Asian Art Sale at Sotheby's Paris
Date: 24 Jun 2007 | | Views: 175676
PARIS, FRANCE - Buyers from around the world (Asia, Europe, U.S.) were active role at Sotheby’s first sale of Asian art in Paris!’ reports Géraldine Lenain, Director of the Asian Art Department. ‘Items of imperial origin from French collections, from jade and porcelain to albums and objets d’art, were all fiercely contested by international collectors looking for rare pieces of impeccable provenance.’
Japanese prints by leading 18th and 19th century artists achieved excellent results. In keenest demand was the iconic Great Wave at Kanagawa from the 36 Views of Mont Fuji by the celebrated Katsushika Hokusai (1760-1849), which surged to ˆ120,000, six times estimate (lot 22).
Chinese art included a splendid ensemble of Qing and Ming jade items that aroused great interest among collectors – especially two Ming celadon/russet jade figures that each sold for ˆ28,800: a crested bird at rest (lot 45, estimate ˆ8,000/12,000), and a paperweight in the form of Zhou Yanzi covered in a stag’s hide (lot 110, estimate ˆ8,000/10,000).
The sale’s highest price of ˆ432,000 went to a Ming Zun-shaped vase (Xuande period, 1426-35), of which just four are known today. The price reflects the strong international market for rare pieces in this field (lot 58, estimate ˆ150,000/200,000).
Top ceramics price was ˆ360,000 for a classical Qing blue and white porcelain bianhu moon-flask (lot 182, estimate ˆ60,000/80,000) from the Qianlong period (1736-95). A Qing bottle vase, with the deep blue glaze typical of the Yongzheng period (1723-35), fetched ˆ26,400 against an estimate of ˆ6,000/8,000 (lot 124). Sang-de-boeuf pieces with the Qianlong mark, owned by the same family for generations, reached ˆ19,200 (lot 128, estimate ˆ7,000/9,000) and ˆ43,200 (lot 130, estimate ˆ15,000/18,000).
Many items characteristic of Chinese taste left their estimates for dead. Take two Qianlong items that each sold for ˆ114,000 (lot 85, estimate ˆ50,000/70,000): a cloisonné enamel figure of an Immortal riding a stag; and an imperial double-gourd panel, owned by the same family since 1930 (lot 78, estimate ˆ15,000/20,000).