Previously unseen MJ photos go under hammer

2010-12-13 07:44

Paris – Several never-before-seen portraits of singer Michael Jackson, taken by a then little-known French photographer, are set to go under the hammer in Paris today.

The four large portraits of the King of Pop show him posing as an Egyptian pharaoh in a gold cape, melancholy in black in front of a red curtain, as an artist in a rhinestone studded suit and as a sort of “Peter Pan” with one eye covered in blue glittering make-up.

The pictures were taken in 1999 by Arno Bani, then just 23. Jackson had reportedly wanted him to take the photos for his album Invincible, seeing him as someone as yet “uncorrupted” by the system.

Though in the end Bani’s work was not used for the album, the photographer had signed over the rights to the Sony record label for 10 years.

Along with the portraits, another 55 smaller prints and 31 contact sheets are to go on sale at the auction house Pierre Berge & Associes. Starting prices are €1 000 (R9 000) for the portraits, and €500 for the prints and contact sheets.

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