Arts & Culture: On March 12 Sotheby's in London will auction off 550 lots of paintings, furniture and works of art from late designer Gianni Versaces fabulous Villa Fontanelle on Lake Como, Italy, which was sold to a Russian Oligarch for $52 million last year. In 1977 Versace purchased the Villa, built in 1776, and restored it to its former neoclassical glory. The designer personally supervised every step of the process and carefully selected every item used in its furnishing and decoration. His family have now decided to deaccession the collection.
Highlights from the sale include a spectacular pair of plaster wrestlers from the workshop of Antonio Canova, c.1800, which were displayed in Versace's own bedroom, and a pair of Italian gilt and bronze-mounted bookcases originally commissioned for the library at the Palazzo Borghese in Rome. "It is a great pleasure to orchestrate this one-off sale of such a maverick of style whose taste and influence is epitomized in his Villa Fontanelle collection," says Mario Tavella, Sotheby's European Deputy Chairman responsible for Single-Owner Collections." This is the last opportunity to enter into Giannis world and buy something from a collection that is representative of his legacy."
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