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Sotheby's New York exhibits 240+ exemplary works of 20th century design
A Rare "Butterfly" Covered Box, 1902. Estimate $20/30,000. Courtesy Sotheby’s.

NEW YORK, NY.- Sotheby’s presents highlights from their two 13 December auctions of Important Design and Tiffany: Dreaming in Glass. Works from both auctions will be on public exhibition from tomorrow, 9 December in their York Avenue galleries, alongside the dedicated auction Masterworks by Tiffany Studios: The William A. Richardson Collection. Together the three sales will offer nearly 250 works.


Sotheby’s announces highlights from our 13 December auction of Important Design. A carefully curated selection of historic and postwar designs spanning from 1870 through present day will be on offer, and is led by a suite of three rare “Crocodile” works by Claude Lalanne. The sale is further distinguished by an important rediscovery in the scholarship of Frank Lloyd Wright, an iconic “Bone” Armchair by Joris Laarman, as well as property from a number of esteemed private collections, including: the Jerome and Ellen Stern collection, the collection of Hana Soukupová and Drew Aaron, the Jacqueline Fowler Collection, and an Important American Collection.

Also on offer this December are exemplary works from the American Arts & Crafts movement by Greene & Greene and Gustav Stickley; outstanding American Studio design by Paul Evans, Harry Bertoia and George Nakashima; and important works by René Lalique, Armand Albert Rateau, Eileen Gray, Line Vautrin, Jean Royère, Pierre Jeanneret, Charlotte Perriand and Yoichi Ohira. Showcasing the dynamism and extraordinary craftsmanship of the works on offer, the 165-lot auction is estimated to achieve $6.2/9.2 million.


Highlights from the sale include examples of Tiffany’s most iconic and highly sought-after designs, including an exceptional “Cobweb” Table Lamp, a superb “Wisteria” Table Lamp, and a "Magnolia and Peony" Window. An exemplary group of favrile glass vases from an Important American Collection conveys the diversity of Tiffany’s forms and techniques.


Sotheby’s will present a dedicated auction of 42 works from the collection of Mr. William A. Richardson. Amassed over the course of two decades, the ensemble offers true connoisseurs an encyclopedic range of the firm’s most artistic production, demonstrating Tiffany’s most celebrated achievements in leaded glass. Among the many highlights are a magnificent Hanging Head “Dragonfly” Floor Lamp, a stunning “Elaborate Peony” Table Lamp, and a dramatic “Octopus” Chandelier. The collection also encompasses rare examples of the firm’s mosaics, fancy goods and lead glass windows.

Having discovered his passion for Tiffany while attending an auction preview in the early 2000s, Richardson turned his vigor for collecting, beginning with silver dollars at the early age of 13, to the firm’s timeless designs. His enjoyment of these exquisite objects would later manifest into a bespoke sanctuary of their artistry and craftsmanship — Richardson built a special room in his home specifically designed to showcase these magnificent pieces in their best light and form.

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