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The Dying Swan ($409,000)

The Masterpiece at The Villa Majorelle. 1

Built c. 1903 under the direction of the French piano company Érard, this majestic carved mahogany grand piano with wood veneer inlays was conceived by the French furniture designer, Louis Majorelle (1859 – 1926), and French painter, sculptor, engraver, pedagogue, Victor Prouvé (1858 – 1943) (both men firmly embedded in the Art Nouveau movement).

Detail of Veneer Inlay. 2

Sotheby’s in France auctioned off The Dying Swan, ‘La Mort du Cygne,’ in 2013 as part of the 130 Art Nouveau pieces from the Louis C. Tiffany Garden Museum in Nagoya, Japan. This collection was originally gathered by Takeo Horiuchi, a real estate mogul with the assistance of Alastair Duncan, an arts specialist for the museum.

After the tsunami in 2011, Horiuchi sold his collection to an American who then contacted Sotheby’s for auction.