Scores of important designs from the 20th and 21st century will hit Christie’s auction block in its expansive Design sale in New York on June 8. Imaginative furnishings from two Giacometti brothers are a few of the highlights, while rare vessels, furniture, and light fixtures by stars like Jean Royère and Ettore Sottsass are featured as well, courtesy of several esteemed private collections.
Although the name Giacometti has remained prominent in design since brothers Alberto and Diego arrived on the scene in the 20th century, Christie’s seems to be on a roll with the duo, having hosted a dedicated sale of their wares last December and gearing up for another on the horizon. Earlier this year, an ornate Alberto Giacometti chandelier, discovered in a thrift store, sold for nearly $3 million.
“Alberto and Diego Giacometti hold an important place in the market today,” Christie’s Head of Sales Victoria Tudor told Artnet News. “In 2022 alone, Christie’s sold over $112 million in sales for Alberto and Diego Giacometti, with 22 lots selling for over $1 million. Strong prices such as these draw more works to the market.”
“The success of this market is largely due to Giacometti designs being timeless, modern, and conducive to a multitude of interior tastes,” she continued. “One can see an evolution of design in Alberto’s body of work stemming from Grande Feuille, with its sensual silhouette akin to the elongated human figures archetypal of his oeuvre.” Christie’s expects the patinated bronze lamp to fetch $300,000–$500,000, although Tudor said estimates across the sale are conservative.
Tudor believes a series of understated earthen ceramics by British artists Lucie Rie and Hans Coper “will perform quite nicely.” Additionally, three designs from celebrated French designer Claude Lalanne will join the sale: Structure Végétale hanging lamp from 2013 (estimated $1,000,000–$1,500,000), a Ginkgo dining suite ca. 1999, and a rare Hosta mirror (estimated $500,000–$700,000) made in 2012.
An array of unmistakable iridescent Favrile glass works by Tiffany Studios—with black-eyed Susan, peony, and wisteria flowers—rounds out the June design sale, alongside more abstract imagery featured on paperweights and vases inspired by other florals and peacock feathers.
Contemporary design is represented in the sale through works by Judy McKie, Philippe Anthonioz, Ingrid Donat, Wendell Castle, and Ron Arad. A complete list of lots hasn’t gone live, so there’s a chance this sale could hold further surprises. Until then, the offerings will be exhibited at Christie’s Rockefeller Center headquarters from June 2 through 7, with the live auction set for June 8.