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    Monday, August 22nd, 2022
    A set of 10 c1754-56 chairs attributed to Benjamin Goodison from the Ann and Gordon Getty Collection. © 2022 Visko Hatfield for Christie’s. UPDATE: THESE MADE $529,200

    A magnificent set of 10 chairs, described by Christie’s as the apogee of Kentian design and the ultimate flowering of the Palladian aesthetic, will come to auction in New York on October 20.  They are by no means the most expensive lot from the Ann and Gordon Getty Collection to be sold over four evening and day auctions in New York from October 20 but there is an Irish connection. The c1754-56 chairs attributed to Benjamin Goodison are thought to be after a design by the architect designer William Kent.  The delicately pierced backs and Vitruvian scroll aprons refine the Palladian style promoted by the foremost classical furniture designer of the day.

    It was his friendship with Richard Boyle, 3rd Earl of Burlington and 4th Earl of Cork (1694-1753)  that promoted Kent as a painter, architect and designer. Known as the architect earl Boyle is credited with bringing Palladian architecture to Ireland and Britain. Major projects include Burlington House, Piccadilly, London (now home to the Royal Academy), Westminster School, Chiswick House and Northwick Park.  Boyle’s professional skill as an architect was extraordinary as an Anglo-Irish aristocrat. Andrea Palladio’s Four Books of Architecture accompanied him on a tour of the Veneto in 1719.  Back in London he employed the Scottish architect Colen Campbell for Burlington House and William Kent was assigned the interiors. The courtyard prominently sited in Piccadilly was the first major executed statement of Neo-Palladianism. Thanks to the Earl of Cork Palladian architecture with its Roman and Greek influences had arrived in this part of the world. Meantime Kent’s Palladian residences with their fully designed interiors became a template for his contemporaries and subsequent generations.  The chairs are estimated at €490,000-€780,000.

    The Getty dining room in San Francisco © Christie’s Images Limited 2022

    The Ann and Gordon Getty Collection sale will offer almost 1,500 lots from their San Francisco residence, considered one of the finest interiors in the world. There are decorative and fine art masterpieces of unrivalled quality and provenance. The New York sales will be complemented by six online auctions of textiles, handbags and jewellery between October 10-25.Leading lots include  American painting, English and European furniture and Asian works of art. There are Impressionist pictures by  Claude Monet and Edgar Degas and Old Master paintings and drawings by  Bernardo Bellotto and Jean-Antoine Watteau.Beginning in September highlights will be exhibited in Shanghai, London, Los Angeles, Paris and New York. Twelve jewels by JAR from the estate of Ann Getty (who died in 2020) made $5.9 million at a sale of Magnificent Jewels by Christie’s in New York in June.Proceeds will benefit the couples foundation for the arts, which is dedicated to supporting arts and science organisations. Beneficiaries will include the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, San Francisco Opera, San Francisco Symphony, University of San Francisco, Berkeley Geochronology Centre and the Leakey Foundation.