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  • Posts Tagged ‘Sotheby’s Hong Kong’

    LOST MASTERPIECE OF CHINESE PORCELAIN

    Thursday, June 18th, 2020

    A lost masterpiece of Chinese porcelain comes up at Sotheby’s Hong Kong Chinese works of art spring sale series on 11 July. The Harry Garner Reticulated Vase was found in a remote European house almost 60 years since it last came to market. It was rediscovered by Amsterdam-based art consultant Johan Bosch van Rosenthal in the country house of the elderly lady who inherited it, surviving the last 50 years almost unblemished in a lively home surrounded by countless cats and dogs. 

    The magnificent yangcai reticulated vase belonged to two major collectors of Chinese art, Sir Harry M. Garner (1891-1977), a mathematician and celebrated collector of Chinese art, and Henry M. Knight (1903-1970), a Dutch collector who assembled one of the finest collections of porcelain from 1930 up until his death. This masterpiece ranks amongst the most complex and exquisite porcelains from the Qianlong period ever to have emerged on the market.

     The extremely small group of pierced, double-walled vases that were produced for the Qianlong Emperor were a technical tour-de-force that was only attempted under the stewardship of Tang Ying (1682-1756), the eminent kiln supervisor, who produced such pieces in very limited quantities during the seventh and eighth years of the Qianlong reign, 1742 and 1743.  A record for the twelfth day in the eighth month, seventh year of Qianlong (1742) mentions a yangcai red-ground sgraffiato winter-green reticulated flower vase with a Xuande-style inner body which was praised as a masterwork by the emperor. It was to be stored at the Qianqinggong (Palace of Celestial Purity), where the Emperor held audiences and banquets. It is estimated at HK$ 70,000,000 – 90,000,000 / US$ 9,010,000 – 11,580,000 / £7,200,000 – 9,300,000.

    A Magnificent and Highly Important Yangcai Reticulated Vase
    Seal Mark and Period of Qianlong

    HOCKNEY TO LEAD HONG KONG CONTEMPORARY SALE

    Wednesday, February 5th, 2020

    The first major David Hockney painting to feature at auction in Asia – 30 Sunflowers – will lead Sotheby’s Hong Kong Contemporary Art evening sale on April 6. The work is not unlike Van Gogh’s Sunflowers, while exhibiting a radical and personal approach. Created in 1996 it marks his return to figurative painting after a decade in which he was primarily immersed in photography. 30 Sunflowers will be on view at Sotheby’s London from February 7 – 11. It will then tour to Los Angeles, Jakarta, Hong Kong, and Taipei.

    David Hockney, 30 Sunflowers

    SEAN SCULLY’S LANDLINE FIRE AT HONG KONG SALE

    Wednesday, September 25th, 2019

    Landline Fire, a 2014 oil on aluminium by Sean Scully, comes up at Sotheby’s Contemporary Art evening sale in Hong Kong on October 6 with an estimate of 7-9 million HKD (around 800,000-1 million euro). Exhibiting radiant swathes of rich amber and ocher against deep sage-green this is an exceptional example of the artist’s ongoing investigation of striped forms. The work hails from the artist’s Landline series which was exhibited to great acclaim alongside the 56th Venice Biennale. Inspired by the intense beauty of sun-drenched Venice, Italy, the Landline works marked a transition from his earlier hard-edged forms to his current more gestural and expressive style.

    Sean Scully – Landline Fire

    QING DYNASTY GLASS VASE TO SHATTER RECORDS

    Thursday, September 12th, 2019

    A 300-year-old Qing dynasty vase made of glass is set to shatter records at Sotheby’s in Hong Kong on October 8 with an estimate in excess of £20 million. Created inside the Forbidden City in Beijing it measures 18.2cm. It is a masterpiece in terms of shape, design, execution and size. Its rarity and preciousness is inextricable from the difficulty of its production: to create a vessel which evokes a bottle wrapped in a cloth pouch tied with a ribbon, with a brilliantly enamelled design of phoenixes soaring amid clouds and peonies, would have required the cooperation of different palace workshops, and demanded the highest level of skill from both the imperial artisans in the Glass House and the imperial painters in the Enamelling Workshops.

