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Michaan's Fine Asian Auction realizes over $2.8 million USD
Attributed to Shen Quan (1682-1765): Mandarin Ducks. Sold for $64,900.

ALAMEDA, CA.- June 22, 2015 became a day of establishing records at Michaan's, as the Fine Asian Works of Art auction broke new sales ground. The auction’s star highlight, Fu Baoshi’s (1904-1965) hanging scroll Lady by the Bamboo, did not disappoint as it set a new U.S. auction record for the artist, realizing a price of over 7 times estimations. The painting by the revolutionary Chinese artist stemmed from the estate of Mr. and Mrs. David Galula and was secured by a Chinese buyer based in New York. A final floor bid cemented the sale of the coveted scroll to the tune of a handsome price realized of $1,410,000, becoming Michaan’s single highest selling painting to date (lot 6222, $150,000-200,000). Asian Art Specialist Mr. Harry Huang realized the artwork’s potential to break the million-dollar mark and was “…greatly pleased, although not entirely surprised…” by the result.

The next of the auction’s top five performers was yet another painting from the Galula estate in Lin Fengmian’s Boats at Shore, which more than doubled estimates at $88,500 (lot 6224, $30,000-40,000). An underglaze blue and famille verte stem bowl of the Jiaqing mark and period achieved $82,600 (lot 6150, $15,000-20,000) and a pair of underglaze blue lidded ice chests of the Guangxu mark and period realized more than 12 times their high estimation at $76,700 (lot 6163, $4,000-6,000). Lastly, was the Qing dynasty scroll Mandarian Ducks attributed to Shen Quan, which sold for over 6 times the high estimate for $64,900 (lot 6201, $8,000-10,000).

A reticulated white jade plaque sold as lot 6011 proved to be a sleeper hit with bidders, realizing over 9 times given estimates ($4,000-6,000). The 18th century piece stands as the top lot from the jade and hardstone carvings portion of the catalogue, admired for its even white hue and fine, auspicious, openwork carvings. An Internet buyer in China placed the winning bid for the plaque whose sale ended at a whopping $56,050.

Additional lots from the Chinese paintings, calligraphy and books section yielded successful numbers from three highly regarded artists. Lin Fengmian’s circa 1940s ink and color on paper Landscape sold for $47,200 with estimates of $12,000-18,000 (lot 6225), Lu Shoukun’s sprawling Lion Rock, Hong Kong, completed in 1960, realized a price of $23,600 (lot 6246, $7,000-9,000) and a mounted scroll collection titled Five Landscapes by Yuan Songnian finished at $14,160 (lot 6217, $5,000-7,000).

Categorically, Chinese ceramics held the most property to surpass estimates with front runners seen in a pair of underglaze blue dragon motif jars at $38,350 (lot 6157, $2,000-3,000), two copper-red glazed bowls for $34,220 (lot 6140, $7,000-9,000), a large 15th century Longquan charger realizing $17,700 (lot 6134, $4,000-6,000), a famille verte rouleau vase of an inertior scene (lot 6167, $2,000-3,000) along with two enameled porcelain plaques signed by Wang Yunquan (lot 6188, $6,000-8,000) realizing $16,520 each, a grouping of three underglaze blue dishes selling for $15,340 (lot 6159, $4,000-6,000) and a Qianlong marked famille rose vase depicting the Three Star Gods for $10,620 (lot 6187, $1,000-1,500). Five additional lots in the section sold from anywhere from over 4 times to over double projections as well (lots 6135, 6136, 6142, 6146, 6151).

Of the textiles at sale, a Tibetan painted Buddhist silk scripture from the Qing dynasty stole the spotlight at over 10 times estimations, selling for $20,060 (lot 6104, $1,500-2,000). An East Bay floor bidder snapped up the religious artwork of numerous auspicious symbols, including Buddhist dragons and Snow Lions. Three other textiles in the sale sold above estimates as well, continuing to add to the auction prosperity (lots 6124, 6126, 6127).

Further collectible works of art and decorative items proved popular with bidders, delighting with their novelty at auction. A gilt bronze weight depicting a recumbent stag sold for over 4 times estimates for $20,060 (lot 6094, $3,000-5,000) and a jade snuff bottle carved in the form of a pebble realized a price of over 5 times the high estimate at $16,520 (lot 6061, $2,000-3,000). Representing the breadth of successful property at sale is a carved amber snuff bottle at over 3 times projections (lot 6062) and an aloeswood wine cup (lot 6071) as well as a zitan wood censer (lot 6075) more than doubling estimates.

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June 29, 2015

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