The historic sale of paintings and objects from the estate of Mary Soames realised an outstanding total of £15,441,822, well above pre-sale expectations of £3.6-5.5 million.
Described as “one of the most outstanding women of her era”, Mary Soames was the last surviving child of Winston Churchill. The auction charted her fascinating life, in which she witnessed first-hand, and often by her father’s side, many of the key moments of 20th-century history. The offering also chronicled the remarkable relationship Mary enjoyed with her father, allowing for a unique and moving insight into the private side of Britain’s greatest war-time leader.
In a sale room filled to capacity each of the 256 lots offered found a buyer as lot after lot soared above estimate, awarding the sale prestigious "white glove" status. The top lot of the sale was The Goldfish Pool at Chartwell, which exceeded pre-sale expectations and broke an auction record for a painting by Sir Winston Churchill, selling for £1.8 million.
Sotheby’s is proud to offer items from the collection of the late Mary Soames, Winston Churchill’s last surviving child. The sale will include many of the personal possessions that surrounded Lady Soames in her delightful and very personal home in Holland Park. Together, they chart Mary Soames’ fascinating life – from her childhood in Chartwell to her service in the army during World World II and her later public life.
The collection chronicles the remarkable relationship Mary enjoyed with her father, allowing for a unique and very moving insight into the private side of Britain’s greatest war-time leader. At the same time, Churchill’s exceptional ability as a painter, extraordinary for an amateur, will be celebrated in the sale through a group of 15 paintings which together represent the most important and personal group of paintings by him ever to come to the market.