Home Magazine The Collection of Peggy and David Rockefeller at Christie’s New York

The Largest Art Auction of All Time: The Collection of Peggy and David Rockefeller at Christie’s New York

The Collection of Peggy and David Rockefeller is up for a spectacular auction at Christie’s New York starting this week, May 8. All profits will go to charity.

The extraordinary Collection of Peggy and David Rockefeller is expected to take in around $650 million - on the basis of the estimates - which would make it the highest-earning auction in history. That's why it has been called "the sale of the century", a three-day auction of one the most massive and prestigious art collection of modern times.

All earnings from the sale will go to various designated nonprofit and philanthropic organizations supported by the Family, including the Museum of Modern Art, Rockefeller University, the Council on Foreign Relations, the Maine Coast Heritage Trust and Harvard University.

Eventually all these objects which have brought so much pleasure to Peggy and me will go out into the world and will again be available to other caretakers who, hopefully, will derive the same satisfaction and joy from them as we have — David Rockefeller


Peggy and David Rockefeller, May 1973. Photo: Arthur Lavine/Rockefeller Estate

The auction sale will offer its crown jewels: Impressionist, Post-Impressionist, and modern paintings. Unique pieces from Claude Monet, Pablo Picasso, Georgia O'Keefe, Paul Gauguin, Diego Rivera and much more will be presented, alongside an abundance of decorative arts. 

As David Rockefeller, Jr. said:

‘We are delighted to be partnering with Christie’s to create a significant fundraising opportunity for the philanthropies that are so important to the Rockefeller family. We are proud to fulfil my father’s wish to share with the world the art and objects that he and my mother collected over a lifetime together, and use them as means to continue the long legacy of Rockefeller family philanthropy first established by John D. Rockefeller.’

The Peggy and David Rockefeller Collection portrays two individuals’ magnificent discourse with the art world — an astonishing collecting achievement extending across medium, geography and history. In its broadness and width, it has no equals in modern times, including thousands of works held at the Rockefellers’ residences in Manhattan, Pocantico Hills, the Hudson Valley, Maine, and beyond.


When I’m gone, somebody else will enjoy these treasures I’ve collected over the years.— David Rockefeller 


Henri Matisse, Odalisque couchée aux magnolias (1923). Photo: courtesy of Christie's.


Pablo Picasso, Young Girl with a Basket of Flowers. Paris. Spring 1905. Photo Courtesy Christie's

Stay Tuned on Kooness magazine for more exciting news from the artworld.