SCIENTIFIC DISCOVERIES ABOUND IN ELLI BUK’S COLLECTION Dedham, MA: This month, Grogan and Company Fine Art Auctioneers is pleased to present the Elli Buk Collection, one of the largest and most comprehensive collections of Scientific Instruments and Tec
News-Antique.com - Apr 03,2013 - Elli Buk (1949-2012) was legendary in the world of collectors who knew him as a self-made, prolific collector, curator and expert on scientific instruments and the history of technology. Over a period of forty years, Elli exercised his passion for acquiring objects from every possible collecting genre, including, but not limited to, microscopes and telescopes; medical devices and quackery; patent models and salesman's samples; early projectors, still and movie cameras; motors, electrical devices and machinery; globes and surveying instruments; telegraphy and telephones; televisions and radios; as well as objects from our industrial past and household items such as typewriters and sewing machines.
"There are many individual items in this auction which are show stoppers, such as Marconi’s own experimental model magnetic detector, an early Riker Motor or an 8 foot Henry Fitz Telescope, but the real essence of the collection is the sheer diversity and quantity of items Mr. Buk amassed over his forty year career," commented Grogan and Company President, Michael Grogan, "We have over 2,000 lots displayed in 15,000 square feet of gallery space. This exhibit is truly a sight to behold. The list of collections within the collection is almost endless."
Elli grew up in Brooklyn, where he was exposed to opera, music and art, however, it was his love of biology, chemistry and physics that inspired him to begin collecting. In 1978, Elli opened E. Buk Art and Antiques at 151 Spring Street in SoHo where his store window become a highlight for passersby. Science fiction writer, William Gibson included a reference to Elli's window in a blog he wrote in 2001 for the National Post. Titled "Mr. Buk's Window", Gibson describes Elli as "a marvelously idiosyncratic antiques dealer in SoHo....Gazing into E. Buk's window, for me, has been like gazing into the back reaches of some cave where Manhattan stores it's dreams." Elli rented objects from his collection to television shows, Hollywood movies, advertising agencies, fashion shoots, and store windows. He loaned his prized objects to various exhibitions that wanted to celebrate the artifacts that built their industry and the collection has been written up in numerous publications including The New Yorker and Architectural Digest.
One of Elli's prized possessions was an eight foot Telescope on Stand made by Henry Fitz of New York (1808-1863). The eight foot telescope, created by the first American telescope maker, is estimated to sell for $8,000-12,000. Another impressive 19th century innovator, Edward Howard, created a Fine American Gold Bullion Scale, which is stamped E. Howard & Co. of Boston, and also bears a presale estimate of $8,000-15,000.
One of the most important items in the auction is Guglielmo Marconi’s own experimental model of his Magnetic Detector, known as “The Rutherford-Marconi” Detector, circa 1900. This unique wireless apparatus was fashioned by Marconi from the winding spring mechanism of a telegraph inker. He used the apparatus in his early tests for what became his patented model in 1902. The Wireless Detector, with impressive provenance, bears a presale estimate of $20,000-30,000. The