Results for the sale of Asian Art at Sotheby’s France showed that numerous Asian buyers in Paris remain keen to acquire carefully chosen, market-fresh items from former French and European private collections.
Enthusiasm for Buddhist Art – whether Chinese, Tibetan or Nepalese – continues apace. This sale again showed the appetite of Chinese buyers for gilt bronzes and tangkas, especially for four magnificent Buddhist sculptures, each emanating tremendous power. The first of these was an exceptional 14th/15th century Tibetan figure of Shakyamuni Buddha, brought back from China by a French military doctor in 1927 and kept in the same French family ever since. It sold well above top-estimate for €745,500.
Among the Jades and Literati items was the fine and rare Qianlong spinach jade chime (or sounding-stone) dated 1764 from the Collection of the Belgian Baron Antoine Allard, featured on the catalogue cover, which exceeded its top estimate, selling for at €265,500.
Sotheby’s upcoming Arts d’Asie auction will take place at the Galerie Charpentier in Paris on 10 June 2014.
Offering a diverse range of fine Chinese, Japanese and Tibetan works of art from European private collections, this sale features an important gilt-bronze figure of Buddha Shakyamuni held in a French collection since the early 1900s. The Chinese works of art section is led by a rare Imperial gilt-decorated spinach-green jade musical chime dated by inscription to 1764. Formerly in the collection of Dr. Raoul Poupelain (1884-1972), it was acquired during a visit to China in 1961 in the company of Queen Elisabeth of Belgium. Another treasure to be offered in the Paris Asian Art sale is a very rare Japanese 17th-century Namban screen depicting the arrival of Portugese traders in Japan. Namban screens were made in the late 16th and early 17th centuries by artists of the Kano school. Very few of these screens are known and even fewer are held in private hands.