Sotheby's, Olympia to sell property from the Monaco residence of Dame Shirley Bassey SOTHEBY'S, OLYMPIA is delighted to announce the sale of a collection of items from the luxurious Monaco residence of Dame Shirley Bassey, the legendary, big-voiced songstress.
News-Antique.com - Nov 30,-0001 - SOTHEBY'S, OLYMPIA is delighted to announce the sale of a collection of items from the luxurious Monaco residence of Dame Shirley Bassey, the legendary, big-voiced songstress who has enjoyed five decades at the top of the music industry. The collection of furniture, works of arts and paintings from her apartment will be sold in the Furniture and Interior Decorator sale at Olympia on Wednesday, September 28, 2005. Encompassing some 18 lots, the collection includes decorative pieces that highlight Dame Shirley's great passion for all things glitzy and glamorous. The sale will offer Bassey fans the opportunity to buy a small but unique piece of the performer's life.
Born on January 8, 1937 in Cardiff's dockside region of Tiger Bay, Dame Shirley was the seventh child of a Nigerian father and an English mother. Growing up in a working class family, she left school in 1952 at the age of 15 to work in a local factory. The following year, however, she started to pursue her dream of a singing career and in 1955 she left Cardiff for London after being discovered by musician Jack Hylton. In early 1957 her debut single The Banana Boat Song reached the top ten and following this Dame Shirley's career went from strength to strength. In 1964 she stormed the charts on both sides of the Atlantic when she sang the theme tune to the third James Bond film, Goldfinger and this was followed by a string of other hit records including I (Who Have Nothing), Big Spender, No Regrets, Diamonds Are Forever and Moonraker. The tremendously successful singer, renowned for her glamorous costumes and fiery personality, was made a Dame of the British Empire by the Queen in 1999.
Dame Shirley's elegant apartment, in one of Monaco's most prestigious blocks, has panoramic views over the sea and the Royal Palace. Up until now her apartment has been furnished in a very decorative and ornate manner but according to her manager, Beaudoin Mills, Dame Shirley is now keen to move towards a more minimalist and simple style of decor. He states that "it's a case of out with the old and in with the new" and as a result a small collection of pieces from the Monaco apartment are to be auctioned.
Highlighting the furniture and works of art items in the collection will be a Louis XVI cylinder bureau, circa 1800 and a Louis XVI style salon suite with faux leopard-skin upholstery. The bureau, illustrated above left, is expected to fetch £5,000-£7,000 while the leopard-skin salon suite, illustrated overleaf, is estimated at £3,000-£5,000. A Sevres style porcelain and gilt bronze mounted vase (illustrated above right and estimated at £800-£1,200) and a white marble figure of a hermaphrodite reclining (estimated at £3,000-£5,000) will also be of interest along with an Italian painted parcel gilt credenza and an ornate Rococo-style giltwood and gesso overmantel mirror. The credenza is expected to fetch £2,000-£3,000 while the mirror is estimated at £4,000-£6,000. A further highlight among the furniture pieces