Julien’s announces auction of Elizabeth Taylor fashions, personal property

Image courtesy of Julien’s Auctions

LOS ANGELES – Julien’s Auctions, the world-record breaking auction house, has partnered with House of Taylor, the entity that preserves and sustains Elizabeth Taylor’s legacy, to announce its highly anticipated event PROPERTY FROM THE LIFESTYLE OF ELIZABETH TAYLOR to take place from Friday, December 6 through Sunday, December 8, 2019 at The Standard Oil Building in Beverly Hills and live online at juliensauctions.com. This special, three-day event celebrates the luxurious lifestyle and singular career of one of the greatest Hollywood legends of all time, Elizabeth Taylor. Absentee and Internet live bidding will be available through LiveAuctioneers.

On offer is a spectacular collection of her iconic fashions, film costumes and accessories, by designers Christian Dior, Edith Head, Gucci, Nolan Miller, Oscar de la Renta, Valentino, Versace, Yves Saint Laurent and more, all worn by the three-time Academy Award-winning actress and humanitarian who dazzled the world with her ravishing beauty, larger than life celebrity persona, and fearless activism in the fight against HIV/AIDS. Highlights of the auction will also include jewelry, wigs, fine/decorative art and household items from her residences around the world, as well as other pieces from her life and career.

Image courtesy of Julien’s Auctions

Born to American parents in London as Elizabeth Rosemond Taylor on February 27, 1932, Taylor’s family moved to Los Angeles in 1939 where she soon landed her first acting role at the age of nine in the film There’s One Born Every Minute (Universal Pictures, 1942). She was signed to a contract by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer and landed her breakthrough role as the equestrian rider Velvet Brown in the film National Velvet (1944), which made her one of the studio’s most popular teenaged stars. In the 1950s, her career from child star to the undisputed Queen of Hollywood ignited with a string of critically acclaimed film performances as some of her most iconic roles, including: the bride Kay Banks in the comedy, Father of the Bride (1950); the high society beauty Angela Vickers, enamored by a working class boy from the other side of the tracks, played by Montgomery Clift, in A Place in the Sun (1951); the strong willed cattle rancher’s wife, Leslie Benedict, in the epic drama, Giant (1956), opposite James Dean and Rock Hudson; her two consecutive Academy Award nominated performances as southern belle Susanna Drake in Raintree County (1957) and the sultry wife Maggie in the adaptations of Tennessee Williams’ Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1958) co-starring Paul Newman; and Suddenly, Last Summer (1959), for which she won a Golden Globe for Best Actress for her role as Catherine Holly. In what would be her last film for MGM, Taylor won the Academy Award for Best Actress for her role as the call girl Gloria Wandrous in BUtterfield 8 (1960).

Throughout her career, Taylor’s epic romances, marriages and jet-setting lifestyle-including having one of the most important private jewelry collections in the world-became legendary, enthralling the public and paparazzi for the next 50 years. In 1963, she played the title role in the historical epic, Cleopatra (20th Century Fox, 1963), and was the first actor to command a million dollars for her performance. Taylor starred opposite Richard Burton, with whom she had an on-set love affair (and ensuing marriages and divorces). The pair quickly became Hollywood’s most sensational couple. They continued to light up the screen, starring together in 11 films, including The V.I.P.s (MGM, 1963), The Sandpiper (Filmways Pictures, 1965), The Taming of the Shrew (Columbia Pictures, 1967) and Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf (Warner Bros., 1966), one of Taylor’s most critically acclaimed film roles, which also garnered her a second Academy Award for Best Actress. In 1981, Taylor starred on Broadway in The Little Foxes, by Lillian Hellman and in 1983 shared the stage with Burton in a production of Private Lives, by Noel Coward.

Image courtesy of Julien’s Auctions

In addition to her renowned career as one of Hollywood’s greatest leading actresses and an international superstar, Taylor was also a successful businesswoman, ardent philanthropist and the first celebrity to launch her own perfume brand. She broke ground as one of the first and most influential celebrities to take part in HIV/AIDS activism, co-founding the American Foundation for AIDS Research (amfAR) in 1985 and establishing The Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation in 1991. For her philanthropic efforts, which included the Israeli War Victims Fund, the Variety Clubs International and other charities, Taylor received multiple honors, including the Presidential Citizens Medal, the French Legion of Honor and was made Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire by Queen Elizabeth II. In 1993, she won a Life Achievement Award from the American Film Institute (AFI) and that same year received her third Oscar, the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award, for her pioneering work in the fight against AIDS. In 2011, Elizabeth Taylor died at the age of 79.

