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An important Régence silver-gilt toilette box achieves top price at Bonhams
An Important and Rare Régence silver-gilt toilette box from the Duchess of Modena Service, 1719, Price realized: $102,500. Photo: Bonhams.

LOS ANGELES, CA.- An important Régence silver-gilt toilette box achieved $102,500, leading The Elegant Home sale at Bonhams Los Angeles on June 25 and 26. The toilette box is from the Duchess of Modena Service and attributed to Nicolas Besnier, Paris, 1719. The piece was estimated at $20,000-30,000.

Aileen Ward, Director, Silver & Objects of Vertu Department, commented: “It was exciting to handle, research and offer for sale such a rare piece of early French Royal silver. It is now rediscovered and re-joined in scholarship with the rest of the extant pieces of the set.”

The Duchess of Modena's impressive and extensive service included quatre carrés or four dressing boxes. The only other of the inventoried carrés known today is the grand carré, currently in a private collection. Along with the grand carré there are thirteen other pieces from the service that are known today, which are in private collections, with pieces bearing charge marks dating from 1696 to 1722, most dating from 1717-1722. The box sold here is the fifteenth known piece.

European decorative arts featured an impressive pair of Empire gilt and patinated bronze figural six light candelabra after a model by Gérard-Jean Galle, circa 1820, achieved $56,250 after an estimate of $6,000-8,000 and a pair of French gilt-bronze and malachite tables by Monbro, mid-19th century sold for $35,000 with an estimate of $15,000-20,000. The highlight of the modern art offerings was Pommes by Léon Arthur Tutundjian (French, 1906-1968), oil on canvas, which realized $43,750 against an estimate of $10,000-15,000. Americana was represented by a Chippendale mahogany compass seat side chair attributed to the same cabinet shop as the set of chairs made for Robert Livingston and Margaret Livingston (Beekman) of New York, circa 1760, reached $10,625 from an estimate of $6,000-8,000.

The Elegant Home includes European and American furniture, chandeliers, tapestries, paintings, mirrors, clocks, sconces, candelabra, bronze and marble sculpture, ceramics and glassware, silver, works of art and Oriental rugs from the 16th through the 20th century. The next auction will be November 12-13, 2018.

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