Specialists at The Value have arrived London, and just examined and appreciated the huanghuali display cabinet (aka shu gui in Chinese) at Christie’s spring sales. They confirm that the cabinet is in very good condition, saying that “its hammer price must hugely exceed the pre-auction estimate”.
As a matter of fact, “huanghuali furniture” does not always mean that it is entirely made of huanghuali, especially at parts which cannot be easily seen, like drawers, are usually made of other kinds of wood. What’s special about the current lot is that its drawer and the plank at the back are also made of huanghuali.
The color of the current lot is mellow. After examining the details that cannot be clearly seen in the catalog, like the front and side toprails which are carved with curvilinear aprons with confronted dragons, our specialists state that the craftsmanship of this cabinet is exceptional.
Our specialists noticed something “weird” about this cabinet. The decoration parts on the right of the top shelf (the right photo above) are in the wrong position, while the ones on the left (the left photo above) are in the correct position. According to the auction house, the parts on the right were put the in wrong position during repairs years ago. As furniture experts could easily fix this problem, hence it does not affect the value of this cabinet.
The pre-auction estimate of this beautiful cabinet is £80,000-120,000, we expect that the bidding atmosphere would be intense, and the hammer price could easily exceed the estimate in multiple times, "like may be 20 times".
A LARGE HUANGHUALI DISPLAY CABINET, SHU GUI, QING DYNASTY (1644-1911)
Auction House: Christie's London
Saleroom: King Street
Sale: Fine Chinese Ceramics and Art
Auction Date: 2017/5/9
Lot No.: 137
Size: 198 x 98 x 61cm
Provenance: The property of a Lady
Estimate: £80,000 - 120,000