Castello de Castagneto Po, the childhood home of French first lady Carla Bruni-Sarkozy is up on the market again, and with 40 rooms and 175 acres of lavish landscape, this is one fairy tale home.
A Rembrandt masterpiece is expected to fetch up to Â£25 million ($41 million) when it goes under the hammer at Christie’s on December 8, 2009.
The painting could break the record price for a Rembrandt, which currently stands at Â£19,800,000 paid for Portrait Of A Lady Aged 62, in December 2003.
The painting, titled “Portrait of a man, half-length, with his arms akimbo,” was painted in 1658 and has been unseen in public for nearly 40 years.
The famed art auctioneer has signed a lease for 235,000 square feet of warehouse space in Brooklyn. Christie’s will store fine art in the waterfront building.
Christieâ€™s expects to occupy the six-story warehouse building early next year, according to a company spokeswoman.
The company would not say how much it paid for the space, but commercial brokers estimated costs at $8 to $10 per square foot.
A second group of artworks from the collection of the late fashion designer Yves Saint Laurent and his partner Pierre Berge is expected to fetch up to 4 million euros ($5.7 million) when it appears for sale in November.
Christieâ€™s Internationalâ€™s YSL Part II sale, held in collaboration with Pierre Berge, will take place at its Paris auction rooms on November 17, 18 and 19.
Almost 1,200 pieces will be offered, about half of them from the coupleâ€™s coastal retreat, Chateau Gabriel, at Benerville near Deauville in Normandy.
A five-carat cushion-cut pink diamond known as “The Vivid Pink” is set to lead Christie’s Hong Kong sale this fall.
According to a media release, the Vivid Pink is the largest potentially flawless fancy-vivid-pink diamond ever offered for sale at auction.
Property of a private collector and set in a ring by renowned jeweler Laurence Graff, the diamond is expected to fetch between $5-$7 million.
A giant gem will hit the auction block in New York this autumn with the sale of the 32-carat emerald-cut Annenberg diamond, which is expected to fetch as much at $5 million.
The flawless ring-mounted diamond, owned by philanthropist Lee Annenberg, widow of publishing magnate Walter Annenberg, leads the auction house’s magnificent jewels sale on October 21.
“Gems of this size are extremely rare, and their presence on the market is always an important event in the world of diamonds,” said Rahul Kadakia, Christie’s head of jewelry.
A painting by Chinese artist Sanyu fetched a record HK$42.1 ($5.4 million) at a Hong Kong auction as bidders fought for lots, betting that the worst of Asiaâ€™s art-market slump is over.
Of the 38 lots offered last week at Christieâ€™s Internationalâ€™s top selection of Asian art, 34 sold, raising a combined HK$181.7 million, according to the London-based auction house.
Thatâ€™s about twice the companyâ€™s presale estimate, said Kate Malin, a Christieâ€™s spokeswoman.
Christieâ€™s is offering a rare, 100-million-year-old petrified shell of an extinct Canadian marine creature.
This fossilized ammonite is expected to fetch $70,000 at an auction next week in France.
The fossil has naturally occurring iridescent colors created when the original shell substance turned into a mineral called aragonite.
A small brown leather armchair once owned by Yves Saint Laurent has reportedly sold for Â£19.4 million (nearly $28 million), making it the most expensive piece of 20th-century design to ever be auctioned.
The armchair, by Irish designer Eileen Gray was only expected to reach around Â£3 mllion at Christie’s in Paris. It was bought by specialist Paris art gallery Robert and Cheska Vallois.
The unique piece – known as the “dragons’ armchair because of the ornate sculptures on its sweeping armrests – was created between 1917 and 1919 by Miss Gray.
Cai Mingchao, a Chinese antique collector and an adviser to the National Treasures Fund, said he placed the winning bid for the two Qing bronzes auctioned in Paris last week and won’t be paying.
The National Treasures Fund is a group backed by the Chinese Ministry of Culture that pools donations to retrieve relics abroad.
Christie’s had proceeded with the sale of the Qing bronzes, severed from a water clock by marauding British and French troops from the Summer Palace in 1860, despite protests from China’s art advocacy groups, patriots and the foreign ministry.
The private collection amassed by the fashion designer and his partner Pierre Berge is considered one of the finest in the world.
Labeled the “sale of the century” by Christie’s, it will include over 700 lots with an estimated total value of â‚¬200 million to â‚¬300 million ($255 million to $380Â million).
Berges and Saint Laurent met in 1958 and set themselves the goal of buying the best paintings and sculptures they could lay their hands on.
A rare manuscript of a speech by Abraham Lincoln calling on the country to unite amid civil war in 1864 sold at auction Thursday for 3.4 million dollars.
The sale, held at Christie’s in New York on the 200th anniversary of Lincoln’s birth, was a record for a US historical manuscript, according to the auction house, and inside the three to four million dollar estimate.
In the November 10, 1864 speech, made shortly after he won re-election, Lincoln wrote: “Now that the election is over, may not all, having a common interest, reunite in a common effort, to save our common country?” Source: AFP
The photograph titled ‘Nude’, which earned Madonna a $25 modeling fee, is expected to sell for $10,000, at the very least. Itâ€™s a full frontal image, taken by Lee Friedlander in 1979 and published in Playboy in 1985.
Madonna was a dancer – says Matthieu Humery, head of Christie’s photography department – when she answered Friedlander’s newspaper ad seeking a nude model.
