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Bonhams presents the Allure of Antiquity: The Bikoff Collection
An Italian Neoclassical style patinated bronze sculpture of Marcus Aurelius, 18th/19th century (est. $8,000 – 12,000). Photo: Courtesy of Bonhams.

NEW YORK, NY.- “The Allure of Antiquity: The Bikoff Collection” is a curated section of souvenirs from the Grand Tour that will highlight the Fine Furniture, Silver, Decorative Arts & Clocks auction at Bonhams New York on March 4.

The Grand Tour was an essential part of the young Englishman’s education, typically taking place between the end of his formal education and the beginning of his adult life. It was also considered a rite of passage for artists. The tour generally lasted between two and three years with long stays in Paris, Rome, Naples and Venice. From their travels they brought with them a repository of knowledge of history and culture, as well as a fantastic collection of souvenirs.

Dating from the 18th and 19th centuries, the approximately 100 lot-section presents items from the esteemed collection of Kathleen and David Bikoff that ranges from marble columns, to bronze sculptures, to botanical and zoological watercolors. Highlights from this section include:

· An important French Neoclassical style repousse metal reduction of the Vendôme column, mid-19th century. The metallic structure stands tall at 5 feet and 2 inches and is expected to fetch between $15,000 and $20,000. Similar columns have been in the collections of Carlos de Besteigui and Bill Blass.

· An 18th/19th century Italian Neoclassical style patinated bronze sculpture of Marcus Aurelius on a white marble base that is estimated to fetch between $8,000 and $12,000.

· A pair of Blue John and marble columns, early 19th century ($5,000 – 8,000). What makes these columns particularly significant is the presence of Blue John stone that is very rare, found only in Derbyshire, England, and which has historically been extremely sought after.

· A pair of Louis-Philippe gilt and patinated bronze Medici vases on tall Siena marble bases, created circa mid-19th century (est. $5,000 – 8,000). The vases are of substantial height, standing at a little over 15 inches.

Karl Green, Director of Furniture & Decorative Arts at Bonhams says, “What makes this collection exceptional is the attention the Bikoffs paid to the aesthetic value of the types of marble selected, some of them quite rare, as well as the number of Grand Tour items of such fine quality. They traveled the world in search of these objects and enjoyed them for decades, refusing all offers of purchase. It is only now that they have somewhat reluctantly decided to let these precious items go.”

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