The Magnificent Jewels auctions at Christie's and Sotheby's (also called Magnificent and Noble Jewels) are considered the largest and most important auctions on the jewelry auction schedule. They are held twice a year in New York, Hong Kong, London and Geneva, and it is the Swiss sessions (in May and November) that collect most of the sensational lots and set the maximum records. Trades are held one after the other within two days. The session opens with Sotheby's on May 14 at the Mandarin Oriental. On May 15, Christie's picks up the baton at the Four Seasons Hotel des Bergues.
For the next auction, both auctions put up Faberge tiaras as top lots. Since the original tiaras made by the Russian jeweler are negligible, it is obvious that the public will show increased interest in these jewelry.
Sotheby's presents a diamond tiara-kokoshnik (c. 1903), created for Countess Cecilia of Mecklenburg-Schwerin, the last Crown Princess of Prussia (daughter of the Grand Duke of Mecklenburg-Schwerin Friedrich Franz III and Grand Duchess Anastasia Mikhailovna). A head ornament was presented to her by Russian relatives on the occasion of her wedding to Crown Prince Wilhelm - a solemn wedding ceremony was held in Berlin in June 1905.
Daniela Macchetti, Head of Jewelery at Sotheby's Europe, comments: “As we saw with the Marie Antoinette pearl sold last November, historical jewels can give us a living moment of the past. The tiara in the form of a kokoshnik attributed to Faberge (there is no Faberge's signature stamp on it - "), speaks of the Russian roots of Crown Princess Cecilia. A surviving portrait indicates that she paired it with a dress in a highly avant-garde style for the early 1900s. For collectors looking for items with a soul, this is a real find. " The jewel is preliminary estimated at $ 200-300 thousand.
© press service
Тиара 1904 года, выставленная на Christie’s, стала свадебным подарком великого герцога Мекленбург-Шверинского Фридриха Франца IV его невесте, принцессе Александре Камберлендской и Ганноверской. Каждая деталь дизайна имеет символическое значение и говорит о любви. Тиара украшена девятью грушевидными аквамаринами и бриллиантами огранки «кушон» и «роза».
Grand Duchess Anastasia Mikhailovna, mother of Frederick Franz IV, was a fan of Fabergé's work and collected the company's products. It was she who advised her son to order a wedding gift in a Faberge store in St. Petersburg. The wedding took place in June 1904. Preserved correspondence between representatives of the Grand Duke's cabinet and the jeweler Eugene Faberge, the eldest son of Carl Faberge. So, in a letter dated May 10, the jeweler offers two versions of the tiara: one (worth 10 thousand rubles) is decorated exclusively with diamonds, the second (worth 7,500 rubles) is decorated with diamonds and aquamarines. From another letter we learn that the product was not finished on time - and on the day of the wedding, the family wedding diadem of the Hanoverian family flaunted on the head of Princess Alexandra. The Faberge tiara was presented to her a few months later.Estimate jewelry $ 230-340 thousand
© press service
In Geneva, both auction houses also offer excellent emerald jewelery for sale.
At the Sotheby's auction, you can see a luxurious Art Deco necklace with 11 extraordinary Colombian emeralds weighing more than 75 carats with diamonds. The jewelry, created in 1935, was owned by Helene Beaumont, an American woman, a socialite and close friend of the Duchess of Windsor. The lot is preliminary estimated at $ 3-4 million.
© press service
The emerald displayed at Christie's has a royal provenance. For more than a hundred years, the green pear-shaped stone weighing 75.61 carats was owned by the Russian imperial family, starting with Catherine the Great, until in 1874 Emperor Alexander II presented it to Duchess Maria of Mecklenburg-Schwerin on the occasion of her wedding with the emperor's son, Grand Duke Vladimir (after the wedding, she became known as Princess Maria Pavlovna). After the death of the princess in 1920, the rectangular-cut emerald weighing 107.67 carats was transferred to the Grand Duke Boris Vladimirovich, who sold it to Cartier in 1927. In 1954, the stone was re-cut and acquired its present appearance. Among its owners were the Cartier family, John D. Rockefeller Jr., jeweler Rafael Esmerian. The emerald came to the May auction from an outstanding private collection,remained unnamed. Estimate is $ 2.3-3.5 million.>