Out with the old, in with the new. As Oprah Winfrey’s 23,000-square-foot Montecito estate undergoes a major makeover, a mansion’s worth of furniture, art and accessories will be auctioned off, announced OWN and Harpo Productions on Monday.
Earlier this year, Oprah disclosed in O Magazine, “I am evolving [and] my taste is too” by way of an explanation of giving her $85 million, 42-acre estate a major facelift. She went on to say that “the gilded mirrors, marble urns, the lavish carbets and sherbet palette – it was all very grand, but it wasn’t very true to myself,” concluding, “the thing that had been missing from all the beautiful places I’d ever lived in, was me!”
Winfrey tapped designer Rose Tarlow, who has done homes for the likes of Barbara Walters, Eli Broad and David Geffen to give an overhaul to the entire home that was originally designed by the late decorator Anthony P. Browne.
Among the items up for auction will be hand-wrought iron panels that adorned the home’s main staircase (estimated at $4,000 to $7,000) as well as a collection of English George Smith upholstered furniture, including the much-photographed green and white plaid couch, with down-stuffed cushions and coordinating pillows, valued at $3,000 to $4,000.
Oprah also has added a number of European antiques from her collection to the sale. One exquisite Louis XVI chest stamped by the maker “Boudin” is expected to bring $30,000 to $50,000. The signed piece with detailed inlay and marble top makes this item highly sought. A set of Louis XV armchairs in hand embroidered yellow silk upholstery, valued at $20,000 to $40,000, also will be up for auction.
English journalist and Santa Barbara resident Richard Mineard, who highlighted the auction in the Montecito Journal, said that “the items are currently being stored in a 50,000-square-foot warehouse.” Mineard continued, “It’s like Jackie O’s auction at Sotheby’s in the ‘90s where everyone got carried away. This is exactly the same thing.”
Beverly Hills-based Kaminski Auctions will hold the event at the Santa Barbara Polo Club and Racquet Club in Carpinteria, Calif. The auction will include items from her homes in Chicago, Maui and Indiana as well as Santa Barbara. Proceeds will benefit The Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy Foundation College Fund.
The public can preview these and many other items to be auctioned at the grounds of the Santa Barbara Polo and Racquet Club. Items will be available to view Oct. 30 through Nov. 1 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Free general admission seating will be available for this auction by pre-registering for tickets at www.kaminskiauctions.com. Catalogs may be purchased for $50 through Kaminski Auctions at www.kaminskiauctions.com.