On surprises and uncertainty in the Chinese art market


In our first editorial of the year we predicted turbulence in the Chinese art market with unexpected prices and lots of surprises (http://chineseart.co.uk/news/unpredictability-will-set-the-tone-for-2016-as-mis-catalogued-vase-exceeds-the-quarter-million-pound-mark/ ). Following a series of ‘mysterious’ and inexplicably high prices at the beginning of the year, the results of last month’s Asian sales again graphically illustrated that point of view.

christies Qianlong vases Qianlong vases: £13m.

The headline price was, of course, a staggering £13m. (yes, thirteen million pounds!) for a pair of 23cm high Qianlong vases decorated with butterflies in falangcai enamels and exposed for sale by Christie’s in London St James’s. They were estimated at £2-3m. To us, bearing in mind the prices achieved by two broadly similar pairs in 2003 and 2008, a price of £5-6m. would not have seemed altogether unreasonable. We think £13m. is, frankly, ludicrously speculative for a couple of pretty 18th century vases, notwithstanding their noble provenance.

Down at Christie’s South Kensington, sadly due to be closed in a matter of weeks, there was a final unexpected price for a pair of 9cm high landscape-painted seals, decorated and signed by He Xuren (1882-1940), which were estimated at £30,000-50,000, and which soared to £180,000. There was no particular provenance and they had been acquired relatively recently, according to the auctioneers.

a-fine-and-rare-pair-of-famille-rose-landscape-sealsrepublic-period-1912-1949-dated Pair of seals £180,000

Up the road at Sotheby’s a large (45cm.) cinnabar lacquer charger achieved £1.3m. against its pre-sale estimate of £400,000-600,000. Probably Yuan, or at least early Ming, it did at least come with good provenance having been in at least three significant collections, including that of Sir Percival David (1892-1964) one of the greatest collectors of the 20th century.

For Bonhams, their highlight was the sale of 49 thangkas from The Jongen-Schleiper Collection and of which we previously wrote (http://chineseart.co.uk/news/probably-the-thangka-sale-of-the-century-coming-up-at-bonhams/) . The triptych depicting the lineage of the Panchen Lamas of Tasilhunpo climbed to £455,000 which was truly spectacular for a 19th century thangka.

In the view of the trade magazine Antiques Trade Gazette, some of these spectacular prices reflect ‘supply issues after decade boom’.  Wrote Roland Arkell, ‘Certainly, many [sale] catalogues were self-consciously trimmed to reflect growing selectivity and the increasing need to err on the side of caution wherever debatable items are brought for valuation.’ ATG highlights a ‘circular’ movement of goods, emanating from China, sold in the UK and quite probably returning, on the back of the provenance afforded by a London sale, to China! It warns of an undermining in the market which could ultimately result from this if it becomes an established trend.

We are not altogether convinced by this. At our sister business Chinese Art in Scotland (www.chineseartinscotland.co.uk), we have increasingly turned to objects which can be valued entirely on their intrinsic beauty rather than marks or reputed provenance. That means, of course, that we have increasingly turned our backs on porcelain, unless it is of such indisputable beauty and craftsmanship that it does not matter if it is mid, or even late, 20th century.

Instead, there are exquisite objects around which are rather more difficult to fake and which have yet to be ‘discovered’ by the market: small furniture, wood carvings, 18th century bronzes, soapstone figures, and curiosities which fit no particular category. Lyon & Turnbull last month sold a collection of Chinese inksticks, estimated at £2-3,000 for £191,000 which goes to substantiate this point.

We recently bought for a modest hammer price, from a well known auctioneer, a massive solid bronze figure (100kgs or thereabout and which requires three people to lift!) catalogued as a Japanese warrior. In fact, it is a bronze of the legendary and hugely popular Chinese unfrocked Buddhist monk, Ji Gong. You can’t doubt that something of that weight and substance, superbly crafted, is a superb investment.

It is our considered view that there are still many beautiful objects out there. And there are bargains. Let the players in the £13m.market get on with it. In our view, they are bidding at the top of the market for names (in this case, Qianlong) and provenance, unable to countenance the beauty and investment value of objects at what they might think of as ‘downmarket’. Rather better, and much more fun, to buy things in the low thousands with virtually unlimited potential.

You can well be sitting on the next ‘inexplicably high’ price!

