Christie’s New York Magnificent Jewels sale will be the first live jewelry auction from a major auction house in New York since novel coronavirus pandemic made its way to North America. It’s an ambitious sale of more than 260 lots that includes colorless diamonds, colored diamonds, colored gems, and vintage and contemporary signed jewels. Perhaps the most interesting part of the sale is a large number of high-quality and important signed jewels from a number of high jewelry houses spanning several periods, including Belperron, Bulgari, Cartier, Graff, Harry Winston, JAR, Lacloche, Tiffany & Co., and Van Cleef & Arpels. Estimates for pieces in the sale range from $10,000 to $7 million.
Because of social distancing and other precautions due to the novel coronavirus, previews being held till July 28 will be by appointment only at the Christie’s Rockefeller Center headquarters. In addition, there will be a limited number of buyers able to attend the auction.
Leading the July 29th sale is a 115.8-carat pear-shaped, F color, VVS1 diamond. It’s suspended as a pendant on a platinum necklace laced with 31 pear brilliant and pear modified brilliant-cut diamonds ranging from 0.97 to 5.50 carats, and 20 smaller pear-shaped diamonds. Its estimate is $5 million - $7 million.
Other colorless diamonds that are among the top lots includes a 25.22-carat, D-color, VVS2 pear-shaped brilliant-cut gem on a platinum ring (estimate: $1.5 million - $2.5 million); a 15.20-carat, D-color, internally flawless heart-shaped gem (estimate: 750,000 - $950,000); and earrings featuring two pear-shaped, brilliant-cut, D color, internally flawless diamonds of 5.99 carats and 5.70 carats, and two D color round brilliant cut diamonds of 2.08 carats (VVS1) and 2.06 carats (VS1) (estimate: $450,000 $650,000).
No auction of this size and importance would be without a selection of significant fancy colored diamonds. They include a 7.16-carat, internally flawless, fancy intense blue pear modified brilliant-cut diamond on a platinum ring (estimate: $3.5 million - $5 million); a 33.65-carat, VS2, fancy intense yellow cut-cornered rectangular mixed-cut diamond on an 18k gold ring (estimate: $525,000 - $625,000); and a 7.65-carat VS2, fancy light purplish pink pear modified brilliant-cut diamond on a platinum and 18k rose gold ring (estimate: $400,000 - $600,000).
Another fancy colored diamond of note is a belle époque platinum and diamond ring featuring a 5.65-carat fancy vivid yellow oval brilliant-cut diamond, circa 1915 with an estimate of $250,000 - $350,000.
Colored gemstones are also strongly represented in the sale led by three sapphires. A 53.48-carat cushion mixed-cut unheated Ceylon sapphire flanked by circular-cut diamonds and mounted in a platinum ring (estimate: $500,000 - $700,000); an 8.54-carat cushion mixed-cut Kashmir sapphire with no indications of heating mounted in a platinum ring (estimate: $400,000 - $500,000); and a 42.45-carat rectangular-cut unheated Burmese sapphire in a platinum ring (estimate: $350,000 – $550,000).
Emeralds are not left out of this sale and the most notable highlight is a 35.77-carat oval modified mixed-cut Colombian emerald with minor clarity enhancements on a platinum ring with an estimate of $300,000-500,000).
Leading all signed jewels in the sale is the one-of-a-kind “Sky Tower” necklace by contemporary high jewelry artist, Anna Hu, from the collection of an “Important Private Collector.” The necklace pairs the beauty of Western contemporary architecture with Chinese history and culture. Inspired by Pritzker Architecture Prize winner and distinguished French architect Jean Nouvel’s design of 53 West 53 located in the heart of New York City, the necklace centers upon a detachable brooch set with a fine jadeite plaque. Its estimate is $1 million - $1.5 million. View this necklace.
Another signed jewel of importance is an Art Deco platinum and white gold sautoir by Bulgari featuring an oval cabochon star sapphire on a detachable pendant; 28 oval cabochon sapphires; and circular, baguette, triangular and bullet-shaped diamonds, circa 1930. Its estimate is $650,000 – $850,000.
Private collections within the sale are offering many more signed pieces by Belperron, Bulgari, Cartier, David Webb, Harry Winston, Jean Schlumberger for Tiffany & Co., Van Cleef & Arpels and Verdura as well as unsigned period jewels. Among the most notable is a collection of more than 20 jewels from the “Property of a Texas Collector” with significant diamonds, colored diamonds, colored gems and signed pieces by David Webb and Bulgari, including a Colombian emerald ring of 16.79 carats ($200,000 - $300,000); a diamond bracelet ($120,000 - $180,000); and a coral, onyx and diamond bracelet by Bulgari ($40,000 - $60,000).
Another collection, “The Property of a Lady” comprises signed jewels by Tiffany & Co., Taffin, Verdura, David Webb and four lots by JAR, including a pair of diamond and colored diamond “Trellis” earrings ($150,000 - $200,000); a diamond Maltese cross brooch by David Webb ($40,000 - $60,000); and a pair of Antique diamond bracelets ($30,000 - $50,000).
The Collection of James and Marilynn Alsdorf spans classic jewels led by a single-stone pear-shaped diamond ring ($100,000 - $150,000); and The Collection of Gloria Manney spans important designs by Angela Cummings for Tiffany & Co., Raymond Yard, and Marcus & Co. which all feature opals, her favorite adornment, including a unique black opal, colored diamond and diamond fish brooch by Van Cleef & Arpels ($50,000-70,000).
The “Estate of Pauline Ireland” contains more than 50 jewels that are included in the live sale and an accompanying online-only timed auction that Christie’s is hosting. Among the notable pieces in this collection are a beryl, yellow sapphire and cultured pearl brooch by Verdura (estimate $10,000 - $15,000); a diamond necklace and earrings ($20,000 - $30,000); and an Art Deco ruby and diamond jabot brooch by Cartier ($15,000 - $20,000).
The Christie’s Jewels Online sale has begun and will run till August 7. In addition to pieces from the estate of “Estate of Pauline Ireland,” it features a selection of fine jewels and designs by Bulgari, Cartier, David Webb, Tiffany & Co. and Van Cleef & Arpels.
This article was extract from Forbes