BEVERLY HILLS, CA.- Juliens Auctions
, auction house to the stars announces Property from The Estate of Luise Rainer. The meteoric star of eight MGM Studios movies of the 1930s and celebrated winner of two consecutive Academy Awards was once heralded as the new Garbo. The items in the collection feature an array of fine European antiques, Old Master and Contemporary fine art, career memorabilia, furniture and personal effects from Rainers longtime home in Londons trendy Eaton Square.
Luise Rainer was the first actress to win back-to-back Academy Awards, the first in 1936 for her performance as Anna Held in The Great Ziegfeld and the second in 1937 for her performance as O-Lan in The Good Earth. Her historic rise in Hollywood is what film legends are made of. After a rocky relationship with Hollywood, this American/Viennese actress spent her time between Switzerland and England and finally settled in England in the 1990s following her second husbands death.
Aside from her acting talents, Rainer had a very discerning eye for traditional European antiques and built an impressive collection of 17th and 18th century Continental case pieces over the decades. Featured in this sale are examples of fine cabinetry from her native Germany, including a Maria Theresia Austrian armoire cabinet (Estimate: $8,000-$12,000), a German walnut Wellenschrank armoire (Estimate: $8,000-$12,000), an 18th century German walnut secretary bookcase (Estimate: $6,000-$8,000), a German fall-front bureau (Estimate: $4,000-$6,000) and a German marquetry games box (Estimate: $2,000-$3,000). Other antique highlights include Dutch marquetry pieces, including an 18th century commode (Estimate: $3,000-$5,000), and side table (Estimate: $2,500-$3,500). British antiques from the same era include a George III Secretary Cabinet with a hidden compartment, (Estimate: $8,000-$10,000), a William and Mary cabinet with multiple drawers (Estimate: $5,000-$7,000), and a William and Mary oyster veneered mirror (Estimate: $2,000-$3,000).
Old Master fine art highlights from the estate include a collection of Russian Icons, some originally purchased from the venerable New York A La Vielle Russie and Hammer Galleries, including Our Lady of Kazan with metalwork by Pavel Ovchinnikov (Estimate: $6,000-$8,000), and a late 16th century Icon believed to have been owned by Czarina Alexandra Feodorovna (Estimate: $6,000-$8,000). The collection also includes Old Master paintings and sculpture, including a carved oak St. Catherine formerly in the collection of William Randolph Hearst (Estimate: $3,000-$5,000), a portrait believed to be Anne of Austria (the mother of Louis XIV) by Jan Van Kessel (Estimate: $10,000-$15,000), and a beautiful Madonna and Child panel attributed to El Divino (Estimate: $6,000-$8,000).
Contemporary fine art highlights include a stunning portrait of Rainer originally painted for the cover of Paris Match magazine in 1949 by Dmitrie Berea (Estimate: $4,000-$6,000), a number of works by Rainers personal friend Reuvin Rubin including Olive Grove (Estimate: $30,000-$40,000), three works by Domenico Gnoli (Estimate between $10,000-$12,000 and $12,000-$15,000), a Renee Sintenis bronze Foal (Estimate: $6,000-$8,000), and a Josef Herman oil (Estimate: $4,000-$6,000).
Rainer herself was a student of art and many examples of her paintings and shadowbox assemblages are included in this sale (most are estimated between $400-$600 or $600-$800). One standout example is her Cubist rendering of Velazquezs Las Meninas (Estimate: $600-$800). This auction also features memorabilia and photographs from Rainers storied career, including a solid 14K gold 1936 Motion Picture Critics of America medal (Estimate: $4,000-$6,000), a George Hurrell black and white photograph portrait, and personal effects such as clothing and shoes, sterling monogrammed dresser sets, and a series of black and white photographs of Rainer with her good friend Albert Einstein.