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    WORLD RECORD PRICE FOR JEWEL SOLD ONLINE

    Wednesday, July 1st, 2020

    A 28.86 carat diamond which made $2,115,000 achieved a world record price for a jewel sold online at Christie’s . The jewels online sale which has just ended achieved 31 bids from Asia and America for the D Colour Type IIA emerald cut stone. The sale brought in $4.1 million with 64% of lots selling at or above their high estimate. Bidders from 27 countries joined in.

    Rahul Kadakia, International Head of Jewelry at Christie’s commented: “The spectacular 28.86 carat D color diamond received immediate attention upon its announcement. The stone possesses a transparency and purity which can only be found in the world’s finest diamonds. The sale of this exceptional stone established the record for a jewel sold in an online-only auction, demonstrating greater client confidence in Christie’s digital ability and online sale platform. We now look forward to the beginning of our live auction season for jewelry spanning all major Christie’s global sale sites led by a US$8m Fancy Intense Blue IF Diamond of 12.11 carats offered in Hong Kong on July 9.”

    Christie’s Jewels sales calendar for July 2020 includes live and online auctions in Geneva, Hong Kong, London, New York, and Paris. 

    THE DIAMOND RING OF 28.86 CARATS, D COLOR, VVS1 CLARITY, TYPE IIA

    HIGHEST VALUE LOT EVER OFFERED AT CHRISTIE’S ONLINE

    Wednesday, May 13th, 2020

    The largest D colour diamond ever offered online will come up at a sale at Christie’s from June 16-30. The spectacular diamond ring of 28.86 carats, D color, VVS1 clarity is estimated at $1-2million. This is the highest valued lot ever offered for sale online at Christie’s. The shape of the stone, the emerald-cut, is one of the oldest diamond shapes with stylistic origins tracing back to the 1500’s. During the Art Deco movement in the 1920’s the cut was modernised based on a shape initially created for emeralds and the style rose to popularity.

    For the first part of 2020 Christie’s has witnessed unprecedented engagement from clients participating in online sales from over 150 countries with new registrants as high as 80% for select sales. In particular, strong results were achieved for Jewels Online sales with sell-through rates ranging from 89% through 99% with overall sale totals achieving double their pre-sale estimates.

    The 28.86 carat diamond

    MORE THAN THE NEWS IS FAKE IN THESE TROUBLING TIMES

    Tuesday, May 5th, 2020

    The trade in fake antiquities is reported on today in the British Museum blog. St John Simpson, Assistant Keeper of the Middle East Department at the museum, recounts a story of trunks consigned from Bahrain to an address in the UK being opened at Heathrow last year. Filled with objects that seemed to have originated in ancient Mesopotamia (modern day Iraq) and dating to 2000BC to 500 BC the cuneiform tablets represented a virtually complete range of basic types known. These range from school texts for trainee scribes, administrative texts, royal inscriptions, mathematical texts and others resembling official documents from temples and public buildings. There was also an inscribed amulet resembling a unique example excavated at the Late Assyrian capital of Nimrud.

    Not one of them was ancient. The clay was all of a similar type, a clue to the fakery, and had been fired in a kiln, proving they came from a modern workshop. Not all the writing made sense and it was the wrong kind of clay for tablets that would have been simply sun dried. Not long after this two more trunks arrived at Heathrow with figurines and animal pottery vessels. “It immediately confirmed our suspicions and made us realise that there are surely more trunks of fakes somewhere out there…” Simpson writes.

    Chillingly he cites this as evidence for a side of the trade in antiquities which is rarely discussed – there are more fakes in circulation than genuine articles. “Faking tablets has been known for over 200 years and they began to appear even before cuneiform had been deciphered. However, this is the first time that we have seen fakes of this particular type – this is a new production line aimed at private individuals with little or no knowledge of the originals”. Caveat emptor.

    A selection of fake figurines. ©Trustees of the British Museum 2020.

    VIRTUAL INTERNATIONAL CHARITY COVID-19 SALE

    Monday, April 27th, 2020

    Sotheby’s and Google are coming together virtually to raise much-needed funds for the International Rescue Committee’s (IRC) work to help mitigate and respond to the spread of COVID-19 in vulnerable communities. An online auction of unique experiences to be enjoyed virtually via Google Meet video calls will run from May 1-8. From intimate conversations and ‘virtual’ drinks to lessons and tutorials all will be offered without reserve. The list of experiences continues to grow, but already includes commitments from leading names in music, film, public affairs, art and design and science.

