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John Lennon
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John Lennon

John Lennon
A leather collar worn by John Lennon throughout 1967 and 1968, the shield-shaped centre studded with metal eyelets and applied with white metal domed bosses, the leather strap similarly decorated with eyelets and further embellished with three green and ivory coloured resin flower heads and four blue glass hoop beads either side, fastening with a mother-of-pearl and yellow metal button clasp (original fastening possibly deficient) -- the collar, given by Lennon to Alexis Mardas, is most memorably visible on Lennon's naked body on the controversial cover for John and Yoko's debut album Unfinished Music No.1 - Two Virgins, 1968, it also featured in numerous publicity shots of Lennon throughout 1967 and 1968 including the occasion of the launch party for The Beatles' album synonymous with 'The Summer of Love' - Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts' Club Band, 19th May, 1967; accompanied by a reproduction of the cover of the 1968 album Two Virgins showing Lennon wearing the collar -- 10x8in. (25.4x20.3cm.) (2)
The Collection Of John Alexis Mardas.
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Post lot text
Photograph courtesy of Rex Features.

Lot Essay

According to Alexis Mardas, Lennon referred to this collar as his "talisman", and never took it off for the period in 1967-1968 during which he is pictured wearing it.

Lennon is pictured wearing this collar on a number of significant occasions in 1967 and 1968 including:
- The launch party for Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts' Club Band, at Brian Epstein's home in Belgravia, London, 19th May, 1967;
- During rehearsals for All You Need Is Love for the BBC's Our World broadcast, 24th-25th June, 1967 (in fact, photographs show Lennon wearing it on his head during these sessions);
- At home at Kenwood, Weybridge, Surrey in June, 1967, during an interview with The Beatles Monthly magazine for an article John At Home, October and November, 1967 issues, the photographs taken for the magazine by Leslie Bryce subsequently reproduced in various later editions of the magazine;
- At London airport on return from a holiday in Greece with the other Beatles and their partners, 31st July, 1967;
- Attending a lecture on transcendental meditation by the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi at the Hilton Hotel, London on 24th August, 1967;
- Visiting the Maharishi for a weekend seminar on meditation in Bangor, Wales, 25th-27th August, 1967;
- During the TV news report, shot in Bangor, following Brian Epstein's death, 27th August, 1967;
- During his visit to the Maharishi's Acadamy for transcendental meditation, Rishikesh, India, 16th February-12th April, 1968;
- At the reception for the opening of Apple Tailoring, 22nd May, 1968;
- On the cover of the catalogue for the Acorn Event in front of Coventry Cathedral, 15th June, 1968;
- At the opening of Lennon's first art exhibition You Are Here at The Robert Fraser Gallery, Duke Street, London, 1st July, 1968;
- At the world premiére of Yellow Submarine, London Pavillion, 17th July, 1968;
- During the recording of Revolution, EMI Studios, July, 1968;
- During the "Mad Day" photo session when the Beatles were photographed in various locations in London by seven photographers, 28th July, 1968 [see Lot 207];
- At Abbey Road Studios for the recording of a track on the White Album, September, 1968;
- On the cover of the album Unfinished Music No.1 - Two Virgins, the photographs taken mid-September, 1968.


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