Christie’s presents an ingenious collection of dashing and chic furniture

Twenty avant-garde pieces from the collection of the Maharajah of Indore will headline the sale.

August 22, 2023: Auction house Christie’s brings an outstanding private furniture collection, containing works from the leading designers of the Modern Movement, dating back to the 1930s. The highlight of the sale are some 20 works from the collection of the Maharajah of Indore, commissioned for his Manik Bagh palace (1930-1933), and beautifully assembled in the early 2000s by a passionate collector. 

Maharaja of Indore
The Maharaja and Maharani of Indore. Image © Dariush Soudi.  

Indian prince Yeshwant Rao Holkar II and his wife commissioned their friend, German architect Eckart Muthesius, to design the Manik Bagh. The design of this modernist mansion has left an indelible print on the history of Decorative Arts by illustrating the visionary personality of a sovereign enthralled by modernity. 

Manik Bagh lamp
A standout piece from the collection is a pair of red synthetic leather armchairs with integrated lamps by Mr. Muthesius. A personal desk designed by one of the greatest French interior decorators of his time, Émile- Jacques Ruhlmann, will grace the collection. This is one of Mr. Ruhlmann’s priceless works. Made from Makassar ebony, this masterpiece represents the high point of the artist's career, brilliantly combining chrome and exotic wood, a perfect example of his functional, technical yet aesthetic evolutionary style in the wake of the Modern movement.

Manik Bagh armchairs with lights
Other highlights are the Maharani’s master bedroom psyche mirror in duralumin and glass, the result of a collaboration between Louis Sognot and Charlotte Alix, and an alpaca sculptural floor lamp by Mr. Muthesisus.

Manik Bagh modern retro bed
Yashwant Rao Holkar II was, at heart, the resident of an India that was numerous decades into the future. His distinctive tastes in fashion, décor and design have always reflected that. These iconic pieces will be on exhibition in Paris, from September 27, until the sale on October 3, 2023.

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