Salon de Magie: The Klosterman Collection Part I
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This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on 10/30/2021
Houdini, Harry (Ehrich Weisz). Houdini Upside Down in the Water Torture Cell. London: Dangerfield, ca. 1912. Close-up inverted bust portrait of Houdini submerged in the water tank escape device that helped secure his reputation as a great escape artist. Framed to 37 x 29 ¼". Strong fold lines prominent, chipping and wear evident; not examined out of frame. A rare poster. This poster is a decidedly dramatic and artistic depiction of the underwater escape Houdini debuted in 1911. In performance, the magician freed himself from a sturdy tank made of glass, metal, and hardwood, filled with water and outfitted with a set of ankle stocks at its top. Houdini extricated himself from the locked cell after many nerve-wracking minutes had elapsed, after the audience had been instructed to hold its breath along with the magician while he remained submerged. Though his assistants stood at the ready with fire axes to break the glass were an accident to occur, these heroic measures were never required. Houdini escaped unharmed at every performance. Houdini featured the “upside down,” as it was commonly referred to, for years, and challenged audiences to prove he could somehow obtain air in the cell while submerged. The effect was mythologized in the 1953 Paramount biopic of Houdini, featuring Tony Curtis in the title role, as the cause of the great magician’s death, but nothing could be further from the truth. Even so, the dramatic nature of the escape and the fact that the secret behind Houdini’s escape from it remained shrouded in mystery for decades after his death contributed to its popularity. This poster, one of only a handful known, was displayed in the Cincinnati Art Museum from October 20, 2001 – Jan. 6, 2002.
 Houdini, Harry (Ehrich Weisz). Houdini Upside Down in the W...
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Current Bidding
Minimum Bid: $15,000.00
Final prices include buyers premium: $112,500.00
Estimate: $30,000 - $60,000
Number Bids: 14
Auction closed on Saturday, October 30, 2021.
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