The First Art Newspaper on the Net   Established in 1996 United States Thursday, June 27, 2019

Mother-of-pearl tray makes world record £962,500 in Bonhams' Islamic and Indian Art sale
Rare mother-of-pearl and black lac overlaid wood tray, Gujarat, late 16th/early 17th century; sold for £962,500. Photo: Bonhams.

LONDON.- A unique mother-of-pearl and black lac overlaid wood tray has set a new world record of £962,500 for a piece of this type, selling to a bidder in the room for well over ten times its estimate in Bonhams’ Islamic and Indian Art sale on 6th October.

The auction, which saw bidders competing across the world, also featured a fine gem-set enamelled gold Turban Ornament (Jigha), from 18th century northern India. The Jigha sold for £68,500, smashing its pre-sale estimate of £30,000 – 40,000.

Originally estimated at £60,000 – 80,000, the 16th century tray is one of a very small number of surviving examples of mother-of-pearl objects from Gujarat. Its design, which depicts winged figures carrying birds or vessels, has never been seen before on an object of its type.

“It has been amazing to work on such an extraordinary piece,” said Oliver White, head of Bonhams Islamic and Indian Art Department. “Mother-of-pearl overlaid objects of this type are incredibly rare, but the presence of winged figures makes our tray rarer still. There are no other recorded examples which feature angels and the fine quality of work and the exceptional condition of the tray make it a unique survivor outside museum collections.”

The angels suggest Persian, Indian and European influences. Strikingly similar imagery – of a winged figure in Persian dress holding a peacock – can be seen adorning the pavilions of Nur Jahan in the Ram Bagh at Agra. These paintings provide an approximate date for this tray and imply that the circumstances of its production may have been somewhat unusual. It seems the decorative scheme was intended for an Indian patron rather than for export to European or Turkish patrons, the general destination for most mother-of-pearl inlaid items.

Gujarat has been recognized as the centre of mother-of-pearl work since the beginning of the 16th century, when the King of Melinde presented Vasco de Gama with a gold and mother-of-pearl bedstead. This particular tray can be attributed to Northern Gujarat because of its characteristic mastic-inset and mother-of-pearl decorated domed cenotaph canopies.

Mother-of-pearl trays are listed among the spoils of the Lodi Sultans of Delhi, when they were captured by Emperor Babur in 1526, and are specifically mentioned as being delivered to ladies at Kabul.

Today's News

October 7, 2015

More than 60 of Goya's most outstanding portraits on view at the National Gallery, London

George Eastman House in Rochester announces new name: George Eastman Museum

First major exhibition in the United States of the work of Ishiuchi Miyako opens at the Getty

First major U.S. monographic exhibition on Andrea del Sarto opens at the Frick Collection

The Sven Gahlin Collection totals £4,560,716 at Sotheby's; Double pre-sale estimate

Very rare four-rotor Enigma Machine leads Sale of Cipher Machines at Bonhams

Phillips to offer important collection of 32 Lucian Freud etchings during Frieze Week

Susan Strickler, Currier Museum of Art director and CEO since 1996, to retire in June 2016

Small is Beautiful: Christie's announces sale of quality works with accessible prices

Art critic and curator Marc-Olivier Wahler appointed advisor to de Appel arts centre

British artist Glenn Brown to be Gagosian Gallery's featured artist at Frieze

Hall of Fame third baseman Brooks Robinson to sell his personal collection through Heritage Auctions

WIELS presents the retrospective exhibition Interregnum by Stan Douglas

Chun Eui-Young selected as the Director of Gwangju Folly III

Thomas Demand's "Modellstudien" opens at the Siza Pavilion

Five female artists unveiled as shortlist for Max Mara Art Prize for Women

Mother-of-pearl tray makes world record £962,500 in Bonhams' Islamic and Indian Art sale

Danh Vo opens site-specific project for the Palacio de Cristal in Madrid

Exhibition at Throckmorton Fine Art presents works by nine Mexican women photographers

Whyte's forthcoming auction of History & Literture will comprise over 300 lots

Sotheby's to sell a special-edition watch by IWC to benefit the Antoine de Saint-Exupéry Youth Foundation

"Independent Visions: Women Artists of California, 1880-1940" on view at the Irvine Museum

Puerto Rican Light (Cueva Vientos) by Allora & Calzadilla opens in Puerto Rico

"See Glasgow-See Sculpture": An exhibition of sculptures with a Glasgow connection by Tom Allan

Most Popular Last Seven Days

1.- Art of early man found in the greatest meteor crater on earth

2.- Exhibition celebrates Helmut Newton's 50-year career through a rare and unseen collection of vintage prints

3.- World's most costly painting on Saudi prince's yacht: report

4.- Sotheby's celebrates the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 Moon landing with an auction

5.- Domaine de Chantilly exhibits Leonardo da Vinci's 'Nude Mona Lisa'

6.- New book offers front-row seat to greatest concert in history

7.- The New York Botanical Garden opens its largest botanical exhibition ever

8.- The most famous car in the world: RM Sotheby's presents James Bond Aston Martin DB5

9.- Mexico unearths what may be historic recording of Frida Kahlo

10.- Exhibition of Pierre-Auguste Renoir's paintings marks centenary of his death

Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .


Ignacio Villarreal
Editor & Publisher:Jose Villarreal - Consultant: Ignacio Villarreal Jr.
Art Director: Juan José Sepúlveda Ramírez

Royalville Communications, Inc
Founder's Site. The most varied versions
of this beautiful prayer.
to a Mexican poet.

The First Art Newspaper on the Net. The Best Versions Of Ave Maria Song Junco de la Vega Site Ignacio Villarreal Site
Tell a Friend
Dear User, please complete the form below in order to recommend the Artdaily newsletter to someone you know.
Please complete all fields marked *.
Sending Mail
Sending Successful