Sept. 14 - Auction house Christie's unveils an unprecedented collection of screen queen Elizabeth Taylor's jewels in Moscow, the exhibition's first stop on a world tour before a December auction in New York. Tara Cleary reports.
Taylor on tour. But this time, it's the Hollywood star's vast jewelry collection making its debut in Russia. Christie's is taking Elizabeth Taylor's collection around the world before auctioning it in New York in December. Senior jewelry specialist of the auction house's American Division, Daphne Lingen, says Taylor's collection is world-renowned. SOUNDBITE: Senior Vice President, Senior Jewelry Specialist of Christie's American Division, Daphne Lingen, saying (English): "She was passionate about her jewelry. She wrote about her jewelry. So this is a highlight because everyone gets a glimpse of one of the best private collections of jewelry in the world." The most valuable piece on display was an 8.24 carat ruby and diamond ring given to Taylor by husband Richard Burton as a Christmas present. Matthew Stephenson, Managing Director of Christie's Russia says many of the pieces have interesting stories attached to them. (SOUNDBITE) Matthew Stephenson, Managing Director of Christie's Russia, saying (English): "The piece behind me is called the 'Iguana Brooch'. Now, you'll notice it's not actually an iguana, it's more like a fish. But it was given to Elizabeth Taylor on the premiere of the 'Night of the Iguana' film, Richard Burton's film." Christie's clients across the post-Soviet world are increasingly important, says Lingen, accounting for roughly 10 percent of its global jewelry market. SOUNDBITE: Senior Vice President, Senior Jewelry Specialist of Christie's American Division, Daphne Lingen, saying (English): "Obviously, Russians have a long history of appreciating jewelry. They know all of the important houses who are making jewelry, so they're a very educated group in terms of jewelry. This is why it is important for us to be here and to be in touch with those clients." Also on display were several of Taylor's dresses which will be sold alongside the jewels at Christie's four-day New York auction starting on December 13th. Tara Cleary, Reuters.