Monday, December 03, 2007

Garage Sale Nets Almost A Million Dollar

LOS ANGELES (AFP) - Rock superstar Ozzy Osbourne's skull-decorated sneakers sold for 2,625 dollars and his gemmed statuette of France's famed Eiffel Tower brought in 10,000 dollars.

The legendary Black Sabbath band front man's favorite coffee mug fetched 1,625 dollars and a cast bronze devil head that hung on a doorway of his family's Beverly Hills home was bought for 8,750 dollars.

What amounted to an Osbourne family garage sale conducted in the name of charity brought in 800,000 dollars, twice the amount expected by the Southern California auction house that handled the event.

A treasure trove of furniture, art and memorabilia belonging to Osbourne, wife Sharon and the couple's children went under the hammer in Beverly Hills in a two-day sale that ended Saturday.

Proceeds from the sale will be donated to the Sharon Osbourne Colon Cancer Program at the Cedars Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles.

More than 500 lots from the Osbournes' homes -- a Beverly Hills mansion, a Malibu beach house and a country estate in Buckinghamshire -- were sold.

"Sharon knows how to have a first-class garage sale," Julien's Auctions executive director Martin Nolan said after the bidding closed.

A dog bed given to the Osbourne canine, Minnie, by rock icon Sir Elton John sold for 2,375 dollars and the winning bid for Osbourne's batskin coat was 3,300 dollars.

A bidder paid 5,250 dollars for a pair of Osbourne's trademark round sunglasses.

Meanwhile, a cast bronze sculpture by Hungarian artist Jozef Rona brought in 56,250 dollars and the Osbournes' custom billiards table sold for 11,250 dollars.

The auction featured an array of designer dresses, antique furniture, art and gold records along with quirky items that were part of the Osbournes' colorful family history.

"Sharon has great taste in fine arts and furniture, so we had our normal fine and decorative art market," auction house chief executive Darren Julien told AFP on Sunday.

"It was fun to see some of the hardcore Ozzy fans bidding against these refined art buyers."

The auction attracted an unprecedented 4,000 registered bidders from at least 15 countries.

That was twice the number of bidders as were drawn to the auction Julien's held for Cher memorabilia, Julien said, referring to the famous singer and actress.

"There were a lot of people vying to get a piece of Ozzy and Sharon," Julien said. "The bidding was feverish."

A bidder paid 4,500 dollars for the Yamaha Banshee quad-bike that Osbourne was riding when he suffered a near-fatal crash in 2003.

Items featured in hit MTV reality television show "The Osbournes" and from the family's Beverly Hills home were the most coveted, according to Julien.

"The biggest request was people wished there was more early Ozzy stuff," Julien said. "He is very sentimental. There isn't a lot of stuff he wanted to part with."

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