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Buddhist art preview opens on Friday, June 3, at Gianguan, NYC
Bronze Bodhisattva Manjushri riding on the back of a Buddhist lion. 10” tall. 4 pounds. Lot 153. Gianguan Auctions, June 10, 2017.

NEW YORK, NY.- Buddhist sculptures, which hold a commanding niche at the core of Asian art, come to the podium at Gianguan Auctions on Saturday, July 10. The gallery at 39 W. 56th Street opens its preview on Friday, June 3, giving collectors ample time to study the works.

The earliest statue is a Northern Wei (386-535AD) stone Bodhisattva in an unusual seated asana with crossed ankles and hands in mudras “fear not” and “charity.” Backed by a mandorla, positioned atop a base flanked by lions, the 11” tall, mottled figure with some remaining pigment captures the sculptural style of the Wei period. It is Lot 148, valued at $40,000 or above.

Two hundred years later, during the Northern Qi (550-557 AD) period, an anonymous artist carved a marble statue of a slender standing Buddha in a frontal stance. The spare, columnar posture is marked by a curved profile, and the long robe is crafted with parallel U-shaped folds. The image, which is typical of the period, stands 33” tall and weighs nearly 80 pounds. It is Lot 145, valued at more than $60,000.

The Song Dynasty (960-1127) then produced a bronze Bodhisattva Manjushri riding on the back of a Buddhist lion. The 10” tall statue weighs more than four pounds. It is Lot 153, similar to an example in the Palace Museum Beijing, and valued at more than $30,000 .

A surviving statue form the Yuan Dynasty (1279-1371) is a gilt and celadon glazed Guanyin. The face, headpiece and jewelry are gilt. The delicate facial gestures demonstrate the skill of Yuan Longuan potters. Lot 157, the 26” tall statue is set to go off at above $20,000.

From the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) comes a large golden robed Bodhisattva Avalokiteshvara (Guanyin) seated with one hand on raised knee. The 14” tall bronze carries the Qianlong Imperial six character mark embossed in a rectangle. It is Lot 155, of the period, and valued at more than $30,000.

Among the smaller figures is a Longquanyao (celadon) shrine encassing a gilt guanyin. The cleverly designed sanctum of rockwork that culminates in a moon disk sets off a golden, seated guanyin accompanied by two accolytes, both of whose faces are gilt. The back has two circular apertures. The Yuan dynasty work is 10" tall. Bidding on Lot 143 begins at $6,000.

Also of interest is a bronze, Northern Wei triad with Bodhisattva. Dressed in a long dhoti and fluttering scarves, the figure holds an amphora bottle. It stands on inverted lotus lappets set on a corner-leg square base, fanked by two attendants, each framed by a leaf-shaped mandorla. All cast in high relief with incised features. Experts say this votive stele was an object for individual worship. Height: 9". Weight: 741 grams. Lot 144 is an excellent acquisition at upwards of $2,000.

All of the Buddhist statues in the sale adhere to the 1970 Unesco treaty on importation.

For details on these and other items in Gianguan Auctions July 10 sale, please visit the catalog at or find the gallery on or

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