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Bonhams Shelves Auction Amid Epidemic

Feb 13, 2020 8:22 AM   By Rapaport News
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RAPAPORT... Auction house Bonhams has postponed its upcoming Jewels and Jadeite sale amid an escalation in the coronavirus epidemic.

The event, which had been due to take place in Hong Kong on March 12, will be rescheduled to a later date, a Bonhams spokesperson said Wednesday in an email to Rapaport News. It comes as the number of confirmed cases of coronavirus tops 60,000 worldwide, resulting in 1,370 deaths.

To date, 51 people in Hong Kong have been infected by the virus, which started in the Chinese city of Wuhan and is now officially named covid-19. One fatality has been recorded in the principality, according to local media.

Other auction houses have stated they planned to scrutinize the spread of the virus before making any decisions on their upcoming Hong Kong jewelry sales.

Sotheby’s told Rapaport News Wednesday that it did not have any immediate plans to change its Hong Kong sale schedule in April — including Magnificent Jewels, slated for April 7. It will “continue to monitor the situation closely, including travel restrictions and recommendations from government agencies,” the company added.

A spokesperson for Christie’s said that if the auctioneer decided to postpone future events, it would provide “bespoke digital marketing and personal client engagement…to ensure that objects consigned for sale are successfully publicized.”

Christie’s, which was due to hold its Magnificent Jewels sale in Hong Kong in May, added that it was “hopeful that the situation will be fully resolved” by that time. However, it has since removed the event — along with all other Hong Kong sales — from its online calendar.

Image: Passengers wear masks on a train in Hong Kong following Coronavirus reports. (Shutterstock)
Tags: bonhams, Christie’s, Coronavirus, Hong Kong Jewels and Jadeite sale, Magnificent Jewels, Rapaport News, Sotheby’s
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