Christies offer valuable advice for buyers of Chinese porcelain

We are approaching one of the two busiest periods of the year for Chinese art auctions. More than 12,000 pieces of Chinese art will be available for purchase throughout the UK over the next few weeks. Competition is intense between auction houses. Christies have some top drawer sales coming up and they are tempting buyers with information services. A good idea, we say . . . folow the links for images of porcelain they have for sale.

Christie’s Collecting Guide: 10 things you need to know about Chinese ceramics

From reign marks to firing flaws, the information every collector should be armed with

  • 1 Handle as many pieces as possible


Chinese ceramics have been copied for hundreds of years by Chinese potters. They copy out of a reverence for an earlier period but often just to fool the buyer. The market has many copies so buyer beware. When starting to collect ceramics, there is no shortcut to learning and authenticating pieces than to handle as many as possible. Take advantage of the large numbers of Chinese ceramics offered around the world at reputable auction houses. In many ways, auction houses are even better than museums as you can handle pieces in cabinets. In handling many pieces, you get a feel for what a ceramic should feel like in the hand, the weight of the piece, the quality of the painting.


A rare Ming-style blue and white pilgrim flask, Bianhu. Yongzheng six-character seal mark. 7 1/8 in. (18.3 cm.) high. Estimate: £60,000-80,000. This work is offered in Inspired Themes: A Fine Selection of Chinese Works of Art on 10 May at Christie’s in London


A turquoise-ground famille rose ‘five boys’ vase. Qianlong six-character seal mark in iron-red. 12 1/2 in. (31.8 cm.) high. Estimate: £300,000-500,000. This work is offered in Inspired Themes: A Fine Selection of Chinese Works of Art on 10 May at Christie’s in London

2 Ask questions

Building the knowledge needed to authenticate Chinese ceramics can take many years. Reading reference books can give a structure to the field but pick specialists’ brains and ask as many questions as possible. There is nothing that a specialist with a little time on their hands likes better than to talk about their subject.

Video: Specialist Kate Hunt talks about her passion for Chinese porcelain

  • 3 Always buy what you love


Do not necessarily think of buying for investment. In that way you will never be disappointed. Try to buy the best quality example your budget will allow.


A famille rose yellow-ground bowl. Daoguang seal mark in underglaze blue and of. 7 3/8 in. (18.7 cm.) diam.. Estimate: £15,000-25,000. This work is offered in Inspired Themes: A Fine Selection of Chinese Works of Art on 10 May at Christie’s in London

  1. Familiarise yourself with the different palettes and glazes and when they were introduced

For example, the wucai (literally five-colour) palette was used in the Wanli period (1573–1619); from this palette came the famille verte palette introduced in the 17th century and the Kangxi period (1662–1722). This features a predominant green enamel together with blue, red, yellow, black. The famille rose palette was added to the ceramic painter’s repertoire in the 1720s and featured a prominent rose colour; the enamels are opaque and there is a wider repertoire of colours. In the 18th century there were many technical advances and glazes were introduced such as the copper-red glazes and flambé glazes.


A Longquan celadon cong-form vase. Sothern Song-Yuan Dynasty (1127-1368). 15 3/4 in. (40 cm.) high. Estimate: £15,000-20,000. This work is offered in Inspired Themes: A Fine Selection of Chinese Works of Art on 10 May at Christie’s in London


A rare flambé glazed vase, fang hu. Yongzheng incised six-character seal mark. 11 7/8 in. (30.2 cm.) high. Estimate: £30,000-50,000. This work is offered in Inspired Themes: A Fine Selection of Chinese Works of Art on 10 May at Christie’s in London

  • Learn about the various kilns and the distinction in glazes between kiln sites


Ceramics were made all over China and kilns in the north and south produced different types of wares and glazes. For example, in the Song dynasty (960–1279) you get beautiful celadon glazed ceramics from the Longquan located in the southwest Zhejiang province, and also the Yaozhou kilns in the northern China Shaanxi province. The celadon glazes differ between these two kilns with the Longquan glaze giving often a warmer, bluish-green tone compared with the Yaozhou glazes that were more olive in tone. Jun wares in the Song dynasty were produced with beautiful lavender glazes often highlighted by abstract purple splashes. The Dehua kilns specialised in ceramics with white and cream glazes. In the late Ming dynasty in the 17th century the Dehua wares were creamy in tone but by the 19th century these became more ivory and white. From the Ming dynasty, the kilns at Jingdezhen in the south of China produced most of the blue and white ceramics.


