Page last updated at 11:26 GMT, Monday, 23 February 2009

In pictures: Yves Saint Laurent auction

Show cases

From the Picassos that graced his walls, to the wooden sculpture on his chimney breast, the artwork that inspired fashion designer Yves Saint Laurent is on show in Paris before being auctioned next week.

Roman marble minotaur

This Roman marble minotaur is just one of 733 lots for sale at what has been branded the "auction of the century". Proceeds are expected to top 300 million euros (269m).

L'Adoration des Mages

Saint Laurent and his business and civil partner Pierre Berge began collecting in earnest in the 1970s after the couture business expanded into pret-a-porter collections.

Bronze statues

Most of the pieces were housed in a three-story apartment in Rue de Babylone, Paris, where Saint Laurent lived from 1972 until his death last June after a year-long battle with brain cancer.

Dancers and Sphere, by Alexander Calder

Auctioneer Francois De Ricqles poses with this motorised sculpture. Dancers and Sphere, by Alexander Calder, has an upper estimate of 2m euros (1.76m)

Rat head and rabbit head

China has launched a legal bid to stop the sale of these statues of a rat's head and a rabbit's head, which it says were looted 150 years ago. The bronzes are expected to sell for 10 million euros (8.8m).

Parakeets and Parrots

"Yves and I were convinced that fashion is not an art, but fashion needs art to exist," Berge told Time magazine.

Portrait de Mme LR

This wooden sculpture by Constantin Brancusi entitled Portrait de Mme LR is expected to fetch 20 million euros (18m). Works by Picasso, Cezanne and Lautrec also feature.

Woman looking at the exhibition

Berge says he is selling the collection because it has "lost the greater part of its significance" after Laurent's death.

Piet Mondrian's Composition I

Several paintings by Piet Mondrian are up for sale, including Composition I, dating from 1930.


Some 30,000 visitors are expected to view the treasures at the Grand Palais in Paris before the collection is sold. Half of the proceeds will benefit Aids research.

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