Orange Crush: Ellen Barkin’s Topaz Earrings Earn $650,000

Famously donned by actress Ellen Barkin at the 2005 Oscars, these elongated oval-cut imperial topaz, ruby, and diamond ear pendants designed by Paris-based Joel Arthur Rosenthal (a.k.a. JAR) went for $650,500 at the New York Jewels Sale at ­Christie’s on Oct. 20. The apricot earrings are no stranger to Christie’s auction block. Four years ago, they were sold at Barkin’s Christie’s jewelry auction for $710,000. “So few of his pieces come onto the market and he produces them in such small quantity that there’s going to be intense competition,” says Daphne Lingon, senior vice president of jewelry, Christie’s Americas. Their red-carpet status couldn’t have hurt, but Lingon says it was JAR’s design aesthetic—plus his well-established clientele—that truly generated buzz. Adds Christie’s chief jewelry specialist, François Curiel: “Anything iconic of JAR will bring a ton of money.”

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