Yves Saint Laurent and Christie’s: a history-making tale
In early 2022, to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the founding of the Yves Saint Laurent fashion house, six major Parisian museums paid tribute to this extraordinary artist whose name, 20 years after his final fashion show, still embodies French haute couture. This offered an opportunity for us to reflect on the exceptional popularity of these haute couture creations at auction and, in particular, at Christie’s Paris, which holds the world record for the artist.
The love story between the auction house and Yves Saint Laurent began in 2009 when Pierre Bergé chose Christie’s to auction off their collection. This fetched a record amount of 373,935,500 Euros, still an absolute record for a private collection sold at auction in France. In 2019, Christie told the story of the exceptional friendship between Yves Saint Laurent and his muse Catherine Deneuve by auctioning her wardrobe of his creations between 1962 to 2002. Also in 2019, the ‘Sunflowers’ jacket, a tribute to Van Gogh embroidered by Lesage from the Spring Summer 1988 collection, broke the world record for an haute couture garment at auction, selling for 382,000 Euros. By 2021, Zizi Jeanmaire, a close friend of Yves Saint Laurent, trusted Christie’s to auction her wardrobe (her emblematic stage costumes in her collaboration with the designer are kept at the Yves Saint Laurent Museum). That same year, in October, the haute couture dress ‘Homage to Picasso Ballets Russes’ from Fall Winter 1979 went for 112,500 euros in a sale of Impressionist & Modern Art at Christie’s Paris. In December of this year, we will have the chance to sell another embroidered jacket by Lesage Haute Couture Spring Summer 1988 from a private European collection at Christie’s Paris. It is a living tribute to Georges Braque’s doves. Stay tuned!