Car Art: Ed Roth, Rat Fink Von Dutch
A few weeks ago, I attended an RM Auction at the Petersen Museum in Los Angeles. The auction was a collection of art and memorabilia from the Brucker Collection. This auction was a collection of items from the once museum; Movie World: Cars of the Stars that closed in 1979.
When they cleaned out the museum the brothers Bruckner stored anything and everything in an airplane hanger. This included a turbine powered car, to paintings, signs and even personal items from such low brow artists as Von Dutch, Ed Roth and Robert Williams!
The treasure trove survived thanks to these guys and was vast because Roth worked for them and Von Dutch had his home there (an old bus parked out back). Every sign, toolbox and office item has now become a part of Kustom Kulture because the hands of these artists and usually their striping brushes touched them!
The auction was small and attended by true enthusiasts of the low brow art world. I ran into a few old friends like Craig Stysek a supporter of the art since before it was cool to like the style.
I must say, I felt that estimates were low in the catalog but the prices even surprised me! The Von Dutch pinstriping box fetched an incredible $270,000, the tailgate from his truck got a whopping $149.000.
Roth items also grabbed some big prices like $25,300 for an ink drawing used for t-shirt and sticker art. Almost all of those drawings went for prices in the thousands of dollars.
I had my eye on a few items like the Howard Hughes motor on a pinstriped stand by Von Dutch. One of the many paintings by Robert Williams or the striped tool boxes, those however were scooped up by much wealthier enthusiasts than me!
Later in the day I found my chance and was able to get something for my own collection! An original Ed Roth ink drawing complete with a monster, blown motor and huge tires. The drawing was mine at the drop of the hammer and I can now say I own something that Roth drew in the 1960’s.
Check out all of the auction results at: http://rmauctions.com/index.cfm