The Original Tastemaker

A creator and collector with an unparalleled eye, the late fashion legend Karl Lagerfeld is the focus of an upcoming auction at Sotheby’s

Iconic, eccentric, and unbelievably talented, the late Karl Lagerfeld was a brand unto himself. From his era- defining work as the creative director at Chanel and Fendi to his own iconic personal style, he is what one would call a “once in a generation” man. And this December, for the first time ever, Sotheby’s will bring to the public eye more than 4,000 objects from his personal collection in a series of auctions staged across Monaco, Cologne, and Paris — Lagerfeld’s (and haute couture’s!) most beloved cities.

Be it his Rolls-Royce cars, the dishes used by Choupette — the cat who shared the last eight years of the designer’s life — or the wild mix of Art Deco furniture and contemporary art he picked for his home, each lot tells a dierent story. “The collection of Karl Lagerfeld reveals his taste as a decorator, aesthete, designer and humanist,” shares Pierre Mothes, a senior director at Sotheby’s, who is leading the auction, adding, “…but, it is also so much more, revealing the man he really was.”

Lagerfeld’s influences spanned from the Italian Memphis Group, French decorative arts to the worlds of advertising and photography. His last years spent in Louveciennes (pictured), near Paris, are marked by an obsessive return to his German roots. The decor harks back to the grand designs of the turn of the century, from Bruno Paul’s Art Nouveau–style furniture sets and delicate ceramics by Gerhard Schliepstein to posters from the 1920s by graphic artists Ernst Lübbert, Ludwig Hohlwein, and Ernst Deutsch-Dryden.

As for Lagerfeld fans, even if his iconic fingerless gloves or Goyard suitcases seem out of reach, just attending the auction will be an experience in itself, with some of the biggest creatives and friends of the late designer expected to take part in the bidding.

*Published in Architectural Digest India, November-December

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