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Auctioning Off The André Leon Talley Collection

By Ameera Steward


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André Leon Talley Collection Auction - Set of customized monogram cases (Luis Vuitton). Image: Courtesy of Christie's

Beginning Wednesday January 18, 2023 and ending Friday February 17, 2023 Christie’s – an art and luxury business known for it’s auctions and private sales – is putting André Leon Talley’s legacy on display with an auction selling Talley’s collection of haute couture, handbags, jewelry, and more. For those who don’t know, Talley was an American fashion journalist, stylist, and creative director. He’s known for becoming the first Black man to hold the title of Creative Director of American Vogue which led him to become its editor-at-large from 1998 to 2013. He died January 18, 2022 at the age of 73 years old.

So, it only makes sense to celebrate his work and extensive collection a year later.

According to Christie’s 'The Collection of André Leon Talley' celebrates the last 50 years of fashion history, drawing upon many influences such as Talley’s love for his grandmother and his esteem for American Vogue editors Diana Vreeland and Anna Wintour.

André Leon Talley collection to be auctioned at Christie's

The auction will run as follows: an online sale from January 27 until February 16, and a selection of highlights will begin a global live tour starting in Palm Beach from January 18 to January 28, then Paris from January 19 to January 24, and last but not least New York from February 15 until February 17. “André Leon Talley's fashion sensibility was singular and timeless. He was categorically chic, and the collection that he amassed throughout his life was unlike any other,” said Elizabeth Seigel, Head of Private and Iconic at Christie’s, in the press release.

“We are beyond thrilled to steward this group of objects from his homes, a selection that showcases Talley's endless love for all things beautiful. From monogrammed Louis Vuitton trunks to custom Tom Ford caftans, each lot is imbued with meaning and linked to his larger-than-life persona and legacy, which continue to inspire us all,” she continued.

According to Christie’s, Talley collected beautiful objects that combined fashion, fine art, literature, and interior design. In its entirety the collection is infused with glamour as well as Talley’s intellectual curiosity, reflecting his decades-long relationships with iconic designers, including lots given to him by Karl Lagerfeld, Miuccia Prada, Ralph Rucci, and more.

Additionally, the tour and catalogue will feature Mr. Talley’s mentee, American designer, LaQuan Smith, and his friend and style icon Diane Von Furstenberg.

Some pieces highlighted in the collection include a brown monogram canvas vertical wardrobe trunk with gold hardware from Louis Vuitton, circa 2000, estimated at the price of 5,000-7,000 dollars; a navy silk faille tiered cape from Chanel, circa 2000-2020, estimated at the price of 3,000-5,000 dollars; and a Chanel pair of Gripoix glass and Gilt metal cuff bracelets, estimated at the price of 4,000-6,000 dollars. In addition, The André Leon Talley Collection is being offered on behalf of Talley’s estate to benefit causes close to Talley’s heart. As a result, the proceeds will go toward the Abyssinian Baptist Church located in Harlem, N.Y, and the Mt. Sinai Missionary Baptist Church located in Durham, N.C – where he grew up.

Christie’s said working so closely with Talley’s estate, they will honor his legacy by creating opportunities to elevate voices from diverse backgrounds, as well as to expand Christie’s network of vendors, contributors, and tastemakers.

“I am thrilled to partner with Christie’s in the sale of the collection of my dear friend André Leon Talley. André was an intellectual and held a lifelong dedication to social justice and a pioneering vision for Black creators and luminaries,” said Alexis Thomas, executor of Talley’s estate, in the press release.

“André saw his collection of beautiful objects, laden with fashion history, as his legacy, and it’s an honor to ensure that its sale will benefit the Abyssinian Baptist Church in Harlem and Mount Sinai Church in Durham,” Thomas continued. “As we embark on a global tour with the collection, we hope to bring the magic of André Leon Talley into the lives of those who have long admired him.”

André Leon Talley Collection Auction - Gold Brocade Caftan. Dapper Dan. Ca. 2007. Image: Courtesy of Christie's
André Leon Talley Collection Auction - Group of five designer sunglasses. Image: Courtesy of Christie's
Andre Leon Talley