Sotheby’s Paris to Auction Private Collection of Vintage Martin Margiela

TREASURE TROVE: As prices for vintage soar, demand for one designer’s work shows no sign of flagging: Sotheby’s Paris said Tuesday that it would hold an exhibition and online auction this fall dedicated to Martin Margiela.
Nearly 220 items of clothing and accessories from a private collection will go under the hammer between Sept. 19 and Oct. 1. Among the top lots is a men’s vest assembled from playing cards from Maison Martin Margiela’s Artisanal collection. One of only five of its kind, it is estimated to fetch between 8,000 euros and 10,000 euros.

A waistcoat made with playing cards from Maison Martin Margiela’s spring 2006 Artisanal collection. 
Courtesy

Among the other rare items offered for sale are down coats from fall 1999, a linen jacket from the Stockman collection of spring 1997, and a top made of bow ties, also from the Artisanal line. The items will be on show from Sept. 20 to 25, coinciding with Paris Fashion Week.
Coming on the heels of two major Paris retrospectives last year — at the Palais Galliera fashion museum and Les Arts Décoratifs — the sale coincides with a double anniversary: the birth of Maison Martin Margiela in 1989 and the departure of its reclusive

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Sotheby’s Paris Preps Fourth Auction of Books From Pierre Bergé’s Personal Library

BERGE’S BOOKENDS: If reading is the key to enlightenment, Pierre Bergé sure had a lot of books to spark his intelligence.
Sotheby’s Paris will hold the fourth auction for a selection of books from Bergé’s personal collection on Dec. 14. Several choice lots are on view at Sotheby’s New York office through Saturday, and they illustrated the myriad interests of the late French business titan: botany, gardens, philosophy, activism and more. The upcoming auction is expected to drum up between 5 million euros and 6 million euros, according to a Sotheby’s spokeswoman.
Literature, the 19th century and music were among the areas of interest covered in prior sales, with the first auction having been held nearly three years ago.
The December sale includes such highlights as Bartholomeus Anglicus’ “Le Propriétaire des choses,” circa 1486. This complete copy of a major medieval encyclopedia is illustrated with 19 large woodcuts, all hand-colored at that time. Bidders will also find Gustave Flaubert’s “Salammbô” from 1863, a first edition that was inscribed by Flaubert to the composer Hector Berlioz.
Another reading relic is Leonhart Fuchs’ “De historia stirpium commentarii insignes” from 1542 that is considered to be the founding treatise of modern botany. The auction house will also

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Banksy Painting Self-Destructs After Fetching $1.4 Million at Sotheby’s

The British street artist Banksy appeared to pull off one of his most spectacular pranks on Friday night, with a frame that shredded his “Girl With Balloon” after it sold.
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At Sotheby’s, ASAP Rocky Breaks Out of the Box

The rapper and style muse put himself through a series of physical challenges before unleashing his new album, “Testing.”
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Sotheby’s Taps Caroline Issa for Next ‘Contemporary Curated’ Sale

COLLECTING FANTASIES: Caroline Issa has channeled her fantasies in the artworks she has curated for the upcoming Sotheby’s “Contemporary Curated” sale in London.
The fashion director and chief executive officer of Tank magazine is joining the likes of Erdem Moralioglu, Anya Hindmarch and Michael Clark, who have all participated as guest curators in the ongoing initiative by Sotheby’s.
Issa said the collaboration with Sotheby’s “has been a mixture of education and rediscovery, finding things that catch one’s eye, seeking out unusual or rare finds, and looking up the artists or historical pieces that were new to me,” said Issa, who has always dabbled in art.
Tank magazine has had art as one of its key subjects, while her aunt Rose Issa is known as one of the first curators of contemporary Iranian and Middle Eastern art.
“Art, just as much as fashion, often inspires an entire issue of the magazine, a photo shoot we conceive and can be a springboard for a brand campaign or a look. It can also confuse, madden and induce euphoria,” she said.
The pieces Issa chose for the auction are a mix of photography, watercolor paintings, sculpture and other mixed media pieces.
“Some of the works spoke to me because they

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Sotheby’s to Exhibit and Auction Mario Testino’s Personal Art Collection

ART FOR AUCTION: London’s Sotheby’s will mount an exhibition and auction of works from Mario Testino’s personal art collection in September.
“I always wanted to collect things that weren’t like me,” Testino said. “I’ve always been excited by everything that makes me look at something differently.”
The Peruvian photographer has curated a showcase of more than 300 works from his own private collection. This includes paintings, photographs, works on paper and sculptures. The starting estimates of the lots up for live auction range from 10,000 pounds for “System of Display, D” by Adam Pendleton, to 800,000 pounds for Tauba Auerbach’s “Untitled.” Also to be auctioned are works by the likes of Wolfgang Tillmans, Gilbert & George and Anselm Kiefer.
“Personal and historical memory are common conceptual motifs in the works here,” said Brandei Estes, Sotheby’s head of photographs in London. “Inviting us to challenge our common preconceptions of what we understand to be true and real. The best art affords us a journey and exploration into new ways of thinking and understanding the world around us.”
The exhibition, titled “Shake It Up,” will run from Sept. 8 to 13 following a showcase in Los Angeles last week. Sotheby’s will later auction a selection of those