A set of four doucai ‘shou’ dishes. Daoguang six-character seal marks in. 8 1/4 in. (20.8 cm.) diam. Estimate: £20,000-30,000. This work is offered in Inspired Themes: A Fine Selection of Chinese Works of Art on 10 May at Christie’s in London

6 Turn it over

Always look at the bases of the ceramics as fakers often do not get these correct. The way a base of a vessel is cut, finished and glazed changes throughout the dynasties so looking at bases can help enormously with dating and authentication. Potters who are trying to fake ceramics often may not have an original example to look at, relying instead on photographs in auction catalogues or books that do not feature the bases.


A blue and white vase. Transitional Period, mid-17th century. 9 1/2 in. (24.1 cm.) high. Estimate: £10,000-15,000. This work is offered in Inspired Themes: A Fine Selection of Chinese Works of Art on 10 May at Christie’s in London

Familiarise yourself with changes in underglaze blue decoration from the Ming to the Qing dynasty

This timeless Chinese decoration changed a lot over the centuries both in the designs favoured and the tone of the cobalt blue when fired. This helps with dating — a characteristic of 15th century blue and white porcelain is the so-called ‘heaped and piled effect’ — when the underglaze cobalt blue concentrates in certain areas, bubbling through the surface of the glaze and turning a deep blue-black. This inadvertently gave texture, energy and shading to the design and was highly admired in the 18th century when potters sought to copy the techniques on archaistic pieces made out of reverence for this early golden period. However, by the 18th century potters had mastered the technique of firing blue and white wares to achieve a more even, uniform cobalt blue tone and this was widely used on most porcelain. The blue varied throughout the dynasties. For example, during the Wanli period (1573–1619) blue and white wares often have a greyish-blue tone; in the Jiajing period (1522–1566) blue and white wares tend to have a vibrant, almost purplish blue.


A massive pair of famille rose ‘water margin’ vases. Daoguang Period (1821-1850). 54 1/2 in. (138.5 cm.) high. Estimate: £60,000-80,000. This work is offered in Inspired Themes: A Fine Selection of Chinese Works of Art on 10 May at Christie’s in London


A rare ming-style blue and white floral vase. Yongzheng six-character mark in underglaze. 8 in. (20.2 cm.) high. Estimate: £200,000-300,000. This work is offered in Inspired Themes: A Fine Selection of Chinese Works of Art on 10 May at Christie’s in London

8 Pay attention to shapes and proportions

The shapes of ceramics changed and evolved throughout the dynasties. Familiarise yourself with the different shapes in different periods. For example, Song dynasty ceramics often drew on nature for their inspiration and have foliate forms. Ceramics from the Song dynasty are all about combining simple forms with beautiful monochrome glazes. Chinese ceramics also have beautiful proportions. A vase or bowl that looks out of proportion is an indication that a neck or mouth has been ground down.

An incised green-enamelled ‘dragon’ dish. Kangxi six-character mark in underglaze blue. 7 in. (17.8 cm.) diam.. Estimate: £10,000-15,000. This work is offered in Inspired Themes: A Fine Selection of Chinese Works of Art on 10 May at Christie’s in London

9  Consider condition

What is an acceptable condition depends on whether the ceramic is Imperial quality or not and when it was made. For example, on a non-Imperial porcelain vessel made in the 17th century, such as a Kraak ware charger, you would expect to see a certain level of fritting to the rim, or see some kiln grit or kiln dust to the base and perhaps a firing flaw that would have occurred in the kiln. These would be acceptable and would not be considered condition issues.

However, you would not expect to find these kind of kiln flaws on an 18th century Imperial mark and period ceramic as the standard would have been higher and the firing techniques refined. The price of mark and period ceramics made for the great 18th century Kangxi (1662–1722), Yongzheng (1723–1735) and Qianlong (1736–1795) Emperors has escalated in the last decade. Whereas 15 years ago, only mint condition mark and period ceramics would have been considered acceptable to collectors, now collectors will accept certain condition flaws in order to buy these pieces. For example, ceramics that have been broken and restored or have hairline cracks.


