Chorleys well satisfied with delayed sale of Republican porcelain

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Lot 88  Pair of Meiping vases achieved £8,000 at Chorleys

Auctioneer Chorleys is reported to be well satisfied with the delayed sale (due to snow!) of Republic period, and earlier, porcelain which took place March 27 and which we wrote about earlier

The morning opened with the Asian section attracting frenetic bidding over the telephones, extra busy internet activity and a packed saleroom.  In particular, there was huge interest from China, the USA and the UK trade with most of the highest bids ending up via the internet.The Asian section offered an important local collection of Republic era porcelain with the highlight being Lot 75, a set of four rectangular porcelain plaques by Bi Botao (1885-1961) representing the four seasons.

Bi Botao was a member of the well-known group ‘The Eight Friends of Zhushan’.  Lot 75 Four Chinese porcelain rectangular plaques, signed and with one artist seal by Bi Botao (1885-1961), dated 1932, sold for £16,000. The group comprised the best porcelain artists of the period and revitalized the Chinese porcelain industry after the political unrest in 19th century China and the subsequent fall of the Qing dynasty.  The plaques, delicately painted with frogs, a spider, turtles and a snake respectively, were acquired from Peter Wain’s ‘Millenium List’, 1999 for £3,000 and sold at Chorley’s for £16,000.

From the same collection, Lot 83, a Chinese porcelain circular seal paste box, painted by Wang Yeting, fetched £4,000 against an estimate of £600-800 while Lot 88, a pair of Chinese porcelain Meiping vases, inscribed with a poem and symbols of immortality, realised £6,000.  Elsewhere in the oriental section, of excellent quality and highly decorative, Lot 16, a garniture of three Chinese famille verte vases from the Kangxi period, fetched £7,500.

‘Friends of Zhushan’ interest set to peak?

Surprisingly high prices have been paid in recent months for Republic era paintings on porcelain – some barely one hundred years old. A set of four panels were exposed for auction in the UK ten days ago and Auctioneers Charterhouse achieved a stunning £420,000 for the works, apparently by Wang Yeting (1884-1942), and which they had estimated at £200-300. The price eclipsed the performance of other, similar, although smaller, lots in recent months.

At Cheffins of Cambridge, in October last year, a figural panel by Wang Qi (1884-1937) got £230,000, and Christies South Kensington knocked down a landscape panel by Wang Dafan (1888-1961) for £300,000 last October.

charterhouse big sale Photo Charterhouse

Rather pleased. A representative of Charterhouse with two of the four panels which made £420,000

The group known as The Eight Friends of Zhushan constituted a group of eight porcelain painters active from the very end of the 19th century, so-called because they met on the full moon of every lunar month at Zhushan. At these regular meetings, they exchanged ideas on their art. That having been said, the painters all had their own distinctive styles and they were not imitative in any way.

The original eight painters were Wang Qi (known for his figural works), Deng Bishan (fish and seaweed), Xu Zhongnan (bamboo), Tian Hexian (plums), Wang Dafan (figural), Wang Yeting (landscapes), Cheng Yiting (flowers and birds) and Liu Yucen (flowers and birds). Wang Qi is generally recognised as the leader of the group. The artists He Xuren and Bi Botao were later members of the Group.

Demonstrating that auctioneers never know where their next high performance lot may come from, Charterhouse boss Richard Bromell said that the panels came from a chalet bungalow in rural Dorset. Two were kept under the bed. Charterhouse operate out of Sherborne, Dorset.

The panels were bought on the telephone by a buyer in Shanghai who will have to pay 19.5% premium on top of the hammer price of £420,000.