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Information about Art, Antiques and Auctions in Ireland and around the world

Posts Tagged ‘Christie’s’


Tuesday, December 20th, 2011

Elizabeth Taylor Collections generate unprecendented global response.

The Elizabeth Taylor auctions brought in a combined total of $156,756,576 at Christie’s in New York.  In what turned out to be the most valuable jewelry and fashion auctions in history 26 items sold for over $1 million and six lots sold for over $5 million.  Christie’s first ever on-line only auction brought in over $9.5 million in additional sales from the collection.  It generated over 57,000 bids.

The auctions drew unprecedented interest from bidders throughout the world.  They bid in person at Christie’s Rockefeller Centre saleroom, on the phone, on-line and by absentee bid.  The sale of 1,778 lots of jewelry, fashion, decorative arts and film memorabilia far exceeded Christie’s pre-sale expectations and lots were frequently hammered down for five, ten or even fifty times their estimate.  The jewelry sales, for example, had been estimated to bring in more than $30 million, but the combined total for two jewelry sales was $137,235,675.

All sales proceeds will be directed to the Elizabeth Taylor Trust. A portion of the profits generated by sales of exhibition tickets, event sponsorships and the ongoing sales of select publications will be donated to The Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation (ETAF).  An estimated 58,000 visitors viewed highlights during an eight-city global exhibition and tour in Moscow, London, Los Angeles, Dubai, Paris, Geneva, Hong Kong and New York.


Wednesday, November 30th, 2011

The world record Colombian emerald ear pendants © Christie's Images Limited 2011. (Click on image to enlarge).

THERE was a world record for this fabulous pair of Colombian emerald ear pendants at Christie’s in Hong Kong on November 29.  They sold for $4,036,318 US, equivalent to $83,000 US per carat.  Each pendant is set with a cushion-shaped emerald weighing 25.38 and 23.12 carats, surmounted by a cushion-shaped diamond weighing 3.04 and 3.04 carats, mounted in platinum, 3.6 cm long.  Matched pairs of Colombian emeralds of this size and possessing such a high quality with a complete absence of any clarity enhancement are very rare, making the “Estrellas de Colombia” an outstanding pair of Colombian emeralds.

At Christie’s sale of magnificent jewels the top lots were two D flawless type IIa brilliant cut diamonds of 35.77 and 35.61 carats.   They sold for $8,275,350 and $8,131,654 respectively.

(See post on antiquesandartireland.com for September 25).


Wednesday, October 26th, 2011

Roger Moore with that Rolex and Jane Seymour. © 1973 Danjaq, LLC & United Artists Corporation. All rights reserved. (Click on image to enlarge).

JAMES Bond aficionados might be stirred by the lure of his Rolex from the 1973 film Live and Let Die.  Modified by Q the Rolex ref 5513, the most memorable watch to appear in film, comes up at Christie’s sale of important watches in Geneva on November 14.   The submariner watch features a bezel spinning at high  at high speed to cut ropes and chains.

In Live and Let Die it bore an ultra strong magnet designed to neutralise bullets. 007 used it to unzip Ms. Solitaire’s dress.  The Rolex was modified for Bond by the brilliant film production designer Syd Cain and the lot is to be sold together with an original construction drawing and two signed images from the set.  (est: SFr. 200,000 – 400,000 –  Euro 163,000- 327,000).

UPDATE: IT MADE 219,000 SWISS FRANCS, $243,959.


Friday, October 14th, 2011

Jussi Pylkkanen selling the record-breaking 'Kerze' by Richter in London tonight. (Click on image to enlarge).

THERE was a new world record for Gerhard Richter at Christie’s in London on October 14. His Kerze (Candle), painted in 1982, was sold for £10,457,250 after a fierce bidding battle. This was the top price at this evenings auctions of Post-War & Contemporary Art and the Italian Sale.  There were nine artists records.  A life size maquette of Antony Gormley’s iconic Angel of the North (1996) sold for £3,401,250 a world record for the artist at auction. The evening saw record prices for Ahmad Alsoudani, Joe Bradley, Karen Kilimnik, Albert Oehlen, Domenico Gnoli and Arnaldo Pomodoro. Untitled by Martin Kippenberger (1990) sold for £1,329,250 a world record price for a sculpture by the artist at auction.

The combined total for the sales was  £55,630,000.  Ten lots sold for over £1 million and 20 lots sold for over $1 million. The corresponding sales last year realised £38.2 million. The buyer breakdown was 49% Europe including the UK, 38% Americas and 13% Asia.

See video post on antiquesandartireland.com for October 13.


Saturday, October 8th, 2011


Edgar Degas’ Petite danseuse de quatorze ans, one of the most readily recognisable sculptures in the world,  is a highlight at Christie’s Impressionist and Modern art sale in New York  on November 1. Christie’s say the work represents a defining moment in Degas’s career.  With it he broke from academic tradition to embrace a new modernist aesthetic.

Degas first unveiled the original tinted wax and mixed media version of Petite danseuse in 1881 at the Sixth Impressionist Exhibition, where it made an immediate impact. With its unflinchingly naturalistic depiction of a young dancer and its unconventional addition of clothing and hair,  the 40-inch high figure earned instant notoriety among artists and connoisseurs.