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Frank Everett Returns to Sotheby’s in Expanded Role

Frank Everett is back at Sotheby’s.
Everett, a pied piper of New York’s jewelry scene — oft spotted at glitzy events at the invitation of bejeweled clients — has returned to the auction house after a brief stint as Graff’s U.S. sales president.
Everett’s homecoming sees him taking up new responsibilities as senior vice president, sales director for Sotheby’s luxury division. While previously only responsible for jewelry, he will now help expand the auction house’s luxury group — including jewelry, watches, wine, cars and “experiences.” Sotheby’s is also looking to get into the fashion game and has begun exploring how sales might include clothing, fashion jewelry and accessories.
The auction house officially unveiled a designated luxury division earlier this year. Before that, its component departments operated autonomously.
Said Everett in a statement: “After briefly turning back to retail I realized my talents and my passion truly align with auction. My favorite part of the job at Sotheby’s revolves around telling the stories about the works of art and the people who cared for them — from the personal collection of Mrs. Paul Mellon to the fascinating history revealed in the Stotesbury Emerald.
“I’m excited that my role will now cross the entire Luxury & Lifestyle

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Sotheby’s to Auction Vivien Leigh’s Personal Belongings

Vivien Leigh’s beloved belongings are to be put up for auction.
Jewelry, dresses and accessories once belonging to film queen, best known for her starring role as Scarlett O’Hara in “Gone With the Wind,” are to be sold by Sotheby’s on Sept. 26 in London.
Each of the 250-plus lots are estimated to sell for between 100 pounds to 100,000 pounds.
Included in the survey are a gold ring from Leigh’s second husband Laurence Olivier, a diamond bow pendant, her wig worn for the film “A Streetcar Named Desire,” a sterling silver cigarette box and a “Gone With the Wind” script.
Harry Dalmeny, Sotheby’s U.K. chairman, commented on the sale: “This is our chance to discover the real, and unexpected, Vivien Leigh.
“We’re all guilty of confusing our favorite actresses with the heroines they portray, of blurring Vivien’s identity with that of Scarlett O’Hara or Blanche DuBois. But behind the guise of the most glamorous and talked-about woman of her age, we find a fine art collector, patron, even a bookworm, who was the intellectual equal of the literati, artists and aesthetes she counted among her coterie.
“Her private collection does not disappoint. Vivien approached the decoration of her homes as if she were designing a

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Sotheby’s to Auction Santiago Barberi Gonzalez’s New York Estate

Artworks from the estate of Santiago Barberi Gonzalez are to be auctioned this fall.
On Sept. 27, Sotheby’s will hold a sale of artworks that were kept in Barberi Gonzales’ New York residence.
Barberi Gonzalez, the president and creative director for the Nancy Gonzalez label of luxury, exotic skin accessories, passed away on March 24 at the age of 40.
“People collect for a variety of different reasons. His was not about ‘Let me find the most commercial piece that will go up the most in value.’ It was more about, ‘Let me find the pieces that reflect me the most,’” said Sotheby’s head of private sales for contemporary art, David Schrader, who is overseeing the sale. Belongings from Barberi Gonzalez’s many other residences will not be included in the sale.
Sotheby’s auction, to be held in two sessions over the course of a single day, will highlight the fashion executive’s passion for the arts.
Schrader was among those advising Barberi Gonzalez on his collection. While Schrader only joined the auction firm in February, making the leap from the financial sector, the two struck up a quick friendship. “He worked with a number of people. As a collector, we had lunch every six to eight

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Basquiat Painting Sells For Record $110.5 Million At Sotheby’s Auction

A Jean-Michel Basquiat painting just sold for the highest price ever paid at auction for an American artist’s work: a whopping $ 110.5 million.

The 72-by-68-inch acrylic and oil stick “Untitled” painting of a skull by the late graffiti artist was the subject of 10 minutes of intense bidding Thursday night at a Sotheby’s auction in New York City. The opening bid of $ 57 million drew gasps from the audience, Bloomberg reported. Sotheby’s had estimated it would sell for at least $ 60 million.

It was the sixth-highest amount ever paid at auction for any work of art, putting Basquiat in the rarefied company of the celebrated Spanish artist Pablo Picasso. Only 10 works have sold for more than $ 100 million.

The successful bidder, Japanese art collector Yusaku Maezawa, an e-commerce billionaire, announced in an Instagram post showing him standing next to the work that he had “just won this masterpiece.”

“When I first encountered this painting, I was struck with so much excitement and gratitude for my love of art,” he added. “I want to share that experience with as many people as possible.”

Collectors Jerry and Emily Spiegel bought the painting for $ 19,000 in 1984, when Basquiat was virtually unknown and had never been publicly exhibited. Basquiat died of a heroin overdose in 1988 at the age of 27 after painting for seven years. He created the skull in 1982. It’s considered one of his most important works still in private hands.