    The glass vase in the hands of Nicolas Chow, Chairman, Sotheby’s Asia

    CHINESE WORKS OF ART AT SOTHEBY’S HONG KONG

    Wednesday, March 13th, 2019

    A themed sale dedicated to the Tianminlou Collection will highlight the Chinese Works of Art Spring Sale series at Sotheby’s in Hong Kong on April 3. Sotheby’s Asia chairman Nicholas Chow said: “We are honoured to be entrusted with a fine selection of the Hong Kong-based Tianminlou collection, which boasts one of the best private blue and white porcelain assemblages in the world. The dedicated sale consists of a carefully selected group of eighteen pieces of Ming and Qing porcelains and is the first time treasures from the collection are offered in the market.” 

    Other sales include Scholarly and Imperial works of art from a distinguished collection, predominantly from the late Ming to the Qianlong period. The Robert Younghman Collection of Chinese Jade II, Fine Imperial Porcelain from a private collection and Important Chinese Art. Here is a small selection:

    BLUE AND WHITE ‘LOTUS’ BASIN 
    MING DYNASTY, YONGLE PERIOD
    ARGE YELLOW JADE ANIMAL-SHAPED PLAQUE EASTERN ZHOU DYNASTY

    DIAMOND UP THERE WITH THE KOH-I-NOOR AT SOTHEBY’S IN HONG KONG

    Tuesday, February 19th, 2019

    One of three oval diamonds over 50 carats to come to auction in living memory will highlight Sotheby’s Hong Kong sale of magnificent jewels and jadeite on April 2. The spectacular 88.22  carat oval diamond is perfect according to every critical criterion and is estimated at US$11.2-12.7 million.  It is D Colour, the highest grade for a white diamond, Flawless and of exceptional clarity, Type Ila with excellent cut, polish and symmetry.

    As with the Koh-i-noor diamond (also oval) and the Cullinan I, which are part of the British Crown Jewels, the stone belongs to the rare subgroup comprising less than 2% of all gem diamonds, known as Type IIa*. Diamonds in this group are the most chemically pure type of diamond and often have exceptional optical transparency.  The 242-carat rough stone which yielded the diamond was discovered in Botswana in the mine of Jwaneng, a mine owned in partnership by De Beers and the government of Botswana and known for producing roughs of the highest quality.

    David Bennett, Worldwide Chairman, International Jewellery Division, said: “For those who have had the chance to see the diamond, one adjective comes back: “breath-taking”. Barely any diamonds of this weight are known to possess the same exceptional qualities of purity and perfection as this remarkable stone which is so full of fire and blinding brilliance.”

    OUTSTANDING QIANLONG PORCELAIN MAKES THREE TIMES ESTIMATE

    Wednesday, October 3rd, 2018

    The Yamanaka Reticulated Vase – recently discovered in a private Japanese Collection – sold for US$19,009,102  at Sotheby’s in Hong Kong today.  This was almost three times its pre-sale estimate.  Carved and exquisitely painted with four pairs of fish below Rococo-inspired motifs on a yellow sgraffiato ground, the exceptional famille-rose reticulated vase is skilfully modelled with an inner blue-and-white vase. It ranks among the most complex porcelains ever commissioned by the Qianlong Emperor (r. 1736-1795).  It is pair to the Bainbridge vase which made international headlines when it was sold in the UK in 2010.

    An outstanding Falangcai Poppy Bowl sold for US$21,600,158.  Unassuming in its beauty, the bowl is exquisitely enamelled on the exterior with an intricate design of poppies issuing from rockwork, with a butterfly depicted fluttering gracefully overhead, a fourteen-character poem, and the interior with a finger-citron, apple and cherries. The bowl is the only recorded example of this design outside of the National Palace Museum, Taipei.

