Filed under: Auctions
A massive silver wine cooler fetched a high price at a recent Sotheby's London auction. The cooler was considered to be the most important piece of English silver to come to the market in 50 years and weighs in at a hefty 168 pounds. The piece which measures more than a meter across was sold to a private Asian buyer during Sotheby's sale of "Treasures," a carefully curated 21-lot sale brought in £13,951,250 / $21,177,998 (skimming over the high end of the pre-sale estimate of £8,790,000 - £13,430,000). The Great Silver Wine Cistern made for Thomas Wentworth sold for £2,505,250 beating the pre-sale estimate of £1.5-2.5 million and setting a new record price for English Silver at auction.
An Italian ivory inlaid rosewood table made for the Duke of Urbino Francesco Maria II Della Rovere circa 1596-7, and subsequently part of the collection of the Medici family, sold for £937,250. An amber box bearing the arms of Prince William IV of Orange and Anne, Princess Royal of Great Britain, North German, circa 1734, realized £657,250 over double the high estimate if £300,000. Even more impressive, a set of three ivory painted and parcel-gilt Royal Pliants by Jean-Baptiste-Claude Séné (1748-1803) made for Queen Marie Antoinette's Salon des Jeux at the Châteaux of Compiègne and Fontainebleau, Louis XVI, circa 1786-87, took in £541,250 against an estimate of £150,000-250,000.
Mario Tavella, Sotheby's Deputy Chairman Europe and the specialist in charge of the sale said: "Today's very successful results represent a fantastic achievement in the field of decorative arts. These extraordinarily rare Treasures with highly desirable aristocratic provenance sparked competition from private collectors and institutional buyers alike as well as the trade and there was bidding and buying from Europe, the United States, Russia, Asia and the Middle East."