Christie’s private jewelery sale sparks controversy over Nazi ties – Rob Report

Christie’s will have a huge collection of gems for sale, but it’s not just quantity that’s getting attention.

On Wednesday, May 3, the auction house offered 700 gems from Austrian heiress Heidi Horten in what is likely to be one of the largest gem sales in history. new york timesThe collection is expected to fetch over $150 million, eclipsing Elizabeth Taylor’s $137 million collection.

Horten, who died last year, received a sizable inheritance following the death of her first husband, Helmut, in 1987, according to Christie’s. The business practices of purchasing Jewish businesses are well documented.” Horten of the auction house admits that she coerced the Jewish trade out of fear of harm from the Nazis.

Contrary to this ugly history, Christie’s said that the proceeds of the sale would not only benefit the Heidi Horten Foundation, but would also benefit the various causes she supported throughout her life, including medical research and child welfare. He also said that after the sale, it would “make a significant contribution” to organizations that “advance Holocaust research and education.”

“We know it has a rough history,” said Anthea Pierce, president of Christie’s Europe, Middle East and Africa. Times“We weighed it against a number of factors,” but added that the foundation was “a major driver of philanthropy.”

Munich-based journalist Stephanie Stefan’s father was on the board of the company that was forcibly sold to Horten, according to the newspaper. Stefan issued an affidavit from another Jewish business owner who claimed that Horten had threatened them with deportation to concentration camps if they did not agree to sell their assets. A historian hired by Horten disputed the accuracy of the affidavit, claiming that Helmut Holten never finalized the purchase of Stefan’s father’s company. Times.

It remains to be seen what effect Helmut Horten’s documented Nazi ties will have on the eventual sale of his vast jewelry collection. But one thing is certain: the answer will come soon.

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