    (See post on antiquesandartireland.com for August 13, 2018)

    The Yamanaka Reticulated Vase

    The Falangcai Poppy Bowl

    HIGHEST TOTAL EVER FOR WESTERN ARTISTS AT HONG KONG SALE

    Monday, October 1st, 2018

    Sales of art by western artists brought in US$33.4 million at Sotheby’s on Hong Kong this weekend. This is the highest total for an offering of western works at an auction in Asia. Picasso’s Buste d’Homme Laure (1969) made US$7.8 million and Joan Mitchell’s Syrtis (1961) sold for $7.2 million. Works by Gerhard Richter, George Condo, KAWS, Antony Gormley, Anish Kapoor and Daniel Richter all achieved notable prices at the modern and contemporary evening sales.

    Pablo Picasso – Buste d’Homme Laure (1969)

    Joan Mitchell – Syrtis (1961)

    THE YAMANAKA RETICULATED VASE AND ITS CONTROVERSIAL COUSIN

    Monday, August 13th, 2018

    The Yamanaka Reticulated Vase

    The Yamanaka reticulated vase, one of the most complex porcelains ever conceived by Tang Ying for the Emperor Qianlong, will come up at Sotheby’s autumn series of sales in Hong Kong. It is a pair to a vase which sold at hammer at Bainbridges for £43 million in 2010 to a Chinese billionaire who subsequently baulked at fees of 20%.  That sale eventually fell through after a two year stalemate and the vase was eventually sold in a deal brokered by Bonhams to an unidentified buyer from the Far East who is believed to have paid up to £25 million for it.

    Carved and exquisitely painted with four pairs of fish below Rococo-inspired motifs on a yellow sgraffiato ground, the exceptional famille-rose reticulated vase is skillfully modelled with an inner blue-and-white vase, which can be glimpsed through the openwork lattice, placing it among the most complex and rarest porcelains from the Qianlong period ever to have emerged on the market.

    It was included in the 1905 Yamanaka Exhibition in New York and acquired by a private Japanese collector in 1924.

    UPDATE:  This sold for HK$149,091,000 / US$19,009,102 / £14,637,024, almost three times the pre-sale estimate 

    RARE PINK GROUND FALANGCAI BOWL TO MAKE MILLIONS

    Thursday, March 1st, 2018

    A SUPERBLY ENAMELLED, FINE AND EXCEEDINGLY RARE PINK-GROUND FALANGCAI BOWL
    PUCE-ENAMEL YUZHI MARK AND PERIOD OF KANGXI

    A superbly enamelled, fine and exceedingly rare pink-ground Falangcai Bowl is among the highlights at Sotheby’s Hong Kong Chinese Works of Art Spring Sale Series 2018 on April 3.   This is without question the finest example of its type. A closely related example at the National Palace Museum, Taipei is painted with different flowers but the exact same colour ground. The rarity of the colours and the perfection of the firing make it likely the two were painted and fired side by side. Thrown and fired by potters at the Imperial kilns in Jingdezhen, the bowls were then painted in the Imperial Palace workshops in the Forbidden City in Beijing, possibly by Jesuits resident at the court of the Kangxi emperor, and fired a second time.  This one, from the celebrated collector Henry M. Knight, is expected to make more than US$25.6 million.

    The auction will feature a rediscovered imperial heirloom handscroll bequeathed by the last Emperor Pu Yi to his younger brother Pu Jie. Depicting ten landscapes the handscroll is the greatest masterpiece of renowned Imperial court painter Qian Weicheng.  It is estimated at US$6.4-8.9 million.

    The series of six sales will offer about 300 lots with a total estimate of nearly US$93.5 millionNicolas Chow, Deputy Chairman, Sotheby’s Asia, International Head and Chairman, Chinese Works of Art said: “There is extraordinary quality and breadth in our offerings of Chinese art this season, with possibly the finest assemblage of Qing porcelain on offer in recent memory.