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  • Press release
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  • New York
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  • For immediate release
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  • 3 March 2022

Christie's Presents Photographs from the Richard Gere Collection

New York – Christie's is pleased to present Photographs from the Richard Gere Collection, an online sale of photographs from the collection of the esteemed actor taking place from 23 March – 7 April 2022. The 156-lots sale offers works spanning the entire history of the medium, including 19th century masters Gustave Le Gray and Carleton Watkins, to recognized early 20th century figures such as Edward Weston, Tina Modotti and Alfred Stieglitz, through notable contemporary icons of today including Richard Avedon, Diane Arbus, Irving Penn, Sally Mann, Robert Mapplethorpe and Herb Ritts. Many of the works were acquired directly from the artists, many of whom Mr. Gere counted among his close friends. The sale carries a low estimate of nearly $2 million.

According to Richard Gere, “These photographs arrived in my life because I felt something for them. They have real soul, a humanity, a generosity – it doesn't matter what the technique is. You know, you listen to an early recording of a great opera singer from 1902, when they just started recording – it’s scratchy, it's trebly. But the quality of that voice, the soul of the voice, it still hits you hard in your heart. Most of the photographers here are not that interested in technique. And the ones that are interested in technique were coming from a deep, personal place, with a point of view, and understanding of the universe.”

Darius Himes, Christie’s International Head of Photographs, remarks, “We are thrilled to handle such stunning works by one of the great film actors of the 20th century. Honed by years both in front of and behind a camera, Gere’s passion for image-making and collecting is on full view in this wonderfully diverse collection. In the late 1970’s his interest in photography was strengthened through his friendship with the late fashion photographer Herb Ritts, who inspired him to dive deeper into the history of photography.  Since then, he has collected across genres and time. On display are highlights from the collection signifying a reflection of his time spent in New York and Los Angeles, his admiration of 19th and 20th century photographers and the friendships he made along the way.”

Among the many highlights in the sale are emotionally charged works by Diane Arbus, Ralph Eugene Meatyard and Sally Mann. These works resonate with theatrics and drama; the images are challenging while maintaining a sense of delight. According to Mr. Gere, “Being an actor, my basic tool is emotions. So I think most of the pictures that I respond to have the suggestion of a story or a flicker of the mystery.”

About Christie’s

Founded in 1766, Christie’s is a world-leading art and luxury business. Renowned and trusted for its expert live and online auctions, as well as its bespoke private sales, Christie’s offers a full portfolio of global services to its clients, including art appraisal, art financing, international real estate and education. Christie’s has a physical presence in 46 countries, throughout the Americas, Europe, Middle East, and Asia Pacific, with flagship international sales hubs in New York, London, Hong Kong, Paris and Geneva. It also is the only international auction house authorized to hold sales in mainland China (Shanghai).

Christie’s auctions span more than 80 art and luxury categories, at price points ranging from $200 to over $100 million. In recent years, Christie’s has achieved the world record price for an artwork at auction (Leonardo da Vinci’s Salvator Mundi, 2017), for a 20th century artwork (Andy Warhol’s Shot Sage Blue Marilyn, 2022) and for a work by a living artist (Jeff Koons’ Rabbit, 2019). Christie's is also recognised as a reference for prestigious single owner collections, having auctioned 8 of the 10 most important collections in history.

Christie’s Private Sales offers a seamless service for buying and selling art, jewellery and watches outside of the auction calendar, working exclusively with Christie’s specialists at a client’s individual pace.

Recent innovations at Christie’s include the groundbreaking sale of the first NFT for a digital work of art ever offered at a major auction house (Beeple’s Everydays, March 2021), with the unprecedented acceptance of cryptocurrency as a means of payment. As an industry leader in digital innovation, Christie’s also continues to pioneer new technologies that are redefining the business of art, including use of hologram technology to tour life-size 3D objects around the world, and the the creation of viewing and bidding experiences that integrate augmented reality, global livestreaming, buy-now channels, and hybrid sales formats. 

Christie’s is dedicated to advancing responsible culture throughout its business and communities worldwide, including achieving sustainability through net zero carbon emissions by 2030, and actively using its platform in the art world to amplify under-represented voices and support positive change.

Browse, bid, discover, and join us for the best of art and luxury at: www.christies.com or by downloading Christie’s apps. The COVID-related re-opening status of our global locations is available here.