When size doesn’t matter . . . chopped down Wanli vase rises to the occasion

Gloucestershire auctioneers Chorleys were pleasantly surprised at the end of last week when an object they had found lying around in a local farmhouse rather exceeded its estimate of £300-500. What was apparently a Wanli blue and white jar, with a 100 boys design, soared to £22,000 amidst frenzied bidding in the room and on the internet. Only it wasn’t. It hadn’t always been a humble jar . . .  Chorleys admit that it ‘started life’ as a vase. Its truncated status did not, however, deter the bidders which puts a whole new complexion on the phrase ‘with all faults’ . . .

wanli at chorleys

And it wasn’t the only high performer in the sale. We previously chose as our Object of Desire, on this site, a most unusual blue and white fishbowl. Almost certainly 18th century, it romped home at £18,000.

blue & white fish bowl at chorleys

We wrote last week about the collection of photographs of the Pekin riots in 1912. They made a respectable £550 – a good buy for somebody as they enjoyed serious historical importance.