Melbourne Museum of Print under hammer

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Ludlow cabinets with brass type were among the standout performers at an online auction for equipment from the Melbourne Museum of Print, with the on-site auction to take place tomorrow at its Footscray premises.

Hot ticket items: Ludlow cabinets with type
Hot ticket items: Ludlow cabinets with type

The eight lots of six to ten Ludlow cabinets with brass type attracted strong bidding, eventually going for $3000-$4000 apiece in the sale, which was run by Gollant Auctions. Lots 300-723, including more machinery, furniture, and memorabilia, will go under the hammer at the on-site auction tomorrow.

Gollant will begin the live auction at 10am Saturday on the Melbourne Museum of Printing site at 266 Geelong Road, West Footscray; the sale is to raise money for a debt to the site’s landlord.

Visitors to the site will see a treasure trove of print history, some of which has never been seen in public. The full story of what led to the current situation was revealed by Print21 editor-at-large Patrick Howard – click here to read it.

The landlord and the Museum's owner Michael Isaachsen are in dispute over the amount of rent that is in arrears. Isaachsen says he has no notification of the results of the auction. He said he offered to run the sale himself, which he said "would have generated more money", but the landlord turned him down. He also bemoaned the lack of support from the print industry over the years.

The Penrith Print Museum has called for supporters to purchase items from the Melbourne auction and donate them, and  Isaachsen, who says he has sunk more than $3m into the project over the decades, told Print21 he would be happy with such a move.

“Where better for these items to go than another printing museum? If they can pick up a bargain from our sale, that’s great,” said Isaachsen.

Anyone interested in supporting the Penrith Print Museum in this way can contact James Cryer at or on 0408 291 508. To find out more about the Penrith Print Museum, go to

Details of the auction, including items for sale tomorrow, can be found at

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