The tastemaker: Marella Rossi Mosseri

In anticipation of the The Collector  sales in London on 23 and 24 May, the art and antiques consultant has styled room sets for Christie’s that pair old with new to highlight aesthetic threads through the centuries

‘Mixing the old and the new can give immense spirit to interiors,’ says Marella Rossi Mosseri, an independent consultant in art and antiques who was previously director of Galerie Aveline in Paris. ‘It brings about all sorts of fresh conversations.’

In conjunction with The Collector  sales on 23 and 24 May in London, visitors to Christie’s King Street headquarters will be able to view a room set curated by Rossi Mosseri. It features period furniture and objets d’art from those sales alongside handpicked works of contemporary art. ‘I wanted to create a dialogue across the ages,’ she explains.

In the turquoise-themed display pictured below she combines a late-19th century, French majolica jardinière and stand by Clément Massier; a pair of George IV silver, five-light candelabra, from 1826, by London silversmith Paul Storr; a George III mahogany side-table from 1760; and a painting on the wall behind them called Perovsquita III, from 2015, by Cuban artist José Yaque. 

A monumental French majolica (Clement Massier) jardinière and stand, late 19th century, impressed factory mark. Estimate £8,000-12,000. A George IV silver Warwick vase. Mark of Benjamin Smith, London. 1822, retailed by Green, Ward and Co. Estimate £40,000-60,000. A George II silver basket. Mark of Paul de Lamerie, London 1741. Estimate £50,000-70,000. A pair of George IV

A monumental French majolica (Clement Massier) jardinière and stand, late 19th century, impressed factory mark. Estimate: £8,000-12,000. A George IV silver Warwick vase. Mark of Benjamin Smith, London. 1822, retailed by Green, Ward and Co. Estimate: £40,000-60,000. A George II silver basket. Mark of Paul de Lamerie, London 1741. Estimate: £50,000-70,000. A pair of George IV silver five-light candelabra. Mark of Paul Storr, London, 1826. Estimate: £80,000-120,000. A George III mahogany side table, circa 1760. Estimate: £30,000-50,000. All lots offered in Silver and 19th Century Furniture, Sculpture & Works of Art on 24 May at Christie’s in London, and English Furniture, Clocks and Works of Art on 23 May in London. Artwork: José Yaque (b. 1985), Perovsquita III, 2015 Courtesy: Galleria Continua

‘I think it’s important,’ she says, ‘to open the eyes of a new generation which has been attracted to buying contemporary art but which is yet to discover that, in any period, you look for the modern through the past.’

Elsewhere at King Street, she unites a Napoleon III, ormolu-mounted, ebony writing table; a pair of Empire candelabra from 1805; two old Chinese, incense-burning containers, in the form of cranes; and a set of doll sculptures by contemporary Cameroonian artist, Pascale Marthine Tayou. The other contemporary figures who feature in Rossi Mosseri’s installation (which opens on 19 May) are Cuba’s Osvaldo González Aguiar and the Moroccan photographer, Leila Alaoui.

The Collector consists of three sales — European Furniture, Works of Art & Ceramics  and English Furniture, Clocks & Works of Art, both on 23 May, and Silver & 19th Century Furniture, Sculpture & Works of Art  on 24 May.

‘It’s always nice to insert a bit of spirit into an interior,’ Rossi Mosseri says. ‘And why shouldn’t that spirit be 18th- or 19th-century?’