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I’ve got a brush… Frank Sinatra’s paintings go under the hammer

16 November 2018

Introducing Rakewell, Apollo’s wandering eye on the art world. Look out for regular posts taking a rakish perspective on art and museum stories

A trove of paintings by Frank Sinatra – yes, Frank Sinatra – is coming up for auction. The works, most of which were completed towards the end of Old Blue Eyes’ life, encompass a range of unexpected styles, from geometric abstraction to naïf figuration. Quite apart from the crooner’s  artistic efforts, the Lady Blue Eyes sale at Sotheby’s New York on 6 December will also include a number of personal items that he and his fourth wife, the late Barbara Sinatra, collected together.

Items up for grabs include ‘a hand crocheted yarmulke’, a portrait of Sinatra by Norman Rockwell and – perhaps most intriguingly – a blue satin baseball jacket with ‘U.S.A. Drinking Team’ embroidered on its breast pocket. Apparently, Sinatra (the ‘coach’ of said squad) had a number of these jackets made for his closest friends. Should you wish to continue the team’s no doubt glorious legacy, the garment is expected to go under the hammer for $300–$500.

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