The Important Jewels auction at Sotheby's New York on 24 September totaled $23,738,439, led by top prices for important white diamonds from private collections as well as a selection of jewels from the collection of Alex & Elisabeth Lewyt. The auction was a strong 82.4% sold by lot, exceeding its high pre-sale expectation of $22.2 million, and marks the highest-ever total for Sotheby's annual September jewelry sales in New York.
Jewels from the collection of Alex & Elisabeth Lewyt - featuring custom-designed and period pieces by French jewelers such as Schlumberger, Suzanne Belperron and René Boivin - totaled $2.5 million, more than twice their high estimate of $940,000. The highlight of the group was a Platinum and Diamond Double-Clip Pendant-Brooch by Schlumberger, which sold for $485,000 above a high estimate of $300,000. Befitting Mr. and Mrs. Lewyt's deep devotion to philanthropy, proceeds from the sale of their collection will benefit a charitable foundation to be established in their name. The foundation will support the causes that they both were passionate about, especially those concerned with animal welfare.
Gary Schuler, Director of Sotheby's Jewelry department in New York, said: "Sotheby's first jewelry sale of the fall season demonstrated that the auction market for this category remains remarkably buoyant. We were encouraged by the significant participation of private collectors throughout the sale, including many of the important diamonds on offer. The auction was highlighted by several exceptional white diamonds emerging from private collections, whose prices reflect the persistent demand in the market for white stones."
Sotheby’s is pleased to present beautiful signed jewels and important diamonds in the first major jewellery sale of the autumn season. Jewels created by renowned French jewelers Jean Schlumberger, Suzanne Belperron, Van Cleef & Arpels and René Boivin are featured in the Collection of Alex & Elisabeth Lewyt, two of America’s most important patrons of early modern art. The Lewyts’ affinity for bold forms and sophisticated color combinations may be found in the abstracted naturalistic designs of Boivin and the exquisitely deconstructed work of Belperron. Further highlighting the sale is a private collection of iconic mystery-set jewels by Van Cleef & Arpels, as well as delightful pave pink diamond animal jewels created by Graff. An array of signed pieces by Tiffany & Co., David Webb, Bulgari and Cartier, will also be offered.
The selection of important diamond rings is led by a D color pear-shaped diamond of 15.10 carats and a 19.51 carat E color emerald-cut diamond mounted by Harry Winston; both stones are type IIa classification and offered from estate collections. One of the most notable stones in the sale – a Fancy Dark Brown diamond weighing more than 40 carats – was produced from the ALROSA mines, one of the world’s leading producers of quality diamonds located in the Yakutia region of Russia.
With more than 500 jewels and precious gemstones offered in the sale, collectors will find an appealing range of styles, periods and estimates at Sotheby’s this September.
Exhibition Times: Please note exhibition hours on 24 September are for Session 2 only.