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    Monday, April 4th, 2022
    Interior of Anne H. Bass’s New York City Home
    From left to right: Rothko, Untitled (Shades of Red), Monet, Le Parlement, soleil couchant,  Rothko, No. 1
    © 2022 Visko Hatfield 

    The Collection of Anne H. Bass featuring a selection of 12 magnificent artworks by leading 19th and 20th century artists including Degas, Monet, and Rothko will come up at Christie’s in New York during Marquee Week in May. The most important American collection to arrive on the market this season comes to Christie’s directly from the interior of Mrs. Bass’s impeccably designed New York City home. These 12 works form a singularly compelling narrative that speaks to both the power of connoisseurship and the enduring relevance and radicality that characterize the greatest works of art. Presented as a dedicated single-owner evening sale, The Collection of Anne H. Bass is expected to exceed $250 million.

    CLAUDE MONET (1840-1926) – Peupliers au bord de l’Epte, automne ($30-50 million)


    Friday, March 25th, 2022
    Rahul Kadakia, Christie’s International Head of Jewellery, with The Rock. UPDATE: THIS MADE CHF21,681,000 / $21,894,082 / €20,722,133

    The Rock, the largest white diamond ever to appear at auction, will come up at Christie’s in Geneva on May 11. Mined and polished in South Africa over two decades ago the 228.31 carat pear-shaped diamond is estimated at $20-30 million. Graded by the Gemmological Institute of America as G colour, VS1 clarity, The Rock is accompanied by a letter from the GIA stating that it is the largest existing D-Z colour pear-shaped diamond ever graded by the laboratory. The previous auction record for the largest white diamond was a 163.41 carat gem, which sold at Christie’s Geneva in November 2017 for US$ 33,701,000.

    Rahul Kadakia, Christie’s International Head of Jewellery said: “The Rock will join the very best of legendary gemstones which have passed through Christie’s global salerooms since 1766. The market for diamonds is particularly vibrant and we are confident that this sensational gemstone will capture the attention of collectors across the globe this Spring season.”


    Wednesday, March 23rd, 2022
    Sir John Lavery – The Croquet Party 

    There was a new world record for Sir John Lavery at Christie’s Modern British and Irish Art evening sale in London last night. The Croquet Party, which was making its auction debut, sold for £2,922,000. The auction achieved £25.5 million and attracted registered bidders from 14 countries across three continents. According to Christie’s this demonstrates continued growth in the international collector base for the category.

    Bridget Riley’s Gala from the curving colour series was the top lot. It made £4,362,000, a new world auction record for the artist. No less than 60% of lots sold above the top estimate.

    (See post on for March 8, 2022)


    Tuesday, March 22nd, 2022

    Poised to be the most expensive 20th century artwork ever at auction Shot Sage Blue Marilyn by Andy Warhol wilL lead Christie’s marquee week sales in New York in May. The estimate is in the region of $200 million. Shot Sage Blue Marilyn is a definitive work. Warhol first began creating silkscreens of Marilyn Monroe following her death in August 1962. He would create reproductions of her visage multiple times in bright colours, often with the features somewhat askew. In 1964, he developed a more refined and time-intensive screen printing technique, antithetical to the mass production he was best known for, and created a limited number of portraits of the Hollywood legend. This technique was so difficult that he never returned to it again. The artwork has been exhibited widely at leading institutions including the Guggenheim Museum in New York, Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris, Tate Modern in London, Centro de Arte Reina Sofía in Madrid, Royal Academy of Arts in London, Museum Ludwig in Cologne, Neue Nationalgalerie in Berlin, Chicago Museum of Contemporary Art, the Netherland’s, Stedelijk van Abbemuseum, Fondation Beyeler, Riehen and the Pasadena Art Museum.

    Shot Sage Blue Marilyn is from the Thomas and Doris Ammann Foundation Zurich. All proceeds will benefit the foundation which is dedicated to improving the lives of children the world over by establishing support systems centred on providing healthcare and educational programs. This single painting will constitute the highest grossing philanthropic auction since The Collection of Peggy and David Rockefeller in 2018.