The rare, 101.27-carat diamond sold at Christie’s spring 2008 Hong Kong auction is now known as “The Shizuka Diamond,” Christie’s announced on Thursday.
The giant stone’s owner selected the name as a gift for his wife of 16 years.
The Shizuka diamond netted $6.2 million at “Jewels: The Hong Kong Sale” in May 2008 and is the largest colorless diamond ever sold at auction in Asia.
A painting by Claude Monet, which is said to have started the new trend of ‘Impressionism’ with its colour-filled canvas, built with darting brushstrokes, is to go under the hammer next month.
The painting, Dans La Prairie, painted in 1876 and first shown at an exhibition in Paris in 1877, features the artist’s wife Camille almost submerged in a flower-strewn field in Argenteuil, to the north of Paris.
Monet’s skill in capturing the scene even bedazzled his contemporary, Paul Cezanne.
Itâ€™s just a whisper at the moment but it may well be the case that Francois Pinault is considering the sale of his Christieâ€™s auction house which he bought in May 1998 for $1.2 billion.
The speculation is based on one obvious fact: at circa â‚¬4.7bn, Artemis, Mr Pinaultâ€™s holding company, is carrying too much debt.
And while all auctions across Bonhams, Sotheby’s and Christie’s haven’t experienced a great year, Christie’s has already cut a couple of departments, shrunk others, let a few employees go and plan more reorganization for the company in January.
Christieâ€™s on Wednesday sold an extremely rare, 17th century fancy deep grayish-blue diamond for $24.3 million, a world record price for any diamond or jewelry sold at auction in London.
The 35.56-ct. Wittelsbach diamond was once owned by King Philip IV of Spain, who purchased for his daughter, Margarita Teresa, for her engagement to Leopold I of Austria in 1664. It was mined in India and owned by the same private collector since 1964.
The price for Wittelsbach topped the previous record of $16.5 million for a 100ct diamond in 1995 in Geneva.
This extraordinary blue-gray diamond (on the picture above) was given to Infanta Margarita Teresa by her father King Philip IV of Spain, on her engagement to her uncle Leopold I of Austria-one of the most historic events in European history.
This girl was the portrayed in Las Meninas), the most famous painting by Spaniard Diego Velazquez. In a political move, she was engaged to Leopold I, who later became the Holy Roman Emperor, and that was when her father gave his 13-year-old daughter the diamond as part of the dowry. Sadly she died aged only 21, having given birth to four child, of which only one survived beyond childhood.
It is believed that the Wittelsbach diamond originated from the Indian diamond mines, was passed into the Austrian and then Bavarian crown jewels, and was finally sold into private hands in 1931. It makes part of the current private collection since 1964.
According to a Christie’s spokesman said “no examples” of coloured diamonds comparable to the Wittelsbach have been put up in an auction before.
“Blue diamonds are rare and to offer a blue diamond of this size, quality, shape and provenance is truly extraordinary.” Actually, the nearest comparable coloured diamond sold at Christie’s was one just a third of the size, a 13.39 carat intense blue diamond that fetched Â£5.5 million ($8.9 million) in May.
In addition, “the appearance of a large blue diamond, among the rarest of colours, with a history that can be traced back to the 17th century and 300 years of royal connections will surely be a thrilling occasion for all collectors of exceedingly rare jewels and works of art.”
The Wittelsbach diamond is the star lot in Christie’s auction Jewels: According to estimates, the 35.56-carat gem, almost once inch in width, with a 300-year-old royal history, could raise up to 10million pounds ($16 million) when it goes under the hammer on December 10.
It is on public display at the auction house in King Street, St James’s, London, on Friday 5 December and from Sunday 7 to Tuesday 9 December.
After an absence of seven years, Christieâ€™s wine department will be back in Asia for an auction on 29 Nov 2008 at the Hong Kong Exhibition and Convention Centre and it will open Christie’s Hong Kong Fall 2008 Sale Season.
Christie’s International Wine Department will conduct a focused sale of fine wine including select offerings from the cellars of first growth, ChÃ¢teau Latour.
Christieâ€™s Hong Kong sales totaled HK $2.4 billion in Spring 2008, the highest total ever achieved for any auction season in Asia.
The evening sale will feature around 250 selected lots, with 150 lots from ChÃ¢teau Latour. One of the top prizes is a 1900 magnum estimated at $18,000 – $24,000. The Latour selection in its entirety is expected to realize in excess of HK $10 million.
Alongside the unique offering from ChÃ¢teau Latour will be a further range of fine and rare wines, all sourced from impeccable European cellars, including rare PÃ©trus and other First Growth Bordeaux, a selection of exceptional Domaine de la RomanÃ©e-Conti, vintage Champagne and venerable Vintage Port and Old Cognacs.
“It really is an increasingly popular market,” said Carina Villinger, design specialist of Christie’s New York. “There is a huge overlap with contemporary art. It has got to the point where we need a separate auction.
The Christie’s sale will feature items such as a polyurethane table by the London-based Iranian architect Zaha Hadid, who designed the aquatics centre for the London Olympics, estimated to raise $200,000.
Another lot will be a highly polished steel sofa by the British-born Israeli designer Ron Arad for $300,000. Arad’s work will be exhibited at the Museum of Modern Art in New York next year.That sofa is made of steel thatâ€™s polished to match the reflection of a real mirror!