Sep 25, 2012
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Rochas collection featuring Kandinsky, Picasso on sale

Sep 25, 2012

The private collection of French fashion icon Helene Rochas is to be sold at auction this week with works by Kandinsky, Balthus and Picasso among the highlights, Christie's said Monday.

The collection, which will go under the hammer in Paris on Thursday, features art works from the modern and post-war eras, Art Deco pieces such as furniture and objets d'art, as well as Old Masters and 19th century paintings and drawings, a statement from the auctioneer said.

Hélène Rochas by Andy Warhol - Photo: Christie's Images Limited 2012

Christie's said the collection reflects the style of a woman who was "regarded as, and still remains, the embodiment of Parisian elegance and perfection; her refined taste was bold and sober, and epitomised French style at its best".

The most significant works on sale include a large Balthus painting, "Japanese woman with red table" featuring the painter's second wife Setsuko Ideta, which is expected to sell for between three and five million euros ($3.8 million-$6.4 million).

Also up for auction are "Braunes Schweigen," a 1925 oil painting by Kandinsky, and a large 1954 terracotta vase by Picasso.

There are also portraits of Rochas by US pop artist Andy Warhol which she commissioned in 1974 when she was living in New York as well as British painter Ben Nicholson's 1933 abstract painting "Violin and guitar".

Helene Rochas married the celebrated Parisian couturier Marcel Rochas at the age of 18 and headed the fashion house after his death in 1955.

Rochas built the label into a world-renowned fragrance brand and sold it in 1971. She died last year at the age of 84.

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