Christie’s is delighted to be entrusted with the sale of Important Jewels from the Estate of Mrs. Henry Ford II. Comprising over 80 lots between Magnificent and Online Jewels, the collection consists of unusual antique and vintage pieces together with standout examples of contemporary jewelry design by many of the world’s great jewelry houses including Boucheron, Cartier, Graff, Tiffany & Co., Van Cleef & Arpels and Verdura among others.
Henry Ford II was an iconic figure in the automotive industry, having accomplished many important milestones for the Ford Motor company. Of all of Henry II’s accomplishments, perhaps his most well-known is the creation of the GT40, still today Ford’s supercar masterpiece and the winner of four consecutive wins at Le Mans in the late 1960’s, the journey of which is depicted in the 2019 feature film Ford v Ferrari. Married to the auto scion in 1980, Mrs. Ford soon found herself in the inner circles of high society, while maintaining her sense of fun and down to earth personality at the same time. The Fords maintained residences in Grosse Point Farms, Palm Beach and London and remained happily married until Henry’s untimely death in 1987.
The jewels of Mrs. Henry Ford II are above all else, both wearable and sophisticated at the same time. Daytime jewels in gold include iconic designs such as a Verdura Maltese Cross bracelet (Lot 34) and a set of ‘Dot Losange’ jewelry in green enamel from Jean Schlumberger for Tiffany & Co. (Lot 14), while more formal occasions called for proper diamond jewelry, such as the stunning necklace by Graff (Lot 19) and flower pendant earrings by Van Cleef & Arpels (Lot 15). Rounding out the collection are two examples of important antique jewelry, including a diamond rivière necklace (Lot 42) and classic brooch set with a cushion shaped Burmese ruby of 8.62 carats (Lot 43), which Mrs. Ford cleverly had a necklace mount made for so that the it could be worn during many occasions. Without question, these jewels, together with the fine and decorative art collection of Mrs. Henry Ford II reflect a woman of great style and impeccable taste in all things beautiful.