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$300 Chandelier Sells for $3.5 Million

A chandelier purchased at an antique store for just £250 ($300) has sold at auction for £2.9 million ($3.5 million).

Giacometti chandelier bought for just $300
Credit: Christie's

According to Christie's, artist John Craxton stumbled across the Alberto Giacometti chandelier in a London antique store in the 1960s. Craxton couldn't believe his eyes - or his luck, says the auction house. Leaving the shop, he banged his head on a low-hanging bronze chandelier he recognized instantly.

The shop listed its maker as "unknown." However, Craxton knew full well that the chandelier had been made by the renowned Swiss sculptor Giacometti a couple of decades earlier. He promptly paid £250, all of his savings, for the piece and kept it hanging in his home for the rest of his life, until he passed away in 2009.

The chandelier had been made for the offices of a contemporary art magazine. When it closed down, the chandelier was put in storage and nobody knows how it eventually ended up in the antique shop in London.

Michelle McMullan, Christie's senior specialist, described the chandelier (made in 1946) as a culmination of Giacometti's works and styles, yet also a totally unique piece of work from the artist.

Gold coins


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