The jewellery collection of Lily Safra
Lily Safra's jewellery collection is expected to make in excess of $20m for good causes in May
Paul Fraser Collectibles, Wednesday 21 March 2012
The name Safra is synonymous with giving. The Edmond J Safra Philanthropic Foundation, set up by the hugely successful banker (1932 - 1999), has supported hundreds of worthy projects in over 40 countries.
And now Edmond's wife, Lily is set to auction her esteemed collection of 70 rare jewels at Christie's in Geneva on May 14 to raise funds for more than 20 institutions around the world.
The collection includes rubies, sapphires and diamonds, and a huge array of fine antique and period jewellery. The 70 items, amassed from the 1970s onwards, are expected to achieve more than $20m.
The sale will feature 18 pieces by Parisian jeweller JAR, many of which were made specifically for Safra between the 1980s and 2000s. It is the largest single-owner selection of JAR jewellery ever seen at auction.
A JAR ruby and diamond Camellia flower brooch, valued at $1.2m-1.5, is attracting particular interest among jewellery collectors.
François Curiel, the international head of Christie's jewellery department, comments that the jewels comprise "the very best in all styles, periods and makers, from the late 18th century all the way to modern times.
"Only a connoisseur with an eye as refined as that of Mrs Lily Safra could have collected such an ensemble of jewels, and only someone with her philanthropic conviction could have expressed such powerful support to worthwhile causes in all charitable fields."
Brazilian born Safra, whose worth is estimated to be in the region of $1bn, is also a keen art collector, and visitors to the Louvre in Paris can visit the Salle Edmond et Lily Safra, where a collection of donated works from Lily and her late-husband can be viewed.
She bought Giacometti's L'Homme qui marche I at Sotheby's in London for £65m in 2010.
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