Auction PR Publicity Announcements News and Information
Auction PR Publicity Announcements News and Information

Estate of Philanthropist Elizabeth Colyear Vincent Brings More Than $2-Million

Bonhams & Butterfields was pleased to offer the Estate of Elizabeth Colyear Vincent, Newport Beach, California on November 8, 2009. Assembled over the course of a lifetime, the Collection featured a diverse group of 18th and 19th century works with a focus on the European aesthetic.

The 300-lot auction included a discerning selection of rare pieces by renowned craftsmen such as François Linke, Paul Sormani and Emmanuel-Joseph Zwiener as well as beautiful examples of gilt bronze, lighting fixtures, silver and porcelain from across Europe.

The Los Angeles sale brought more than $2.3-million dollars to become one of Bonhams & Butterfields most successful Furniture and Decorative Arts auctions to date.

elizabeth-colyear-vincent“Bonhams & Butterfields was honored to offer works from the Estate of Elizabeth Colyear Vincent to a crowd of more than 200 people in the Los Angeles saleroom. In addition to the standing room only gallery, numerous phone and absentee bids from Australia, Turkey, England, France, Germany, Italy, Greece and across Europe, were seen. Fierce bidding was observed throughout all sections of the sale for 18th and 19th century European furniture and decorative arts, with many of the items on offer far surpassing their initial pre-sale estimates,” said Andrew Jones, Los Angeles Director of European Furniture and Decorative Arts at Bonhams & Butterfields.

Elizabeth Colyear Vincent, a fifth generation Californian, was born in Los Angeles, California on May 24, 1914. She was the second child of self-made California businessman Curtis Calhoun Colyear, founder of Colyear’s New and Secondhand Furniture, a downtown Los Angeles institution in the early 1900s, followed by Colyear’s Van & Storage. In 1912, Curtis Colyear incorporated Colyear Motor Sales Company, which would ultimately become the largest independent distributor of automotive replacement parts on the West Coast until it merged with another company in 1965.

In 1976, Mrs. Vincent settled in a Georgian Colonial house on the prestigious Harbor Island in Newport Beach, California. There, she was able to surround herself with all her passions – with an incredible collection of orchids which were cared for in an immense greenhouse; boating with the 96-foot Nordic Star moored in the harbor just outside her door; arts and antiques, which were so lovingly displayed throughout her home; and friends and family, whom she entertained frequently.

While enjoying a life full of beauty, Mrs. Vincent always remembered to give to those around her and supported numerous Southern California charities. In particular, her devotion to her two favorite causes, Hoag Hospital in Newport Beach and The Orange County Performing Arts Center®, never wavered. During the course of her lifetime, she enriched many lives through her generous philanthropic endeavors.

“The final sale result is a testament to the discerning eye of Elizabeth Colyear Vincent and her appreciation of 18th and 19th century Europe,” said Jones.

The top lots of the November 8, 2009 auction were a Louis XVI style gilt bronze mounted kingwood vitrine, late quarter 19th century (est. $15,000-20,000) and an imposing pair of Louis XVI style gilt bronze floor torcheres, late 19th century (est. $25,000-35,000), which both sold above their pre-sale estimates for $91,500.

“The Louis XVI style gilt bronze floor torcheres were two of the most impressive examples of floor lighting to be offered at public auction in recent years. Bonhams & Butterfields was delighted to present these items along with many rare and unique works from the Collection of Elizabeth Colyear Vincent to the public,” said Jones.

Notable highlights from the sale also included an impressive Napoleon III gilt bronze surtout de table, mid 19th century (est. $15,000-20,000, sold for $70,150); a French patinated bronze figural group Gloria Victis, cast after the model by Marius-Jean-Antonin Mercié, late 19th century (est. $8,000-12,000, sold for $64,050); a grand Venetian micromosaic and acid etched mirror, circa 1900 (est. $20,000 – 30,000, sold for $54,900); a Louis XV style gilt bronze mounted marquetry side cupboard by Emmanuel-Joseph Zwiener, late 19th century (est. $15,000-20,000, sold for $54,900) and an imposing Napoleon III carved giltwood and gesso hall mirror and associated jardinière, third quarter 19th century (est. $12,000 – 15,000, sold for $45,750).

Additional property from the estate of noted Orange County Philanthropist Elizabeth Colyear Vincent, including furniture, decorations, silver and jewelry will be offered on November 15-16, 2009 during Style on Sunset, the thematic monthly sale at Bonhams & Butterfields in Los Angeles. The fall auction will highlight ‘Grand Salon’ style and feature works from the 16th century, Spanish Baroque, Georgian and Louis XIV to 20th century modern periods as well as items from the present day.