A rare iron-red and underglaze-blue decorated square-form vase, Gu. Wanli six-character mark in underglaze-blue. 22 5/8 in. (57.5 cm.) high. Estimate: £40,000-60,000. This work is offered in Inspired Themes: A Fine Selection of Chinese Works of Art on 10 May at Christie’s in London

10  Familiarise yourself with marks

Reign marks state the dynasty and the name of the emperor for which an item was made and were used on all ceramics made for the Emperor and his Imperial household. Familiarise yourself with the reign marks used in each period but do not rely on a reign mark to establish the age of a piece. Marks were often copied and can be apocryphal. A useful reference book is The Handbook of Marks on Chinese Ceramics, Gerald Davison, London, 1994. This lists all the Imperial Ming and Qing dynasty reign marks that appear in seal script form, zhuanshu, and regular form, kaishu.  These should be studied together with the many different variations of hallmarks, auspicious marks, potters’ marks and symbols that you find on the bases of Chinese porcelain throughout the ages.


Highlighted Sale

Inspired Themes: A Fine Selection of Chinese Works of Art

London, King Street

10 May 2016

Learn more


Related lots

A famille rose yellow-ground bowl

Daoguang seal mark in underglaze blue and of the period (1821-1850)

Estimate £15,000 – £25,000 ($21,720 – $36,200)

Lot 59 | Sale 13075


View Lot

A wucai dragon and phoenix bowl

Qianlong six-character seal mark in underglaze blue and of the period (1736-1795)

Estimate £2,000 – £4,000 ($2,896 – $5,792)

Lot 144 | Sale 12289




Christies announce Asian Art in Europe programme for Spring & Summer 2016

a_turquoise-ground_famille_rose_five_boys_vase_qianlong_six-character_d5992017h One of Christies’ top sale items in current series

A TURQUOISE-GROUND FAMILLE ROSE ‘FIVE BOYS’ VASE QIANLONG SIX-CHARACTER SEAL MARK IN IRON-RED AND OF THE PERIOD (1736-1795) The vase is elaborately decorated with bats, eternal knots, peaches and multi-coloured lotus sprays, set against a bright turquoise ground. The mouth is encircled by a ruyi border and a band of classic scroll. The short foot is decorated with lappets and a key-fret band. The shoulder is moulded with two young boys, one holding a ruyi sceptre and the other holding a gold ingot. Three further boys are depicted to one side, climbing onto the vase. 12 ½ in. (31.8 cm.) high. Estimated at £300,000-500,000

This spring Christie’s will present a rich array of diverse and dynamic sales of Asian Art in Europe, including King Street and South Kensington in London, in Paris as well as online at christies.com. Collectively the sales offer a wealth of Chinese and Japanese art, spanning over 3,000 years of artistic practice and featuring exceptional artworks from important European collections.

The sales kick off in April with an online sale Asian Art Inspired by Nature, running from 19 – 28 April at www.christies.com/asianartonline comprising over 120 lots from a broad range of collecting categories. From classical Chinese paintings, Japanese works of art, Chinese ceramics and works of art to Asian contemporary art, this sale presents a unique opportunity for emerging collectors and experienced connoisseurs to acquire works of art inspired by Nature, with estimates starting at just $600 and ranging up to $30,000. The online sales calendar also includes Japanese Prints, 14 – 28 June; Japanese Art at the European Court, 23 June – 7 July; and Chinese Works of Art Summer Sale, 1 – 15 July.

Christie’s Chinese auctions in London will take place between 10 and 13 May. Together these sales will offer almost 700 lots including Chinese jades, ceramics, scholar’s objects, textiles, paintings and furniture. Inspired Themes: A Fine Selection of Chinese Works of Art will be held on 10 May at King Street; Chinese Ceramics, Works of Art & Textiles on 11 and 13 May at South Kensington.

Following the auctions in London, Christie’s Paris will host the traditional sale of Art d’Asie on 22 June, and works from The Portier Collection of Japanese Art will also be on view on 18 and 19 June. 