Roy Lichtenstein, I Can See the Whole Room…and There's Nobody in It! at Christie's Contemporary and Post War sale in New York on November 8. It is estimated at $25-35 million. UPDATE: This sold for $43.2 million, a new auction record for the artist.

Estimated at $25-35 million, the work is to be on view in London during Frieze Week from October 9-14. There will be a week of exhibitions and auctions dedicated to modern and contemporary art a newly renovated rooms at King St. It will include works by Andy Warhol, Francis Bacon, Pablo Picasso, Gerhard Richter, Roy Lichtenstein, Edgar Degas, Damien Hirst, Joan Miró and Réne Magritte, among others.

UPDATE:  The Degas was the biggest casualty in a disappointing night.  Christie’s sold $140.8 million of works. This was the lowest sales total in two years for Impressionist and Modern art.  No less than 38 per cent of the 82 lots on offer failed to find buyers. The pre-sale estimate was $211.9 million – $304.4 million.

Christie’s Post War and Contemporary evening sale in New York on November 8 features one of the earliest of Roy Lichtenstein’s Pop Art pictures.  I Can See the Whole Room…and There’s Nobody in It!, estimated at $25-35 million, is one of a number of Pop Art masterpieces in the auction.

The Post-War and Contemporary day sale at Christie’s in New York on November 9 includes Andy Warhol’s Dollar Sign being sold by NAMA, Ireland’s bad bank set up to purge risky property loans.  (See antiquesandartireland.com post for September 19).


Monday, October 3rd, 2011

THE  highest quality group of works by L.S. Lowry to come to the market will be sold at Christie’s inaugural evening sale of 20th Century British & Irish Art in London next November 16.  The Lord Forte Collection of 14 piantings is being sold by the descendants of Lord Forte (1908-2007).  The Forte family name is synonymous with the world famous hotel brand which was established by the entrepreneurial magnate Charles Forte who created a worldwide empire of restaurants and hotels from virtually nothing.


The inaugural evening sale of 20th Century British & Irish Art including The Lord Forte Collection of Works by L.S. Lowry realised £23,625,000/ $37,233,000/ €27,664,875, selling 92% by value and 72% by lot.


The top lot was Piccadilly Circus, London, 1960, by L.S. Lowry which achieved £5,641,250/ $8,890,610/ €6,605,904, setting the joint highest world record price for the artist at auction and for the category.

UPDATE:  The sale realized £23,625,000.  The top lot was Piccadilly Circus, London 1960  by L.S. Lowry, which made £5,641,250, a joint highest world record price for the artist at auction.

L.S. Lowry Saturday Afternoon 1941 (estimate: £1,200,000-1,800,000). Click to enlarge. UPDATE: THIS MADE £2,057,250.

L.S. Lowry Fun Fair at Daisy Nook 1953 (estimate: £1,500,000-2,000,000). (Click on image to enlarge). UPDATE: THIS MADE £3,401,250.


Sunday, October 2nd, 2011

The Silver Apples of the Moon by Margaret Macdonald Mackintosh (click on image to enlarge) UPDATE: IT SOLD FOR £115,250

THE Silver Apples of the Moon, a re-discovered watercolour by Margaret Macdonald Mackintosh, features at Christie’s sale of 20th Century Decorative Art & Design in London on October 25.  As with so many Symbolist works, The Silver Apples of the Moon is inspired by poetry, taking its title from W. B. Yeats’ poem  The Song of Wandering Aengus.  This is a twilight scene depicting the poem’s character: “a glimmering girl, With apple blossom in her hair  …..   The silver apples of the moon, The golden apples of the sun.”

Margaret  Macdonald Mackintosh and W. B. Yeats had a common interest in mysticism and the occult, as well as being influenced by the Pre-Raphaelites. The Silver Apples of the Moon is known to have been exhibited in 1912 at the 33rd Annual Exhibition of The Royal Scottish Societies of Watercolours and subsequently in 1913 at the 52nd Exhibition Royal Glasgow Institute of the Fine Arts.

Macdonald Mackintosh exhibited at the 1900 Vienna Secession, where she undoubtedly influenced the Secessionists Gustav Klimt and Josef Hoffmann.  She was wife of pioneering Glasgow architect, interior decorator and painter Charles Rennie Mackintosh. The Silver Apples of the Moon is estimated at £50,000-£70,000.

Here is Yeats’ poem The Song of Wandering Aengus:

I went out to the hazel wood,
Because a fire was in my head,
And cut and peeled a hazel wand,
And hooked a berry to a thread;
And when white moths were on the wing,
And moth-like stars were flicking out,
I dropped the berry in a stream
And caught a little silver trout.
When I had laid it on the floor
I went to blow the fire aflame,
But something rustled on the floor,
And some one called me by my name:
It had become a glimmering girl
With apple blossom in her hair
Who called me by my name and ran
And faded through the brightening air.

Though I am old with wandering
Through hollow lands and hilly lands,
I will find out where she has gone,
And kiss her lips and take her hands;
And walk among long dappled grass,
And pluck till time and times are done
The silver apples of the moon,
The golden apples of the sun.


