Coming up on 18 & 19 May, we have our two-day Chinese Ceramics and Works of Art auction, including Japanese, Islamic and Indian Art. The auction offers ceramics and works of art reflecting the richness and breadth of China’s artistic heritage, with items including porcelain, white and coloured jades, scrolls, Thangkas, Buddhist art, lacquerware, bronzes, cloisonné, furniture and screens. Here Dreweatts Asian Art specialists, Mark Newstead and Dr Yingwen Tao, pick out some of their top lots from the auction.
Lot 1: A Magnificent Chinese Imperial blue-glazed silver and gilt 'Bat and Crane' vase, Tianqiuping, seal mark and period of Qianlong (1736-1795) | Est. £100,000-150,000 (+ fees)
"This is a very fine and large example of an Imperial Tainqiuping vase made under Royal patronage for the Qianlong Emperor who demanded not only the finest porcelain but also constant innovation. This vase could have been made for his birthday, as the Qianlong Emperor was a devout Buddhist and a follower of Daoism. It features both an unusual and innovative combination of silver and gold and references Daoism with the silver cranes each holding an emblem for each of the eight Immortals."
Lot 200: A Chinese flambé hu vase, xuantong mark and of the period (1909-1912) | Est. £5,000-8,000 (+ fees)
"This is a documentary example of a royal gift of an Imperial porcelain vase from the Emperor Xuantong to an Englishman Joseph B. Carson in 1923. The vase is sold with an accompanying letter by ‘Imperial Command’ thanking Mr Carson for his assistance in fighting the fire at the Imperial Palace. It is not only a beautiful vase but captures a moment in time of Anglo-Chinese history."
Lot 52: A Chinese cloisonné 'Lotus pond' brush washer, late 19th or early 20th century | Est. £500-800 (+ fees)
"This Chinese cloisonne brush washer is not only attractive, with a lotus pond design, but also almost certainly gifted to Mrs and Mrs Carson in 1923 as a wedding present by the famous Chinese socialite and style icon Oei Hui-lan known as Madame Wellington Koo. She briefly later became First Lady of the Republic of China from late 1926 until 1927."
Lot 9: A fine and rare album of 67 china trade watercolours, Qing Dynasty, circa 1835 | Est. £17,000-22,000 (+ fees)
"This is a fabulous album of 67 Chinese export china trade watercolours still in book form and as such are almost as fresh as the day they were first painted. There is superb variety of subject matter from botanical, to royal subjects as well as East India Company buildings in Canton painted as they were in 1835."
Lot 113: A fine and large Chinese silk embroidered 'Immortals' panel, Qing Dynasty | Est. £6,000-8,000 (+ fees)
"The sale has a fantastic collection of Chinese textiles mainly from an American collection formed in the 1980’s and 1990’s, including this large silk embroidered ‘Immortals’ wall hanging depicting The Queen mother of the West flying on a Phoenix. This one has a striking central motif of a shou character signifying longevity and similar shou embroideries are found in the Imperial Palace Collections."
Lot 134: An impressive large Chinese pottery sancai groom, Tang dynasty (618 to 907 AD) | Est. £1,000-1,500 (+ fees)
"One of the last great bargains in Chinese art are Tang figures and while some can be very expensive, many are still under-priced including this marvellous example of a groom deaccessioned from the Art Institute of Chicago and previously gifted to them from the collection of Pauline Palmer Wood in 1969."
Lot 147: A Chinese blue and white 'phoenix pavilion' dish, Kangxi (1662-1722) | Est. £800-1,200 (+ fees)
"Blue and white porcelain is loved by all and looks wonderful on mahogany furniture. However, this dish also tells a story of love and intrigue of a couple’s tryst in the Phoenix Pavilion where one man’s jealousy over his friend’s betrothed, leads to his loss of power and his eventual downfall!"
Lot 150: A fine Chinese blue and white vase, meiping, Yongzheng period (1722-1735) | Est. £15,000-20,000 (+ fees)
"This is a good example of Chinese blue and white porcelain dating from the Yongzheng period (1722-1735) which was a short-lived reign but noted for its fine porcelain. This vase is a large 18th century piece referencing the Yuan Dynasty designs."
Lot 163: A rare Chinese Export part dinner and tea service, Qianlong, circa 1755 | Est. £5,000-7,000 (+ fees)
"Chinese export dinner services were commissioned by aristocratic English families in the 18th century in relatively large numbers, but this service is rare as it is documented in the will of the man it was made for, William Taswell (1708-1777). William Taswell was rector of Wotton-under-Edge in Gloucestershire, and in his will dated 3rd October 1775 he specifies ‘all such China in my possession as shall be found marked with my family’s arms’ is to go to my son George Taswell, who at the time was serving in India as Colonel of ‘The Madras Terribles.’"
Lot 173: A rare Chinese Famille Rose porcelain archer's ring, Qing Dynasty, late 18th century | Est. £2,000-3,000 (+ fees)
"Archer’s thumb rings were usually made of a hard material such as stone, horn, wood, bone, antler, ivory, metal, but this example is rare as it is made of porcelain and dates from late 18th century. The thumb ring is a piece of equipment designed to protect the thumb during archery and this attractive small survival has an intriguing old label that one speculates might have been from a royal inventory..."
Wednesday 18 & Thursday 19 May 2022
Donnington Priory, Newbury, Berkshire RG14 2JE
Chinese Ceramics and Works of Art | Part One (Lot 1) | Wednesday 18 May, 10.30am BST
Chinese Ceramics and Works of Art | Part One (Lots 2-200) | Wednesday 18 May, 11am BST
Chinese Ceramics and Works of Art (Part Two) and Japanese, Indian and Islamic Ceramics & Works of Art (Lots 201-551) | Thursday 19 May, 10.30am BST
Tel: +44 (0) 1635 553 553
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