November 20, 2009 / 8:05 PM / 10 years ago

YSL auction raises almost three times estimate

PARIS (Reuters) - A second auction of art and furniture once owned by fashion guru Yves Saint Laurent has raised 8.9 million euros ($13.22 million), up to three times the estimated amount, auctioneers Christie’s said on Friday.

The first sale of treasures belonging to Saint Laurent and his companion, Pierre Berge, raised more than 370 million euros in February in one of the biggest auctions Paris has seen.

Christie’s had estimated the second sale would rake in between 3 and 4 million euros, with all the proceeds going to an AIDS research charity.

The November 17-20 auction featured almost 1,200 works that used to decorate various properties owned by the couple, including Chateau Gabriel, a 19th-century Normandy country house.

Christie’s said 98 percent of the lots found a buyer.

Among the objects that saw heavy bidding were a pair of armchairs, made at the start of the 19th century, which were valued at between 6,000-8,000 euros and eventually sold for 241,000 euros.

Another unexpected hit was an umbrella holder, which used to stand at the entrance to Saint Laurent and Berge’s Paris apartment. It was valued at between 300 and 500 euros, but sold for 109,000 euros.

Saint Laurent and Berge built up one of the world’s biggest and most important private art collections over some five decades but Berge decided to sell it all after Saint Laurent died last year.

Reporting by Elizabeth Pineau, writing by Crispian Balmer, editing by Jon Boyle

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