Highlights of the auction include: Agathon Leonard, a gilt-bronze lamp featuring Loie Fuller, circa 1901, the sensational American dancer at the Folies-Bergere in Paris (estimate: $15,000-$20,000); a pale blue chiffon evening gown designed by Edith Head and worn by Taylor to the 1974 Academy Awards ceremony (estimate: $4,000-$6,000); a group of three silk Persian rugs, including an antique Kirman Laver rug from Taylor’s Gstaad residence (estimate: $4,000-$6,000); a black and white, leopard print pantsuit designed by Mirsa (Marchesa Olga di Gresy) and worn in the film The Only Game in Town (20th Century Fox, 1970) (estimate: $3,000-$5,000); a New York Yankees jacket worn in a 2004 Vogue Paris shoot by, iconic photographer Bruce Weber (estimate: $2,000-$4,000); a silver studded, Versace leather biker jacket worn for her appearance on The Johnny Carson Show (estimate: $$4,000-$6,000); an Yves Saint Laurent cashmere poncho and jersey top ensemble worn in the film The Sandpiper (Filmways Pictures, 1965) (estimate: $2,000-$3,000); a green wool-felt, dip-dyed cape designed by Franca, London (Baroness Stael von Holstein) worn to Buckingham Palace for Richard Burton’s investiture (estimate: $6,000-$8,000).

The list of highlights continues with several of Taylor’s sterling table pieces, including two Gorham individual salt and pepper sets with “ET” monograms, a pair of Japanese wagon-form sterling, parcel-gilt, and niello salt and pepper shakers, and an Asprey sterling Kiwi bird bottle stopper from Paris (estimate: $1,000-$2,000); a set of four Cartier sterling napkin rings in the “Trinity” pattern (estimate: $500-$700); a Kumi Kookoon custom set of deep violet and lavender silk charmeuse bedding, with pleated duvet and pillow covers decorated with embroidered butterflies (estimate: $600-$800); a Bottega Veneta luggage set with violet printed laminated numbered tags reading “MINE!” (estimate: $2,000-$3,000); a group of D. Porthault bath linens including a set of seven hand, face and bath towels, a bath mat featuring purple violets with a blue “E” monogram and a set of Pratesi bathroom linens (estimate: $1,000-$2,000); a small wood sleigh bed with four sphere finials, linens and an inset mattress, personalized for “SUGAR,” Taylor’s beloved pet Maltese (estimate: $800-$1,200); a Loro Piana brown cashmere wrap worn to the AIDS Candlelight March in Washington, D.C. on October 12, 1996 (estimate: $600-$800); a Bill Tice chambray white cotton floral embroidery caftan worn in a Terry O’Neill photo shoot with David Bowie, a lime green silk La Mendola cape, a custom Christian Dior scarf with personalized message from Dior designer Marc Bohan to “Mrs. Richard Burton,” a gold-plated sterling silver Cartier belt, signature inscribed to Elizabeth’s mother, Stallion cowboy boots, monogrammed with “E” …and more.

Image courtesy of Julien’s Auctions

“Julien’s Auctions is honored to present this three-day celebration of the life and spirit of an extraordinary woman who needs no introduction — Elizabeth Taylor,” said Darren Julien, President/Chief Executive Officer of Julien’s Auctions. “Taylor was a giant and the star of a lifetime who epitomized Hollywood glamour, beauty and style in a way like no other celebrity ever had before and that we may never see again. She wore what made her feel good and followed her heart instead of the fads, which ultimately made her a trendsetter and made her collection of fashion items one of the most unique and sought after in the 20th century.”

In celebration of this momentous occasion, Julien’s will be offering a beautiful, special edition three volume set of silver-grey hardcover catalogues with a matching case. The Collector’s Edition will cost $400 and will be available exclusively at juliensauctions.com.

Also, on offer in conjunction with this event will be a Limited Premium Collector’s Edition of The Lifestyle of Elizabeth Taylor catalogue sets. These special sets will feature a striking purple velvet case as a tribute to Taylor’s trademark violet eyes. 100% of the proceeds from the sales of the Limited Premium Collector’s Edition will benefit The Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation (ETAF). Elizabeth Taylor founded ETAF in 1991 to raise funds and awareness to fight the spread of HIV/AIDS, and is celebrated as the first globally recognized celebrity HIV and AIDS activist. The Limited Premium Collector’s Edition will also include a limited-edition photographic portrait print of Elizabeth Taylor. The Limited Premium Collector’s Edition will cost $1,000 and will also be available exclusively at juliensauctions.com.

Image courtesy of Julien’s Auctions

In addition, Julien’s Auctions and luxury ocean liner company Cunard will bring Elizabeth Taylor’s magnificent and luxurious collection to the high seas in an exclusive auction exhibition aboard flagship Queen Mary 2 in a voyage departing out of Southampton, UK on October 18 and arriving in New York on October 25.

“It is an honor to offer our guests an exclusive preview of Elizabeth Taylor’s stunning collection onboard Queen Mary 2 and give our passengers an experience available only on Cunard,” said Josh Leibowitz, SVP Cunard North America. “Elizabeth Taylor was a fan of Cunard and sailed frequently on our ships.”

On the Transatlantic Crossing out of Southampton to New York, guests will enjoy:

* A daily, rotating exhibit of the Lifestyle of Elizabeth Taylor Collection
* Exclusive opportunity to bid on choice items in advance of the general auction which will be held at Julien’s Auctions in Los Angeles in December 2019
* Q&A session with Darren Julien, President/CEO of Julien’s Auctions and Martin Nolan, Executive Director of Julien’s Auctions

For more information about Cunard, or to book a voyage, contact your Travel Consultant, call Cunard Line at 1-800-728-6273 or visit www.cunard.com.

Watch for full preview coverage later this year on Auction Central News. 

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