It’s been 15 months since the sad and sudden death of Anthony Bourdain. Now a collection of the celebrity chef’s personal belongings are being sold in an online auction, which is good news for anyone in the market for a chrome duck press that once appeared in an episode of the Bourdain-hosted show The Layover.
The auction is being run by auction house Lark Mason Associates, with most of the proceeds reportedly going to Bourdain’s wife (from whom he had separated), Ottavia Busia, and their daughter. Another portion of the money will help to establish a new scholarship in Bourdain’s name at the Culinary Institute of America, which he attended during the 1970s.
The priciest item, by most estimates, is a Bob Kramer steel and meteorite chef’s knife, which is expected to sell for $4,000 or more at auction. It was custom-made for Bourdain by Kramer, a world-class knifesmith. The rest of the collection is eclectic and not all for the kitchen. According to the iGavel auction website, the lots include “artwork, books, home and decorative furnishings, knives, wrist watches, apparel and more,” all personally acquired by Bourdain throughout widely-traveled his life. (And it’s not all exorbitantly expensive—at least several of the valuations are estimated well below $1,000.)
There are even some artifacts of a literary nature, such as a Simpsons script (Bourdain played himself in the 2011 episode "The Food Wife") and an early draft of his 1995 novel, Bone in the Throat .
The auction also features two paintings from the New York artist, musician, and actor John Lurie, who sold two paintings to Bourdain for $19,000 each. “They were two of my favorites and I would not have let them go if they were not to Anthony,” Lurie tweeted (then deleted) on Monday. Lurie, it seems, was not pleased to learn that they are now expected to go for between $1,000 and $2,000—far less than what Bourdain paid. “Why is everything associated with the art world so remarkably grotesque?” Lurie asked in tweet that was subsequently deleted. A fair question.
Other highlights: A U.S. Navy jacket Bourdain received in 2006, the Times reports, “after having to leave Beirut in a hurry in the midst of the Israeli-Lebanese conflict"; a silver and bronze sculpture modeled after the Michelin Man; a Peter Lovig Nielsen teak flip-top desk; and a small record case including some of Bourdain's vinyl. Bourdain’s musical tastes were eclectic—his father was at one time a Columbia Records executive, and Bourdain himself fraternized with punk legends like Marky Ramone and Iggy Pop on his various television programs. No wonder, then, that his record collection includes selections by Roxy Music and the Velvet Underground, among other iconic groups.
Bidding in the online auction begins October 9th. Details here.