Friday, September 30th, 2011

Rene Gruau The Red Coat, circa 1950 (£3,000-5,000). (Click on images to enlarge). UPDATE: SOLD FOR £15,000.

THE autumn sale of of 20th Century Decorative Art & Design at Christie’s in London on October 25 includes these iconic original fashion drawings by René Gruau (1909-2004) renowned haute couture illustrator who fashioned the style of the forties and fifties.  He was favoured by  leading fashion houses, including Christian Dior, Balenciaga, Balmain and Lanvin and was commissioned by the American editor Fleur Cowles in the 1950’s for Look and Flair magazines.


UPDATE:  THE collection of René Gruau fashion illustrations easily quadrupled its low estimate. Bidding was fierce in the room, on the phone and online, mostly from European collectors and trade. 

There is contemporary design, Art Nouveau, Modern and Postmodern works in a sale of over 130 lots expected to realise more than £2 million.

Rene Gruau On the beach, circa 1950 (£3,000-5,000) UPDATE: SOLD FOR £5,000

Rene Gruau The Blue Bows, circa 1950 (£3,000 -5,000). UPDATE: SOLD FOR £9,375



Sunday, September 25th, 2011

A pair of 35.77 and 35.61-carat D colour flawless clarity Type IIa round brilliant-cut diamonds, estimated at US$7/9 million each.

This pair of unmounted, round, brilliant cut diamonds weighing 35.77 and 35.61 carats each and graded “D Flawless” will lead Christie’s sale of magnificent jewels in Hong Kong on November 29.  “D Flawless” is the highest accolade for colour and clarity and the Type 11a stones have been estimated at $7-9 million US dollars each.  They were uncovered at two separate mines in southern Africa, the Jwaneng mine in Botswana and the Saxendrift mine in South Africa.

Beginning in October the sale will be toured to New York, Beijing, Shanghai, Tokyo, Singapore, Bangkok, Geneva, Taipei and Hong Kong.

UPDATE: the 35.77 carat stone sold for  $8,275,350 US dollars, the 35.61 carat stone made $8,131,654 US.


Monday, September 19th, 2011

Andy Warhol Dollar Sign ($400,000-600,000) to be sold in New York on November 9. UPDATE: THIS MADE $782,500.

A total of 14 paintings formerly owned by the Irish developer Derek Quinlan – including works by Warhol, William Scott and Paul Henry -  are to be sold by Christie’s in London and New York on behalf of NAMA, the National Asset Management Agency.  Proceeds will be used to pay some of Mr. Quinlan’s debts, which have been taken over by NAMA.

Christie’s announced today that 14 works of art from a Private Collection will be offered from a NAMA debtor “who has co-operated in the disposal”. The most valuable of the works is Dollar Sign by Andy Warhol which will be sold at the Post-War and Contemporary Art auction  in New York on November 9.  It is estimated at $400,000-600,000.  Two other works will be offered in New York, Ace Airport by Alex Katz ($150,000-200,000) and Arches Cover by Robert Motherwell ($60,000-80,000).  UPDATE: Ace Airport was unsold. and Arches Cover made $74,500.

The remaining eleven works will be offered at Christie’s

In Connemara by Paul Henry (£70,000-100,000) to be sold in London on November 17.

sale of 20th Century British and Irish Art on November 17 in London.  They are:  Still life variation 2 by William Scott (£200,000-300,000);  Côte de la Mer, Bretagne by Roderic O’Conor  (£150,000- 250,000); Man doing accounts by Jack Butler Yeats (£120,000-180,000);  In Connemara by Paul Henry (£70,000-100,000);  Still life with candle by William Scott (£60,000-80,000); Sailor Home from Sea by Jack Butler Yeats (£60,000-80,000);  Gateway 4 by Ivon Hitchens (£60,000-80,000); Avington Water No. 1 by Ivon Hitchens (£50,000-80,000); A Quiet Read by Roderic O’Connor (£40,000-60,000); Tinkers Picking Whitethorn by Louis le Brocquy (£40,000-60,000) and Woman by Louis le Brocquy (£40,000 to £60,000).



Still life variation 2 by William Scott (£200,000-300,000) - sold for £385,250

Man doing accounts by Jack Butler Yeats (£120,000-180,000) - sold for £183,650

In Connemara by Paul Henry (£70,000-100,000) - sold for £109,250

Still life with candle by William Scott (£60,000-80,000) - this was unsold.

Sailor Home from Sea by Jack Butler Yeats (£60,000-80,000) - sold for £73,250

Gateway 4 by Ivon Hitchens (£60,000-80,000)   -  sold for £169,250

Avington Water No. 1 by Ivon Hitchens (£50,000-80,000) - sold for £157,250

A Quiet Read by Roderic O’Connor (£40,000-60,000  - sold for £43,250

Tinkers Picking Whitethorn by Louis le Brocquy (£40,000-60,000)  - this was unsold.

Woman by Louis le Brocquy (£40,000 to £60,000) - this was unsold.
Cote de la Mer, Bretagne by Roderic O'Conor (£150,000- 250,000) -  this was unsold.