Chelsea Hotel Art Collection in Auction

The legendary Chelsea Hotel in New York was a hotspot for the hip and artistic, many of whom paid their bills with their art. On May 16th, the collection that owner Stanley Bard accumulated this way will be sold at auction.

Sherill Tippins, who is a fellow at the Netherlands Institute of Advanced Studies this year, wrote a book documenting the history of the Chelsea Hotel called Inside the Dream Palace. Her book was awarded the Marfield Prize, the national award for arts writing. At the invitation of Freeman’s Auction House, she wrote the introductory essay to the auction catalogue. Read it here.

Bard, who inherited the hotel from his father and passed away in February, assembled an art collection including work by Karel Appel, Christo and Larry Rivers. Among the famous names from the arts world who stayed at the Chelsea are Bob Dylan, Jackson Pollock, Mark Rothko and Robert Mapplethorpe, Patti Smith and the playwright Arthur Miller, who lived there for six years after his divorce from Marilyn Monroe. It was both famous and infamous: Dylan Thomas died there of alcohol poisoning in 1953, and punk musician Sid Vicious of the Sex Pistols was suspected of stabbing his girlfriend to death there. He was acquitted, but a few months later died there himself of an overdose. The Dutch artist Jan Cremer and the journalist H.J.A. Hofland were also regular guests. The Chelsea Hotel closed last year, and will probably be converted into a hotel and luxury condo’s.