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September 3 2014

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28 posts tagged "Christie’s"

Marilyn Monroe, John Wayne, and More Remembered in Christie’s Famous and Infamous

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Marilyn Monroe & Russell PoseFor lifelong fans of icons like Marilyn Monroe, John Lennon, and T.E. Lawrence, seeing their most famous articles of clothing is the closest thing to traveling back in time. Former banker David Gainsborough Roberts is one of those fans, and he amassed dozens of collectibles over the past 20-plus years. To share his passion with the world, he has opened an exhibit titled Famous and Infamous at Christie’s in London. He told the Daily Mail, “In 1989 I bought a Marilyn Monroe film costume and my life changed completely.” Included in the exhibit is the red sequined dress Monroe wore in the 1953 film Gentleman Prefer Blondes and John Wayne’s signature Stetson hat. Pharrell, take note: The competition for most celebrated topper of the year just got really steep.

Famous and Infamous will run through September 2 at Christie’s in London.

Photo: The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Images 

The Birkin Whisperer Ignites a Lawsuit Against Christie’s

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US-FRANCE-FASHION-LUXURY-BAGS-AUCTIONIt’s a battle of the Birkins for Heritage Auctions and Christie’s International. Matthew Rubinger, formerly the resident Hermès handbag expert at Heritage, recently departed the company to join Christie’s, and took Heritage’s “trade secrets” along with him. The New York Times reports that no one knows rare Birkins like Rubinger, 26, who began buying and reselling purses back in high school. Heritage claims in the lawsuit that it invested in his identity, branded him as a star, and introduced him to sources in Hong Kong and Japan. It goes without saying that they were less than pleased when Rubinger traded teams, and they have since filed a lawsuit against Christie’s, Rubinger, and two high-level associates who also left, for breach of contract and stealing trade secrets. Rubinger and his associates’ departure from the auction house left Heritage with essentially no luxury accessories team.

While Heritage has always specialized in high-end accessories, Christie’s, a house generally more concerned with Picasso and Matisse than Hermès and Chanel, has recently made a push into the luxury fashion market. Heritage is seeking $60 million in damages and lost profits, a number that reflects the significant earnings Heritage raked in from Hermès handbag sales. Last December, Heritage sold a one-of-a-kind porosus crocodile and black Togo leather Kelly bag for $125,000, and in late 2011, a red crocodile Birkin bag with 18-karat white-gold and diamond hardware went for a record $203,000. Without those sizable profits, it’s unclear how Heritage will continue with its current plans to expand the business.

Photo: Stan Honda / Getty Images

Kick Off the New Year With Some Old Schiaparelli

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SchiaparelliDidn’t get quite what you hoped for this Christmas? Don’t fret, just gather up those gift receipts, exchange your unwanted trinkets for cash, and head over to Christie’s in Paris. On January 23 (which, it should be noted, is the last day of the Haute Couture shows), the auction house will put 180 items from Elsa Schiaparelli’s personal collection under the hammer. The treasures—which include vintage Schiaparelli wares, a totally divine tête-à-tête chaise in pink (what other color would it be?), the legend’s 1936 Giacometti floor lamp, and original portraits of the designer—are expected to grab about 700,000 pounds. If you can’t make it to Paris for the sale, just tune in to Style.com on January 20, when Schiaparelli’s newly appointed creative director, Marco Zanini, will present his debut collection for the revived house.

Photo: Christie’s, via dailymail.co.uk

Draw Something: Fashion Illustration Takes the Spotlight

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Illustrations by David Downton, Gary Card, Zoe Taylor, and Antonio Lopez

Last night in London, Christie’s South Kensington auction house played host to an exhibition and discussion orchestrated by the Fashion Illustration Gallery (FIG). And while the audience sat through the Issa London-sponsored talk, whose panel included Christie’s Meredith Etherington-Smith, illustrator David Downton (whose work is pictured above, top left), and Style.com’s Tim Blanks, they were left wondering: Should astute art investors buy up fashion illustration in the same way the world should have snatched up early Basquiat or Koons? “Before Andy Warhol was Andy Warhol, he was a fashion illustrator,” said Etherington-Smith. “Fifty years ago, the art world debated whether photography was a bona fide art form, and the same is happening now with fashion illustration. I believe there is no doubt fashion illustration is an art, but a vastly underappreciated one.”

The art on display last night represented the old guard like Cecil Beaton, Antonio Lopez (above, bottom left), and Andy Warhol, as well as such new talents as Gary Card (above, top right), Zoë Taylor (above, bottom right), and Tanya Ling. Strange bedfellows? Not according to Downton. “Some of the younger fashion illustrators out there are the most skilled draftsmen,” he said. “They very much should take their place alongside the great artists of days gone.”

Among the questions thrown out to an audience that included Suzy Menkes, Camilla Al Fayed, and Susie Bubble: Will fashion illustration ever be accepted as an art form? And will magazine editors ever replace celebs for illustrations? Downton, perhaps, answered these queries best. “The illustration I did a few years back of Cate Blanchett for Australian Vogue was, against all odds, the fastest-selling issue of the year. It also won the Maggie’s Magazine Cover of the Year. After that, there was no doubt for me that there is a place in the art world for fashion illustration.”

FIG’s exhibition at Christie’s South Kensington runs through December 19.

Illustrations: David Downton, Gary Card, Zoe Taylor, and Antonio Lopez

Disney Does Designer

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Disney Dresses

Having made their debuts in Harrods’ holiday windows last year, Versace’s Cinderella dress, Valentino’s butter-yellow Belle gown, Oscar de la Renta’s Snow White frock, and Escada’s Princess Jasmine look will go under the hammer—for charity—alongside other designer Disney-princess duds at Christie’s, on November 13. Prince Charming is not included in the auction price.

Photo: Courtesy of Harrods