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  • Press release
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  • New York
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  • For immediate release
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  • 8 December 2020

Results | Christie's New York Magnificent Jewels totals $44.58 million | 8 December 2020

95% SOLD BY VALUE | 91% SOLD BY LOT

118% HAMMER ABOVE LOW ESTIMATE

GLOBAL PARTICIPATION WITH BIDDERS FROM 39 COUNTRIES

FROM LEFT TO RIGHT: THE DU PONT PADPARADSCHA’ SAPPHIRE RING OF 24.58 CARATS, PRICE REALIZED $930,000; AN EXTRAORDINARY KASHMIR SAPPHIRE AND DIAMOND BRACELET, PRICE REALIZED $6,030,000; SAPPHIRE AND DIAMOND NECKLACE, PRICE REALIZED $1,110,000

RESULTS – Christie’s New York auction of Magnificent Jewels achieved a total of $44,583,875 with 95% sold by value, 91% sold by lot, and 118% hammer above low estimate after a marathon ten-hours of bidding. There was global participation with bidders from 39 countries. Additionally, the preceding Jewels Online sale from November 18 to December 1 totaled $2,575,500 with 100% sold by value and 90% sold by lot. Together, the December Jewels sales in New York achieved a combined total of $47,159,375.

The top lot of the Magnificent Jewels auction was an extraordinary Kashmir sapphire and diamond bracelet of 43.10 carats surrounded by 67.90 carats of D color internally flawless diamonds that was purchased for $6,030,000 by Harry Winston. Nayla Hayek, CEO of Harry Winston, comments, “We are very proud to have purchased this extraordinary Kashmir Sapphire which joins the ranks of the finest diamonds and colored gemstones acquired by Winston to form our superb Legacy Collection.”

Other notable sapphires include a cabochon Kashmir sapphire ring of 21.72 carats by Van Cleef & Arpels from 1917 that achieved $1,722,000; a Burma sapphire necklace of 80.86 carats that sold for $1,110,000; and an Art Deco Kashmir sapphire of 12.64 carats and diamond brooch by Cartier, formerly from the collection of Jean Stralem that realized $1,530,000. Among other top lots were a pair of fancy intense purplish pink and fancy intense pink diamond earrings of 2.61 and 2.34 carats, potentially internally flawless that sold for $2,070,000; a diamond of 102.61 carats, Y to Z color, VS2 clarity, which achieved $1,650,000; and the Vanderbilt Diamond Necklace formerly belonging to Wendy Vanderbilt Lehman that sold for $750,000.

Additionally, private collections within the Magnificent Jewels sale performed with exceptional results including:

Important Jewels from the Estate of Mireille Lévy totaled $2,746,000

Important Jewels from the Estate of Mrs. Henry Ford II totaled $2,253,750

Property from the du Pont Family Collection totaled $1,248,125

Property from the Collection of Mary M. and Robert M. Montgomery, Jr. totaled $1,090,000

The Collection of Barbara Allen de Kwiatkowsi totaled $975,000

Property from the Collection of Athena Blackburn Sold to Benefit Charitable Causes totaled $788,750

American Muse: The Collection of Nina Griscom totaled $598,750

Jewels offered in loving memory of Lana Chenko-Haddad to benefit the Shriners Hospitals for Children, the ASPCA, and Breast Cancer Research achieved $525,000

Specially featured in the sale was a custom-ring by JAR, recreated after the signature jewel made for Elizabeth Taylor’s 70th birthday (pictured left), which sold for over seven times its estimate realizing $62,500.  The single-cut diamond and platinum ring will be custom-fit and set on one-side with the initial of the buyer’s choosing. Proceeds from this unique lot are designated for The Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation (ETAF). ETAF’s initiative HIV Is Not A Crime advocates for the modernization of criminal laws and penalties affecting people living with HIV.

Christie’s Luxury Week New York sales continue through December 15.

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. Christie’s has sold 8 of the 10 most important single-owner collections in history, including the Paul G. Allen Collection—the most valuable collection ever offered at auction (November 2022). 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 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 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.