For three days earlier this week, YSL's longtime partner, Pierre Bergé and Christies Paris auctioned over 730 art pieces that belongs to the late Yves Saint Laurent and raised a total of around €375m beating the estimates of €200m-€300m.
The collection of paintings, sculptures and furniture filled the late designer’s duplex apartment at 55 Rue de Babylone and Pierre Bergé’s Rue Bonaparte apartment is one of the major collections ever to be auctioned in Paris. It includes pieces by Warhol, Goya & Henri Matisse.
One piece of furniture made a record high of €21.9m, It is now the world's most expensive armchair, created by the Irish designer Eileen Gray. At €21.9m (£19.6m), I doubt that anyone will sit on it ever again.
Despite the financial recession we are in now, French dealers suggest that the recession may have actually helped the high bids, because the rich people want to put their money in a safe investment! Also ofcourse the name of the late designer helped increase the bids as well.
Talking numbers, on the first evening alone, the sale raised €206m, almost €36m for the Matisse painting of 1911 The Cuckoos, a Blue and Pink Rug and €8.9m for a couple of ordinary perfume bottles, declared to be "ready-made" art, and signed by the surrealist, Marcel Duchamp.
The Auction was held at the gorgeous Grand Palais, the world’s largest and prestigious exhibition hall. Around 33,000 people queued to see the collection last week. Access to the auction room ha has been strictly controlled, with potential buyers having to prove they had access to at least €500,000 in ready cash.
Two controversial items, a bronze Rat and Rabit heads, which were reportedly stolen from the Summer Imperial palace in China, in 1860 at the end of the second Opium War. The item were reportedly sold for €15m each.