1923 Leica fetches world record at Vienna auction
A 1923 Leica camera fetched a world record 2.4 million euros ($2.9 million) at auction on March 10 in Vienna, the city’s Westlicht museum said.
The minimum price had been set at 400,000 euros but the Leica 0-series no. 122, one of a 25-strong series of prototypes made two years before the reputed German marque began retailing, was the subject of ferocious bidding given its pristine condition.
It finally went to an Asian bidder, the museum said, adding there only three of the series remained in their original condition.
The previous record for a 1923 Leica saw a buyer spend 2.16 million euros in 2012, Westlicht said.
Andreas Kaufmann, an Austrian, bought the iconic high-end marque favored by pioneering photojournalists such as Robert Capa and Henri Cartier-Bresson in 2005 to relaunch a company, one of the world’s oldest photography brands which was struggling at the time.