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This Cartier bracelet, circa 1930, features the distinctive Tutti Frutti carved emeralds, rubies and sapphires, alongside single-cut diamonds. |  Image: Mike Stillwell, <i>Town & Country</i>
This Cartier bracelet, circa 1930, features the distinctive Tutti Frutti carved emeralds, rubies and sapphires, alongside single-cut diamonds. | Image: Mike Stillwell, Town & Country

Cartier ‘Tutti Frutti’ bracelet sold in record-breaking online auction

A bracelet from Cartier’s iconic Tutti Frutti collection has been sold for $US1.3 million ($AU2 million) through a Sotheby's digital auction, breaking the record for the most expensive piece of jewellery sold online.

The bracelet – owned by a family in the US and worn once – was purchased by an anonymous bidder in the single-lot auction, conducted from 24–28 April. It is believed to have been made around 1930 and had never previously appeared at auction.

Inspired by Indian jewellery combined with an Art Deco aesthetic, the piece features single-cut diamonds, carved and cabochon emeralds and sapphires, rubies, onyx, and black enamel.

Catharine Becket, Sotheby
Catharine Becket, Sotheby
"The result achieved for this bracelet is testament to the fact that, even under the most challenging of circumstances, the demand for great art endures"
Catharine Becket, Sotheby's

Sotheby’s estimated the bracelet would sell for between $US600,000–800,000, yet demand was strong, with five prospective buyers submitting competitive bids throughout the four-day auction. 

View Tutti Frutti history by Cartier »

Catharine Becket, head of Sotheby’s Magnificent Jewels Auctions in New York, said, “The result achieved for this bracelet is testament to the fact that, even under the most challenging of circumstances, the demand for great art endures."

She added, “Tutti Frutti jewels have always held a special allure for collectors, capturing the West’s fascination with the ‘exotic’ at a time when travel was relatively limited, much as it is today. Now, of course, we can connect with the touch of a button, which allowed us to engage with bidders worldwide.”

The distinctive Tutti Frutti style was developed by Jacques Cartier following a visit to India in 1911, where he was introduced to the jewellery collections of the maharajahs of Patiala and Kapurthala. 

 

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Sotheby's Condition Report: "In good condition, with light wear and scratching to the platinum mounting, commensurate with age. The carved rubies range from medium pinkish red to medium deep purplish red; the sapphires from medium light to deep blue; and the emeralds from light green to medium deep bluish green.

As typical for the type, the carved colored stones display varying degrees of transparency and color-zoning; moderately to heavily included with surface-reaching inclusions. The cabochon sapphires are medium blue and translucent. The onyx in overall good condition.

The enamel with areas of loss, noticeable under close inspection. The diamonds estimated to weigh approximately 8.00 carats are approximately F-I color, VS-SI clarity. The bracelet opens by means of lifting the tab-form clasp from the front, using the crescent-form thumb piece. Width of band approximately 15/16 inch. Highly articulated and flexible."


 

 

More reading: 
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Tuesday, 04 August, 2020 03:13am
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