Christie's announces Harewood: Collecting in the Royal Tradition, two auctions of works primarily selected from outside the core 18th century collections at Harewood House. The first sale is to be held at King Street on 5 December and ‘The Attic Sale’ is to be held at Christie’s South Kensington on 9 December. The sales will feature many works with royal provenance from the collections of H.R.H. The Princess Mary, Princess Royal and Countess of Harewood (1897–1965), only daughter of H.M. King George V and H. M. Queen Mary. These sales are being held as part of the arrangements following the death last year of her son, George Lascelles, 7th Earl of Harewood (d. 2011), during whose 54 year stewardship Harewood House was transformed from a superb but very private house onto one of the best known and most welcoming stately homes open to the public today.
Harewood’s outstanding collection of furniture by Thomas Chippendale is unchallenged for its status as the greatest commission from England's most renowned cabinet-maker. Among many other treasures the house is also famous for its old master paintings collected by the present Lord Harewood's grandfather, Henry Lascelles (later the 6th Earl of Harewood) in the 1920s and its collection of works by the celebrated 18th century English craftsman Matthew Boulton. Much less well-known are those parts of the collection added by H.R.H. The Princess Mary and, later, by her son, the late 7th Earl of Harewood (1923-2011) including Chinese works of art and objets d’art by Fabergé.
The ‘Attic Sale’ to be held at Christie's South Kensington on 9 December, presents a treasure trove of objects with estimates starting at just £300. The contents of this sale, acquired over generations, capture the essence of day-to-day life at the heart of the most personal of the Harewood collections.