New Order co-founder Peter Hook, successfully auctioned off his “Joy Division Signature Collection” at an charity auction this past week.
Items being sold included original master tapes of singles, 7” test pressings, artwork, bass guitars, amps, clothes, records, limited edition box-sets, CDs, publicity material, posters for the films 24-Hour Party People, and the Ian Curtis biopic Control.
(One example of such film related item of interest were scripts and correspondence with the production of the 1994 film, The Crow, whose source comic referenced Joy Division several times.)
Prior to the auction, Hook had explained to Louder than War that he wanted to sell virtually everything he had related to both bands:
“Every single piece that I own is in the catalogue. There is nothing else. This is every single thing I own. I only kept one thing back that a wonderful kid I met years ago gave me an art piece – a black felt square with hand wired Unknown Pleasures on it and it’s the only thing I kept and it’s in my office. All the proceeds go to charity. I don’t want to insult the people by keeping the money. I didn’t want to end up like a King Midas figure sitting there on my own cackling, look what I got! That feels nuts.”
However, in this auction catalogue were copies of personal letters between Joy Division frontman Ian Curtis and Belgian journalist Annik Honoré, which triggered objections from his former band mates Stephen Morris and Bernard Sumner, ultimately leading to Hook pulling the items from auction.
Morris and Sumner issued the following statement via the bands website:
“Both Bernard and Steve were very disappointed that Peter Hook had decided to sell copies of the letters between Ian and Annik in his “signature collection” auction on Saturday. They considered them to be very private and personal correspondence. We had also been contacted by many people, some closely connected, who also expressed their unhappiness with this proposed sale.
It was a relief to see that Peter chose to withdraw them from the sale, prior to Saturday’s auction.
We noted that the money from the proposed sale was to be donated to The Christie hospital, so Bernard and Steve have personally made a donation of £1,500 to The Christie.
Although previously Annik had given permission for extracts to be published we hope that the entirety of the letters will remain as they were intended to be, private.”