NEW YORK, NY.- Henry Howard-Sneyd, Chairman of Asian Art, Europe & the Americas, noted: In a thriving market for Asian Art in New York, we saw a strong series of auctions across all categories comfortably exceed pre-sale expectations. Our offerings this week were particularly diverse, with great prices for works from an early 3rd century Gandharan Grey Schist Figure of a Seated Buddha from the Cleveland Museum of Art to a Ming Dynasty Anhua-Decorated Tianbai-Glazed Meiping, Bada Shanrens album of classical Chinese paintings to Maqbool Fida Husains modern untitled painting of four women. The stage is truly set for our Hong Kong sales at the beginning of April.
MING: THE INTERVENTION OF IMPERIAL TASTE
Total $11.3 Million
Estimate $9.7/13.7 Million
Angela McAteer, Head of Chinese Works of Art in New York, commented: "This was a great way to start our Asian Art sales in New York. This auction of treasures from the Ming Dynasty is an indicator of the tremendous global appetite for the highest-quality Chinese porcelain.
92.9% of Chinese porcelain of the highest quality sold in the opening sale of Sothebys Asia Week New York sales, with 61.5% selling over their high estimates. From an Exceptionally Rare Anhua-Decorated Tianbai-Glazed Meiping to an Exceptionally Rare and Large Fine Blue and White Reserve-Decorated Peony Dish, this themed-sale of carefully selected masterpieces from the 300-year reign of the Ming Dynasty honored the technical mastery and artistic vision of Chinese artisans and their Imperial Courts.
IMPORTANT CHINESE ART
Total $10.9 Million
Estimate $9/12.9 Million
This seasons offering of Chinese Works of Art was led by an Exceptional Jian Nogime Temmoku Tea Bowl from the Southern Song Dynasty. The beautifully-potted work of art, with iridescent hares fur striations was sought by several bidders in the room, driving the final price to $1.1 million (estimate $500/700,000). The top lots of this sale illustrated the diverse selection of property available to collectors of Chinese Works of Art: Two Extremely Rare Famille-Rose Figures of Ksitigarbha from the collection of Joan Oestreich Kend sold for $492,500, triple the low estimate, while a Gold and Silver-Inlaid Bronze Tapir-Form Vessel (Zun) attracted a great deal of interest, flying past its $20/30,000 pre-sale estimate to fetch $492,500.
INDIAN, HIMALAYAN AND SOUTHEAST ASIAN WORKS OF ART
Total $4.7 Million
Estimate $3.4/5.1 Million
Anu Ghosh-Mazumdar, Head of the Indian and Southeast Asian Art department in New York, commented: We curated our Indian, Himalayan and Southeast Asian Works of Art sale to todays market and were pleased to see it demonstrate continued momentum in our collecting category.
With bids flying in from the United States, the Middle East, India and beyond, todays sale of Indian, Himalayan and Southeast Asian Works of Art saw interest for works of art ranging from the 3rd to the 19th century. Works from important collections, including property from the Cleveland Museum of Art and selections from the Lanier Collection, sold particularly well. A Gilt-Bronze Figure of Tara from a private East coast collection was pursued by several collectors, soaring past its pre-sale estimate of $80/120,000 to achieve $588,500. (separate release available)
MODERN & CONTEMPORARY SOUTH ASIAN ART
Total $6.6 Million
Estimate $3.2/4.5 Million
Yamini Mehta, International Head of Indian and South Asian Art, noted: Our commitment to India, through our highlights exhibition at the beautiful Leela Palace in Delhi and special events in Mumbai, London and New York, bore fruit this week, and we look forward to continuing to shape this market in our New York and London salesrooms in the years to come."
91.4% sold, with 67.9% of lots selling above their high estimate, paintings from the 19th, 20th and 21st centuries had a strong performance at the only auction of Modern & Contemporary South Asian Art this week. The cover lot of the sale, Raja Ravi Varmas Untitled (Damayanti), an iconic image known to many Indian households, attracted over five bidders in the room, online and on the phones. Estimated at $500/700,000, this stunning oil on canvas sold for $1,692,500. This mornings sale also found significant prices for works by Maqbool Fida Husain, Sayed Haider Raza, and a new auction record for Horace van Ruith. (separate release available)
FINE CLASSICAL CHINESE PAINTINGS & CALLIGRAPHY
Total $14.4 Million
Estimate $8/11.2 Million
Rongde Zhang, Head of Sale for Classical Chinese Paintings in New York, commented: Provenance, literature and exhibition history continue to fascinate collectors, both new and old. This season, offerings from private American collections drew particular interest: Xu Beihongs Lion was a unique example having remained in the same private collection for over eighty years, having been gifted directly by the artist.
Sothebys Classical Chinese Paintings department continues to go from strength to strength, with todays sale of Fine Classical Chinese Paintings & Calligraphy achieving $14,365,750. Led by Zhu Das Flowers, Bids, Fish and Fruit, an ink on paper album of twelves leaves that sold for $3,132,500 (estimate 2.5/3.5 million), 88.2% of lots sold, with 73.1% of lots selling above their high estimate. Competition remained fierce throughout the sale with the second-to-last lot, Xu Beihongs Lion, fetching $828,500, far above its pre-sale estimate of $150/200,000.