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French Decorative Arts from the Estate of Dallas Socialites Ray & Clare Stern for Sale at Heritage Auctions



DALLAS, TX.- A selection of sumptuous French decorative arts from the Estate of legendary Dallas power couple Ray and Clare Stern will form the centerpiece of Heritage Auctions’ June Signature® Decorative Arts Auction, being presented June 1 at Heritage’s Design District Annex, 1518 Slocum Street.

Heritage Auctions will host a wine and cheese reception on Tuesday, May 31, from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., at its Design District Annex, at which time the reproducing piano that the Stern’s purchased for the lobby of The Claremont Condominiums (estimate: $5,000+) will be demonstrated.

Highlights from the collection include a gorgeous pair of monumental French Napoleon III Style Bronze, Gilt Bronze and Marble Figural 13-light Torcheres (estimate: $10,000+), from an unknown maker, likely in Paris, late 20th Century, along with a lovely French Gilt Bronze, Ebonized and Gilt Wood Cabinet and Mirror with Tortoise Shell and Brass Inlay (estimate: $6,000+), made in Paris, circa 1880 and a French Gilt Wood and Marble Pier Table with Gilt Bronze Mounts (estimate: $6,000+), made in Pairs, circa 1840.

“Ray and Clare Stern arrived in Dallas in the late 1960s with an eye toward real estate development,” said Karen Rigdon, Consignment Director for Decorative Arts at Heritage.

In 1972, Ray, a former wrestling champion, known as “Thunder,” together with Clare, revolutionized Dallas’ fitness industry, opening the Ray & Clare Stern Health Center, the city’s first co-ed fitness club. It was not long before the couple widened their field even further, forming charter airline Worldwide Jet, playing off Ray’s love of flying and fostering their mutual love of travel. Many of their projects are still notable today, including The Indigo Apartments (formerly Wedgwood Tower) and The Bonaventure Condominiums (formerly the Claremont).

“With travel came a passion for hunting for beautiful objects, many of which we are presenting in the June 1 auction,” said Rigdon. “This rich collection is unified by grand scale, strong design, fine craftsmanship and a sense of romanticism, a quality Ray and Clare saw personified in French traditional design.”

Further highlights include, but are not limited to:

A French Louis XV style Kingwood Bureau Plat and Associated Chair with Giltwood Bronze Mounts: Unknown maker, Paris, France, circa 1900. Marks to lock plate: BAYLE & PIERRE, 58 R. TROUSSEAU, PARIS. Estimate: $5,000+.

A French Napoleon III Carved Gilt Wood Mirror: Unknown maker, probably Paris, France, circa 1865. Unmarked. Estimate: $5,000+.

A French Baroque Style Gilt and Painted Wood Mirror: Unknown maker, probably Paris, France, circa 1880-1900. Unmarked. Estimate: $5,000+.

A French Louis XV Style Marble and Gilt Bronze Pedestal: Unknown maker, probably Paris, France, circa 1880-1900. Unmarked. Estimate: $5,000+.

A Pair of French Louis XV Style Marble and Gilt Bronze Nine-Light Candelabra: Cast by Barbedienne Fonduer, Paris, France, circa 1900. Marks: F. BARBEDIENNE. Estimate: $2,500+.










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French Decorative Arts from the Estate of Dallas Socialites Ray & Clare Stern for Sale at Heritage Auctions




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