Sotheby’s New York October 22nd, 2020, “Important Jewels” auction, the first auction with bidders in attendance since the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic in March, 2020, but held in a new and innovative hybrid format, consisting of an online advanced bidding, culminating in the usual drama of a live auction, registered a substantial Sale Total of USD 17,928,892.
A total of 265 lots were on offer at the sale out of which 83% of the lots were sold, with participants originating from thirty different countries and almost 75% of the buyers placing their bids online.
Top lot of the sale was Lot No. 134 – An Exquisite Fancy Pink Diamond and Diamond Ring – which sold within the estimate of USD 4,000,000 – 5,000,000 for USD 4,618,000. The size 6 ½ ring is set with a pear-shaped, 12.38-carat, fancy-pink, VVS2-clarity diamond , flanked by two pear-shaped, D-color, Internally Flawless diamonds weighing 0.52 and 0.51 carats, framed and accented by circular-cut diamonds.
The next top lot of the sale was Lot 115 – A Diamond and Fancy Brownish-Orangy-Pink Diamond Pendant-Necklace – which sold just above the lower estimate, within the range of USD 3,000,000 – 5,000,000 for USD 3,166,000. The necklace of length 17 ¼ inches suspends a pendant set with a pear-shaped, 51.92-carat, D-color, internally flawless diamond, surmounted by another pear-shaped, 3.65-carat, fancy-brownish-orangey-pink diamond, spaced by a circular-cut diamond, and the link-chain further interspersed with small circular-cut diamonds.
The next lot which achieved the third most value at the sale of USD 1,532,500, just above the lower estimate, within the range of USD 1,500,000 – 2,500,000, was Lot 89 – An Important Sapphire and Diamond Ring. The Iridium-platinum ring of size 7¼, is claw-set with a cushion-cut Kashmir Sapphire weighing 19.24 carats, flanked by two tapered baguette-cut, F-G color, VS- clarity diamonds together weighing 0.80 carats. The sapphire is of medium to medium deep blue color, strongly saturated with high degree of clarity and color zoning subtly visible face-up and more readily apparent at certain angles.
The Lot was accompanied by two lab reports. AGL report no. 1104869 dated November 20, 2019 states that the sapphire is of Kashmir origin, with no indications of heating. SSEF report no. 110233 dated October 17, 2019 states that the sapphire is of Kashmir origin, with no indications of heating.
A significant feature of the auction was that around 60% of the lots on offer were sold even above their higher estimates, such as Lot 110 – A Ruby and Diamond Ring – with an estimate of USD 120,000 – 140,000, selling for more than double the upper estimate for USD 302,400. Some of the other lots which achieved this feat are listed below :-
Lot 247 – David Webb Diamond and Baroque Cultured Pearl Sautoir – with an estimated range of USD 75,000 – 100,000 was sold much above the upper estimate for USD 163,800.
Lot 116 – Pair of Diamond Earstuds – with an estimate of USD 55,000 – 75,000 was sold above the upper estimate for USD 113,400.
Lot 16 – A Cartier Paris Diamond Bracelet – with an estimate of USD 40,000 – 60,000 was sold for more than double the upper estimate for USD 163,800.
Lot 175 – An Emerald and Diamond Ring – with an estimate of USD 25,000 – 35,000 was sold for almost double the upper estimate for USD 69,300.
Lot 184 – John Rubel Co. Turquoise, Ruby and Diamond ‘Ballerina’ Brooch with an estimate of USD 20,000 – 30,000 was sold for double the upper estimate for USD 60,480.
Lot 165 – Henry Dunay Gold, Diamond and Simulated Diamond Lachrymosa Mask – with an estimate of USD 20,000 – 30,000 was sold for USD 69,300, which was more than double the upper estimate.
Lot 114 – A Cartier Diamond Bracelet – with an estimate of USD 20,000 -30,000 was sold for more than the double upper estimate for USD 75,600.
Kendall Reed, head of fine and online jewels at Sotheby’s New York, commenting on the results of the auction said, “Our results are a clear indication that the appetite for top-quality diamonds, rare gemstones and stylish signed jewels still remains very strong.”