Jay-Z Is Auctioning Custom Library Cards to Benefit the Brooklyn Public Library

The sale caps the rapper's autobiographical "The Book of HOV" exhibition at the library, which closes December 5.

Hosted by Christie's, Jay-Z is auctioning off a briefcase filled with custom metal library cards showcasing his album artwork.

The legendary rapper Jay-Z is auctioning off a signed black leather Pinel et Pinel briefcase filled with custom metal library cards, each showcasing an example of his album artwork from across the decades. The sale is hosted by Christie’s New York and Roc Nation, an entertainment company founded and run by Jay-Z. The estimate is only being provided on request, and all proceeds will go toward the Brooklyn Public Library.

“Each library card in the single lot encapsulates the essence of his solo studio albums, making this a unique and personal celebration of his artistic journey,” said Elizabeth Seigel, head of private and iconic collections at Christie’s.

The metal library cards are replicas of a series of limited-edition cards that were created by Roc Nation for attendees of “The Book of HOV,” a free exhibition by Roc Nation hosted by the library in Brooklyn. Spread across two floors, the installation tells the life story of Shawn “Jay-Z” Carter—born and raised in Brooklyn—through photographs, artworks, audio, and other archival objects.

Since it opened on July 14, the installation has attracted over 600,000 visitors and resulted in a more than 50 percent rise in new library card registrations. “The Book of HOV” closes on December 4, and the highest bidder on the briefcase will also receive a card commemorating the exhibition.

“Every day for the past four months, thousands of new patrons have visited Central Library to see ‘The Book of HOV’ and be inspired by Jay-Z’s extraordinary journey from Brooklyn to the world stage,” said the library’s president and CEO, Linda Johnson.

The single-lot sale, “JAY-Z: The Book of HOV Celebrating an Icon at the Brooklyn Public Library,” will take place online at christies.com through December 5, and the lot is on display at Christie’s Rockefeller Center galleries. Check out the library cards below.

Vol. 2… Hard Knock Life library card. Photo courtesy of Christie’s.

American Gangster library card. Photo courtesy of Christie’s.

Dynasty library card. Photo courtesy of Christie’s.

The Blueprint 3 library card. Photo courtesy of Christie’s.

The Black Album library card. Photo courtesy of Christie’s.

Magna Carta library card. Photo courtesy of Christie’s.


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