LaVella Hits the Brucker Collection Auction

Long ago, there was a magical place in Buena Park, California called MovieWorld: Cars of the Stars, owned by a pair of brothers by the name of Brucker. Ed Roth worked there. Von Dutch lived in a bus on the property, and although the museum closed in '79, the Bruckers' stored collection contained some fabulous artifacts of lowbrow art history. Our friend, mentor, and sometime-collaborator Mike LaVella of Gearhead, covered last weekend's auction of the Brucker collection and kicked us down a bit of science as he frantically readied himself for a trip to buy a suit in Hong Kong.

LaVella Hits the Brucker Collection Auction

The auction was also held live on eBay, and according to LaVella, "A lot of it was sold to eBay people." Jay Leno (who had a proxy bidder) bought a motor from Howard Hughes' plane that was in the Brucker museum that Dutch striped.

"The guy who bought Von Dutch's pinstriping kit is Ralph Whitworth who is opening up a museum in Winnemucca, Nevada called America's Car Collection. He bought the Road Agent, the Mysterion and the Druid Princess, and bid Von Dutch's paintbox up to $270,000."

According to LaVella, though, "If you went just to buy Williams, it could've been your cleanup day." Compared to to the frenzy whipped up by Roth and Dutch's dead-icon status, Robert Williams' paintings often sold below the expected outlay. Dutch's tools, however, went for mind-boggling prices, often going for ten times their appraised rates. The action was so fast and furious that LaVella lucked out and scored Von Dutch's flip-up address book for a mere 400 bucks (although on eBay it says it sold for $475).

The LA Weekly has a great piece on why this art matters, the Brucker collection, and a fond farewell to Fausto Vitello, a patron of lowbrow art.

Dutch Auction [LA Weekly]

Related:
Fausto Vitello: RIP [Internal]