In recent art world news, Christie’s in New York announced this week that it will auction off 2,000 items from the estate of the late David Rockefeller, who was the last living grandson of American industrialist John D. Rockefeller until his passing earlier this year at 101, and his late wife, Peggy Rockefeller, who passed away in 1996.
Rockefeller was a passionate supporter of the arts throughout his long life and possessed a keen eye for art. He bought a Mark Rothko painting in 1960 for $10,000 that was later sold at auction in 2007 for $72 million.
The Rockefeller estate may break the record for most valuable collection ever sold at auction with estimates in the $700 million range. The collection of the late fashion designer Yves Saint Laurent and his partner, Pierre Bergé, set the previous record when it was sold at Christie’s in Paris in 2009 for nearly $500 million.
The auction of the Rockefeller estate will benefit various charities long supported by the Rockefellers, including the Museum of Modern Art, Harvard University, the Council on Foreign Relations, and the Rockefeller Fund.
Christie’s will auction off the estate in Spring 2018 in a number of auctions to be announced at a later date. The estate includes American decorative arts, Chinese export porcelain, European ceramics, furniture, Impressionist and modern works, and silver.