Art & Antiques Market Art Auctions/SOTHEBY'S ARTS and CULTURE AUCTIONS

White Glove for €23m Hubert Guerrand-Hermès Auction, Starring €2.6m “Marie-Antoinette” Chair

Written by Staff Writer

White Glove for €23m Hubert Guerrand-Hermès Auction, Starring €2.6m “Marie-Antoinette” Chair

A ROYAL CHAIR, CREATED FOR THE BOUDOIR OF MARIE-ANTOINETTE, SELLS FOR €2.6 MILLION / $2.8 MILLION

As Sotheby’s Auctions of the Hubert Guerrand-Hermès Collection Commence in Paris:‘White-Glove’ Evening Sale Totals €23 Million / $25 Million 

*Tripling its Pre-Sale Estimate*100% Sold, With 80% of Lots Exceeding High-Estimates

Led by Artworks & Designs Traversing the Centuries, Including Standout Prices for Works by Pierre Soulages, François-Xavier Lalanne, Pierre Antoine Lemoine, Lucio Fontana & Alexandre-François

PARIS, 13 December – Hubert Guerrand-Hermès (1940-2016) was passionate about art in all its forms, and this passion has taken over Sotheby’s Paris galleries this week. Tonight, the first auction from his collection presented some sixty pieces treasured by the ambassador for the arts, from exceptional 18th-century French furniture to the great names of post-war and contemporary art. The “white-glove” Evening Sale totaled €22,966,840 / $24,719,210, with 100% of the lots offered finding a buyer, and more than 80% selling for sums in excess of their high estimates. The total tripled the pre-sale estimate of €6.1 – 8.9 million. 

Among the stars of the night was a regal carved and regilded Louis XVI chair (Lot 7), thought to have been created for Queen Marie-Antoinette’s intimate personal rooms at Versailles, which soared to €2,589,000 / $2,786,541. The chair hails from a set of furniture considered to be at the cutting edge of fashion, which influenced the choice of seating for the apartments of various royal residences. The results marks a record for a single 18th-century chair.

The top lot of the evening was a monochrome canvas by Pierre Soulages (Lot 21), which sold for €3,073,000 / $3,307,470, the highest price for a 1970s work by the artist. The masterful painting had been acquired by Guerrand-Hermès at a Sotheby’s Paris auction almost 14 years to the day.

“Tonight’s sale was a celebration of prestigious provenance, as the undeniable response to Hubert Guerrand-Hermès’ eye for collecting showcased the continued demand for the most elevated world of refinement. This was most notably seen in the flurry of bidding for the exceptional chair, touched by Marie-Antoinette’s renowned taste. The baton will fittingly be passed on tomorrow to another great woman in French history, la Duchesse du Berry. The sale also saw fierce bidding for the cutting-edge contemporary artists that Guerrand-Hermès so uniquely paired with his classical arts.”

Mario Tavella, President of Sotheby’s France and Chairman of Sotheby’s Europe

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