Pair of Louis XV gilt walnut fauteuils a la reine by Louis Delanois, $3.6m (£3m) at the Christie’s New York Rothschild Masterpieces sale.

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The four sales totalled a premium-inclusive $63m (£52m).

The $43m (£35m) ‘evening’ sale of 60 Rothschild Masterpieces on October 11 included as lot 48 a pair of Louis XV gilt walnut fauteuils a la reine by the Parisian menuisier Louis Delanois.

Until their recent rediscovery in the Rothschild collections, only one other example of this muscular architectural model was known (one owned by Karl Lagerfeld sold in Monaco in 2000 for Fr2.7m).

Dated c.1770, they are among the grandest known examples of seat furniture in the neoclassical style known as the ‘goût grec’.

The hammer price of $3.6m/£3m (estimate $500,000-800,000) set a new high for European 18th century seating furniture.

It lasted a matter of minutes.

Two lots later came a second pair of Louis XV walnut and white painted fauteuils from a suite supplied to the Salon de compagnie at Madame du Barry’s château at Louveciennes in 1771.


Pair of Louis XV walnut and white painted fauteuils supplied to Madame du Barry, $5.1m (£4.2m) at the Christie’s New York Rothschild Masterpieces sale.

This suite (relatively few pieces survive) was made by Louis Delanois, the carver Joseph-Nicholas Guichard and painter Jean-Baptiste Cagny and supplied to Madame du Barry in her years as the last mistress of an aging Louis XV.

Described in a Revolutionary inventory made in March 1793, and later sold in 1795, the fauteuils once adorned Alphonse and Leonora de Rothschild’s hôtel Saint-Florentin in Paris, before they were confiscated during the Nazi occupation of France.

Recovered by the Monuments Men from Neuschwanstein Castle, they were returned to the Rothschild family in 1946. Estimated by Christie’s at $600,000-$1m, the pair sold at $5.1m (£4.2m).

Ceramics stunner


Hispano-Moresque blue and lustre charger c.1456- 61 bearing the arms of Charles VII of France, $820,000 (£677,000) at the Christie’s New York Rothschild Masterpieces sale.

A new auction record was also set for Hispano-Moresque ceramics with the sale of an 18in (46cm) blue and lustre charger for $820,000 (£677,000), four times the low estimate.

Made in Valencia (probably Manises) c.1456-61, the heraldry suggest it was probably a diplomatic gift from Philip the Good, Duke of Burgundy, to Charles VII of France or his son Louis XI.

It too was recovered by the Monuments Fine Arts and Archives Section after the Second World War: it was found in the Alt Aussee salt mines.

Among the name buyers at the auction was the Cleveland Museum of Art in Ohio, purchasers of a silver-gilt mounted nautilus cup bearing the mark of the Delft silversmith Cornelis Jansz van der Burch, 1607.

It is the first piece of ‘golden age’ Dutch silver in the CMA collection and will go on view in the Schott Gallery for Dutch Painting. Only six Delft-made nautilus cups are known.

Estimated at $100,000- 150,000, it took $1.2m (£990,000).


Silver-gilt mounted nautilus cup by Cornelis Jansz van der Burch of Delft, 1607, $1.2m (£990,000) at the Christie’s New York Rothschild Masterpieces sale.

More Rothschild family objects will be included in forthcoming Christie’s Paris auctions including the Exceptional Sale on November 21.