The Galerie de Chartres held an auction on May 25th of 40 of the paper negatives of 19th-century photographer Felix Teynard and in the process set a new world auction record for a paper negative at 186,000 euro, or about $240,000. Lot 58, Dakkeh, or a group of date palm trees, was only estimated at 4,000-6,000 euros but soared to the record after a battle between an anonymous French collector and another bidder. The French collector won the prize (and the other images in the auction with trees predominating). Reportedly, this was the same French bidder who won the cover image of the Galerie de Chartres' sale of the paper negatives and positives of Louis De Clercq.
The previous world auction record was set during the second set of Jammes sales at Sotheby's in Paris in 2002. A paper negative by Negre, which showed the arched doorway of the abbey tower at Mont-Majour. With an estimate range of 30,000-45,000 euros, it became an object of contention between Hans Kraus, who was bidding for a private collector, and the phone. The phone bidder snagged it at a new world-record price at that time for a paper negative at auction of 137,750 euros or about $122,000. Other lots of paired positives and negatives have sold for more.
The sales total for the Chartres auction for the 40 paper negatives was over 888,000 euro (well over $1,150,000), and there were eleven buyers in all, excluding the French Bibliotheque Nationale, which pre-empted two lots. The bidders included dealers and collectors from the U.S., France, U.K. and other European countries. The Galerie de Chartres has had considerable luck with auctioning paper negatives and other key 19th-century photographic material. The expert there is Arnaud Delas.