Qianlong Celadon Vase Sells For HK$17.2 Million In Hong Kong

Christie’s Hong Kong sale dedicated to the Wang Xing Lou collection of imperial Qing dynasty porcelain produced HK$17.2 million for a Qianlong mark and period celadon glazed dragon bottle vase which was the top-selling lot of the sale.

The sell through rate was around 57%, with 16 of the 28 lots finding a buyer. The owner of Wang Xing Lou is a collector and art dealer in Hong Kong who began to put his collection together in the early 1990s.

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Tiny Buddha Fetches £210,000 At Sworders

A tiny 900-year-old Pala dynasty bronze Buddha has sold for a whopping £210,000 against a £400 to £600 estimate at Sworders Asian art sale in Stanstead on May the 13th.

The figure measured just 3 inches tall, the diminutive figure of the four-faced, eight-armed goddess Amoghapasa (the wisdom giver), had come for sale with modest hopes of £400-600.

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Ground Hog Day

A Chinese vase found in Nottinghamshire house sells for £15,000. The vase was expected to fetch £50 as it was thought the vase was a reproduction. The blue and white vase was 38 cm and was thought to date to circa 1640.

Auctioneer Charles Hanson of Hansons Auctioneers commented: “I spotted the vase in an ordinary two-up, two-down. It was filled with a few dried flowers in a bedroom. I picked it up and asked the seller if he knew anything about it. He mentioned that it had been given to his father when he was working as a chauffeur in the 1950s.”

Mr Hanson also said: “Why would a valuable piece of Chinese ceramics be tucked away in a modest house in Nottinghamshire? I arranged for the vase to be auctioned. However, despite my gut instinct, I made a mistake. After examination, I decided it was repro and consigned the vase into Hansons’ March Antiques and Collectables sale with a guide price of around £50”

“But when the auction catalogue went live online extraordinary bids started to come in for the humble vase. I withdrew it from sale to give myself time to consult Chinese ceramics experts and, importantly, ensure we achieved the best price possible for our client.”

See HereI Wish I Could Buy Shares In Hanson’s Auctioneers!


DO NOT Remove Verdigris From Chinese Antique Bronzes

Verdigris, what some people refer to as green “gunk” on Chinese antique bronze, is a natural form of patina that accumulates over time on copper, bronze and brass as it is exposed to air. In addition to varying shades of green, it may also be bluish green in color. It can also be induced using acids, and sometimes is artificially applied to new items made of these metals, especially copper.

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£52,000 & £52,000 For Daoguang Bowls?



McTear’s auction room in Glasgow sold this pair of blue sgraffito ground famille rose bowls on December 17, the bowls had a Daoguang seal mark to the base.

Measuring under 6 inches across and the interiors decorated in underglaze blue while the exteriors were painted in famille rose colours with roundels filled with flowers all against a blue sgraffito ground.

McTear’s thought they were later copies and estimated them as such at just £100 to £200, obviously bidders thought different and took the bowls to £52,000 despite damage to both bowls.

Spookily, another pair of bowls, but this time on a yellow ground, sold at Rosebery’s auction in London on November the 9th.

Rosebery’s this time estimated their pair of yellow ground bowls at £8,000 to £12,000, and they also sold at £52,000 just like the McTear pair above.

They measured 4½in (11 cm) across. Rather than a typical Daoguang seal mark in underglaze blue, these had a four-character iron-red Shendetang Zhi marks to the bases.

It was said these bowls came by descent from the collection of Robert C Bruce (1898-1953) and were acquired by his great uncle Sir Frederick Bruce, ambassador to Peking from 1860-64.

History Of Chinese Cloisonne

Photo courtesy of christies.com

The history of Chinese cloisonne and the production of it’s ‘free standing’ objects is a surprising one. The art of cloisonne was commonly used during medieval times in most of Europe, England, the Middle-East, and the near East, on small accessories and jewelry. In fact this era coincided with the use of stained glass windows in Christian churches, and the understanding of how glass could be transformed, colored and shaped for many uses.

For cloisonne, glass flux was fired in metal cloisons, meant to reproduce the jewelled effect of precious stones in their primitive straight settings. Many cloisonne body ornaments have been found in tombs dating B.C. Today, international museums are displaying examples of Byzantine, Celtic, Persian, Egyptian, Slav, Greek, Islamic and Russian cloisonne pieces, from the B.C. and A.D. periods.

By the early 15th century, with the strong trade going to the Far East from the Near-East along the silk-route from Europe, Persia and India, cloisonne objects and other artistic crafts found their way to China and Japan. Cloisonne was adopted and became a refined and appreciated decorative medium, by the MING Dynasty emperors (1368-1644), and continued to be promoted and selectively produced from then on.

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