PBMA launching new division, selling James Dean jacket March 3

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. – Palm Beach Modern Auctions (PBMA) has launched a new Urban Culture division. The firm is kicking off this new segment of its business in a big way. It will offer the iconic red jacket James Dean wore in the 1955 blockbuster film “Rebel Without a Cause,” during its March 3 auction. This is the first time Dean’s jacket is available for sale.

Take a moment to enjoy this clip of Jim Stark (James Dean), in the legendary red jacket. In this scene he is talking to Judy (Natalie Wood) following the deadly ‘chickie-run’ race from “Rebel Without A Cause”…

The 565-lot auction also features modern and contemporary art, furniture, decorative accessories and jewelry. The auction begins at noon Eastern time. The PBMA gallery is located at 417 Bunker Rd., West Palm Beach, Florida. In addition to on-site bidding, phone and absentee bidding is an option, as is internet bidding through LiveAuctioneers.com.

Picasso to Paul Evans

Picasso plate

Visage No 202 plate by Pablo Picasso, edition 33 of 500 ($5,000-$10,000). (Photos courtesy Palm Beach Modern Auctions)

The fun begins with a Palm Beach private collection of Pablo Picasso ceramics. The coveted, quirky wares were designed by Picasso during the postwar years at the Madoura pottery studio in Vallauris, France. “There are far more collectors of this pottery than there are sellers,” Baca notes. Eleven pieces are iin the sale, including a Cruchon Hiibou pitcher, with an estimate of $9,000 to $12,000; and a Figure De Prou handled vessel, with an estimate of $10,000 to $15,000. In addition, a large Pichet Aux Arums, or pitcher with a lily motif is up for bid. It comes to auction with an estimate of $10,000 to $15,000.

Jean Royere mid-century furniture is the ultimate in sophistication and is on offer in this sale. A Val D’or coffee table with provenance dating back to 1950 (Le Roi Fou, Paris) may reach between $12,000 and $18,000; while a pair of Grand Oeuf (Egg) lounge chairs of Royere German fur and oak, boasts both private and gallery provenance.It’s estimate is $60,000 to $80,000

Mid-Century Furniture Taking Center Stage

Prices continue to soar for American studio furniture and sculptures, especially the creations of mid-century design lions like Harry Bertoia, Paul Evans and George Nakashima. The lineup includes an exceptional Nakashima Minguren II English oak burl and black walnut coffee/occasional table. It carries an estimate of $30,000 to $40,000 into auction. It is accompanied by a LOA from the artist’s daughter and fellow furniture designer Mira Nakashima, dated 3/8/2016. A rare – if not unique – Bertoia stainless steel floor sculpture stands 71¾ inches high, with a willowy attitude that suggests motion in the wind. One of four Bertoia sculptures in the sale, its estimate is $30,000 to $50,000.

Many other 20th-century design greats are represented in the furniture section, including Vladimir Kagan, Philip & Kelvin Laverne, Karl Springer, T.H. Robsjohn-Gibbings, Gio Ponti, Ico Parisi and Paul Evans (American, 1931-1987), whose distinctive sculptural-metal furniture is as fresh today as it was 50 years ago. Eight lots of Evans designs appear in the auction, including a scarce coffee table of verdigris-patinated copper and glass. Furthermore, its estimate is $18,000 to $24,000.

James Dean Worn Jacket Makes Auction Debut

The jewel in PBMA’s Urban Culture crown is Lot 333, the red jacket memorably worn by James Dean

James Dean_Rebel Jacket

These two photos courtesy Palm Beach Modern Auctions, and public domain press photo distributed by Warner Brothers Studios in 1955.

in the 1955 film classic “Rebel Without A Cause.”

“We are so thrilled and excited that we’ve been given the honor of auctioning James Dean’s ‘Rebel Without A Cause’ jacket,” said Rico Baca, co-owner of PBMA. “It has never, ever been offered for sale before, at auction or otherwise. It’s a highly important piece of Hollywood memorabilia and is supported by an archive of written provenance that shows a trail of ownership going all the way back to the wardrobe supervisor at Warner Brothers.”

Baca continued, “There are certain items that immediately come to mind when we think of the great stars of the past – Marilyn Monroe’s white ‘subway’ dress from ‘The Seven Year Itch,’ the black leather outfit Elvis Presley wore for his comeback special on TV, and for James Dean, it’s unquestionably the red windbreaker he wore as Jim Stark in ‘Rebel Without A Cause.’ These are items we expect to see in The Smithsonian.” The jacket comes to auction with a $400,000-$600,000 estimate.

Bronze Sculptures to Pop Culture

Fine jewelry of the highest quality, from such blue-chip names as Rolex, Piaget, David Webb and Cartier are also on offer. There are three lots of 18K gold and diamond designs by Van Cleef & Arpels: a necklace, a stunning pair of earrings and a Fleurette 5-flower bracelet incorporating 70 diamonds. Furthermore, with its original box, the luxe bracelet is offered with a $25,000 to $30,000 estimate.

Additional objects headlining categories in this auction include:
• “Sitting Couple II,” bronze sculpture, No. 2 of six by Lynn Chadwick, circa 1973 ($40,000-$60,000).
• Painted-wood sculpture titled “Diminishing Reflection,” circa 1964-65, by Louise Nevelson ($30,000-$50,000).
• Archive of personal property of the late actress Farrah Fawcett will be represented in 10 lots, including a cast she worn on her arm after an injury to her wrist in the early 1980s. The cast bears signatures of various people, including pop art icons Andy Warhol and Keith Haring ($10,000-$15,000).
• “Mickey ad Minnie” mixed-media painting by graffiti artist Mr. Brainwash (Thierry Guetta) ($40,000-$60,000).

Additional lots include pop art skateboard decks, concert and art posters, extremely rare 1980s London rock concert and radio station shirts, Mick Jones’ (Foreigner) personal VIP Looney Tunes varsity jacket, and a group lot containing three items related to John Lennon and Yoko Ono. It includes a “War Is Over If You Want It” t-shirt personally gifted to the consignor by Lennon and Ono, together with two books: Yoko Ono’s Grapefruit, and John Lennon’s In His Own Write, with an estimate of $2,000 to $2,500.

Plans to Participate

For more information, visit www.modernauctions.com, email info@modernauctions.com or call 561-586-5500.