This sale features a high-quality and diverse showcase of French and European silversmith’s pieces from the 17th to 20th centuries, including gold boxes, perfume bottles and miniatures.
Among the exceptional items are a Parisian Bishop’s crook by Poussielgue-Rusand, ordered for the Bishop of Chartres in 1896, a large selection of cutlery sets by French (Puiforcat, Risler and Carré), Danish (Jensen) and American (Tiffany) designers, a magnificent golden lorgnette enamelled by Filippi in Paris in 1850 and even a rare coffee and tea set in solid German gold from the 1950s.
With the results of this sale Sotheby’s France – the only auction house to stage sales devoted exclusively to Silver – has cleared the €50-million barrier for sales of Silver since June 2002, when Sotheby’s first specialist sale was held in Paris.
Since June 2002 Sotheby’s have staged 22 auctions in the field, several featuring memorable collections (notably the Jourdan-Barry Collection in 2012), and also negotiated two exceptional private-treaty sales (the Pouilly-sur-Meuse treasure trove, now on display in Nancy’s Musée Lorrain; and a pair of tureens from the King George III dinner-service by Robert-Joseph Auguste, sold to the Louvre in 2011).
These results reflect Sotheby’s leadership in the field – especially since the decision was taken to make Paris the capital of European Silver sales in 2008.
Today’s sale total of €2.2 million/$2.9 million maintians this impressive track record. Sotheby’s European Head of Silver, Thierry de Lachaise, declared himself ‘delighted with today’s results. Although decorative items with fine provenance have remained in demand over the last decade, the market can be increasingly divided into two: antique pieces from the 16th and 17th centuries on the one hand, and more decorative items from the 19th and 20th centuries on the other.’