No matter how often it’s brought up in conversation or referenced in media, it’s rare to see a picture of the original Moon Landing, not bat an eye, and turn away. This innate infatuation with outer space might as well be embedded in our nature, which is why Bonhams is capitalizing on it with its Space Photography auction.
Of the many photos that highlight this sale, the most notable is a 70mm snap of Neil Armstrong taking one small step heard around the world. Of course, this was taken by none other than Buzz Aldrin, ultimately grabbing the only full-body photo of Armstrong on the moon. Moreover, the photo shows the famed astronaut packing samples into Eagle’s MESA, a storage compartment that descends from the ascent stage to the moon. And while the flight plan clearly stated that Aldrin was eventually supposed to secure the Hasselblad used to take the photo, Armstrong did not intend to hand it over — nevertheless, the outcome was incredible.
In addition to this patriotic piece of photographic history, the other remarkable lot in this sale is the first image of the earth taken from the moon. This set of 9 silver gelatin prints come together to form a mesmerizing panorama image that measures over 5.5’ long. These were taken in 1966 by the Lunar Orbiter spacecraft, which had a pair of cameras to capture different fields of view, resulting in a view that is literally out of this world.
Bonhams expects these two lots to sell between $20,000 to $30,000, but other photographs start from as low as $200. The Space Photography auction ends on December 1.