Asian Art Fall 2015 Auction

By: Chih En Chen

Asian Art

Insight to our Fall 2015 Asian Art Auction

Bringing our auctions together is always a pleasure. We work carefully and thoughtfully to find the right balance of materials, always following our rigorous guidelines of quality and rarity. My trips to Taipei, New York, and across Canada from August to October resulted in an exciting variety of exceptional consignments.

This fall we are pleased to offer over 330 lots from Vancouver, Montreal, Quebec City, New York, Taipei, and here at home in Toronto, covering Japanese, Korean, Himalayan, Southeast Asian, and of course, Chinese works of art. On Vancouver Island, I was privileged to accept for consignment a collection of fine porcelain. It was mainly acquired in Hong Kong and Beijing prior to 1940, and some is from respected Asian art dealers, including Orientique Hong Kong.

We are also delighted to introduce Waddington’s first Asian Art Reference Books section, which includes selected lots from the estate of Yukman Lai (1949-2013), a Chinese-Canadian artist, calligrapher and seal engraver. He was born in China and raised in Hong Kong, eventually immigrating to Vancouver in 1991 where he became a prominent educator and artist of ink paintings and calligraphy. He was passionate about fostering an integration of eastern and western cultures. His works have been collected by art galleries and museums in Canada, Hong Kong and mainland China, and his paintings and calligraphy were selected by Canada Post to be issued as stamps in 1999 and 2001. A small sampling of his comprehensive library is included in this sale, and more will be offered in the future.

We are also thrilled to include another piece from the estate of Chen Zhaogong (1903-1996). You may recall the Qianlong blue and white Ming-style hu vase that we featured as our June 2014 catalogue cover, which realized an astounding 186,500 CAD. For this sale, we successfully secured another important porcelain piece from the Chen family: a blue and white bottle vase from the Guangxu period (lot 208). And in an astonishing and auspicious coincidence, our aforementioned clients from Vancouver Island consigned a matched mate! We are thrilled to offer these rare and exceptional pieces; and their cobalt blue certainly illuminates our porcelain section.

The Japanese works section features a massive and fine painting painting of Mori Tetsuzan (1775-1841), which depicts the rare tiger theme of this 18th Century master. It was consigned to us by an important Dutch-Canadian family, with provenance from Christie’s Amsterdam, 1981.

With such a variety of extraordinary works, the cover lot must stand out as an exceptional item to represent the entire auction. This fall we are proud to present a turquoise-ground shaped box with a Qianlong mark and of the period (Lot 157) as our catalogue cover. It is from a renowned French diplomatic family in Montreal, with distinguished provenance including C. T Loo and Maison des Bambous, Paris. The only comparable piece, which was possibly the other half of a pair, is now in the GuanFu Museum Beijing.

It has been a privilege assembling this auction, and a true pleasure to work with numerous fine examples of Asian culture from our valued clients.

Our heartfelt thanks to all our consignors, buyers and consultants for your continued support.

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