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Ex-New York City Mayor Ed Koch's furniture, art up for auction

Former New York City Mayor Ed Koch, the combative, acid-tongued politician who rescued the city from near-financial ruin during a three-term City Hall run in which he embodied New York chutzpah for the rest of the world, died Friday, February 1, 2013. He was 88.
November 18, 2013 8:44:04 AM PST
An auction will offer a glimpse into the inner world of former Mayor Edward Koch when a trove of his furniture and art collection goes on sale.

Doyle New York is auctioning the items in two sessions. On Monday, furniture, decorative arts and paintings from his Greenwich Village home go on the block. On Nov. 25, Koch's correspondence with heads of state, his books and other ephemera are scheduled to be sold.

The three-term former mayor died in February at the age of 88.

Among the highlights on Monday are Koch's favorite burgundy leather upholstered club chair and ottoman, which are estimated to fetch between $200 and $300. There also is a dining room set designed by Frank Lloyd Wright. It includes a set of six fruitwood barrel chairs, estimated to bring $2,500 to $3,500, and a matching fruitwood table, expected to sell for $1,500 to $2,500.

Art works include a lithograph by American artist Frank Stella titled "Jasper's Dilemma." It is inscribed "For Ed - thanks a million - F.S. '89," and is expected to bring $1,500 to $2,500.

Among the more unusual items is a group of three ancient pottery vessels, two of which date to the Iron Age and the third to the first century. They have a pre-sale estimate of $700 to $1,000.

The Nov. 25 highlights include a framed copy of a 1948 letter from Harry Truman recognizing the newly established state of Israel. Also included are letters from Presidents Ronald Reagan and Bill Clinton, British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher and Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin.

Koch's brash, humor-tinged style came to personify the New York of the 1980s. The Democratic mayor is credited with helping save New York from its economic crisis in the 1970s and leading it to financial rebirth.


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