Capes, Tarot Cards and Jewels: This Is How You Can Take Home a Little Piece of Walter Mercado
Puerto Rican astrologer Walter Mercado was a certified world icon. Known for his flamboyant style, optimistic nature and over-the-top personality, he became a legend and carved out a legacy that lives on today (almost two years after his passing).
Thanks to Bonhams, now fans across the globe will have the opportunity to own some of Mercado's most treasured pieces. The auction house will be listing more than 135 items owned by the famed TV personality ranging from his finely tailored suits to jewelry to his epicly embellished capes and other personal items.
Earlier this year, his home in San Juan, Puerto Rico, was put up for sale as the family found that it would be impossible to turn into a museum.
Niece Betty Mercado told People en Español that "all of the belongings [coming] from [Walter's] home" were put up for auction as the house was too grand for the area it was in. "[The house] had...a lot of stairs [and] levels, [and] it was in a residential area. We couldn't turn it into a museum."
Some of the carefully selected pieces his family chose to sell at auction will include his unforgettable wooden throne where he would share his astrological predictions, the majority of his capes, his Tarot deck, a statue of the Goddess Ganesh and silver coins that belonged to the eccentric Spanish artist Salvador Dalí. The items range from $500 to $60,000.
Mercado revealed that her uncle loved buying antiques. "He gathered a collection of beautiful pieces, jewelry, capes and personal items. Perfumes [and] lotions were his strong suit," his niece said.
But of all the things being auctioned, the late astrologer's niece feels that his clothes were the most important items to him. "Perhaps his clothing will be the most historic pieces [as] he always valued them a lot...the oldest of his belongings are about 50 years old. I have his glasses from when he was a boy, there are things that we stayed with because they were very personal to him. When he passed...we placed a purple cape with gold details by Carolta Alfaro [on the casket]. The other cape he loved was the one with the Puerto Rican flag."
His family also selected pieces that would be donated to the Smithsonian Museum in Washington D.C. His many capes could also be admired in the Netflix documentary Mucho Mucho Amor: The Legend of Walter Mercado that featured an exhibition in his honor at HistoryMiami Museum.
"Walter always said he was immortal, [that] he would never die," his niece added assuring the auction is an opportunity to spread his love around the world.
"Money wasn't our motive, he took care of us, [he] made sure of that. It pleases us greatly that a piece of him can reach the entire world. People can now have something that belonged to him, and they can appreciate it. His legacy is love. He loved humanity," she added.
Bonhams' auction, "Written in the Stars: The Collection of Estate of Walter Mercado," will run online from November 30 to December 9, 2021.