The 12 December 2013 sale total of nearly €7 million proves that, in an increasingly competitive market with quality objects becoming ever scarcer, it is still possible to make superb discoveries in Paris. Despite the inevitable return of Chinese works of art from Europe to their country of origin, France remains a niche venue where Asian buyers can still find market-fresh objects of peerless quality and with historic provenance.
As with Sotheby's Paris sale last June, jades again caught the eye and yielded the highest price of the sale: €517,500 for an important Qianlong period (1736-95) celadon and russet jade Boulder. Less typically, the sale's second-highest price went to an archaic bronze: a rare Shang dynasty food vessel (12th century B.C.) formerly in a German private collection, which sold to a Chinese collector for €397,500. Works from the Buddhist world were again in high demand.
The Arts d’Asie auction focuses on three important porcelains from two private collections, one of which is French and the other European: a copper-red yuhuchunping vase from the Ming Dynasty with four flowers in foliage, a rare blue and white meiping vase with intertwined dragons from the Qing Dynasty and, finally, a very large doucai moonflask with cranes and longevity peaches, dating from the 18th century. Vases, jade ornaments, gilt-bronze Buddhist sculptures and a beautiful selection of modern Chinese paintings will complete this sale, including a painting by Wu Changshuo entitled Poppy flowers, from the collection Julius Eberhardt.