    Friday, March 18th, 2022
    Antonio Canova (Possagno 1757-1822 Venice) – Maddalena Giacente (Recumbent Magdalene) marble, 1819-1822

    Antonio Canova’s (1757-1822) Maddalena Giacente (Recumbent Magdalene) 1819-1822, the Italian titan’s lost masterpiece completed shortly before his death, will be a highlight at Christie’s during Classic Week in London this summer. The sculpture of Mary Magdalene in a state of ecstasy was commissioned by the Prime Minister of the day, Lord Liverpool (1812-1827). Scholars have searched for the work for decades. In November 1819 Thomas Moore, the Irish poet and lyricist, recorded that Canova: “took me to see his last Magdalen, which is divine: she is lying recumbent in all the abandonment of grief; and the expression on her face and the beauty of her figure … are perfection”. The sculpture passed to Lord Liverpool’s brother and after his death it came up at Christie’s in 1852. It was acquired by Lord Ward whose son sold it at a moment of personal tragedy to the carpet manufacturer Sir Herbert Smith. The attribution to Canova seems to have been lost at this stage. It changed hands as a “classical figure” in 1938 and was purchased by Violet van der Elst, a campaigner who was instrumental in bringing about the abolition of the death penalty in England. It was in the garden in her house at Addison Road, Kensington and was sold with the house several times. In 2002 it was sold in a garden statuary sale and the attribution to Canova has only been established recently. It is now estimated at £5,000,000-8,000,000.  The earliest known photograph of the marble was taken in 1857 at the Manchester Art Treasures exhibition which was opened by Prince Albert.


    Thursday, March 10th, 2022
    Courtyard lounge, ground floor, Givenchy’s Hotel d’Orrouer with Picasso’s Faun with a Spear. Courtesy, Christie’s Images Ltd.

    The first highlights from the collection of Hubert de Givenchy were unveiled by Christie’s today. They include Woman Walking by Alberto Giacometti (€20-30 million); Passage of the Migratory Bird by Joan Miro (€2.5 – €3.5 million) and Faun with a Spear by Pablo Picasso (€1.5 – 2 million). With over 1,200 lots dating from the 17th to the 20th century, this collection features a remarkable gathering of nearly 800 pieces of French and European furniture, including many masterpieces of classical furniture from the French Regency period to the Neoclassical period and onwards.

    In the decoration of his homes, Hubert de Givenchy always considered the furniture in constant dialogue with the works of art, both ancient and modern. Alongside numerous major sculptures and paintings by old masters such as Hubert Robert, the collection includes several masterpieces of modern art: from the couturier’s friend and collaborator Alberto Giacometti’s Woman Walking, a key painting by Joan Miró never before presented on the market, several works by Alberto’s brother, Diego Giacometti and more contemporary works by Claudio Bravo and François-Xavier Lalanne.

    Already underway in Palm Beach, a selection of works from the collection will be previewed in several cities including New York, Los Angeles and Hong Kong. Sales will take place in Paris from June 14-17 and online from June 8-23.

    (See post on for February 2, 2022)

    Joan Miró – Passage of the Migratory Bird


    Monday, March 7th, 2022
    RICHARD AVEDON (1923–2004)
    Bob Dylan, Folk Singer, New York City, 1963

    This gelatin silver print from 1967 of Bob Dylan by Richard Avedon is estimated at $40,000-60,000. It comes up at an online sale of photographs from the collection of actor Richard Gere at Christie’s from March 23 – April 7. The 156-lot sale offers works spanning the entire history of the medium, including 19th century masters Gustave Le Gray and Carleton Watkins, to recognised early 20th century figures such as Edward Weston, Tina Modotti and Alfred Stieglitz, through notable contemporary icons of today including Richard Avedon, Diane Arbus, Irving Penn, Sally Mann, Robert Mapplethorpe and Herb Ritts. Many of the works were acquired directly from the artists, many of whom Mr. Gere counted among his close friends. The sale carries a low estimate of nearly $2 million.

