New York, NY, June 23, 2015 – To celebrate its 20th anniversary, on June 18th Luce della Vite (http://www.lucedellavite.com/en/) held an auction at Christie’s Auction House in NYC’s Rockefeller Center of rare wine lots, some dating back to the inaugural vintage. 100% of the auction proceeds were donated to the Baryshnikov Arts Center (BAC) and the Cage Cunningham Campaign. Launched in 1993, Luce (the first-ever blend of Merlot and Sangiovese from Montalcino) was the result of a partnership between Marchesi Frescobaldi, the historical leader in Tuscan winemaking, and Robert Mondavi, the first family of American winemaking. The auction consisted of 20 unique lots, none of which will ever be available again. The total hammer amount was $57,100 before buyer’s commissions.
The auction was preceded by an eight-vintage vertical tasting of Luce reserved to members of the wine trade, media, investors, collectors and BAC constituents. The lots sold by Christie’s included rare vintages, vertical collections, magnums, double magnums, imperials and an 18 Liter Melchior bottle of the 2012 vintage of Luce, which marked the 20th anniversary of the wine. The best-selling lot was a vertical collection of 20 double magnums (3 Liter) bottles, one from each vintage of Luce, 1993 to 2012, hammered at $12,000.
“It has been an honor to work with Christie’s in our efforts to support Baryshnikov Arts Center, a great New York institution making extraordinary, innovative contributions to the performing arts community.” said Lamberto Frescobaldi, president of Marchesi Frescobaldi and winemaker of Luce. “We are very pleased with the auction results, and proud to celebrate twenty vintages of Luce with BAC.”
BAC’s executive director, Georgiana Pickett, said: “BAC could not be more pleased with the results of the auction. In addition to the much needed funds that were raised, we feel BAC is now part of the Luce della Vite family. We look forward to future collaborations with this excellent company and with the warm-hearted and passionate people who work there.”
The money raised from the auction will directly benefit the Baryshnikov Arts Center’s ongoing Cage Cunningham Campaign, which honors visionary choreographer Merce Cunningham and his artistic partner John Cage. The campaign supports future generations of artists who are continuing Cage and Cunningham’s commitment to artistic exploration, and will enable BAC to name its Studio 6A the John Cage and Merce Cunningham Studio –– the first physical space named in their honor. Earlier this spring, BAC hosted a performance by Stephen Petronio Dance Company of Merce Cunningham’s 1968 RainForest, in concurrence with a reception to celebrate Luce’s 20th vintage.
For more information or materials regarding Luce della Vite, please contact Maggie Doherty at [email protected]. For more information or materials regarding Baryshnikov Arts Center, please contact Kristen Miles at [email protected]. For more information about Christie’s, please contact Kendall Galant at [email protected].
About Luce Della Vite – lucedellavite.com:
Luce started with vintage 1993 as the collaboration between the families of Vittorio Frescobaldi of Tuscany, Italy, and Robert Mondavi of Napa, CA. The objective of these two great winemaking families was clear: combine their cultures and passion to create exceptional wines in Montalcino, Tuscany. Today the Luce della Vite estate is owned by the Frescobaldi family with a few minority shareholders. Lamberto Frescobaldi continues the original vision of the founders, producing unprecedented, unique wines from the exceptional terroir of Montalcino. Located southwest of the medieval town of Montalcino, the Luce della Vite estate covers 474 acres of land, 74 of which are vineyards. Most of the vineyards were planted in 1977, while new plantings were added in 1997 and 1999. Dating back to the Renaissance, the Frescobaldi family has been in the forefront of promoting and supporting the arts for six centuries.
About Baryshnikov Arts Center – www.bacnyc.org:
Baryshnikov Arts Center (BAC) is the realization of a long-held vision by artistic director Mikhail Baryshnikov to build an arts center in Manhattan that would serve as a gathering place for artists from all disciplines. BAC’s opening in 2005 heralded the launch of this mission, establishing a thriving creative laboratory and performance space for artists from around the world. BAC’s activities encompass a robust residency program augmented by a range of professional services, including commissions of new work, as well as the presentation of performances by artists at varying stages of their careers. In tandem with its commitment to supporting artists, BAC is dedicated to building audiences for the arts by presenting contemporary, innovative work at affordable ticket prices.
About Christie’s – www.christies.com:
Christie’s is a name and place that speaks of extraordinary art, unparalleled service and expertise, as well as international glamour. Founded in 1766 by James Christie, Christie’s has since conducted the greatest and most celebrated auctions through the centuries providing a popular showcase for the unique and the beautiful. Christie’s offers around 450 auctions annually in over 80 categories, including all areas of fine and decorative arts, jewellery, photographs, collectibles, wine, and more. Christie’s also has a long and successful history conducting private sales for its clients in all categories, with emphasis on Post-War & Contemporary, Impressionist & Modern, Old Masters and Jewellery. Christie’s has a global presence with 53 offices in 32 countries and 12 salerooms around the world including in London, New York, Paris, Geneva, Milan, Amsterdam, Dubai, Zürich, Hong Kong, Shanghai, and Mumbai. More recently, Christie’s has led the market with expanded initiatives in growth markets such as Russia, China, India and the United Arab Emirates, with successful sales and exhibitions in Beijing, New Delhi, Mumbai and Dubai. Christie’s is the world’s leading art business with global auction and private sales in 2014 that totalled £5.1 billion ($8.4 billion USD), making it the highest annual total in Christie’s history.