To celebrate Asia Week New York in the coming September, Sotheby’s is going to present over 1,000 works of art across six sales during Asia Week, featuring a diverse array of Chinese ceramics, sculpture, works of art, paintings and calligraphy. Let’s take a look at the sale calendar before we move on to introduce some highlights.
Junkunc: Chinese Buddhist Sculpture
Date: 12 September | 10:00 AM
The sale offers a selection of Chinese Buddhist sculpture from the Junkunc Collection, comprising almost 1,000 years of early Buddhist stone, lacquer and gilt-bronze sculptures dating from the Northern Wei to Ming dynasties.
Leading the sale is a limestone figure of a bodhisattva from Tang dynasty (618-907), estimated at US$1.5m-2.5m. In the Buddhist tradition, a bodhisattva is a benevolent being who has attained enlightenment but has postponed entry into nirvana to help others achieve release from the cycle of birth, death and rebirth.
In addition to the limestone figure of bodhisattva, highlights include a white marble inscribed triad group from Northern Qi dynasty, dated Tianbao tenth year (559). The triad group is estimated at US$300,000 - 500,000.
Important Chinese Art
Date: 12 September | 10:30am & 2pm
Important Chinese Art features over 280 lots of Chinese ceramics and works of art. Highlights include a rare bronze zun from late Shang dynasty, Yinxu period. Estimated at US$650,000 - 850,000, the zun is notable for its crisp decoration preserved. Originally used as ritual wine containers, zun are known from the late Erligang period and grew in popularity during the Shang dynasty.
A sancai-glazed pottery seated court lady carries an estimate of US$500,000 - 700,000. The figure offers an invaluable glimpse into the cultural, social and political strength of the Tang dynasty; in particular the enjoyment of power, privilege and autonomy of court women. Such figures were commissioned for royal and aristocratic tombs, made to accompany the departed.
Other highlights include a large blue and white ‘dragon’ vase from Qing dynasty, 18th or early 19th century, and imperial Qing dynasty porcelain from the Estate of Aron and Elizabeth Landauer.
A large blue and white ‘dragon’ vase from Qing dynasty, 18th or early 19th century (estimate: US$30,000 - 50,000)
(Left to Right)
A “Clair-De-Lune”-glazed dish, Yongzheng mark and period (estimate: US$8,000 - 12,000); a Wucai “Month” cup, Kangxi mark and period (estimate: US$60,000 - 80,000); a pair of Famille-Rose “Balsam Pear” bowls, Qianlong seal marks and period (estimate: US$60,000 - 80,000)
The Tang Hung and Fung Bi-Che Collection of Chinese Paintings & Calligraphy
Date: 13 September | 10:00 AM
The collection is assembled by the couple Tang Hung and Fung Bi-Che, who were well trained in Chinese painting and calligraphy. All the works in this collection have been selected by two individuals with a discerning eye.
Highlights include Bridge to Mountain Temple Shrouded by Prismatic Clouds in Splashed Colour by Chinese master Zhang Daqian. Zhang is best known for his expressive splashed-ink landscapes. This painting is estimated at US$220,000 - 280,000.
Yun Shouping’s Flowers of Winter and Spring will also be offered at the sale, carrying an estimate of US$80,000 - 120,000. Yun Shouping, also known as Nantian, was a major artist of the early Qing dynasty. He was regarded as one of the Six Masters of the Qing period. Acclaimed for his vibrant and expressive style, Yun revived the genre of flower paintings in China and became popular throughout the country.
Fine Classical Chinese Paintings & Calligraphy
Date: 13 September | 11:30am & 2pm
A poem in regular script by Yuyan (estimate: US$200,000 - 300,000)
Song dynasty poems and essay exceptions in running script (estimate: US$100,000 - 200,000)
The sale offers work by prominent figures like Dong Qichang, Lan Ying, Wang Yuanqi, Lu Zhi, Emperor Jiaqing, Qi Baishi, Wu Guanzhong, Huang Junbi, Zhang Daqian, Wu Changshuo and many more. Highlights include a poem in regular script by Yuyan (estimate: US$200,000 - 300,000) and Song dynasty poems and essay exceptions in running script (estimate: US$100,000 - 200,000).