Van Cliburn Collection stars $464,500 George II mirrors

A pair of George II giltwood mirrors were the star attraction of the Van Cliburn Collection auction at Christie's on May 17.

The circa 1750 mirrors, attributed to Matthias Lock, sold for $464,500, surpassing their $250,000 high estimate by 85.8%.

Van Cliburn
Van Cliburn has an eye for English

Harvey Van Cliburn, born in 1934, remains one of America's greatest pianists, and clearly keeps a close eye on the collectibles scene, having amassed a superb collection of Russian art, silver, jewellery and, of course, English furniture, an area that Paul Fraser Collectibles is delighted to know well - see our stock here.

English furniture is hot property around the world.

A report by the Daily Mail newspaper revealed that an English bookcase, worth £980 ($1,560) in Britain, sold for £10,000 ($15,900) in China recently - a rise of 920.4%.

The May 17 auction also featured a pair of George III silver four-light candelabra from 1810, bearing the mark of Paul Storr, which sold for $320,000, comfortably within estimate.

Will Strafford, head of private collections at the auction house, commented: "Van Cliburn's legendary appeal as a performer and a collector was celebrated in Christie's saleroom as buyers from all over the world responded with tremendous enthusiasm". 

An 1840 Russian silver soup tureen, which once formed part of the service of the Grand Duchess Olga Nikolaevna, beat its $120,000 estimate with a $158,500 performance.

Izabela Grocholski, head of Russian art, remarked that Van Cliburn's Russian pieces, which were acquired on his concert tours, "were exceptional both for their rarity and for their historical importance, and were enthusiastically pursued by both Russian and American clients."

The 147 sold lots achieved $4.4m in all.

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