Chinese Works of Art

This sector comprises art and antiques from China including works from the Han, Tang, Yuan, Ming and Qing dynasties.

There is a market for pieces of all ages and rarity from ancient Neolithic jades right up to ceramics made in the Republic era. The increased interest and purchasing power from Mainland China since the late 1990s has led to a significant rise of prices.


A £150,000 record that’s not to be sniffed at

02 July 2002

Christie’s King Street, may not have had their best ever sale but they did have the week’s most admired snuff bottle: a black and white jade inscribed example, signed Shixiang, 1740-1850.

Coming up...in Paris

19 June 2002

THIS most unusual looking beast is expected to be the star lot at a sale to be held in Paris on July 4 at a most unusual location, the pagoda-like Maison Chinoise, rue de Courcelles, Paris 8.

London wins international battle for £75,000 China trade pair

14 June 2002

Nanking means to most people the rape of that city by the Japanese; to ceramics collectors it conjures up memories of the Nanking Cargo, but in the specialist picture market it is the place where the 1842 treaty was signed opening up five ports to British merchants “without (molestation or restraint”.

Not to be sniffed at

17 April 2002

Christie’s, Blanche B. Exstein Collection of Fine Snuff Bottles, March 21: Snuff bottles may not be to every collector’s taste, but Christie’s Blanche B. Exstein Collection of Chinese Snuff Bottles achieved that rarest of auction phenomena: a 100 per cent sell-out by lot and by value.

Experts spot £16,500 Ming vase

06 February 2002

AUCTIONEER Mark Bowman is hardly the first auctioneer to be taken aback by the price achieved by a piece of Oriental porcelain, and not just at provincial rooms like his operation at the Wotton Auction Rooms (10% buyer’s premium).

Endless appeal of Infinite Life

31 January 2002

A large, gilt-copper altar statue of Amitayus, the Buddha of Infinite Life, on a lotus flower base, right, 3ft 2in (96cm) tall and hailing from Inner Mongolia/Dolonnor or China (c.1700), proved the main attraction at Nagel’s Asian Art sale in Stuttgart on November 10, selling for DM420,000 (£134,000).

£54,000 Chinese gem charms London specialists

13 December 2001

COINCIDING with London’s Asia week, the 507-lot sale held by Gilding’s (12.5% buyer’s premium) at Market Harborough on November 13 featured this blue and white six-character mark and period Qianlong (1736-95) meiping, right, on its front cover.

Top heavy price for pear-shaped vase

28 November 2001

Chinese sales at Christie’s South Kensington (17.5/10% buyer’s premium) can always be relied on to produce some good prices during Asia week. While the morning works of art session in their Chinese Ceramics and Works of Art sale, November 8, was quiet, business picked up in the afternoon for the ceramics section.

Northeastern promise

28 November 2001

Individual entries consigned to Sotheby’s and Christie’s Chinese sales were an encouraging reminder to any jaded dealer that if you look hard enough and long enough, sleepers are still to be found.

Chinese sleeper goes at ten times estimate

08 November 2001

THIS 619-lot ceramic and clock sale at Phillips Chester did not boast such a high take-up as Phillips’ Bury St Edmunds auction but the 60 per cent that did manage to get away sold to the tune of £73,170.

Qianlong (1736-95) mark and period dragon vase

05 November 2001

Early Qing imperial porcelain has long been the darling of the Hong Kong Chinese auctions so when a Qianlong (1736-95) mark and period dragon vase with a previously unpublished pattern came up at Sotheby’s (20/15/10% buyer’s premium), Hong Kong on October 29, sparks flew and an auction record was set for a piece of Qianlong porcelain.

Pair of Qianlong mark and period vases

28 August 2001

This pair of Chinese porcelain vases had been salvaged from a house owned by a religious cult. No, not the Falun Gong, but the Panacea Society, a ‘charity’ founded in Bedford after the First World War who believed that Christ would make his second coming to the town of the eponymous van.

Minimalism? The Chinese did it first

23 April 2001

Exhibitions of desirable items from exotic locations at affordable prices has become the hallmark of the Gordon Reece Gallery, 16 Clifford Street, London W1 and this applies to the current exhibition of Antique Chinese Classical Furniture which continues until May 12.

Collection of Meiji is an attraction in Lincolnshire

02 April 2001

UK: ORIENTAL antiques rarely make the strongest contribution to provincial sales – although they have provided a few hugely gratifying if rather embarrassing sleepers before today – but the first day of this Lincolnshire sale featured a private collection of Meiji works of art that attracted strong bidding from the specialist trade.

Jade chicken cup flies to £19,000

12 February 2001

UK: When a private UK vendor consigned a Chinese celadon jade cup to Christie’s South Kensington (17.5/10% buyer’s premium) at £400-600, he could not have hoped in his wildest dreams to sell it for almost 50 times the low estimate.

Tek Sing – proof that the Internet can work

04 December 2000

IN a week that has seen the NASDAQ plummet and general gloom settle over the dotcom world, the massive Tek Sing cargo sale has shown that the Internet can play an extremely useful role in the international auction scene.

Chinese blue and white ewer

17 October 2000

UK: The unexpected crowd puller at Lyon & Turnbull’s 509-lot sale on October 8 was this Wanli period (1573-1619) Chinese blue and white ewer estimated at £400-500

Splendid pair of 18th century Chinese polychrome famille rose hawks found at local family home

19 June 2000

UK: Hawk-eyed Neil Froggatt spotted the true worth of an antique treasure during a routine household evaluation.

Fatigue proves deadly to Ming relic

12 June 2000

US: ONE OF the rarest chairs in the world has met with an unexpected fate at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts. A 17th century Chinese folding armchair, which had accomodated the highest dignitaries of the Imperial court, was unable to bear the weight of a weary museum visitor who had disregarded the ‘do not touch’ sign and sat down to rest his feet.

‘Have they not Arts?’ ‘They have pottery’

22 May 2000

UK: JAMES Boswell’s question and Dr Samuel Johnson’s answer on the subject of China, c.1778.

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