A&O Shorts

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Ever feel like your home is overwhelmed with books? (No? Really?) Well, Spanish artist Alicia Martin has taken inspiration from book sprawl and created massive outdoor sculptures that suggest the aftermath of a book-eating cyclone. Since the late 1990s, Martin’s book sculptures have tumbled from windows or cascaded over archways throughout Europe, with three located in the heart of Madrid.

Earlier this week, the Concord Museum in Massachusetts received a daguerreotype of Sophia Thoreau (1819-1876), younger sister of American essayist and naturalist Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862). The timing is fortuitous; July 12 marks the bicentennial of the birth of the author of Walden and Civil Disobedience.

A man who says he is a distant cousin of Jesse James has come forward with a never-before-seen ambrotype of the notorious outlaw, young and handsome with piercing light eyes. Patrick Meguiar of Tennessee first heard about the antique photo from his grandfather, Maynard Meguiar, who would tell stories about their ancestral connection to James, …

On Saturday, July 24, at the Royal Sonesta in Cambridge, Massachusetts, Boston-based RR Auction held a robst sale of memorabilia relating to notorious mobsters and outlaws like Al Capone, Bonnie and Clyde, and John Dillinger.                                                                                                           

Coming to auction later this month at Christie’s in London is an early nineteenth-century walking stick that belonged to the Scottish novelist and poet Sir Walter Scott. Made of malacca, or East Indian rattan palm, this walking stick was given by Scott to the Scottish painter, William Allan in 1831, just a year before the author’s death.

Photographer Mathew Brady (1822-1896) is mostly remembered today for his Civil War images—wounded soldiers resting under trees, prisoners awaiting transportation, scores of dead combatants lying in bloody fields—and is considered one of the pioneers of photojournalism.

This past Tuesday, May 18, the London rare booksellers Maggs Bros. Ltd.—"antiquarian booksellers by appointment to the Queen"—launched its second exhibition to mark the opening of a new store after its recent relocation to 48 Bedford Square from its 80-year-long home 50 Berkeley Square.