LENA HORNE’S POSSESSIONS TO BE AUCTIONED


FROM THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

LENA HORNE was known for her elegance as much as for her sultry voice.

On Wednesday, 200 items that once filled her Manhattan apartment were being sold by her estate at DOYLE NEW YORK auction house, objects that epitomized her sophisticated taste: French style furnishing, elegant costumes, jewelry and fine art.

Many admirers of the singer/actor may find that owning a piece of the legendary star’s belongings may not be out of reach.

A sequined cardigan evening coat is estimated to sell for as little as $100 – $200, while a small LOUIS VUITTON trunk with stickers inscribed LENA HORNE HAYTON was being offered with a presale price of $500 – $700. A soft leather vanity case inscribed LH was estimated at $200 – $400.

Ms. Horne’s favourite designer was GIORGIO DI SANT ANGELO. A CHANEL five strand choker of gold tone metal links and faux baroque pearls had a $1,000 – $1,200 presale estimate.

The auction house said the estimates were based on current market values but that the celebrity provenance was the X factor that would determine the price at auction.

The highest priced item in the sale is a colorful abstract painting by African American artist and muralist CHARLES ALSTON, estimated to bring $30,000 to $50,000.

LENA HORNE’S refined taste extended to the furnishings in her Upper East Side home. A Rococo style gilt metal and glass 12 light chandelier and a pair of Continental Rococo style gilt wood mirrors are both estimated at $1,500 to $2,500.

Ms. Horne, who was also a dancer and civil rights activist, died last May at the age of 92. She appeared on screen, stage, on records and in nightclubs and concert halls. Her signature song was STORMY WEATHER but her vocal range extended from blues and jazz and to such RODGERS & HART classics as THE LADY IS A TRAMP and BEWITCHED, BOTHERED & BEWILDERED.

In the 1940s, LENA HORNE was one of the first black performers hired to sing with a major white band, the first to play the famed COPACABANA nightclub in New York City and among a handful with a Hollywood contract.

A striking figure, Ms. Horne was the subject of some of the artworks in her collection, including a 1959 portrait by GEOFFREY HOLDER, estimated at $2,500 – $3,500 and a 1950 bronze sculpture by PETER LAMBDA that could bring $3,000 – $5,000.

The collection also includes books and photographs, among them a group of books autographed by LANGSTON HUGHES ($300 – $500) and a selection of contact sheets by RICHARD AVEDON taken during a photo shoot with Ms. Horne ($75 – $100).

ON LINE:

www.doylenewyork.com

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