NEW YORK, NY.-
unveiled the full auction contents of Lady Blue Eyes: Property of Barbara and Frank Sinatra, which will be offered across a series of auctions this December in New York.
A reference to Barbara Sinatras best-selling memoir, Lady Blue Eyes: Property of Barbara and Frank Sinatra will offer a rare window into the personal lives of the famed couple, through more than 200 works that Barbara and Frank assembled and lived with together throughout their 22-year marriage. Drawn primarily from the Sinatras residences in Palm Springs, Los Angeles and Malibu, Sothebys sales will offer fine art, decorative art and furniture collected by the couple, as well as objects and memorabilia left to Barbara upon her husbands passing in addition to her dazzling personal collection of jewelry and accessories. Together, the auctions will illuminate the two worlds that the Sinatras occupied: the fashionable lifestyle of a beloved entertainer and philanthropist, and the home life where the couple surrounded themselves with the people and objects they loved.
A portion of the proceeds from the December auctions will benefit the Barbara Sinatra Children's Center in Rancho Mirage, California, a nonprofit organization founded by the couple in 1986, which seeks to provide counseling for victims of physical, sexual and emotional child abuse.
Lady Blue Eyes: Property of Barbara and Frank Sinatra will be offered across three sales:
Lady Blue Eyes: Property of Barbara and Frank Sinatra 6 December
Magnificent Jewels 4 December
Lady Blue Eyes: Online Open for Bidding from 27 November 7 December
Sothebys will hold public previews for Lady Blue Eyes in our Los Angeles galleries on 19 & 20 November and in their New York galleries from 30 November 5 December.
HIGHLIGHTS ACROSS THE COLLECTION
FILM & ENTERTAINMENT MEMORABILIA
The significant selection of film & entertainment memorabilia on offer features material associated with projects spanning Franks career in music and film. Highlights include: more than 30 personal copies of scripts and screenplays associated with iconic roles, including From Here to Eternity the film that earned Frank an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor Oceans 11, On the Town, The Manchurian Candidate, Guys and Dolls and The Man with the Golden Arm; music recordings including RIAA awards to commemorate the sales of Duets and Frank Sinatra: The Reprise Collection; two AKG microphones used on various professional engagements; and concert and film posters from his career including a poster from Franks two-week run of shows in 1950 at The London Palladium, marking the entertainers first concerts outside of America.
FRIENDS AND ICONS
The auction also includes numerous signed letters, books, photographs and even artwork from the couples celebrity friends, from Ethel Barrymore, James Cagney, John Wayne, Tony Bennett and Kirk Douglas, to members of the infamous Rat Pack, including Sammy Davis Jr. and Dean Martin.
The Sinatras fine art collection is highlighted by a number of paintings and sculptures by American artists, including Walt Kuhn, Childe Hassam and Leroy Neiman. The group is led by Norman Rockwells Sinatra: An American Classic (Portrait of Frank Sinatra) (estimate $80/120,000), commissioned by Frank in 1973 and later hung in Barbaras Los Angeles penthouse. The couple particularly enjoyed works by Impressionist and Contemporary artists, including Pablo Picasso, Joan Miro, Marc Chagall and David Hockney among others.
The auction offers a number of signed letters, books and photographs from every-sitting President of the United States, from Harry Truman to Bill Clinton. Franks relationship with John F. Kennedy is illustrated by a number of objects, from an inscribed and signed book of Profiles in Courage by a then-Senator Kennedy, to a limited deluxe edition of the Kennedy-Johnson Inaugural Program from January 20, 1961 for which Sinatra served as the producer of the inaugural gala and an article from the Texas State Journal of Medicine, with markings in Franks hand, that recounts the treatment given to President Kennedy after the fatal shooting by Lee Harvey Oswald in 1964.
After years of publicly supporting Democrats, by 1972 Frank began endorsing Republican politicians and causes. Once President Ronald Reagan was elected, Sinatra became more of a celebrity fixture at the White House than he had been during any presidency since Kennedy. He personally raised millions towards Reagans 1980 Presidential campaign, and organized the inaugural galas in 1981 and 1985. The auction offers a medal from the Reagan inauguration identifying Frank Sinatra as Entertainment Director, as well as a pair of velour jackets from the 50th American Presidential Inaugural Gala in 1985.
"Being Mrs. Frank Sinatra took some getting used to, but my romantic husband went out of his way to make me feel loved and cherished every day, taking the time to express his feelings. He turned every day into Christmas."
Sothebys will offer a selection of Barbaras personal jewelry collection across the December sales, with a significant portion highlighting the Magnificent Jewels auction on 4 December in New York. The collection reflects her dynamic lifestyle with Frank, from daytime gold pieces by Marina B. worn at Palm Springs lunches and tennis events to the ultra-glamorous diamond and gemstone pieces by Van Cleef & Arpels that she wore at award shows, concerts and social engagements with Frank and their friends. Many of the pieces were fashioned to Barbaras personal specifications by her jewelers of choice, and a number of them were picked out and gifted to Barbara by Mr. Sinatra himself, who enjoyed surprising his wife with luxurious jewels and gemstones.
According to her memoir, the emerald-cut 20-carat diamond ring offered in the 4 December Magnificent Jewels sale was one of two given to Barbara in a pivotal moment in their four years of courtship. Frank threw two huge jewels onto the bed and told her to pick one. Once her chosen stone had been set, he dropped it into her glass of champagne, but he still hadnt proposed until she made him choose which finger to put it on.
The collection also features a selection of iconic clothing and personal accessories the couple wore throughout their travels, special occasions or around town in Palm Springs. Highlights include: Franks custom made Cyril Castle Tuxedo and Di Fabrizio shoes which he wore to a number of concerts and galas; an orange jacket embroidered with Franks initials that he wore on his private jet; a silver pill box engraved Youre a pill/ love, Barbara, and a U.S. Drinking Team jacket custom made for Frank and his closest friends, with Franks as the designated Coach. The auction also offers a special gold plated and enamel police badge inscribed Frank Sinatra, Chairman of the Board, State of New Jersey, Essex County," with matching police cap.
FURNITURE & DECORATIVE ARTS
Some of the best times were when wed stay in just the two of us, and Frank would prepare me a romantic meal. Hed spend an entire afternoon in the kitchen hed designed himself, cooking up a series of delicious Italian dishes. Hed light the candles, arrange the flowers, and woo me all over again.
The couple loved to entertain at their homes in Palm Springs, Los Angeles and Malibu, often inviting their famous friends Gregory Peck, Kirk Douglas, Robert Moore and Robert Wagner and their families for holidays and special occasions. From a glass and patinated bronze Peony Table Lamp by Tiffany Studios, and Art Deco-inspired furniture by Karl Springer, to a group of Fabergé boxes and picture frames, the collection on offer provides an intimate look at what the couple chose to surround themselves with. Of special note is a 20th century Pottery Lettuceware service by Dodie Thayer, which Barbara personally acquired from the designer in Palm Beach and used frequently when entertaining.
Both Barbara and Frank held a deep appreciation for sports, and were avid tennis and golf players. Every year, the couple would host The Frank Sinatra Celebrity Golf Invitational in Palm Springs, the proceeds of which benefitted the Barbara Sinatra Center for Abused Children. The auctions will offer the blazers they wore to the 1990 invitational, in addition to a set of Franks golf clubs. Additional memorabilia includes a baseball signed by the 1980 Los Angeles Dodgers, a 2000 World Series Baseball signed by Joe Torre, and a United States Olympic Team Windbreaker, embroidered with Franks initials F.A.S on the front.