Lollobrigida auctions gems for stem cell research

Italian actress to sell jewels from extensive Bulgari collection.

By Hallie Engel

Famed Italian actress Gina Lollobrigida is set to auction off £2.5 million of her diamond jewellery to raise money for stem cell research.

Lollobrigida rose to fame in the 1950s and 1960s, appearing on screen with the likes of Humphrey Bogart, Rock Hudson and Frank Sinatra. During this time she amassed an extensive collection of Bulgari jewellery, 22 items of which will go under the hammer at the Magnificent Jewels and Noble Jewels auction at Sotheby’s Geneva on May 14.

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Lollobrigida stated that she wanted to leave behind a souvenir of her life and experiences, adding tht the sale will not be the end for the jewellery, as it will go on to do good by "helping a cause that is very important to me".

Amid the 22 Bulgari pieces going up for auction are a pair of pearl and diamond pendant earrings that could fetch up to £660,000, and a 19.03ct diamond ring, part of a suite with an estimate of £300,000.

Lollobrigida will also sell a pair of emerald and diamond ear clips worn when photographed with artist Salvador Dali 1965.

Since retiring in the 1980s, the now 85-year-old actress has turned to sculpture, stating that "a sculptor doesn’t need jewellery".



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