Fairwater – The Collection of Sir Warwick and Lady Fairfax AC OBE
It is with great privilege that Bonhams announces the forthcoming contents sale of Fairwater, the highly distinguished home of Sir Warwick and Lady Fairfax AC OBE. One of the most significant private collections ever to be offered at public auction in Australia, the sale will feature important works of Australian art, many of which have never been offered on the open market, along with significant decorative arts and furniture. Amassed by the Fairfax family over the last century the sale will also include pieces from their Harrington Park colonial homestead and the family's New York apartment, known as the Gilded Birdcage. Occupying the 41st and 42nd floors of the Pierre Hotel in New York, the apartment once belonged to John P Getty and was home for a time to Elizabeth Taylor. Decorated by Frank Grill with assistance from Martyn Cook, the apartment was a considered a 'Chateau in the Sky'.
Fairwater, the family's main residence, was acquired in 1900 by Sir James Oswald Fairfax, the grandson of James Fairfax who founded The Sydney Morning Herald. For three generations the house remained with the Fairfax's until its sale in 2018 when it became the most valuable house sold in Australia.
Highlights from the collection will be unveiled in the coming weeks with the auction scheduled for late September. Merryn Schriever, Director of Bonhams Australia, said, 'Fairwater is one of Australia's most distinguished properties. The collection it housed is unique in the Australian market and a celebration of three generations of the Fairfax family. With many rare works of Australian art, Sculpture, fine French and English furniture, continental ceramics and important decorative arts. This sale of selected contents will appeal to collectors both locally and internationally.'
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