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  • Posts Tagged ‘Sotheby’s Paris’


    Tuesday, June 12th, 2018

    An Imperial 18th century ‘Yangcai’ Famille-Rose porcelain vase sold for 16.2 million at Sotheby’s in Paris today.  This was a new record for any Chinese porcelain sold in France. This lost treasure of Imperial China was found in an attic and brought in to Sotheby’s in a shoebox after having been discovered by chance in the attic of a French family home.

    The vase is of exceptional rarity: the only known example of its kind, it was produced by the Jingdezhen workshops for the magnificent courts of the Qianlong Emperor (1735-1796). Famille Rose porcelains of the period (or ‘yangcai’ porcelains, as they are known) are extremely rare on the market, with most examples currently housed in the National Palace Museum in Taipei and other museums around the world.

    These so-called yangcai porcelain commissions were the very epitome of the ware produced by the Jingdezhen imperial kilns. They were made as one-of-a-kind items, sometimes in pairs, but never in large quantities. This technique combined a new colour palette with Western-style compositions. Beyond their superior quality, yangcai enamels were intended to create the most opulent and luxurious effect possible.  Only one other similar vase, although with slightly different subject matter and decorative borders, now in the Guimet museum in Paris, is known.

    Left to the grandparents of the present owners by an uncle, the vase is listed among the contents of the latter’s Paris apartment after his death in 1947. It is recorded alongside several other Chinese and Japanese objects including other Chinese porcelains, two dragon robes, a yellow silk textile, and an unusual bronze mirror contained in a carved lacquer box.   While the exact provenance of the vase and the other Chinese and Japanese pieces before 1947 cannot be traced, the receipt of a Satsuma censer acquired as a wedding gift in the 1867 Universal Exhibition in Paris by an ancestor of the family suggests an active interest in Asian art at a very early date. Similarly, this vase may well have been acquired in Paris in the late 19th century when the arrival of Asian works of art initiated a fashion for Japanese and Chinese art


    Wednesday, January 10th, 2018

    THE furniture sculptures of Pierre Cardin are not installed along the walls, but in the centre of the room so that it is possible to walk around them.  This January Sotheby’s Paris is mounting an exhibition of the utilitarian sculptures of Cardin from 1970. With their extravagant and organic forms these pieces are still very much in demand.  At the  age of 96, Pierre Cardin remains a man and a brand, the sign of absolute success, still celebrated and exhibited in all four corners of the world.  The exhibition runs from January 17-24.

    Selette 1976 – a fridge, bar, cabinet.

    Presentoir 1980