Design Masterpieces Triumph at Bonhams New Design Sale in London

Les Biches, a folding screen made c.1926 by the French Art Deco design master Jean Dunand was the top selling lot in Bonhams highly successful inaugural Design sale, focusing on 20th Century & Contemporary design, in London today (Wednesday 14 October). It sold for £93,813 having been estimated at £50,000-70,000. In total the sale realised £1,379,86, with 74% sold by lot and 87% sold by value.

Dunand (1877-1942) was particularly known for his lacquered screens, often using floral or animal designs as in Les Biches (The Hinds). He was in great demand from private and commercial clients alike and his work is represented in museums and galleries throughout the world.

Pieces by Dunand's near contemporary and occasional collaborator Emile-Jacques Ruhlmann (1879-1933), were also in demand including:
• A Davène bookcase sold for £55,063 (estimate £15,000-20,000).
• A Puech extendable table sold for £25,063 (£20,000-25,000).
• A Soussa desk sold for £22,563 (£18,000-22,000).

Bonhams Director of Design, Marcus McDonald, said: "The first Design sale included an impressive range of modern and contemporary, offering wonderful examples of Scandinavian, Nordic, Italian Design, and American too. There was a great number of impressive, and desirable pieces by well-known Designers and Architects. Gio Ponti, Finn Juhl, Le Corbusier and Pierre Jeanneret, Jean Dunand and Emile-Jacques Ruhlmann were only a few examples which drew particular attention.

"I am delighted that the first Design sale in London attracted so much interest and was so successful. I'm looking forward to our next sale in April 2021."

Other highlights of the sale included:

• 'Committee' table, model no. LC/PJ-TAT-14-B, designed for the Assembly, Chandigarh by Le Corbusier and Pierre Jeanneret 1963-1964. Sold for £75,063. Estimate: £40,000-60,000.

• Important sideboard from the 1950s by Paul Dupré-Lafon. Lacquered sycamore, leather, brass. Authenticated by the estate of Paul Dupré-Lafon. Sold for £22,563. Estimate: £20,000-30,000.

• 'Une oie', petit modèle, circa 1912 by Rembrandt Bugatti. Bronze with black patina.
Cast by A.A. Hébrard, Paris, France. Number 9 from the production of 19. Sold for £35,063. Estimate: £20,000-30,000.


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