Oskar Barnack’s Leica 0-Series camera sells for a record-breaking $15M at auction


posted Monday, June 13, 2022 at 12:30 PM EDT


Last week, we wrote about a Leica 0-Series prototype camera that was expected to sell at auction for as much as $3,000,000. On June 11 at Leitz Park in Germany, Leica held its 40th Leitz Photographica Auction, and the prototype camera shattered expectations and sold for €14.4 million, which is just over $15M.

The $15M camera eclipsed the previous record-holder, a different Leica 0-Series camera that sold for around $2.5M. What makes the latest 0-Series camera so special? It was owned by Leica's founder Oskar Barnack. Of the 23 Leica 0-Series cameras produced in 1923, two years ahead of the Leica A was released to the public, only about a dozen are believed to have survived, but only one was used by Barnack himself. The camera has Barnack's name engraved on top of the viewfinder.

The 0-Series camera, No. 105, also sold with an attached 50mm F3.5 lens, original leather lens cap and engraved aluminum cap. It's hard to imagine a camera selling for more anytime soon, given the unique history of this specific camera.


To review the entire auction catalog, click here. You can view the final auction results here.

(Via DIY Photography