The Best Timepieces from Russell Crowe’s Art of Divorce Auction
Vintage & Auctions

The Best Timepieces from Russell Crowe’s Art of Divorce Auction

Breaking up is never easy, but we here at Watchonista are amused to see that actors Russell Crowe and Danielle Spencer have found fun and profit in their split.

By Rhonda Riche

Crowe and Spencer, who announced their separation five years ago, are putting many of their possessions up for public auction on April 7 at Sotheby’s Australia. Called, “The Art of Divorce,” the event features a catalogue cover with Crowe dressed in a tux, cheekily holding up a cocktail and saying, “bottoms up” with his eyes.

The Russell Crowe collection consists of important works by some of Australia’s most significant historic, modern and contemporary artists, as well as guitars (anyone remember Crowe’s band 30 Odd Foot of Grunts?), as well as movie and sports memorabilia (Crowe is really into cricket).

The real highlight, though, are the 29 watches that are up for bid. The estimates are quite low and they are in Australian dollars, so there’s always a chance that you could get a great deal. Here are the most beautiful finds in the catalogue.

The Insider

Omega Speedmaster Stainless Steel Chronograph. Estimate $4,000 - $6,000

Everybody needs a Speedy, but this one has an interesting backstory. “Ron Howard bought me a Speedmaster, [and] I gave it to my brother,” says Crowe in the catalogue. He regretted the re-gift and bought this one to replace it.

A Good Year

Panerai Luminor GMT PAM063 Stainless Steel Automatic, circa 2001. Estimate $6,000 - $9,000

Crowe writes that this manly Luminor brings back fond memories of his Gladiator-era heyday. 'I associate this watch with the film, Gladiator (2000). I bought it in Spain while there to do the premiere for Proof of Life (2000); however, it was also the period of time when Gladiator was nominated for Academy Awards.'

The Nice Guys

Cartier 18k and diamond set Pasha. Estimate $8,000 - $12,000

Crowe was (and probably still is) quite the watch collector and he liked to share his passion with friends and family. This glittering Cartier was a gift for Spencer. Her loss could be your gain.

American Gangster

Vacheron Constantin Limited Edition Jubilee 1755, circa 2005. Estimate $40,000 - $60,000

The most important piece in the collection, this numbered, limited edition timepiece is so cool that it would sell above estimate even if Russell Crowe were not part of its provenance. Still, it’s interesting to note that Crowe wore it to a court in November 2005 to plead guilty for assaulting a hotel clerk.

Man of Steel

IWC Portugieser Laureus Sport for Good Foundation Stainless Steel Automatic Chronograph, circa 2014. Estimate $8,000 - $12,000

This classic Chronograph was a gift from Spencer to Crowe shortly before they broke up. His loss could be your gain.

L.A. Confidential

Omega vintage automatic, circa 1945. Estimate $1,500 - $2,500

Speaking of exes, this vintage Omega was a present from Crowe’s former girlfriend, Meg Ryan. The 28k gold snap on case back is inscribed with initials RJM and HERMES. “I don't know who the initials RJM refer to,” quote Crowe.

Master and Commander

Rolex Stainless Steel Automatic Yachtmaster, circa 2003. Estimate $10,000 - $15,000

There are three Rolexes in the Crowe collection, but we like this one best because it reflects the actor’s love of the sea (many of the artwork on offer has nautical themes). Crowe himself acquired this timepiece upon completion of the film Master and Commander in 2003.

Cinderella Man

Rolex Cosmograph Daytona in yellow gold, circa late 1990s. Estimate $40,000 - $50,000

This golden boy is inscribed ‘BLACKCOURT PRT RC – PHAC OCT 1ST 2004’ on the case back. It was purchased to commemorate the founding of Crowe's company, Blackcourt League Investments, which bought a 75 percent stake in the South Sydney District Rugby League Football Club, Rabbitohs, which won the premiership in 2014. Did we mention that all of these watches come with letter signed by Crowe himself stating his ownership?

And receive each week a custom selection of articles.

He Said / She Said: Why Aren’t More Female Collectors Attending Auctions?

By Rhonda RicheEditor-At-Large
By Joël A. GrandjeanContributor
If you’ve attended a watch auction in person over the last few years, you’ll undoubtedly notice the gender disparity within the ranks of bidders...