Barbra Streisand would like to offer you a very nice piece of jewelry, all in the name of charity
Some prefer Saturday morning garage sales for the disposal of once-cherished possessions. Others choose eBay, the internet trading post. And then there's Barbra Streisand. Faced with an abundance of stuff—furniture, jewelry, vintage clothing—Streisand contacted Christie's, the famed auction house, with a list of items ready to sell. The auction house was only too happy to oblige. "This woman has a real eye and great taste," says a Christie's spokeswoman, Vredy Lytsman. "She takes the same intense approach in collecting as she does when she directs a movie or records a record. She's a collector."
Included in Streisand's collection are platinum, gold and diamond necklaces, bracelets, wristwatches and rings dating from 1860 that are estimated to bring in between $1,000 and $10,000 apiece. They will be on display at Christie's Los Angeles showroom from Sept. 15 to 19 and go on sale Sept. 29. Her furniture and decorative arts, still being cataloged, will be auctioned at Christie's New York City showrooms Nov. 29. More vintage jewelry and clothing go on the block in New York Dec. 2. Public viewing for these subsequent sales will be in November, but the specific dates have not been set.
The proceeds—Christie's raised more than $6 million for Streisand the last time she did something like this, in 1994—will go to the entertainer's Streisand Foundation, a philanthropic organization that benefits the environment, civil rights, disadvantaged children and other causes. "Because the money will go to charity, we hope to fetch as much as possible," says Lytsman.
Lytsman acknowledges that Streisand's name will bring in many of those inspecting the merchandise. "But more than that, we expect people who like jewelry and know jewelry," Lytsman says. "She's got some really great stuff. It is a celebrity sale, but on the other hand, it is very different because we are not selling her castoffs or anything like that."
Mick's Holiday on Ice
For the discerning traveler who wants more than just another frolic in the sun, Iceland offers a lot—if you like sea birds, hot springs and geysers. Not to mention the occasional chance of spotting an authentic rock and roll geezer. For some reason, celebs are beginning to flock to this North Atlantic island. Does this mean that Iceland, just below the Arctic Circle, is suddenly in danger of becoming the hot new place? Well, maybe not hot, but at least temperate.
Earlier this month, Mick Jagger, 56, on a three-day trip with friends to hike, bike and bird watch, was seen pedaling a bicycle along the streets of tiny Isafjördur, a remote hamlet on the island's western coast. The locals respected his privacy, says police Chief Olafur Helgi Kjartansson. While at the Maritime Museum in town, Jagger asked the caretaker so many questions about the country's geothermal waters and such that the caretaker inquired, "Are you a geologist?" To which Jagger replied, "No, just interested."
So are other celebs. Jerry Seinfeld vacationed there a few years ago. Kevin Costner recently stayed in Reykjavik, the capital, while on vacation, and Damon Albarn, lead singer of the British rock band Blur, bought a share in a bar there and reportedly applied for dual citizenship. Maybe now's the time to go, before natives chill to the idea of too many visitors.
A Little Bit of Heart and Soul
"It's time to celebrate the women...because we are beautiful," said singer Eve—just Eve—presenting at the 5th annual Soul Train Lady of Soul Awards Sept. 3 in Santa Monica. Music had much to do with the evening, of course, since Soul Train is one of the longest running dance shows on TV. And so they honored music—hip hop, rap and R&B—and the musicians who make it. TLC received the Aretha Franklin Entertainer of the Year award; Lauryn Hill, who missed the ceremony (she was on tour), won three awards anyway. Girl groups such as 702, Divine and Xscape seemed to enjoy the company as much as the entertainment, hugging old friends and even singing songs a cappella in the ladies room. It was an evening for memories too. TLC's Lisa "Left-Eye" Lopes, who brought along her own videocam to tape the backstage proceedings, reminisced about watching Soul Train as a girl and seeing the Jackson 5 "with those bouncing Afros." Producer Kenneth "Babyface" Edmonds talked of the Soul Train dance line. And Natalie Cole, winner of the Lena Home Award for Career Achievement, recalled the first time she performed on the show. "I was very nervous," she laughed, "but it was a good kind of nervous."
The Grass Is Always Greener...
Nothing succeeds like success. Except in Britain, says Prince Edward, where the newspapers "hate anyone who succeeds." And where "there's more baggage, if you understand that expression." The British press certainly did, lambasting the prince, who runs a television production company, for telling The New York Times that working in Hollywood is "a breath of fresh air" compared to home. The British Chambers of Commerce partly agreed—"There's certainly room for improvement," said spokesman Andrew Parkinson. Edward, 35, later apologized: "I had no intention of offending my country."
A Mild Spice Makes Nice
When word came that Geri Halliwell, 27, planned to write her autobiography after a less-than-pleasant split from the Spice Girls last year and that her old band would pen their own memoirs, well, you could almost hear the announcer cry, "Let's get ready to ruuuuuuumble!"
Except that Scoop got an advance look at Halliwell's work If Only, due out in mid-October, and found that—like some pro-wrestling matches—the bad vibes may have been just for show.
Halliwell does have a few unkind words. The former Ginger Spice says that her fellow singers became more like business partners than friends after they all found success together. She pouts that at the time she left the band she felt "emotionally disappointed." And she admits that "in truth, I had barely talked to any of the girls since leaving the band" on May 31, 1998.
But "it's not a knives-out kind of book—she doesn't have an ax to grind," says Halliwell's publicist, Jonathan Hack-ford. "There is no literary feud, as far as Geri is concerned."
And what of her old mates? In their book, Forever Spice, due out in November in Britain, the Spices write about how they felt when Halliwell left just before a European tour ended "and how, mainly, they were upset," says Rebecca Cripps, the group's fan magazine editor. But that will be the only body slam. "The girls have a lot of love for [Geri]," says Cripps, who I is helping them with the new book. For now the band will concentrate on repositioning their image in the book as grown-up people. Says Cripps: "It's very classy."
Moving Right Along
Just how serious is this thing between Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta-Jones? Last fall, Douglas, 54, and Zeta-Jones, 29, kept a low profile. By spring they admitted to dating. They vacationed together in June, and in August they spent time in California with Douglas's father and stepmother. So will there be an engagement announcement when they celebrate their common birthday at Douglas's New York City apartment Sept. 25? "It's just a birthday party," says his spokesman. Party invitations—more than usual—were mailed last week. Douglas traditionally celebrates with friends also born Sept. 25, including: Barbara Walters, Christopher Reeve and fashion designer Nino Cerruti.
ON THE BLOCK
Although she played Princess Diana in two television movies, Catherine Oxenberg's three-bedroom Beverly Hills home was her castle—until now. Sotheby's International Realty is asking $1.3 million for the 1,600-square-foot Mediterranean-style villa with front and back courtyards. "I loved my house," says the former Dynasty star, "but I need to see the ocean." So Oxenberg, 37, and her husband, actor Casper Van Dien, 30 (Starship Troopers), are looking for property in sight of the Pacific in Malibu.