'World's longest sofa' fetches thousands at special auction
PUBLISHED: 07:47 16 July 2019
A Stansted auction house's inaugural pop culture sale, titled Into the Groove, was the place to buy a rare David Bowie poster, the world's longest sofa - and even an offshore powerboat.
Vehicles opened the sale at Sworders. An unorthodox entry to a regional auction room were two racing class offshore powerboats, once part of the Vulture Ventures Offshore Racing team.
A Phantom 23ft powerboat, decked out in decals for Vulture Ventures and the Rolling Stones-inspired logo 'It's a Gas, Gas, Gas' dated from 1997. It had been in recent use and came for sale with a 2014 Mercury Pro XS 250 outboard engine and a road trailer. The selling price was £12,500.
A Skater 28ft 'Cultured Vulture' powerboat sold at £5,000 came with considerable pedigree. This boat, named to the twin cockpits for the pilot 'CB III' and throttle man 'Peter Dredge' - posted speed records in the 1990s for Class II and III Offshore Class but offered together with three unserviceable outboards an a road trailer that was no longer roadworthy it would require considerable investment to run again.
Perhaps the most unusual vehicle in the sale was the experimental amphibious car, the 1992 Dutton Mariner. Using the running gear from a standard production road car (in the case a 1,600cc Ford Fiesta) it has a one-piece hull moulded from high-strength glass reinforced plastic. Although requiring some restoration and recommissioning, this example made £4,000, four times its estimate.
Finished in metallic gold, a Ferrari 412i, the mid-80s four-seater grand tourer with a 'quad-cam' V12 engine, sold at £21,000 to top the sale while a 2005 Mitsubishi Evo IX made to Group N rally specifications sold at £10,500.
Rock and pop collectables were mixed with the design, fashions, ideas and memorabilia of the immediate post-war era.
Two posters for local concerts held at the Rhodes Centre, Bishops Stortford proved popular. The red and black printed poster to see The Who on March 27, 1965, sold at £650 (estimate £500-700) while another for a little known artist called David Bowie and The Buzz playing on July 30, 1966, (admission 7s 6d) took £820.
The Beatles were not to be outdone. A series of four photographs of John, Paul, George and Ringo taken during a special afternoon performance for the Southern Area Fan Club at the Wimbledon Palais on December 14, 1963, were sold at £880.
An unexpected highlight was a copy of the 1976 Wings at the Speed of Sound LP that, signed by both Paul and Linda McCartney, took £620 (estimate £100-150) while a copy of the 1967 The Velvet Underground and Nico LP, signed in black marker pen by cover-designer Andy Warhol, took £1,050 (estimate £600-800).
An example of Warhol's cellulose and wool Souper Dress sold at £1,200.
A cream leather De Sede 'Non-Stop' sofa or Tatzelwurm measuring approximately 12m long went well above estimate at £9,400. The sofa, that found its way into the Guinness Book of Records as the world's longest sofa, was first designed in 1972. Any number of modular upholstered segments can be zipped together to suit every room size.