Remembering Lauren Bacall
Bonhams Chosen to Auction the Estate of the Renowned Hollywood Actress

Lauren Bacall, the acclaimed actress of stage and screen who passed away in August 2014, assembled an astonishing collection of art, including works by some of the greatest artists of the 20th century. The Bacall Collection, estimated at $3 million, will be auctioned at Bonhams New York in March 2015.

The highlights of the Bacall collection are eight sculptures by Henry Moore, Britain's greatest 20th century sculptor, two of which were sold in November's Impressionist and Modern sale at Bonhams, New York.

Bacall's deep admiration of Moore began in the 1950s while she was living in Los Angeles, but it was not until 1975 that the actress was introduced to the sculptor by Robert Lewis of the Brook Street Gallery in London.

Bacall later recalled her first conversation with the artist: "The operator said Henry Moore was on the phone. I could not believe it. I said, 'Is that really Henry Moore?' and he said, 'Is that really Lauren Bacall?'" When she finally visited the artist at this studio in Much Hadham, Herfordshire, the Hollywood star was herself star-struck: "It was and will be ever a high point of my life ... [it was the] realization of a dream," she wrote to the artist.

The sculptures by Henry Moore are among approximately 700 lots, including works by Picasso, Hockney and Miro, to be offered by Bonhams. Bacall acquired pieces at galleries and auctions in California, New York, London, Paris and Rome, while her interest in African art developed while on location with her husband, Humphrey Bogart, for the film The African Queen (1951).

Included in the auction are contemporary prints, modern and contemporary art, English and French 18th and 19th century furniture, English Majolica, tribal works or art, jewelry, couture, and luggage by Louis Vuitton and Goyard.

Speaking on behalf of her family, Leslie Bogart said: "We felt and continue to feel that Bonhams is professional and inviting, yet not intimidating. Perfect for us.'

Jon King, Bonhams' Vice President and Director of Business Development, captured the excitement at the company: 'Bonhams is extremely honored to represent the estate of Lauren Bacall at auction. Ms. Bacall has been not only an international treasure to the public at large, but also a long-time friend to Bonhams over the years. We are looking forward to providing the public with a rare glimpse into Ms. Bacall's formidable collecting sense and intuitive style.'

Portrait: © Kobal Collection


Bonhams, founded in 1793, is one of the world's largest auctioneers of fine art and antiques. The present company was formed by the merger in November 2001 of Bonhams & Brooks and Phillips Son & Neale. In August 2002, the company acquired Butterfields, the principal firm of auctioneers on the West Coast of America. Today, Bonhams offers more sales than any of its rivals, through two major salerooms in London: New Bond Street and Knightsbridge; and a further three in the UK regions and Scotland. Sales are also held in San Francisco, Los Angeles, Carmel, New York and Connecticut in the USA; and Germany, France, Monaco, Hong Kong and Australia. Bonhams has a worldwide network of offices and regional representatives in 25 countries offering sales advice and valuation services in 60 specialist areas. For a full listing of upcoming sales, plus details of Bonhams specialist departments go to

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