Auction Of Dr Tony Ryan’s Personal Art & Antiques.

Love Awakened by Giovanni Battista Lombardi.

One of Ireland’s finest and most valuable private collection of art and antiques, from the estate of the late Dr Anthony Ryan is to be broken up and partially sold at auction, by Christie’s of London. Objects to be sold will go on view in a special pre-sale exhibition at the Village at Lyons near Celbridge, Co Kildare, for three days, from Friday, 20th May  next, with the final sale date in July, expected to realise in excess of €2.24 million.

This sale features 400 lots from his personal private collection of over 2000 pieces of European fine and decorative art, which spans the 18th, 19th and 20th centuries and include paintings, sculpture, furniture and tapestries from his home at Lyons Demesne, near Celbridge, Co Kildare.

One object to go on sale is his marble sculpture, La Revelación de Amor (Translated ‘Love Awakened,’), circa 1870, by Italian sculptor, Giovanni Battista Lombardi, (1823-1880), which on it’s own has an estimated value in excess of €40,000.

Born here in Thurles, County Tipperary, Dr Thomas “Tony” Ryan (2 February 1936 – 3 October 2007) was an Irish multi-millionaire, philanthropist and businessman.

Educated at the CBS in Thurles he began his working life with Aer Lingus, before going on to found their aircraft leasing arm, during the quieter winter months.

In 1975, he founded Guinness Peat Aviation (GPA) the Commercial Aircraft Sales and Leasing company which he set up in 1975 with $50,000 (Today’s value in Euro €34,500), as well as being co-founder of Ryanair with Christy Ryan and Liam Lonergan. Ryanair was believed to be the main source of his wealth in later life and the company is now one of the biggest airlines in Europe, valued at several billion euros.

A patron to numerous local and Irish charities, Dr Ryan was believed to have a accrued personal fortune ranging between €800 million to €1.5 billion and held honorary doctorates from several Irish Universities, including Trinity College, Dublin, the National University of Ireland, Galway and the University of Limerick.
Dr Ryan over the years helped nurture two successful business protégés – Denis O’Brien and Michael O’Leary, both of whom became multi-millionaires.


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