Christie’s Late – Looking East: The Art of China

Christie’s South Kensington, 3 May

This May, the Christie’s Late event is dedicated to the arts of China – from the art of making tea and the Chinese language, to music, to artworks and objects that span thousands of years of creativity. The evening is free and open to all in London to meet Christie’s Chinese art specialists and will include talks, Mandarin Chinese classes, and a Chinese printmaking workshop lead by artist He Weimin from the Muban Educational Trust. Find out more at www.christies.com/lates

Inspired Themes: A Fine Selection of Chinese Works of Art

Christie’s King Street, 10 May 

On 10 May Christie’s King Street will present Inspired Themes: A Fine Selection of Chinese Works of Art, a sale showcasing exceptional examples of Chinese ceramics, jades, Buddhist art, paintings and furniture, with many of the artworks originating from distinguished private European collections. The sale spans a broad period of Chinese history, ranging from an early Western Zhou Dynasty (12th-11th century BC) bronze ritual food vessel, gui (estimate: £40,000-60,000), to modern Chinese painting including Mouse and Candlestick by Qi Baishi (estimate: £80,000-120,000). The ceramics section features a rare Yongzheng mark and period (1723-1735) Ming-style blue and white floral vase (estimate: £200,000-300,000) and a Qianlong mark and period (1736-1795) turquoise-ground famille rose ‘five boys’ vase (estimate: £300,000-500,000). The sale will also feature an exquisite selection of Buddhist art, highlighted by a rare and large Ming Dynasty (15th-17th century) polychrome wood figure of Guanyin (estimate: £80,000-120,000); a 19th century silk embroidered Thangka depicting the Panchen Lama Ensapa Lobsang Dondrup (estimate: £40,000-60,000); and a magnificent set of four gilt-bronze figures of Buddhist guardians dating to the 17th-18th century (estimate: £120,000-180,000). 

Chinese Ceramics, Works of Art and Textiles

Christie’s South Kensington, 11 and 13 May

Christie’s South Kensington will offer the highly anticipated Chinese Ceramics, Works of Art and Textiles sale on 11 and 13 May with over 580 lots across a wide range of media, spanning over three thousand years of Chinese art and with estimates ranging from £1,000 up to £50,000. The sale includes a number of notable private collections which present imperial mark and period porcelain, jade carvings, Song and Ming dynasty carved Buddhist wood sculpture, hardwood and bamboo scholars’ objects and Chinese robes. A Private Asian Collection of 65 lots presents 19th and 20th century zitan, hardwood, bamboo and boxwood brush pots and scholar’s objects. The sale also features jade carvings, ceramics and works of art from the Lever Collection – further works from this collection will be included in the Inspired Themes: A Fine Selection of Chinese Works of Art auction at King Street on 10 May.

 The Dani and Anna Ghigo Collection

Christie’s King Street, 11 and 12 May

On 11 and 12 May, Christie’s King Street will present The Dani and Anna Ghigo Collection. A true antiquarian and discerning collector, Dani Ghigo was a leading Italian carpet dealer, who over the last 50 years, together with his wife Anna, formed this remarkable private collection. Housed in the Ghigo ancestral home on the hillside in Turin, the collection vividly captures the breadth of the couple’s knowledge and passion for carpets, South East Asian, Himalayan & Indian sculpture, French & Italian furniture, tapestries, and Chinese & Japanese works of art. The Chinese element of the collection dates from the early Ming to the late Qing dynasty (14 th-20th century). The majority of lots were made primarily for the Chinese domestic market. Highlights include two rare, almost life size, painted-wood Buddhist figures of bodhisattvas, which date from the late Yuan or early Ming period. The sale also features bronze and pottery Buddhist figures, jades, furniture, paintings including a large set of wallpaper panels, and decorative porcelain, as well as decorative Japanese laquer and works of art.

Arts d’Asie

Christie’s Paris, 22 June

On 22 June, Christie’s Paris will present its traditional summer Art d’Asie sale. The auction will offer over 400 lots of mainly Chinese and South East Asian works of art. Most of the pieces featured come from French and European private collections, including a fine selection of Ming and Qing fans and paintings from a French private collection. Highlights of the auction include a Chinese 18th century Zitan mirror stand decorated with dragons (estimate: €100,000-200,000) and an important Nepalese gilt-bronze repoussé figure of Vajradhara, 17th/18th (estimate: €100,000-150,000).


Asian Art Inspired by Nature

Online Only, 19 – 28 April

Asian Art Inspired by Nature will offer over 120 lots from a diverse range of collecting categories across Asian Art. The beauty of Nature has been celebrated by Chinese and Japanese culture throughout the ages and has found its expression in literature, music, Daoist and Buddhist beliefs and the arts, from classical paintings to porcelain, and from jade, cloisonné and bamboo to contemporary art. The online sale will be open for bidding at www.christies.com/asianartonline from 19 to 28 April, presenting a unique opportunity for emerging collectors and experienced connoisseurs to acquire works of art inspired by Nature.


