Lenin stars in charity auction for Hungary's toxic red sludge victims

A December charity auction is to be held following the death of 10 people in Western Hungary when a large reservoir filled with toxic red sludge ruptured, last month.

The auction will offer 230 communist-era relics to help the victims of the disaster. Aside from the casualties, many other people were also injured.

According to reports, the relics have been stored in state warehouses for the past 20 years, and are therefore likely to be well-preserved with firmly established provenance.

Among the lots is a bust of Vladimir Ilyich Lenin (1870-1924), Russia's first Head of State, which is likely to be among the highlights.

Collectibles linked to important figures from political history hold particularly strong value on the markets - especially when the figure in question is as important and influential as Lenin.


For instance, other valued Lenin artefacts currently for sale on the private markets include one of his death masks by the renowned Soviet-era sculpture Sergey Merkurov.

When a Lenin death mask last appeared on the market, back in 1989, it was valued at $12,500. Today, its market value has risen to $57,000.

The immense value appreciation of Lenin's death mask should offer high hopes to the sellers of his historic bust in the December auction.

Lenin's bust will appear for sale alongside socialist realism-style paintings and photographs of Hungary's communist-era leaders in the December 6 charity sale.

The auction will be held at the Pinter Gallery in Budapest, with all proceeds going to the Catholic charity Caritas.


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