More than 200 photos from NASA’s pioneering 1960s space missions gathered by a single private collector are to go under the hammer in Austria later this month.
The lots include iconic images of Neil Armstrong’s first steps on the moon’s surface on 1969 taken by fellow Apollo 11 astronaut Buzz Aldrin.
Experts at the Dorotheum auction house , which is hosting the ‘Beauty of Space’ sale in Vienna say the images “encapsulating the profound significance of our giant leap into the cosmos.”
Dorotheum photo expert Eva Koenigseder said 229 photographs will be sold between 15th and 27th September.
In a statement obtained by Newsflash, Koenigseder said: “The ‘Beauty of Space’ collection includes iconic and rare photographs from the Victor Martin-Malburet Collection, featuring historic moments that defined the golden age of astronautics and graced the covers of LIFE or National Geographic magazines at the time.”
Bidding for the photo, in which the lunar module Eagle is reflected in Armstrong’s gold-plated visor, starts at EUR 2,000 (GBP 1,720).
Auctioners expect the bids to top somewhere between EUR 4,000 and EUR 6,000 (GBP 3,430 to GBP 5,150).
Another remarkable picture from the collection is the first-ever photograph of Planet Earth taken by a human.
The photo, Earthrise, shows part of the moon’s surface with the Earth rising in dark space.
It was taken by astronaut William Anders in 1968 while Apollo 8 was in lunar orbit.
It is regarded as a “major milestone of photography,” says expert Koenigseder.
The Beauty of Space collection also features what is considered the first space selfie in taken by Buzz Aldrin during the Gemini 12 mission in 1966.
The Dorotheum’s Eva Koenigseder said in her statement from 7th September: “In 1969, humanity achieved a monumental milestone by setting foot on the Moon.
“This historic moment also marked a significant chapter in the history of photography.”
Koenigseder explained: “While the primary objective of the astronauts was to scientifically record their activities, they were inspired by vistas never seen before, as well as a new understanding of what it is to be human.”
The tradition-rich auction house’s photography expert argued: “Each and every shot was a historic treasure, a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that would never be able to be captured again.”
Koenigseder emphasised: “Today, they have achieved iconic status, standing alongside the earliest cave paintings as powerful symbols of human curiosity, ingenuity, and the unending quest for discovery.”
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Story By: Thomas Hochwarter, Sub-Editor: Michael Leidig, Agency: Newsflash
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