    There is a chance to record a song with Sting, coffee with Hillary Rodham Clinton, a Shakespearian acting lesson from Sir Patrick Stewart, a conversation with actor/comedian Sacha Baron Cohen, coffee or tea with Madeleine Albright, a conversation about music will all five members of The Strokes, a virtual art work creation with Marc Quinn, a virtual visit to Highclere Castle with the Earl and Countess of Carnarvon, Downton Abbey writer and creator Julian Fellowes and actors Hugh Bonneville and Elizabeth McGovern and a conversation with David Miliband, former British Foreign Secretary and current President of the IRC.

    From distributing meals in New York City to translating public health guidance into numerous languages for refugee and migrant communities across Europe, the IRC response is built on years of experience in supporting people affected by conflict, crisis, and disaster in over 40 countries around the globe. Learn more at www.rescue.org 

    NOT FOR PROFIT CHARITY AUCTION FOR NHS AT BONHAMS

    Friday, April 24th, 2020

    Telephone/iPhone from Then and Now by Irish artist Michael Craig Martin is one of the lots at The Blue Auction, an online sale by Bonhams in aid of NHS Charities Covid-19 urgent appeal. The not for profit online auction runs until April 29 with all profits going to the NHS appeal. Leading actors, musicians, artists and sportspeople have all pledged lots. The catalogue is online.

    UPDATE: THE BLUE Auction raised £405,300

    MICHAEL CRAIG-MARTIN R.A. (IRISH, BORN 1941)
    Telephone/iPhone, from ‘Then and Now’. UPDATE: THIS SOLD FOR £3,800

    TIME ONLINE JEWELLERY, SILVER AND WATCHES AT O’REILLY’S

    Thursday, April 23rd, 2020

    A timed online only auction of jewellery, watches and silver by O’Reilly’s of Francis St., Dublin is running until April 24 at 1 pm. The catalogue and details of how to bid through easyliveauction.com are online. This contemporary jewellery suite by Alison Bradley of London is lot 48 and estimated at 800-1,200.

    Contemporary jewellery suite by Alison Bradley, London. UPDATE: THE CLOSING BID ON THIS LOT WAS 800

    YOUR NAME ON A CHARACTER IN A NOVEL

    Wednesday, April 22nd, 2020

    Your name as a character in a Jeffrey Archer novel is up for grabs at auction. Whether as a hero or villain is not specified. This is lot number one at Cheffins charitable auction to support The Addenbrooke’s Charitable Trust Covid-19 Fast Response Fund. “I am delighted to be able to support Cheffins in this benevolent auction by offering to name a character in my next book after the highest bidder. But remember, only I’ll decide whether you’re a goodie or a baddie…! Addenbrooke’s Charitable Trust is an organisation that is close to my heart as my wife Mary is Vice-President”., the author said. The timed online 40 lots sale, which also includes a private dinner with the Lord and Lady Mayoress at the Mansion House in London for 16 guests, runs to 9 pm on April 24.

    Former Conservative politician, prisoner, international best-selling author and local Cambridgeshire resident, Jeffrey Archer  UPDATE: THE HAMMER PRICE WAS 2,400stg

    LUTTRELSTOWN SALE RECALLED AT BIRR ONLINE AUCTION

    Monday, April 20th, 2020

    A hardback edition of Christie’s catalogue for the 1983 Luttrelstown Castle contents auction is among the lots at the online only sale of Irish interest books, journals, periodicals, pamphlets and journals by Purcell Auctioneers of Birr on April 22. It is estimated at 30-50. Among the contents of Luttrelstown was a carpet made for Czar Nicholas I of Russia. David and Victoria Beckham married at Luttrelstown in 1999. There are 598 lots in the sale including a second edition of Finnegan’s Wake by James Joyce and Humanity Dick by Shevawn Lynham. The catalogue is online at easyliveauction.com

    Contents of Luttrellstown Castle Sale 26th to the 28th September. 1983

    VIRTUAL VISIT TO MONET’S GARDEN AT GIVERNY

    Friday, April 10th, 2020

    Royal Academy curator Ann Dumas introduces Claude Monet’s garden at Giverny in Normandy for the Painting the Modern Garden, Monet to Matisse exhibition in London in 2016.

    ICONIC JEWELS AT CHRISTIE’S ONLINE SALE

    Wednesday, April 8th, 2020

    Iconic jewels from leading houses feature at Christie’s New York jewels online sale from April 13-24. The sale features work from Boucheron, Bulgari, Cartier, David Webb, Graff, Tiffany, Van Cleef and Arpels and Verdura. More than 160 lots are on offer with bidding starting at below $2,000. The catalogue is online.  

    VAN CLEEF & ARPELS MALACHITE AND GOLD ‘VINTAGE ALHAMBRA’ NECKLACE ($6,000-8,000)