Crowds gathered at Sothebys
last week to buy their own piece of the lifestyle of one of the twentieth centurys most stylish men, Mark Birley (1930-2007). The contents of Thurloe Lodge, the London home of the renowned arbiter of taste and fêted club owner doubled pre-sale expectations to sell for the combined total of £3,854,619, (est. £1,258,040 - £1,840,770). With his refined sense of style and unerring eye for detail, Mark Birley furnished Thurloe Lodge as the ultimate bachelors residence and gentlemans home. Over 850 clients registered to bid for the collection, and with fierce competition both in the auction room and on the phone, over 85% of the 496 lots sold exceeded their high estimates.
Henry Wyndham, Chairman of Sothebys Europe commented: The enthusiasm with which people from all corners of the globe descended on Sothebys today to try and obtain their own bit of Mark Birley magic, pays a most fitting tribute to his distinguished career and enviable talents. Marks style and way of life has an appeal which has resonated not just in London and among the clientele of his famed clubs, but also with people who may not have known him but are nonetheless inspired by his timeless elegance.
A Selection of the Star Lots
Natalia Goncharovas sketch of the Queen Of Shamakhan from Le Coq D'or from the Ballet Russes sold for £398,500 almost five times its high estimate (£60,000-£80,000)
A Large Imperial Celadon Jade Seal from the Qing Dynasty sold for £326,500 (est. £40,000-£60,000)
Henry Herbert La Thangues A Study (Resting AfterThe Game) achieved £302,500
David Hockneys drawing of his pet dachshund Boodgie smashed the pre-sale expectations to achieve £158,000 (est. £12,000-£18,000)
Mark Birleys personalised Hermès Backgammon Board sold for £20,000 (est. £500-£1,000)
The solid silver enamelled bathroom taps from Thurloe Lodge sold for £2,625 (est. £300-£500)
Marks Birleys personalised novelty Bulgari and Links of London pocket watch sold with a Jaeger Lecoultre travel alarm for £3,000 (est. £150-£250)