A RARE DARK GREEN STONE CARVING OF A RAM, NEOLITHIC PERIOD
15,000 - 25,000 USD
A RARE DARK GREEN STONE CARVING OF A RAM
boldly carved standing foursquare with a pair of large curled horns and a short tail, the stone of a variegated dark green color with extensive calcification
Length 3¼ in., 8.3 cm
The proper right foreleg is lost, with some associated areas of losses. Some losses to the top of the head. Overall with expected age-appropriate wear.
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Collection of Stephen Junkunc, III (d. 1978), acquired prior to 1963.
Alfred Salmony, Chinese Jade Through the Wei Dynasty, New York, 1963, pl. II-5.
Alfred Salmony，《Chinese Jade Through the Wei Dynasty》，紐約，1963年，圖版II-5
This exceptionally rare naturalistic Neolithic carving is closely related to a green stone sculpture of a ram, formerly in the collection of A.W. Bahr and now in the National Museum of Asian Art in Washington D.C., illustrated in Beyond the Legacy. Anniversary Acquisitions for the Freer Gallery of Art and the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery, Washington D.C., 1998, pl. 218, where the authors attribute it to the Shijiahe Culture, circa 2200-2000 B.C., and refer to the present lot as its 'close mate', see p. 219. Compare also a Neolithic stone bird in the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, Kansas City, published in Na Zhiliang, Guyu jianzai [A Catalogue of Ancient Jades], Taipei, 1980, pl. 54; as well as a jade bird and a jade tortoise, both from the Chang Wei-Hwa Collection, sold at Christie's Hong Kong 27th November 2019, lot 2718 and 2716. Compare also Shang dynasty animals in a similar style, such as a stone ram from the Walter Sedgwick Collection, purportedly discovered in Anyang, Henan province, illustrated in ibid., pl. 49, together with a marble elephant, p. 236, fig. 322; a stone bear excavated from the Fuhao tomb in Anyang, published in Yinxu fuhaomu [Tomb of Lady Hao at Yinxu in Anyang] Beijing, 1980, pl. CLXXV, fig. 301; a marble buffalo in the Freer Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., exhibited in A Decade of Discovery, National Museum of Asian Art, Washington, D.C., 1979, cat. no. 1; and a jade seated bear in the Harvard Art Museums, Cambridge, illustrated in Jenny F. So, Early Chinese Jades in the Harvard Art Museums, Cambridge, 2019, cat. no. 20A.
本品雕工極簡，尤具古樸厚重之感，目前存世另見一極近石羊例，巴爾舊藏，現存華盛頓國立亞洲藝術博物館，錄《Beyond the Legacy. Anniversary Acquisitions for the Freer Gallery of Art and the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery》，華盛頓，1998年，圖版218，書中定其或為石家河文化，約公元前2200至2000年，並提及本品為之近例，見頁219。另可參考一新石器時代石鳥，藏納爾遜-阿特金斯藝術博物館，堪薩斯城，載那志良，《古玉鑑載》，台北，1980年，圖版54；另見一玉鳥及玉龜例，同出張偉華收藏，售香港佳士得2019年11月27日，編號2718及2716。參考商代相類動物雕例，如見一石羊，Walter Sedgwick 收藏，據載出自河南安陽，錄前述出處，圖版49，同見一大理石象，頁236，圖322；安陽婦好墓亦出土一石熊，載《殷墟婦好墓》，北京，1980年，圖版CLXXV，圖301；另見一大理石牛，藏華盛頓佛利爾美術館，展《A Decade of Discovery》，佛利爾美術館，華盛頓，1979年，編號1；再見一玉雕坐熊，藏哈佛藝術博物館，劍橋，載蘇芳淑，《Early Chinese Jades in the Harvard Art Museums》，劍橋，2019年，編號20A。