Artwork and furnishings belonging to billionaires Ann and Gordon Getty are once again coming to auction, following a blockbuster sale from the couple’s collection in October.
The second installment of a Christie’s sale for the Getty collection encompasses three auctions in June offering the contents of their Berkeley property, known as “The Temple of Wings.” The Greco-Roman style house, originally built for dancer Florence Treadwell Boynton, was acquired by the Gettys in 1994.
“Another bravura performance by the multi talented Ann Getty, Temple of Wings drew together decorative arts from Europe and America from the late 19th and early 20th centuries in an extraordinary building high up in the Berkeley Hills,” said Jonathan Rendell, deputy chairman for Christie’s Americas, in a statement, adding that Ann Getty decorated the home with decor from the Arts and Crafts movement, Tiffany Studios and Fortuny. “It was a magical place.”
Ann Getty, who died in 2020, helped found interior design firm Ann Getty and Associates and was a board member at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York University and the New York Public Library. She was also a prominent philanthropist, contributing to institutions such as the University of California Berkeley and the San Francisco Symphony.
Her husband Gordon is the son of late oil tycoon J. Paul Getty, founder of Getty Oil. A classical music composer, Gordon Getty also founded mutual fund startup ReFlow Management in addition to launching PlumpJack Winery with Gavin Newsom, now governor of California.
The sale follows last year’s multi-million dollar auction
The couple’s collection of 1,500 works of art, jewelry and textiles fetched more than $150 million in an October 2022 auction, with proceeds benefiting Ann and Gordon Getty Foundation for the Arts.
Sir Lawrence Alma-Tameda’s A Coign of Vantage will be included in The Ann and Gordon Getty Collection: Temple of Wings with an estimate of $3.5 million, as will Lord Leighton Frederic’s The Bath of Psyche, estimated to sell for $500,000.
Other items featured in the two subsequent sales will include glass work from Tiffany Studios, such as its “Wisteria” and “Butterfly” lamps, which have estimates of $600,000 and $500,000, respectively. Bidders will also have the opportunity to purchase textiles by William Morris, including his “Hammersmith” rug, estimated to sell for $100,000.
Victorian Gothic furnishings, including an oak reading stand purchased at the 1951 Great Exhibition at London’s Crystal Palace, will also be auctioned, accompanied by pottery from artists like William De Morgan, Emile Galle and Muller Freres.
The proceeds from the three auctions will once again go towards philanthropy and benefit a number of arts and science organizations selected by the Gettys, which reportedly include the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, University of San Francisco, San Francisco Opera, San Francisco Symphony, Berkeley Geochronology Center and the Leakey Foundation.