), and while it's a beautiful photograph, is it any more exceptional than others he did of Carole?

Probably not. However, as the description reads, it's a "Gelatin silver glossy double-weight 10½ in. x 13½ in. print of Carole Lombard by Otto Dyar; with photographer blind embossed stamp on the recto lower right, photographer and Paramount Pictures rubber stamps on the verso. Very fine; with ¼ in. light handling at the lower right." It's next to pristine, and probably pretty rare, too (I hadn't come across this image before). Still, it's hard to believe that a portrait is worth more than the used car many of us drive.

Nevertheless, if you're interested in bidding on it, go to http://cgi.liveauctions.ebay.com/487-Original-vintage-Carole-Lombard-photo-by-Otto-Dyar_W0QQcmdZViewItemQQcategoryZ52933QQihZ016QQitemZ260257428045QQrdZ1QQsspagenameZWDVW. (Bidding for this and other items continues through July 31, a week from Thursday.) And if you can afford to purchase this without it making a major bite out of your budget, well, let's just say I'd like to know you better.

Heck, instead of buying one Dyar photo, how about getting two instead at roughly the same price (a bargain, I say!). Bidding on each of the following starts at a mere $4,000:

To learn more about the first, go to http://cgi.liveauctions.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&category=52933&item=260257428034; for the second, visit http://cgi.liveauctions.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&category=52933&item=330248746315

If all of the above are out of your price range, don't fret. My favorite Dyar photo auctioned here shows Carole in the backyard of her fabled Hollywood Boulevard home. (Profiles erroneously lists it as being in Beverly Hills, but Lombard didn't live there until later in the decade, long after Dyar had left Paramount. Also, the yard is similar to that of other photos taken of that house.) At 8" x 10", it's relatively small compared to some of the others:

You can find out more at http://cgi.liveauctions.ebay.com/276-Carole-Lombard-photo-at-her-home-By-Otto-Dyar_W0QQcmdZViewItemQQcategoryZ52933QQihZ016QQitemZ260257426296QQrdZ1QQsspagenameZWDVW. Bidding starts at only $400.

We'll feature some other auction items tomorrow.
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