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First auction house opens in Qatar

Qatar Business

Cultural Village Foundation - Katara has launched the first auction house in Qatar named AlBahie.

The inaugural ceremony of the auction house was attended by Her Excellency Sheikha Al Mayassa bint Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, the chairperson of Qatar Museums, and Sheikh Faisal Bin Qasim Al-Thani.

Dignitaries, ministers, ambassadors and heads of diplomatic missions to Qatar were also present during the inaugural ceremony.

The inaugural sale of the house included a considerable breadth of work on offer at AlBahie, with 240 lots including works on paper, Holy Quran and manuscripts, sculpture, Orientalist paintings, enamels, arms and armour, glass, fine furniture and Indian period jewellery.

Dr Khalid Bin Ibrahim Al-Sulaiti, general manager of Cultural Village Foundation-Katara, said through AlBahie auction house, Katara aims at promoting the culture of collectibles ownership. The auction house will also provide new collectors and potential local and regional consignors with access to confidential, expert advice and valuations for their items.

Located in Katara, the world-renowned cultural hub of Qatar with its outstanding theatres and performance spaces, AlBahie will offer Qataris and visitors to the region alike, a trusted and truly local way to buy fine collectibles and Middle Eastern art for the first time.

AlBahie will be led by director Corinne Lefebvre, who will bring to the venture her experience in auction houses, galleries as a history of art professor. She will be assisted by Alexandra Bots who joins AlBahie from Christie’s Amsterdam.

Lefebvre said: “The market for Oriental and Middle Eastern, fine and decorative art is of huge global significance – at AlBahie we have the advantage of local knowledge but with a considerable international reach, offering the best possible opportunities for our consignees and a superb selection of items for our collectors. AlBahie is set to be a wonderful addition for a region famed for its connoisseurship and love of the arts.”

The first auction of the venture was open to preview online and in person from March 7 to April 4. Outstanding items spanned the complete range of collecting interest offered by AlBahie and included a rare and exquisite 19th century mother-of-pearl Ottoman cabinet, with gold, silver, turquoise and ivory with a pre-sale estimate of $180,000, as well as a striking example of the work of contemporary sculptor by Fernandez Arman, valued with a pre-sale estimate in excess of $60,000.

A specialist auction of Oriental carpets and rugs is scheduled for May 2016. - TradeArabia News Service

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