Audrey Hepburn auction offers rare glimpse into life
Written byNick Glass, CNN
Twenty-four years after her death, why is Audrey Hepburn -- perhaps more than any other 20th century film star -- so revered, so idolized? Billy Wilder, who directed her in two movies, once said: "You looked around and suddenly there was this dazzling creature looking like a wild-eyed doe prancing in the forest. Everybody on the set was in love within five minutes."
Some of us -- quite a few of us, it seems -- are still enraptured.
奥黛丽·赫本(Audrey Hepburn)去世24年后，为什么人们崇敬她，把她当做偶像来崇拜，要甚于任何一位其他的20世纪的影星。曾执导过两部影片的比利怀尔德 (Billy Wilder) 曾说: “你环顾四周，突然发现一个耀眼的生物，看起来就像一只眼睛狂野的母鹿在森林里跳跃。片场的每个人都在五分钟内坠入爱河。”
A Sept. 27 auction at Christie's London promises a "uniquely intimate glimpse into the life of one of the greatest Hollywood stars." She was, we are reminded, "a screen legend, fashion icon and humanitarian."
The word "icon" recurs endlessly whenever Hepburn is written about. As such, she has attained a level of celebrity that is hard to put a price on. But there are almost 500 lots at the auction trying to do just that.
Two are estimated to make over $100,000: Hepburn's personal working script for "Breakfast at Tiffany's" (annotated in her favorite turquoise ink) and a Givenchy cocktail dress worn in the movie "Charade." Dollar estimates for the other lots mostly range from the low hundreds to the low thousands.
赫本为《蒂凡尼的早餐》(Breakfast at Tiffany’s)创作的私人剧本(用她最喜欢的蓝绿色墨水标注)和电影《字谜游戏》(Charade)中穿的纪梵希(Givenchy)鸡尾酒会礼服，这两件作品的估价估计超过了10万美元。其他拍品的估价大多在几百美元到几千美元之间。
Mementos of a star
They won't say it, of course, but Christie's will be quietly hoping that these estimates prove unrealistically low. In 2006, the auction house sold a Givenchy cocktail dress created for "Breakfast at Tiffany's" for over $900,000 -- almost seven times the highest estimate.
And who knows how much a devoted fan will be prepared to pay for a bangle, scarf or pair of sunglasses once worn by Hepburn, or the white rotary dial telephone from her bedside in Switzerland.
当然，他们不会这么说，但佳士得会悄悄希望，这些估值会被证明低得不切实际。2006年，该拍卖行以90多万美元的价格售出了一件纪梵希(Givenchy)为《蒂芙尼的早餐》(Breakfast at Tiffany’s)设计的鸡尾酒礼服，几乎是最高估价的7倍。
Audrey Hepburn in 1955. Credit: (Photo by Hulton Archive/Getty Images)
A style legacy
Hepburn made the cover of Life magazine nine times -- more than any other celebrity. Unlike contemporaries like Marilyn Monroe and Elizabeth Taylor, she wasn't voluptuous -- she was slim, with a ballerina's pose. At a tribute evening in New York in 1991, Hepburn modestly referred to herself as "the skinny broad" who had been turned into a "marketable commodity."|
But Hepburn was sublimely photogenic. She was effortlessly and preposterously -- if not classically -- beautiful. Photographer Cecil Beaton wrote of her "enormous heron's eyes," "her long incredibly slender and straight neck" and "her incandescent glow," according to the 1986 book "Beaton in Vogue." She was, he concluded, "like a portrait from Modigliani."
赫本曾九次登上《生活》杂志的封面，比其他任何名人都多。与同时代的玛丽莲·梦露 (Marilyn Monroe) 和伊丽莎白·泰勒 (Elizabeth Taylor) 等人不同，她摆出芭蕾舞演员的姿势，并不性感——她身材苗条。1991年，在纽约的一个追悼会上，赫本谦逊地称自己为“瘦女人”，后来她变成了“有销路的商品”。
Lot 144: A Givenchy couture gown worn in "Charade" (1963) Credit: © Christie's Images Limited 2017
Her fashion sense also captured the world's imagination. British Vogue and Harper's Bazaar have both carried articles reflecting on Hepburn's classic style in advance of the Christie's sale.
Hepburn loved clothes and it showed. She confided to a journalist in 1954 that "I love them to a point that it is practically a vice." Her close friend, the couturier Hubert de Givenchy, told Vanity Fair in 2014: "(I've) seen I don't know how many young girls in little black dresses or little narrow trousers with black T-shirts. They seem to adore Audrey more for the clothes than the movies -- maybe they don't even know the movies."
赫本喜欢衣服，这一点很明显。1954年，她向一名记者吐露心声，“我爱他们到了近乎恶习的地步。”她的密友、时装设计师休伯特·德·纪梵希(Hubert de Givenchy)在2014年接受《名利场》(Vanity Fair)采访时表示:“(我)不知道有多少年轻女孩穿着黑色小礼服或黑色t恤配小窄裤。他们似乎更喜欢奥黛丽的衣服，而不是电影——也许他们甚至不知道电影。”
While working on the film "Roman Holiday," costume designer Edith Head noted that "(Hepburn's) figure and flair told me, at once, that here was a girl who'd been born to make designers happy -- a designer's dream."
All the items on sale at Christie's have been consigned to auction by the two people Heburn called her "greatest creations" -- her two sons, Sean Hepburn Ferrer (from her first marriage to American actor Mel Ferrer) and Luca Dotti (from her second marriage to the Italian psychiatrist Dr. Andrea Dotti).
There appears to have been an amount of friction between the two ahead of the sale -- they went to court over memorabilia ownership in 2015. Both sons have published their own photo-memoirs of their mother, though they jointly own the Audrey Hepburn trademark.
在拍摄电影《罗马假日》(Roman Holiday)时，服装设计师伊迪丝·海德(Edith Head)指出，“赫本的身材和才华立刻告诉我，这个女孩生来就是为了让设计师开心——设计师的梦想。”
But while her image lives on, how well do we really know Audrey Hepburn? Probably not as well as we think. A self-professed introvert, she retired from Hollywood at a relatively young age and remained a highly private person.
Lot 3: A glass choker and bracelet Credit: © Christie's Images Limited 2017
拍品3:玻璃颈链和手镯来源:©Christie’s Images Limited 2017
Hepburn never wrote an autobiography. Two years before she died of cancer, aged 63, the Hollywood literary agent, Irving "Swifty" Lazar practically begged her to write one. In a persuasive three-page letter he told her that she didn't have to "kiss and tell" or "lash out at anyone," and that she would earn "very close to $3 million."
Nothing came of it. Hepburn was perhaps too pre-occupied with her work as a special ambassador for UNICEF, and may have been instinctively unwilling to betray confidences.
All of this has surely contributed to her enduring mystique.
In "Roman Holiday," the movie that made her a star in 1954, Hepburn played a princess. And that's how, in a way, she has stayed in the minds of the public: elegant, sophisticated, stylish -- an aristocratic European movie star unsullied by Hollywood.
The contents of the forthcoming Christie's sale simply remind us of what Sean Hepburn Ferrer calls Hepburn's "elegant spirit." Billy Wilder expressed it better than most: "God kissed the cheek of Audrey Hepburn and there she was."
And here she is now -- or at least her photographic archive and some of her personal belongings. And that's as close as many of us will ever get.
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