    Richard Gere said: “These photographs arrived in my life because I felt something for them. They have real soul, a humanity, a generosity – it doesn’t matter what the technique is. You know, you listen to an early recording of a great opera singer from 1902, when they just started recording – it’s scratchy, it’s trebly. But the quality of that voice, the soul of the voice, it still hits you hard in your heart. Most of the photographers here are not that interested in technique. And the ones that are interested in technique were coming from a deep, personal place, with a point of view, and understanding of the universe.”


    Wednesday, March 2nd, 2022
    THOMAS MORAN (1837-1926) – A Passing Shower in the Yellowstone Cañyon. UPDATE: THIS MADE $1,740,000

    Stewards of the West: The Knobloch Collection, a dedicated live auction of Western American Art comes up at Christie’s in New York on May 18. The late entrepreneur and conservationist Carl W. Knobloch, Jr. built a striking private assemblage of Western American painting and sculpture that reflects his deep commitment to the region, while developing a reputation as a leading connoisseur and collector in the field. Off the walls of the family’s Wyoming residence, the collection is notable for its exceptional quality and features the leading artists of the genre such as Thomas Moran, Albert Bierstadt, Frederic Remington and Henry F. Farny, among others. Proceeds of the auction will benefit The Knobloch Family Foundation which is committed to grant making that ensures the conservation of natural ecosystems. With approximately 75 lots, the collection is expected to make in the region of $15 to $23 million.


    Thursday, February 24th, 2022
    Lucas Cranach the Elder (1472-1553)The Nymph of the Spring

    Lucas Cranach the Elder’s (1472-1553) The Nymph of the Spring and Jan Jansz den Uyl’s (1595-1639) Pewter jug and silver tazza on a table will be highlights at Christie’s Old Masters evening sale in London on July 7. The paintings are from the collection of Cecil and Hilda Lewis who supported wide-ranging charitable and cultural endeavours from the V&A and National Gallery to the Weizman Institute of Science. The Nymph of the Spring, painted around 1540,  is estimated at £6,000,000-8,000,000,  Pewter jug and silver tazza on a table is estimated at £2,500,000-3,500,000.


    Thursday, February 10th, 2022
    Francis Bacon – Triptych 1986-7. UPDATE: THIS SOLD FOR £38,459,206,

    ONE of Francis Bacon’s last great paintings, Triptych 1986-7, will come to auction for the first time at Christie’s 20th/21st Century on March 1. The London evening sale is a key auction within the 20/21 Shanghai to London series. This triptych, an extraordinary meditation on the passage of time and the solitude of the human condition, is estimated at £35-50 million. The suited figure in the left-hand panel is based on a press clipping of the US President Woodrow Wilson, stepping forward as he was leaving the Treaty of Versailles negotiations in 1919; the right-hand panel was inspired by a photograph of Leon Trotsky’s study taken after his assassination in 1940. In the centre sits a figure resembling Bacon’s then-partner John Edwards, his pose reminiscent of the artist’s beloved George Dyer in the haunting eulogy Triptych August 1972 (Tate, London). Widely exhibited throughout its lifetime, Triptych 1986-7 was most recently seen in the Centre Georges Pompidou’s acclaimed exhibition ‘Bacon en Toutes Lettres’(2019-20).

    The year after its creation, Triptych 1986-7 was one of 22 paintings shown at the Central House of Artists’ Tretyakov Gallery in Moscow: the first exhibition by a well-known artist from the West to take place in Soviet Russia. Many viewers did not recognise the Trotsky photograph as a source, but to those who did, the painting’s presence heralded a sea-change in the country’s political attitudes towards art: the Iron Curtain, notably, would fall the next year. It is one of a rare number of large-scale triptychs by Bacon to remain in private hands. Between 1962 and 1991, the artist produced just 28 such works measuring 78 by 58 inches, nearly half of which reside in museums worldwide.