Important Design

Live Auction: 30 July 2020 • 10:00 AM EDT • New York
Important Design 30 July 2020 • 10:00 AM EDT • New York

S otheby’s Important Design sale presents a curated survey of Design from the last century, from elegant examples of French Art Nouveau and Art Deco to dynamic postwar and Contemporary Design. Leading the sale are the endearing sculptures Singe I and Singe II by François-Xavier Lalanne – two golden monkeys whose irresistible charisma distinguish them as quintessential icons within the artist’s œuvre. In addition to other masterworks by François-Xavier and Claude Lalanne, the sale features works by many European design masters including Jean Dunand, Jean-Michel Frank, Georges Jouve, Pierre Jeanneret and Jean Royère. A superb selection of French Art Deco furniture and objects from the esteemed collection of New York restauranteur Jean Denoyer is led by a rare “Fontane” Cabinet by Émile-Jacques Ruhlmann. The sale also presents an outstanding selection of leaded glass lamps and objects by Tiffany Studios, including a magnificent “Peony” Table Lamp on a rare “Arch and Leaf” base from the prestigious collection of Jeep and Carla Harned. Additional sale highlights include superlative American Studio works by George Nakashima, Paul Evans and Harry Bertoia, and a wide range of important Contemporary Design.

 The Universe of Lalanne
 
The Universe of Lalanne
Step into the fantastical world of Claude and François-Xavier Lalanne, the legendary artist duo known for their poetic and humorous reinterpretations of the animal and natural worlds through sculpture and decorative arts, in a highly curated section led by important masterworks of animalier sculpture. Singe I (Lot 129) and Singe II (Lot 130) from the collection of former Ambassador Felix Rohatyn epitomize Lalanne’s ability to infuse elegance and anthropomorphic qualities to his creatures.

View Lots 129 & 130
Explore the Treasures of Louis Comfort Tiffany
Tiffany Studios
tiffany studios | "wisteria" table lamp
Estimate 450,000 – 600,000 USD
Explore the Treasures of Louis Comfort Tiffany
Explore Tiffany’s “garden”—a superb selection of works by the firm that showcase Louis C. Tiffany’s admiration of the natural world. Here you will encounter both flora and fauna depicted in the firm’s leaded glass lighting, led by superlative examples of the “Dragonfly” and “Wisteria” models, as well as a stunning “Peony” lamp with rare base and an exuberant flowering “Laburnum” lamp. Further highlights include a rare “Ball” mirror and resplendent “Moorish” chandelier, which exemplify the richness and diversity of forms produced by the firm.

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Icons of Contemporary Design
 
Icons of Contemporary Design
This curated section showcases important works by contemporary designers. 1970s and Postmodern design are represented through Maurice-Claude Vidili’s Sphère d’Isolation and Shiro Kuramata’s Glass Chair, which precede present-day works by furniture designers Wendell Castle, Mattia Bonetti and the Campana brothers, among others. An exceptional offering from this segment is a unique pair of “Extruded” High Consoles by Marc Newson (Lots 138 & 139 ) in Carrara marble, commissioned from the artist by the present owner.
View Lots 138 & 139
Masters of European Modernism
Jean Prouvé
jean prouvé | "visiteur" armchair, model no. 305
Estimate 20,000 – 30,000 USD
Masters of European Modernism
Mid-century French design is equally celebrated through important works by highly regarded cabinetmakers and architects whose practice has defined modern-day decorative arts. Modernist masterworks by Eugène Printz and Jean-Michel Frank anticipate offerings of postwar furniture, which include an emblematic “Visiteur” armchair by Jean Prouvé, two sets of armchairs by Pierre Jeanneret and Le Corbusier as well as a pair of sculptural “Tour Eiffel” Room Dividers by Jean Royère.

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Masterworks of Art Deco from the Collection of Jean Denoyer
Émile-Jacques Ruhlmann
émile-jacques ruhlmann | "fontane" cabinet, model no. ar1533/nr2232
Estimate 80,000 – 120,000 USD
Masterworks of Art Deco from the Collection of Jean Denoyer
At the core of the sale’s pre-war chapter figures a superb selection of French Art Deco furniture and decorative arts from the esteemed collection of New York restauranteur Jean Denoyer, anchored by an important “Fontane” Cabinet by Émile-Jacques Ruhlmann. The work of Jean Dunand is also represented through two masterpieces of lacquerware, a large “La Conquête du Cheval” Panel and a “Panthère noire et Jaguar” Two-Panel Screen executed in collaboration with animalier painter Paul Jouve.
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Treasures of the American Arts & Crafts Movement
Frank Lloyd Wright
frank lloyd wright | "wisteria" window from the darwin d. martin house, buffalo, new york
Estimate 50,000 – 70,000 USD
Treasures of the American Arts & Crafts Movement
The Arts & Crafts movement in America sought to preserve and promote the integrity of hand-made objects and furnishings, and it was successful in doing so across a wide range of media. Explore the diverse interpretations and manifestations of this movement through the eyes of its most important and influential designers, including Frank Lloyd Wright’s seminal “Wisteria” window from the Darwin D. Martin House, the impeccable artistry of Charles Rohlf’s carved desk chair, Gustav Stickley’s hand-wrought lighting, Harvey Ellis’s refined and modernist inlaid furnishings and more.
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The Legacy of American Studio Design
judy mckie | "wagging dog" chair
Estimate 25,000 – 35,000 USD
The Legacy of American Studio Design
Harry Bertoia’s Untitled (Multi-Plane Construction), a large-scale wire sculpture that recalls the artist’s most successful compositions, leads the American Studio chapter of the sale. The wide range of materials and techniques presented here attests to each artist’s superior practice and mastery over their chosen medium. Judy Mckie’s “Wagging Dog” Chair in bronze, George Nakashima’s burled oak Coffee Table and Paul Evans’ Unique Cabinet made with welded, gilt and enameled steel, constitute some of the highlights from this section.

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