Artist-Customized Darth Vader Helmets Head to the Auction Block

GIVE ME LIBERTY. Wade Lageose’s contribution to The Vader Project is among the 100 helmets to be auctioned next week.
Luke, I am your…artist-customized 1:1 scale replica Darth Vader helmet! Dov Kelemer and Sarah Jo Marks of DKE Toys convinced 100 underground artists and designers—including Gary Baseman, Frank Kozik, Ron English, Dalek, Simone “Tokidoki” Legno, and Michelle Valigura—to reimagine Darth Vader’s distinctive headgear (inspired by a World War I German Stahlhelm helmet, according to Star Wars costume design lore) for The Vader Project. Since its kickoff in 2007, the traveling helmet exhibition has earned fans from Los Angeles to Tokyo and earlier this year wowed crowds at the Andy Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh. Now it’s time to see how they’ll fare on the open market. Next Saturday, Freeman’s will auction the helmets, with most bids starting at $1,500. Collectors, bidders, and fans are invited to view the Vader Project at the Philadelphia auction house beginning Monday. Is the $15,000-$20,000 estimate for Mister Cartoon‘s airbrushed “House of Color” helmet (below) out of your price range? Use the force, Luke, and spring for the $40 keepsake catalogue.

Helmets by (from left to right) Gary Baseman, Hiddy of Secret Base, and Mister Cartoon