Achieving more than $104.8 million, Sotheby’s 2016 Chinese art auctions in New York featured many extraordinary lots, often selling for more than five times their estimates. Watch the video to view 2016’s most impressive highlights, including two 100%-sold auctions, and discover why now is an ideal time to consign your Chinese paintings and works of art to Sotheby's. For a complimentary valuation of your artwork, simply email photographs to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Created for the Qianlong Emperor this exquisitely crafted musket is one of the most significant Chinese treasures ever to come to auction. In this film, celebrated Chinese actor Wang Gang is the voice of Emperor Qianlong reciting a poem about hunting deer with his musket.
With more than twenty auctions over five days, Sotheby’s autumn sale series in Hong Kong defied expectations. Fierce bidding from new buyers and experienced collectors alike resulted in several artist records as well as 100%-sold sales, including The Sublime – Wou-Ki Zao, a sale of sixteen works on paper by the artist, and the collection of renowned Japanese dealer Sakamoto Gorō. Other highlights include #TTTOP, a special auction guest-curated by Korean star T.O.P, which is now the highest-value sale of western contemporary art ever held during a major auction series in Hong Kong. With a grand total of HK$22 billion (US$285 million), not to mention six sales on 5 October alone achieving HK$603 million (US$77.2 million), Sotheby’s Hong Kong performance proved the market is alive and thriving. To discover more about the sales and their best-selling lots, click ahead. LAUNCH SLIDESHOW
The regal taste for furniture fashioned from precious metals is age-old, as demonstrated in the upcoming London sales, Collections and European Taste: Property from three distinguished Swiss collections. Tutankhamun was entombed with plated chairs and tables fit for the afterlife, and the art-form arguably reached its zenith in the lavish interiors of Louis XIV's palace at Versailles. Sadly, the vast majority of pieces from the great European courts were eventually melted down in order to finance wars or replenish treasury coffers. More permanent expressions of courtly wealth came in the form of carved wooden furniture and cast bronze mounts, coated with gold leaf and highly burnished to give the impression of solid gold. The contrast of textures would have dazzled contemporary audiences, shimmering in the candlelit interiors of the 17th and 18th century, and the tradition for gilded furniture and objects lasted well into the 19th century. Click ahead to see outstanding examples across both sales. LAUNCH SLIDESHOW
On 9 February 1796, the Qianlong Emperor abdicated after 60 years on the throne and thus became the Emperor Supreme. This massive jade seal, the star of the Dragon Emperor sale on 5 October 2016 in Hong Kong, celebrates the ultimate chapter of his long and outstanding reign.
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