The two days of sales dedicated to 20th-century decorative arts and Design resulted in great success. With a final total of €17.6 million, Sotheby’s achieved one of its highest totals in this field. The Parisian sales started with an auction dedicated to Henri Chwast’s Art Déco treasures. Following the success of this first chapter in Paris, Sotheby’s sold the second part of the collection in London, achieving a total amount of €11 million.
Two world records punctuated the Parisian session. The first was achieved by Pierre Chareau’s ‘Religieuse SN 31’ lamppost, which soared to €1,075,500; the second by Jean Goulden’s silver and glass table lamp which achieved €355,500.Among the top pieces were a unique eggshell and lacquered wood fire surround by Jean Dunand, which soared to €1,927,500, six times its high estimate. Its Cubist-style geometrical decoration illustrates the essential aesthetic lines of Art Deco.The sale put the spotlight on Eileen Gray, an artist who rarely appears on the market. Her vase achieved the second highest price of the sale, selling for €1,447,500. It came from the famous collection of Madame Labourdette, wife of the celebrated coachbuilder Jean-Henri Labourdette.
On 21 November, Sotheby’s will unveil a remarkable collection assembled over more than twenty years by Henri Chwast. The works were selected for their exceptional quality, and their rarity, prestigious provenance and the dialogue created between them establish them as a truly legendary Art Deco collection.
The group also provides an overview of the founding figures of Art Deco, including some of the most active patrons of their time: Madame Agnès, Madame Labourdette and the Maharajah of Indore. Some of the most prominent designers featured include Eileen Gray, Jean Dunand and Pierre Chareau. The pieces have passed through the hands of some of the greatest Art Deco collectors: the Galerie du Luxembourg (the renowned Art Deco gallery), Félix Marcilhac, Alain Lesieutre, Maria de Beyrie, Bob and Cheska Vallois and Karl Lagerfeld.