Six strands of Kurt Cobain's hair have been sold for $14,145 (£10,005, €11,584).
The hair belonging to the late Nirvana frontman was put up for auction as one of the lots included in the Amazing Music Auction (Vol. 1), hosted by the IconicAuctions house. Bidding opened on May 6 and the locks, which were snipped from Cobain's head by a friend when he was touring Bleach in the UK in 1989, have now been sold.
IconicAuctions said of the lot: “This one-of-a-kind artifact is entirely fresh-to-market and is accompanied by an impeccable lineage of provenance including photos of Kurt posing with the woman who cut this hair, scissors in hand, and a fantastic shot of the hair actually being cut! The lucky friend who trimmed the Nirvana front man’s iconic blond locks was an early confidant, Tessa Osbourne, who cut his hair in 1989—well prior to his Nevermind breakthrough—while on the Bleach tour. Tessa presented the original lock to Seattle artist Nicole DePolo as a heartfelt gift after Kurt’s passing, and she provided the original bag with handwritten provenance note, “29/10/89: Tess cut Kurt's hair in Birmingham, England, 27 Holy Rd., Handsworth, Birmingham B202BU.”
The lot was bolstered by a detailed two-page provenance affidavit signed by DePolo, which read: "Tessa had known Kurt back in England, and they had hung out during the Bleach Tour. Nirvana had broken in England first, and she must have had a sense that Kurt would become a musical force. When it came to Kurt, Tessa was kind of what like Astrid Kirchherr had been to the Beatles—the woman who had given him his iconic haircut. She even had a series of pictures to prove it: a snapshot of her and Kurt with long straggly hair while she held a pair of scissors high, then a shot of the scissors going through about 7” of hair. The rest was history. Kurt was known for his bleached blond pageboy, and she’d given him his first one back in October of 1989, just before his image began to circulate throughout the world".
The Amazing Music Auction (Vol. 1) also included Beatles, Cream and Van Halen memorabilia. A portion of proceeds from the auction are going to Crew Nation, a global relief fund for live music touring and venue crews who are facing hardship due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Crew Nation works to provide monetary grants to crew members during the pandemic and beyond.
Kurt Cobain’s stage-used Marshall AMP & six strands of his hair up for bid NOW https://t.co/3F5hM9xxOY ending May 15! Percentage of auction proceeds benefit Crew Nation, a global relief fund for live music crews #crewnation #livenation #Nirvana #KurtCobain @marshallamps pic.twitter.com/apXMBt3jE9May 11, 2021