Focus On Women: June 1, 2023 Auction Highlights

Lot 123: Sojourner Truth, Narrative of Sojourner Truth, a Northern Slave, first edition, Boston, 1850. Estimate $10,000 to $15,000.

Swann’s Focus on Women auction, scheduled for June 1st, pulls together an eclectic set of material representing women’s contributions to art, life, and society. From Louisa May Alcott to Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Catherine the Great to Susan B. Anthony, and Jane Austen to Amelia Earhart, the works of many famous women are included. But the sale wouldn’t fulfill its brief without emphasizing the everyday lives of women and their unsung accomplishments and triumphs.

Lot 162: Myrlande Constant, Boubou, Drapo Vodou, Haitian Vodou Banner, mixed-media. Estimate $400 to $600.
Left: Lot 156: Women Army Airfare Training Detachment, 318th, World War II, Yearbook: 318th A.A.F.F.T.D. Class of 43-W4 and 43-W5, Sweetwater, Texas, 1943. Estimate $700 to $900; right: Lot 3: Jane Austen, Pride & Prejudice, London, 1817. Estimate $6,000 to $8,000.
Lot 173: Loretta Belle Tulian Eaton, Archive of Photo Albums and Travel Diaries, 1905-07. Estimate $3,000 to $5,000.
Left: Lot 31: Louisa May Alcott, Autograph Script for a Performance of Mrs. Jarley’s Waxworks, Massachusetts, circa 1867-79. Estimate $2,000 to $3,000; right: Lot 158: Elizabeth Blackwell, The Laws of Life with Special Reference to the Physical Education of Girls, first edition, New York, 1852. Estimate $3,000 to $5,000.

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Bidders will find art in the sale, in a variety of media including photography, prints, and sculpture. Of special interest is a large collection of Mary Beth Edelson’s working files, an archive related to her lifetime correspondence and work, and a group of letters and important large photographs from Fanny Stevenson, sent home to her family while she was living with Robert Louis Stevenson in Samoa in 1892. Developing collecting areas are a strong component for this sale, as we shine the light on the underrepresentation of women. The field of female provenance boasts several interesting lots, as well as books printed by female printers.

Lot 70: Mary Beth Edelson, Artist’s Archive of Working Files & Correspondence. Estimate $5,000 to $7,000.
Lot 45: Fanny Stevenson, Archive of Photographs & Letters, circa 1868-1900. Estimate $4,000 to $6,000.

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