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  • Harry Fane

How will Sothebys Tutti Fruiti bracelet do?

Sothebys is auctioning this important Cartier bracelet in a single lot, 'on line', auction this week. How will it do? The estimate, $ 600-800,000, is a normal BC (before corona) value. In regards to the bracelet itself, it certainly is not one of great multi-coloured gemstone (long, horribly known as Tutti Fruiti) bracelets. There is 'air' (gaps) between the stones which was obviously intended but in the truly great examples (Cole Porter) the stones are set very close together. Perhaps more attention in this example was placed on the clasp which is a very good example of Cartier's technique and design at the time...certainly the clasp takes up a good proportion of the bracelet. The coloured stone portion is quite heavy in diamond work and the coloured stones themselves could be considered sparse. Regardless of this 'nitpicking', these bracelets represent, without doubt, the pinnacle of Cartier's originality and brilliance. It should make a good price but it will interesting to watch what effect selling such a high value and important piece in an 'on line' sale has overall...if very successful, maybe it will open the way for the auction houses to dispense with everything and just become on-line portals...

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