The past two weeks were Edward Gorey madness at auction houses on separate ends of the country.
On October 7, 2010 Pacific Book Auction in San Francisco sold the collection (with additional items added) of Henry Toledano, author of Goreyography - the 1996 Edward Gorey bibliographical checklist. The auction featured over 100 lots of Gorey material. Bidding was strong for the material which included many signed, limited edition books and ephemera. A number of unusual prints were sold, including the rare Elephantamos (one of 26 lettered sets of nine prints featuring elephant-headed figures). For books, the star of the show was a copy of The Raging Tide, copy "J" of 26 lettered copies that came with a stuffed Figbash doll - hand made by Edward Gorey himself. This was the first appearance of these rare dolls, which have become much sought after by collectors.
Following up the excitement at PBA, Swann Galleries in New York City threw its own Gorey Party on Thursday, October 14th. If the first auction was a delicious meal, this second auction was a feast for Gorey collectors. Many of the rarest Gorey collectibles were offered in just under 50 lots, and some stellar prices were realized. The two stars of this show were the limited edition Amphigorey (#34 of 50 copies accompanied by an original piece of artwork - art later published in Categor y), and The Sopping Thursday (#C of 26 lettered copies with an original piece of artwork). Even though these two lots took top billing, this auction was chock full of items which rarely become available. The quality and variety of the items was reinforced by the exceptionally strong bidding throughout this auction, with only a few lots not being sold.