The sale of the important collection of the French Art Deco dealer, author and collector Félix Marcilhac concluded last night with an outstanding total of €24,727,715 ($34,290,170), well above pre-sale expectations (est. €8.7-11.2 million/ $12.1-15.5 million), and 95.2% of lots sold. Over the course of two days, almost 600 collectors and art dealers from Europe and the U.S. registered their intention to bid on masterpieces of Decorative Arts that reflected the discerning eye and refined taste of Félix Marcilhac. The collection has set a record for the sale of Decorative Arts at Sotheby’s
Assembled over 40 years, this landmark collection featured Art Deco treasures which had not been seen in public for decades. Many of these pieces boasted prestigious provenance, having belonged to the likes of Jacques Doucet, Marie-Laure de Noailles, Elsa Schiaparelli, Jeanne Lanvin, Paul Cocteau and Jean-Michel Frank.
This historic sale set new benchmarks across all disciplines of Decorative Arts and established 21 auction records.
The top lot – a unique patinated gypsum and bronze cabinet, circa 1935 by Jean-Michel Frank – soared above estimate and achieved €3,681,500 ($5,105,173) – an auction record for the French designer (est. €400,000-600,000/ $545,000-820,000).
Cécile Verdier, Head of 20th Century Decorative Arts & Design, Sotheby’s Europe said: “It was a huge honour for us to handle the sale of this landmark collection. The historic results achieved demonstrate the strong and ever-increasing appetite of great collectors for works by pre-war Art Deco artists who are still considered as icons of modernity. Ever since the announcement of the sale in October 2013, the response has been extraordinary among collectors and the media. Félix Marcilhac wrote important chapters in the history of Decorative Arts and we are delighted to have written this page with him.”