Citizen Kane, Chaplin and James Bond headline vintage international film poster auction

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The international appeal of American cinema will be on display at Weschler’s Vintage Film Posters and Fine Art Auction on Friday, February 22nd at 10 a.m. Classic films and iconic figures such as Citizen Kane and Charlie Chaplin feature prominently in this collection of framed posters from Scandinavia, France, Italy, Russia, and Germany.

The collection, which comes from the Washington, DC office of Dewey & LeBoeuf LLP, includes posters released between 1910 and 1996. A rare French four-sheet for the film L’Espionne de Fort MacDonald (A Nation’s Peril) leads the auction with an estimate of $2,500 to $3,500. The film was produced by Pathé Frères’ American Kinema and the poster, released circa 1910, was designed by French artist Candido Aragonese Faria.

Highlights include several classic films from the American canon. Orson Welles’s 1941 masterpiece is represented with an Italian four-sheet for Quarto Potere (Citizen Kane) ($1,000-$2000), while Elia Kazan’s On the Waterfront is reimagined by Italian painter Anselmo Ballester for the 1954 release of Fronte del Porto ($800-$1,200). A one-sheet designed by Saul Bass reveals the Italian release of the 1962 political thriller Tempesta su Washington (Advise & Consent) ($300-$400). Bass worked with the film’s director, Otto Preminger, on several films, creating both posters and thematic opening title sequences. His innovative work led to similar collaborations with Alfred Hitchcock, James L. Brooks, and Martin Scorsese.

The universality of film is further exemplified by a selection of posters featuring international icons. Russian artist Boris Zelenskij’s 1958 poster, Chaplin Festival-Three Films, bears a simple image of Chaplin’s most famous role, The Tramp ($200-$400). The 1967 Italian release of the fifth Bond film, Si Vive Solo Due Volte (You Only Live Twice), includes a suited Sean Connery with his trusty Walther PPK ($800-$1,200). A stunning one-sheet designed by Georges Kerfyser for the 1962 French release of Lawrence d’ Arabie (Lawrence of Arabia) features a white shadow of the legendary British officer juxtaposed against a bold red background ($1,500-$2,500).

A selection of fine art will also be on display, including urban landscapes by Bradley Stevens (American b. 1954) and Jan Pawlowski (Polish/American b. 1949), and an assortment of 19th century prints. Stevens’s oil paintings portray Washington, DC’s natural beauty, while Pawlowski’s work, such as Bryant Park and Washington Square Park: Two Works ($1,500-$2,500), captures many of New York’s most iconic locations.

Exhibition for the auction will be held February 16-21 at Weschler’s second floor gallery, located at 909 E Street, NW, Washington, D.C. 20004. Exhibition hours and a complete illustrated catalogue are available at www.weschlers.com.

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