On April 21, the public will catch a glimpse into the charitable, luxurious and culturally-invested lifestyle of philanthropist Cecile Zilkha during an auction of her most prized possession: her jewelry collection. The 29-piece assortment features a variety of antiques rooted in history and defined by Zilkha’s lavish style. The auction will serve as part of the the Magnificent Jewels sale taking place at Sotheby’s in New York City. An exhibition will also be open to the public from April 16.
According to Sotheby’s Senior Vice President Frank Everett, the colored gemstones are the most exceptional jewels in the Zilkha’s collection. He cites a Harry Winston ruby and diamond bracelet and an emerald Van Cleef & Arpels flower brooch as particularly spectacular. “And the 19th century brooch centering a 60-carat unheated Ceylon sapphire, surrounded by old mine-cut diamonds (each weighing approximately two carats!) is truly impressive,” Everett said.
During her lifetime Zilkha’s humanitarian work and longtime patronage of the Met gained her recognition across the globe. As a result of her dedication, she was honored by the Republic of France in 2005 with the highest French order for civil merits, the Chevalier de la Legion d’Honneur, as well as the Chevalier des Arts et des Lettres, a recognition of significant contributions to the arts, literature, or the promotion of these fields.
Zilkha’s daughter Bettina Zilkha reminisced on her mother’s attachment and personal interest in her jewelry collection. “Whenever something great happened, she would walk by Van Cleef & Arpels. But it was never about just acquiring jewelry. It was always about acquiring knowledge–she wanted to learn more about the way things were done. She took her jewelry education very seriously, but never wore her jewels too seriously.”
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createdAt:Mon, 09 Mar 2020 20:35:22 +0000