Cartier Desk Clock, ca. 1928

Value (2012) | $25,000 Auction$35,000 Auction

You brought us a travel clock today, a very special kind of travel clock. And it belonged to your grandmother?

My grandmother. She traveled across the United States from San Francisco to New York, and traveled all over Europe with her husband.

Well, travel, I suppose, was a bit more luxurious back then.

It was.

It was a little more relaxed. Here we have the clock in its leather case. But the real surprise comes when we open up the doors and see the gold clock inside. You told me who made this clock, didn't you?

It was Cartier.

It was Cartier. Now, Cartier was famous for making wonderful Art Deco objects. I'd almost call them confections rather than ordinary objects. And in fact, many of them are signed on the bottom. And you'll see the signature "Cartier" on the bottom of the box. Cartier was a master of design. This is from the 1920s. And at that time, chinoiserie-- Chinese designs, Chinese motifs-- were very popular. And what he has done here is taken some Chinese designs and created a small clock that opens up to reveal this wonderful dial, which actually was a proprietary design of Cartier's. The thing about Cartier objects today is that they are so popular that they're often faked. But this one has all the earmarks of being quite genuine. If you went to sell this, you would probably realize something between $10,000 and $15,000 for it.

You're kidding.


No. No. Not possible.

It's possible. Cartier is very, very special, and that's one of the reasons why we get so concerned about fakes. But this is absolutely genuine, and one of their wonderful designs. And I'm so happy I got a chance to see it today. Thanks a lot.

I can't believe it! (laughing) I absolutely can't. That's incredible.

Appraisal Details

Bonhams, NY
New York, NY
Update (2012)
$25,000 Auction$35,000 Auction
Appraised value (1998)
$10,000 Auction$15,000 Auction
Richmond, VA (August 28, 1998)
Gold , Leather

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