COLLECTING
Thomaï Serdari on Fine Arts & Luxury
Tiffany & Co. Vintage Minaudière. Courtesy of Heritage Auctions.

For the last ten years, auction houses have been steadily increasing their presence in the field of vintage fashion and accessories. Increased consumption of luxury goods has paralleled the ups and downs of the market and, as a result, it has generated an entire new category of product placement at auctions. While the major auction […]

Pierre Sterlé. Bracelet, 1950s. Courtesy of Sotheby's London.

If the world of high jewelry had a scent, this would be Jicky by Guerlain. Jicky, permeator of dreams and private moments, exudes old world elegance and simplicity just like finely set precious stones do. It is modern and evolving, evocative of new technology and seeker of excitement in new materials and techniques. As all […]

An illustration to the Ramayana Mewar, circa 1710. Courtesy of Bonhams.

As Asia Week New York just kicked off, fervor for the numerous works exhibited at Sotheby’s, Christie’s and Bonhams is rising. Auctions are scheduled for the upcoming week. A collaboration among auction houses, independent dealers and major cultural institutions, such as Asia Society, Japan Society, Rubin Museum of Art etc., Asia Week aims at celebrating and […]

Vogue cover with Belperron brooch, 1934. Courtesy of Vogue.

Suzanne Belperron (1900-1983) is known today as the jewelry designer who never signed her creations and who deliberately burned her personal papers and photographs–or at least, this is the myth created around her name. This version of history has been defeated with the monographic work on Belperron by French jewelry expert Sylvie Raulet. Belperron’s powerful […]

Axel Salto ceramic vase for Royal Copenhagen.

Today, for each luxury house, the public can recall both the name of its brand and that of its celebrity designer. Think of Raf Simmons for Dior Couture (fashion), Paloma Picasso for Tiffany’s (jewelry design), or Jean-Claude Ellena for Hermès (perfume). This was not the case at the beginning of the 20th century. A time […]

Fornasetti enamelled brown glass, 1937. Courtesy of Alexandre Biaggi.

Call it name-dropping, call it trend-setting, brand-cladding is an art for urbane New Yorkers. These global nomads, whether local or international, are well versed in the language of brands. They show a flare for branded apparel, define their lifestyle according to branded neighborhoods, and consume branded art by means of branded funds and trust accounts.  […]

Louis I. Kahn. Esherick House, 1959-1961. Courtesy of Wright Auctions.

The inventory of modern architecture, especially housing, reads like a prescription for physical therapy. It is often dry, cold, and uninspiring—even worse, it can be confusing and off-putting like a drill that your therapist trusts will make you feel better and fully functional. You totally understand the mechanics on a purely abstract level and yet […]

Jean Etienne Liotard. Portrait of Mademoiselle Jacquet, bet. 1748-1752.

A portrait of the lovely Mlle Jacquet is coming up for auction at Sotheby’s Paris on June 21st. Mlle Jacquet was an actress and singer with the Royal Academy of Music  in Paris. Her portrait is signed by the most famous pastel painter of the eighteenth century, Jean Étienne Liotard. Liotard (1702-1789), was born in […]

Hiroshi Sugimoto. Color gradations. Courtesy of the artist.

The first collaboration between the artist Hiroshi Sugimoto and La Maison Hermès took place in 2003 in Tokyo. There, at the luxury brand’s space, Sugimoto’s exhibit L’Histoire de l’Histoire allowed him to present his work alongside about sixty ancient and medieval Japanese objects and to effectively interject himself into Japan’s history. That type of strong […]