Pieces from Saeed Motamed Collection to be sold by Kidson Trigg

Saeed Mohamed Collection Chinese vases

Lot 3 A pair of Chinese ‘realgar’ glass baluster vases, 25cm. high

Next Tuesday, Swindon auctioneers Kidson Trigg will sell several items from the collection of the late Saeed Motamed.

Saeed Motamed (1925 – 2013) started collecting art in 1953 and continued to do so until the late 1980s and early 1990s. Christies sold most of his collection in April last year and Bellman’s, the Sussex auctioneers, followed up in August this year with items which Christie’s did not sell.

Saeed Motamed was born in Iran in 1925, towards the end of the Qajar dynasty. He trained as an engineer at Tehran University, before moving to Stuttgart, Germany aged 27 to further his studies. He had a particular enthusiasm for Islamic glass and Persian lacquerwork. After the Iranian revolution of 1979, Saeed Motamed never again visited his native country, although Persian remained his language of choice for his written papers and Islamic art remained his first love.

By this time, Mr Motamed’s connoisseur’s eye was making him famous throughout Europe and Asia. He has had personal influence over the preservation of Islamic glass pieces: many items which he once owned are now prized museum exhibits, and can be found in establishments such as the British Museum and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. In an introduction to the catalogue of an exhibition of pieces from the collection at Bernheimer Fine Arts LTD in 1986, Basil W. Robinson paid tribute to Mr Motamed’s extraordinary vision, writing: “the present exhibition comprises a selection from the property of a private collector whose long and extensive experience and expertise in all branches of Islamic art are well known to everybody in this field. Its quality is thus guaranteed, and is indeed self-evident”.

As a member of the Baha’i community, Mr Motamed encouraged curiosity and appreciation of other cultures, and his collection reflects this perfectly. It transcends decades, continents and themes, and is exciting specialists, amateurs and novices alike.

The items he collected bear witness to the depth and breadth of his knowledge of the artistic traditions of Iran, and the rest of the Islamic World. It was an expansive collection of Islamic Art which also spans centuries of the history of pre-Islamic Iran. Saeed Motamed’s pioneering interest for Islamic art, and particularly his love for early Islamic glass and Persian lacquer works, made him famous throughout Europe and America. Naturally, such a collection contained many examples of Chinese-made vases and jars, some of them extremely rare. Items from his collection can be regarded as coming with exceptional provenance.

Saeed Mohamet

Highlights from Christie’s ‘Asia Week’ sales

Last week in London was dubbed ‘Asia Week’ – not to be confused with the autumn event Asian Art in London – because of the large number of auction sales held in the capital. This was not any sort of official title but the sobriquet did, of course, serve marketing purposes rather well. We have noted elsewhere that Bonhams rather stole the limelight with their Chinese sale which netted well over £8m. There were, however, some other interesting lots, and prices, elsewhere. Christie’s mounted several sales and here are what we have singled out as some interesting highlights. Some very substantial prices were achieved and these tend to reflect upon the status of the auctioneer. As one Chinese buyer put it to us, “When you buy from a large auction house with a reputation you know that research has been done and you can buy with confidence.” That, of course, comes at a price . . .


A small green and white overlay-glass water pot, 19th c. but with apocryphal Quianlong mark to the shoulder  £33,750


A rare Ming-style yellow-enamelled blue and white ‘Lotus Bouquet’ dish with Yongzheng six-character mark in underglaze blue within a double circle and of the period  27.4cm. £116,500


A small, lemon-yellow glazed dish, Yongzheng 6-character mark to base underglaze, within double circle, and of the period. 7.8cm. Finely potted with bright yellow glaze. £60,000


A pair of claire-de-lune-glazed stem bowls with Yongzheng six-character marks in underglaze blue and of the period. From a private Hong  Kong collection amassed in the early 20th c. Diameter 18cm. £56,250


A pale celadon jade, finely-carved archaistic vessel (Tulu) of the Quianlong period. In its original archaistic form a tulu would have been used for artist’s materials with chambers for water and pigments within the rectangular form.                                                £52,500


A rare ‘dragon & phoenix huanghuali mirror stand of the 17th century.  80.7cm. high. £338,500