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Jony and Marc's (RED) Auction - Sir Jonathan Ive, Marc Newson and Bono

Marc Newson, Bono and Sir Jonathan Ive. Photograph courtesy of Bono's (RED).

In a few hours at Sotheby's in New York, Apple's design genius, Sir Jonathan Ive (better known as Jony), and his longtime designer pal, Marc Newson, will present an incredible selection of extremely beautiful objects that they have curated and/or designed for Bono's Product (RED), the charity Bono established in 2006 with Bobby Shriver to raise awareness of and to work to eliminate HIV/AIDS in Africa.

Check out the Sotheby's online catalog here.

Among the goodies up for grabs are an exquisite one-off Leica Digital Rangefinder Camera that Ive and Newson have collaborated on - estimated to be worth at least half a million dollars (I wish I were bidding for that!) - a truly elegant Steinway Grand Piano (estimate $150-200,000) and, one of Jony's own groundbreaking creations, the new Mac Pro in red (estimate $40-60,000)!

The one-off (RED) Leica Digital Rangefinder Camera.

The (RED) Steinway & Sons Grand Piano.

The (RED) Mac Pro - a stunning design by Ive.

Proceeds from the sale will be donated to The Global Fund to fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, the world's largest financier of anti-AIDS, TB and malaria programs, which according to Wikipedia "by mid-2012 [had] approved funding $22.9 billion that supports more than 1,000 programs in 151 countries." 

Bono has devoted enormous time and energy to Product (RED) - which has proven both highly popular and occasionally controversial as a form of "ethical consumerism" (this article in New Political Science, Volume 31, Issue 2, 2009, argues that it offers "a pragmatic solution to augmenting funds for AIDS treatment in Africa") - and is confident that the continued focus on the battle against HIV and AIDS will ultimately help eliminate the disease.

A personal favorite: a fabulous typewriter originally designed by Ettore Sottsass. Photograph courtesy of

For more information on the auction tonight, please visit Product (RED)'s website, check out the Sotheby's online catalog for the auction, and watch this video, featuring Bono, Jony and Marc:

I wish the auction - and its charitable intent - great success!

On a personal note, we met Jony Ive a couple of years back at Apple's headquarters in Cupertino, California, as a seventh birthday treat kindly arranged by our good friend (and Jony's), Stephen Fry, for our tech-savvy son, Hudson.

Jony was wonderfully kind and generous with his time to Hudson - and has stayed in touch since - and you can read the post I wrote about our visit at the time here:

Hudson, Apple and Sir Jony Ive (revisited)

Apple's beautiful address. Photograph Copyright © 2011 Alexander Chow-Stuart.

"I knew that Apple, one of the world's most secretive companies, doesn't do public tours - but fortunately one of our best friends, the wondrously gifted British writer, director, actor, comedian and Mac evangelist, Stephen Fry, not only knows Steve Jobs but also the genius British industrial designer, Jonathan Ive, who created the mind-bending and world-changing beauty and technological simplicity/complexity of the iMac, iPod, iPhone and iPad (with help from equally inspired hardware and software engineers)."


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