• Illustrated letters go on sale at Sotheby's

    On a hot Provencal day in July 1890, Vincent van Gogh wrote to his brother Theo – blocking out, as he often did, space for a drawing. In it a black cat stealthily circles a dead painter’s garden. The portentous ink was set: four days later van Gogh had shot himself. Now a collection of papers, for sale at Sotheby’s in New York on Wednesday 8 May, shows that many of the artist’s contemporaries shared his epistolary flair.Letters by Manet, Picasso, Renoir, Signac, Matisse, Chagall and Gauguin are composed not only of the articulated preoccupations of the artist (Picasso and Renoir are fixated on culinary pursuits) but also their visual riffs. Snapshot compositions sketched on the fly and odd motifs punctuate these sheets.

  • Faulkner’s medal, writing up for auction

    When Nobel Prize-winning writer William Faulkner’s works went on sale in 2010, auction house Christie’s said the collection of 90 items “was nearly a complete representation of Faulkner’s work,” according to the Huffington Post. But last year, Lee Caplin, executor of Faulkner’s literary estate, and others discovered a “treasure trove of these literary papers” in the Faulker family barn in Virginia. Now, the papers, which include a story Faulkner wrote in college, along with Faulkner’s Nobel medal, are going up for auction with Sotheby’s....