Elizabeth Taylor Memorabilia & Collectibles

andy warhol elizabeth taylorWith massive interest in Elizabeth Taylor, her life and memorabilia with the recent The Collection of Elizabeth Taylor at Christies and its record results we thought we would take a look at her career and associated memorabilia and collectables.

Pictured right: ANDY WARHOL (1928-1987) Liz (Feldman and Schellmann II.7) offset lithograph in colors, 1964, on wove paper, signed in felt-tip pen, dedicated 'to elizabeth with much love', from the edition of approximately 300, published by Leo Castelli Gallery, New York, framed. Sold for $662,500 at Christies, New York, December 2011. © Christie’s Images Limited 2011.

Elizabeth Taylor was born on February 27, 1932 and went on to be one of the most iconic Hollywood actresses.  As one of the world's most famous film stars, Taylor was recognized for her acting ability and for her glamorous lifestyle, and her stuuning beauty. She died on March 23, 2011 of congestive heart failure in March 2011 at the age of 79.elizabeth taylor frank taylor

Pictured left: Elizabeth Taylor Frank Worth Images Elizabeth Taylor during the filming of Giant, 1955 [printed later] A limited edition black and white photograph, numbered 76/195, with photographer's blind-stamp to lower left. 16x20in. Sold for $1,875, Christies, New York, June 2008. © Christie’s Images Limited 2011.

National Velvet (1944) was Taylor's first success, and she starred in Father of the Bride (1950), A Place in the Sun (1951), Giant (1956), Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1958), and Suddenly, Last Summer (1959). She won the Academy Award for Best Actress for Butterfield 8 (1960), played the title role in Cleopatra (1963), and married her co-star Richard Burton. They appeared together in 11 films, including Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? (1966), for which Taylor won a second Academy Award.

elizabeth taylor richard burtonPictured right: A Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor archive of letters, documents, blueprints and photographs acquired during their time spent at Casa Kimberly, 1960s-1970s. Approximately 780 pages of correspondence, including letters and documents pertaining to the busy lives of Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor; most of these are written to the couple by business associates. Many of them concern the production Under the Milk Wood, The Staircase and Villain, other portions of the archive concern the contributions made by the Burtons to the Oxford Playhouse University Theatre to add an expansion to be named after Burton and include blueprints, while others outline which permits Elizabeth's son and Richard's children would need in order to live in Switzerland. One copy of a typed letter by Burton (unsigned) to John Valva humorously questions whether or not Elizabeth was having an affair with Sammy Davis, Jr. and the only autograph letter signed by Elizabeth is entirely in pencil to her housekeeper concerning her salary: "We must go through Ray M. and Jim Benton ... we can't do anything money-wise without their knowledge - ie: sending of checks ect. Love, Mrs. B." Various sizes. Sold for $1,000 at Bonhams, Los Angeles, December 2011. Image Copyright Bonhams. elizabeth taylor cleopatra dress

Her much publicized personal life included eight marriages and several life-threatening illnesses. From the mid-1980s, Taylor championed HIV and AIDS programs; she co-founded the American Foundation for AIDS Research in 1985, and the Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation in 1993. She received the Presidential Citizens Medal, the Legion of Honour, the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award and a Life Achievement Award from the American Film Institute, who named her seventh on their list of the "Greatest American Screen Legends".

Pictured left: CLEOPATRA, 1963 An Irene Sharraf caftan, the nude chiffon ground appliqué with palmyra and lotus flowers in coffee and cream silks and beadwork, unlabeled, made for Elizabeth Taylor in Cleopatra. Sold for $27,500 at Christies, New York, December 2011. © Christie’s Images Limited 2011.

The Collection of Elizabeth Taylor at Christies

The landmark auctions of The Collection of Elizabeth Taylor at Christie’s New York from December 3-17 realized a combined total of $156,756,576 (£100,324,209/ €120,702,563) with every single item sold. The sale drew unprecedented interest from bidders throughout the world, who gathered in Christie’s flagship Rockefeller Center saleroom to compete in person, on the phone, on-line and by absentee bid to win one of the Collection’s 1,778 lots of jewelry, fashion, decorative arts and film memorabilia. The total far exceeded Christie’s pre-sale expectations for the sale as a whole and for individual items, which were frequently hammered down for five, ten, or even 50 times their estimate in some cases.Elizabeth Taylor La-Peregrina-Pearl

Pictured right: Elizabeth Taylor's La Peregrina is a remarkable pearl of 203 grains in size – equivalent to 50 carats – that was first discovered in the 1500s in the Gulf of Panama. The pearl reached a world auction record price for a pearl at $11,842,500 (£ 7,579,200 / € 9,118,725) at Christies in December 2011, after four and a half minutes of bidding. The pearl, an historic 16th century pear-shaped pearl suspended from a necklace custom-designed for Ms. Taylor by Cartier, has been widely heralded as one of Elizabeth Taylor’s most iconic jewels. © Christie’s Images Limited 2011.

As one of the most highly-anticipated sales in auction history, the Collection generated intense interest from bidders throughout the world, with 36 different countries represented during the four days of live auctions. This historic sale set a world record for the most valuable sale of jewelry in auction history, and set a new bar for the most valuable collection of fashion ever offered at auction. It also marked the company’s first-ever Online-Only sale, which ran in parallel to the live auctions at Christie’s New York and generated over 57,000 bids and $9.5 million in additional sales. In total, 26 items sold for over the $1 million mark, and numerous new world auction records were achieved – a testament to Miss Taylor’s expert eye for craftsmanship, rarity, and quality in all of the items she chose for her personal collection.