(Paris) Delacroix, Corot, Millet… 81 works of art making up the collection of French cinema legend Alain Delon will be exhibited in several cities (New York, Geneva…) before being auctioned on June 22, announced Tuesday in Paris the auction house Bonhams-Cornette de Saint Cyr.
Estimated between 4 and 5 million euros (between 5.9 and 7.4 million $), the collection includes paintings, sculptures, but also drawings from the Italian Renaissance, including a work by Veronese. It will be presented in a traveling exhibition in May and June in New York, Hong Kong, Geneva, London and Paris.
“I bought my first drawing in 1964 exactly, in London. Over the years, I have acquired drawings, paintings and sculptures that have moved me, spoken to me and even sometimes consoled me. These works have accompanied me for many years and have been part of my life,” says Alain Delon, 87, in the sale catalog.
Among the major pieces summarizing “60 years of passion”, an oil on canvas by Raoul Dufy, La plage de Sainte-Adresse, 1906, estimated between 600,000 and 800,000 euros ($885,000 and $1.2 million), and an 1825 painting by Eugène Delacroix, Arab Horse Attached to a Picket (400,000 to 600,000 euros; $590,000 to $885,000), said auctioneer Arnaud Cornette de Saint Cyr in presenting the sale.
“A huge collector with an instinctive, animal eye,” the actor “was one of the biggest buyers of designs from the 60s and 70s, when they weren’t in vogue,” he said. .
In 2007, Alain Delon had dispersed modern works, explaining to the newspaper Le Monde “that he prefers to settle it now” because of his “hate” of posthumous sales.
“Since I worked a lot, all my money went into old drawings. There are some who buy cars, who go to whores, I prefer paintings. I bought out of passion, never out of investment,” he added.
Seven world records, for artists like Estève, Manessier or Olivier Debré, were recorded during this sale, with auctions partly multiplied by the popularity of their owner.
In 2016, after dispersing his cellar of grands crus, his watches and his collection weapons, Alain Delon also sold at auction a collection of Bugatti bronzes which had been a great success.