Lot 1698. From the Molly de Balkany Collection, An important Art Deco necklace set with an old-mine-cut 14ct (approx.) diamond and two Colombian 75ct and 78ct (approx.) drop emeralds. Estimate CHF 80,000-120,000. Sold CHF 520,000© HDV Hôtel des Ventes SA 

GENEVA.- Piguet Auction House ended its September sale yesterday evening with an overall result of CHF 5.2 million. The Fine Jewellery, Contemporary Art and Antiquarian Books sessions drew in passionate collectors and enthusiasts with a high concentration of rare works and impressive pieces. An Art Deco necklace (circa 1930) set with emeralds crushed its estimate by reaching CHF 632,300 (lot 1698 from the Molly de Balkany Collection, estimated at CHF 80,000-120,000). 

Bernard Piguet, Director of Piguet Auction House and Chief Auctioneer, stated: “In this sale, our auction house has beaten its own record for a Jewellery sale which now stands at over CHF 2.5 million. We are also very proud to have sold the piece of jewellery from the Molly de Balkany collection for CHF 632,300. This stands as the most expensive item of jewellery ever sold by Piguet Auction House”. 

Piguet Auction House also held its annual Modern and Antiquarian Books sale this season. The sharp selection, precision and thoroughness of the catalogue ensured the most important Swiss and international bibliophiles attended the auction. The results are convincing and confirm Piguet Auction House as holding a major position on this specialist market, despite the big sales organised in Paris. 

Record Sale for Fine Jewellery 
Following the international success of the Molly de Balkany Collection sale at Prangins (Vaud) which reached CHF 5.3 million back in May, it was only natural that collectors should await her jewellery with great anticipation. Without disappointing, an Art Deco necklace with two Colombian drop emeralds of rare size (75 and 78 ct.) set off buyers world-wide on a race to the win the final bid by telephone, via internet or through sheer determination in the saleroom. Clients from as far afield as India had chosen pole position in the Geneva saleroom. When the hammer finally fell, the winning bid assured a sale of CHF 632,300 for the necklace, multiplying the estimate by 7.5 and reaching a record price for an item of jewellery sold by Piguet Auction House (lot 1698). From the same collection a Belle-epoque brooch by Cartier sold for CHF 231,000 (lot 1706). At this price, both lots have reached the highest prices achievable on the international market. 



Lot 1698. From the Molly de Balkany Collection, An important Art Deco necklace set with an old-mine-cut 14ct (approx.) diamond and two Colombian 75ct and 78ct (approx.) drop emeraldsEstimate CHF 80,000-120,000. Sold CHF 520,000© HDV Hôtel des Ventes SA 

Accompanied by SSEF certificate no. 87466 dated 2 September 2016 stating a moderate amount of oil. The whole necklace is set with 8/8 baguette cut diamonds (additional links). Length 35.5-45.5 cm, height of pendants: 7 and 9 cm.



Lot 1706. A Belle Epoque brooch by Cartier, double bow and ribbon design set with old-cut diamonds (approx. total 6.5 ct) and a 10 ct (approx.) cabochon emerald at the centre, the lower ribbon retains a drop emerald of approx. 23 ct with the upper bow ribbons suspending a drop emerald to either side of approx. 3.9 and 4ct.  Estimate CHF 80,000-120,000. Sold CHF 190,000© HDV Hôtel des Ventes SA 

SSEF report no. 64653 dated 4 September 2012 stating none to moderate amount of oil in treatment and Colombia as origin, h. 9 cm, width 3.7, with fitted Cartier case. Sold with an 18k white gold chain and a gilt metal screwdriver.

Enamelled solar clocks by Patek Philippe are extremely sought after and continue to enthral collectors. On Thursday evening, a unique example was put up for auction. After a battle between the telephone bidders, the clock sold for CHF 121,600 (lot 1509). 




Lot 1509. A unique and highly collectible Patek Philippe solar clock "oiseaux des étangs" par Elisabeth Perusset Lagger. Signed Patek Philippe : dial, case, movement, réf. 1362M, n°movement 1804504, circa 1991Estimate CHF 50,000-80,000. Sold CHF 100,000© HDV Hôtel des Ventes SA 

Piguet Auction House, a major player in the field of booksales 
Almost 90% of all lots in the Modern and Antiquarian books auction were sold, attaining prices that either doubled or bettered their estimate. This enthusiasm was notably directed towards the books with high quality bindings, specialist cook books, books on ornithology, hunting, travel, alchemy and esotericism – all from private Swiss collections. From the Xavier Givaudan Collection (1867-1966), a rare Kehl edition of the Oeuvres of Voltaire in 70 volumes bound in red leather and embossed with the Russian Imperial coat of arms sold for CHF 31,600, making four times the high estimate (lot 135, estimated at CHF 5,000-8,000). 

Spotlight on Contemporary Art 
Having already proven itself a key player in the field of booksales, Piguet Auction House went on to show itself a major player in Contemporary Art sales.

The auction house witnessed a veritable frenzy of bidders all trying to purchase the biomechanical sculptures by Swiss artist Hans Ruedi Giger (1940-2014). Collectors in the saleroom, on the telephones and those poised in front of their screens for internet bidding all wanted a part of these fantastical sculptures that inspired the universe of the Alien films by Ridley Scott. After a long and relentless bidding war, Bambi Alien was sold for CHF 17,000 (lot 1046 estimated at CHF 300-500). Moments later, bidding on the Nubian Queen surprised the audience by jumping from CHF 8,000 to CHF 17,000 in an attempt to secure a winning bid before selling for CHF 36,400, multiplying its low estimate by 18 (lot 1047, estimated at CHF 2,000-3,000). 



Lot 1047. Hans Ruedi Giger (1940-2014), Nubian Queen, 2002, sculpture en aluminium, signée et numérotée 17 sur 23, 183x33,5x49 cm. Estimate CHF 2,000-3,000. Sold CHF 36,400. © HDV Hôtel des Ventes SA

Certificat d'authenticité et d'achat par le Musée H. R. Giger, Gruyères, daté du 18.08.2009.

Alongside the Swiss Contemporary Art, works of art from international contemporary artists also witnessed great results: Burhan Dogançay (Turkey, lots 977 to 983), Ungno Lee (Korea, lots 1001 to 1004), Markus Lüpertz (Germany, lots 1012, 1013), Teresa Pagowska (Poland, lot 1020)… 

In the more classic Swiss Art category, the unpublished works of Albert Anker (1831-1910) from a Neuchâtel collection (north-west Switzerland) saw a more expected level of success. The highest bid was made for the Portrait of a young girl (lot 1127 sold at CHF 194,500), followed by the Portrait of a boy (lot 1124 sold at CHF 109,400) and the watercolour of a Young boy reading (lot 1123 sold at CHF 52’200). 


Lot 1127. Albert Anker (1831-1910), Portrait de jeune fille, huile sur toile, signée, 51x43 cmEstimate CHF 80,000-120,000. Sold CHF 160,000. © HDV Hôtel des Ventes SA

Provenance:  Collection privée suisse; Collection privée Neuchâtel, 1962; Collection B. Schneider, Neuchâtel


Lot 1124. Albert Anker (1831-1910), Portrait de garçon 1859, huile sur cuivre, signée et datée 1859, 43x33 cmEstimate CHF 60,000-80,000. Sold CHF 90,000. © HDV Hôtel des Ventes SA

Next Sale: Winter Auction, 11-14 December 2017.