Maezawa said he plans to loan the work to institutions around the world before making it one of the centerpieces of a museum he has created in his hometown of Chiba, Japan.

The businessman last year bought another 1982 Basquiat painting of a devil at a Christie’s auction for $ 57.3 million, which at the time was the most ever paid for a work by the artist.

The Basquiat was part of a Sotheby’s Contemporary Art Evening Auction of American post-war paintings that also featured works by such artists as Roy Lichtenstein, Andy Warhol and Robert Rauschenberg.

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Sotheby’s Geneva to Debut Regular Fine Jewelry Sales

GEMS IN GENEVA: Sotheby’s Geneva will begin holding regular jewelry auctions from June this year. The auction house will debut the new “Fine Jewels” sales on June 1 with a selection of 82 creations by Geneva-based Italian designer Michele Della Valle, known for his colorful works featuring flora and fauna.
The sales, to be held at Sotheby’s new Geneva premises, will complement the house’s bi-annual “Magnificent Jewels and Noble Jewels” high jewelry auctions, offering collectors the chance to acquire fine jewelry pieces at a broader range of price points, Sotheby’s said.
Key pieces from the first sale have guide prices ranging from $ 3,000 to $ 50,000.

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Sotheby’s to Auction Off Record-Breaking Diamond Earrings

ROCK STARS: Set to represent one of the jewelry world’s most high-profile splits, the most valuable pair of diamond earrings ever to appear at auction is due to go under the hammer as separate lots at Sotheby’s upcoming spring sale, “Magnificent Jewels and Noble Jewels,” according to a statement from the house.
Dangling from the earrings are the pear-shaped, type IIb ‘Apollo Blue,’ billed as the largest internally flawless, fancy vivid blue diamond ever to be offered at auction – weighing 14.54 carats – and the ultra rare type IIa ‘Artemis Pink,’ weighing 16 carats, described as the most chemically pure diamond type in existence, boasting exceptional optical transparency.
The estimates for the lots, which will be auctioned off on May 16 at the Mandarin Oriental in Geneva, Switzerland, stand at $ 38 to $ 50 million and $ 12.5 to $ 18 million, respectively.
Sotheby’s Hong Kong earlier this month set a new world auction record for any diamond or jewel when the Pink Star, a 59.6-carat oval mixed-cut pink diamond – billed as the largest internally flawless fancy vivid pink diamond that the Gemological Institute of America has ever graded – fetched a whopping $ 71.2 million. Acquired by Hong Kong jeweler Chow Tai Fook, the rock has since been renamed the CTF Pink Star.
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Naturally, Sotheby’s First-Ever Erotic Art Auction Broke Viewing Records

A look at the NSFW collection.

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Gustav Mahler £4.5m manuscript breaks record at Sotheby’s

A handwritten manuscript by Gustav Mahler fetches a record-breaking £4.5m at auction.
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Sotheby’s to Auction Historic Grey Pearl Necklace

ON THE BLOCK: One of the world’s rarest pearl necklaces will return to the auction circuit this October. Sotheby’s will auction “The Cowdray Pearls” at its Oct. 7 Hong Kong Magnificent Jewels sale, and estimates that the Cartier-signed piece could fetch between $ 4.5 and $ 7 million.
The necklace itself is composed of 42 extremely rare gray saltwater pearls, and the auction firm says it is a near-impossible occurrence to find that many grey pearls that create a proper match. The necklace is accompanied by a pair of matching earrings, with mounts also by Cartier.
Chin Yeow Quek, deputy chairman of Sotheby’s Asia and chairman of international jewelry, Asia, said of the lot: “Natural saltwater gray pearls are rarely seen at auction and the present necklace, strung with 42 superb gray pearls and of aristocratic provenance, is arguably the greatest of its kind in existence. This is an extraordinary collecting opportunity for pearl and jewellery connoisseurs around the world.”
Sotheby’s first auctioned the necklace in 1937. The piece originally belonged to the Viscountess Cowdray, Lady Pearson, who died in 1932.
The auction firm also holds the record for selling the most expensive natural gray pearl at auction, with the December 2012 sale of the Wrightsman Pearl brooch for

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Sotheby’s to Auction Haute Couture

SOME LIKE IT HAUTE: “Every Dress Tells a Story: Couture from The Dider Ludot Collection” marks the first time Sotheby’s Paris will be auctioning couture pieces. On July 8, some 150 garments and accessories from Ludot’s private collection will be on the block.
A famed fashion collector, Ludot assembled his cache over 40 years. He has selected items created between 1924 and the early 2000s by such celebrated couturiers as Paul Poiret, Yohji Yamamoto, Madame Grès, Christian Dior, and Cristóbal Balenciaga.
Lots include delicate pink feather dress made for fashion muse, Francine Weisweiller, by Balenciaga in 1965, as well as late model Bettina Graziani’s black satin evening outfit created by Azzedine Alaïa in 1992.
The collection is open for public viewing from July 3 to July 7 at the auction house at 76 Rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré.
 

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