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Displaying items by tag: brooke astor

Before her death in 2007, Brooke Astor was a fixture in New York City’s elite inner circle. A tireless philanthropist and champion of the arts, Astor left behind a legacy marked by kindness, generosity, and good taste.

Sotheby’s has announced an auction of the contents of two of Astor’s estates – her legendary Park Avenue duplex and her country estate, Holly Hill, in Briarcliff Manor, NY. A total of 901 items including European and Asian furnishings, Old Master paintings, Qing Dynasty paintings, tea sets, silverware, jewelry, a porcelain menagerie, and over 100 dog paintings will head to the auction block September 24–25. Per Astor’s request, proceeds from the sale will go to the institutions and causes she held dear including the New York Public Library, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Bronx Zoo, Central Park, the Animal Medical Center of New York, New York City’s public school system, and a number of charities in Maine. Sotheby’s expects the sale to bring in between $6 and $9 million for the entire collection.

An icon of New York society and refinement, Astor spent her final years suffering from dementia. After her death at 105, her estate remained in limbo due a family dispute that lasted five years. The feud ended in March of 2012 and $100 million of Astor’s estate was freed for her charities. The amount going to Anthony Marshall, her only son, was cut by more than half as he was convicted of taking advantage of his mother’s deteriorating mental state and altering her will to his advantage.

Among the most coveted of Astor’s pieces that will be headed to Sotheby’s are an Imperial Chinese gilt-bronze lion clock slated to bring in around $180,000–$220,000 and an emerald and diamond necklace with earrings estimated at $280,000– $390,000 for both.

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