NEW YORK, NY. - On March 4-5, Christie’s will offer the auction of Two Distinguished American Collections: The Estate of the Hon. Noreen Drexel, Newport, R.I., And The Estate of Van Cliburn, Fort Worth, TX, encompassing over 500 unique objects, design pieces, and works of art from the two illustrious collectors. Accomplished patrons of the arts as well as American ambassadors of taste, both Drexel and Cliburn spent years building their collections of beautiful treasures, which include Chinese export porcelain, fine jewelry, English furniture, Impressionist and 19th century European paintings, American, English and Russian silver, and other highlights including a 1869 C. Bechstein Model V piano, gifted to Cliburn from his mother. With no reserve for lots estimated at or below $5,000, this sale promises to appeal to both seasoned and new collectors.
The Estate of the Hon. Noreen Drexel, Newport, R.I.
Few cities embody the glamour of Gilded Age America like Newport, Rhode Island. For the people of Newport, one woman served as the personification of their community’s beauty and generosity: Noreen Stonor Drexel (1922-2012). Throughout her life, she served as a social pillar of the City-by-the-Sea, a woman admired and emulated for her impeccable style, effortless grace and her kindness to everyone. Many of the items in the sale were collected over the years in England, where Mrs. Drexel was born, and in France, where Mr. Drexel’s grandmother lived in Paris during the Second World War. Mr. Drexel was an avid collector of porcelain and her collections represent her passion for the medium.
• A Chinese Export American Market Initialed Punchbowl, Circa 1795. $7,000 - 9,000
• Ludwig Bemelmans, Dog, front cover of The New Yorker, 13 February 1965. Ink and gouache on paper. $2,000-4,000
• A George II Pine Console Table, Circa 1735. $30,000-50,000
The Estate of Van Cliburn, Fort Worth, TX
The second session encompasses over 300 exceptional works from the personal collection of Van Cliburn (1934-2013), one of America’s greatest pianists. The collection comprises superb examples of English furniture, European Works of Art, Porcelain and Silver that reflect Mr. Cliburn’s refined taste and the private passion of a sophisticated connoisseur. With estimates ranging from $1,000 to $250,000, the total sale is expected to achieve in excess of $3 million.
• A William IV Silver Oval Tea Tray. Benjamin Smith, London, 1834. $50,000-80,000
• Sir Martin Archer Shee, Portrait of a boy, full-length, with a spaniel on a terrace with a landscape in the distance, oil on canvas. $20,000 - 30,000
• A George II Mahogany Pier Table, Circa 1745. $15,000 - 20,000