BOSTON, MA – Skinner’s upcoming Asian Works of Art auction features 568 lots with special strengths in the areas of textiles, jade, Chinese paintings, and ceramics. The auction will take place at Skinner’s Boston Gallery on Saturday, March 18 at 11AM, coinciding with the end Asia Week in New York.
The textiles in this auction are especially notable. Jon Eric Riis, widely regarded as the nation’s leading contemporary tapestry artist and an international authority on textiles, will be speaking about the collection on Thursday, March 16 at 6PM. Highlights include:
♦ Embroidered Lady’s Informal Robe, 19th century, pale blue silk richly embroidered with flowers, fruit and auspicious symbols (Lot 119, $2,000-3,000).
♦ Official Canopy Cover, 18th-19th century, with embroidered motifs of a pair of lung dragons, each chasing a pearl (Lot 140, $3,000-5,000).
♦ Yunjin brocade yardage, featuring intricate woven patterns of dragons, clouds, and other traditional motifs. (Lots 143-145, $5,000-7,000 each).
The skills that produced such remarkable textiles are being lost and the labor-intensive techniques are dying out, says Judith Dowling, Director of Asian Works of Art. This decline is stimulating interest in these needlework treasures, both in China and among collectors around the world.
Carved jade is perhaps China’s most admired artifact. This auction includes numerous examples of the revered mineral, including a significant collection of small jades from the estate of a connoisseur who began his acquisitions many years ago.
The jades being offered, many of which are of highly prized white nephrite, are especially distinguished for their excellent carving, notable pieces include:
♦ Jade Boulder, 18th century. An impressive 9 ¾ inches high, the piece is finely carved with two figures amid mountain scenery (Lot 202, $60,000-80,000).
♦ Jade ruyi Scepter, a gnarly branch embellished with mushrooms and a hornless dragon (Lot 232, $10,000-12,000).
In addition to a fine assortment of blue and white wares, mostly 19th and early 20th centuries, there are stunning rarities such as:
♦ Pair of Lemon yellow-Glazed Wine Cups, 1723-35. They are very early, very small, and very fine. The brilliant color is hard to achieve, and firing such delicate objects is a great technical accomplishment (Lot 281, $30,000-50,000).
♦ Peachbloom Water Coupe, 18th century, with incised underglaze decoration of dragons (Lot 282, $10,000-20,000).
Paintings and prints
There is a large selection of Chinese landscapes, bird and flower paintings, scrolls, and calligraphy. Two highlighted works are from 20th century masters:
♦ Hanging Scroll Calligraphy by Wu Changshuo (Lot 432, $40,000-60,000).
♦ Mountain-Water by Zhang Daquian, ink and light color on paper (Lot 442, $50,000-70,000).
Also offered are a variety of Japanese woodblocks including several Kawase Hasui works noted for the delicately atmospheric depiction of landscapes and cityscapes in snow and rain.
The Library of Joseph Wei
Like his library, Joseph Wei was a person of many interests, with great depth of knowledge–his life’s study focused on the worlds of Asia and the Middle East. He combined his connoisseurship of Asian art with a career as a fine arts dealer, all the while following a spiritual journey that embraced Christianity and Buddhism. His library contains both scholarly monographs, particularly rich in Buddhist material, and titles essential for the study and authentication of works of art.
Highlights from his collection will be offered in the March 18 auction. Additional rare and desirable titles will be available in the online-only auction, A Scholar’s Library, from March 9 – 20.
Previews, Catalogs, and Bidding
Previews will be held on Thursday, March 16, 12-5PM; Friday, March 17, 12-7PM; and Saturday, March 18, 9-10:30AM.
The print catalog is available for purchase from the Subscriptions Department at firstname.lastname@example.org. Prices realized will be available at www.skinnerinc.com during and after the sale. The Skinner website enables users to view all lots in the auction, leave bids, and bid live, in real-time through SkinnerLive!
Skinner auctions draw international interest from buyers and consignors alike, with material regularly achieving record prices. The company’s auction and appraisal services focus on fine art, jewelry, furniture, and decorative arts from around the globe, as well as wine, fine musical instruments, rare books, Asian art, clocks, Judaica, and more. Monthly Skinner Discovery auctions feature a breadth of estate material. Widely regarded as one of the most trusted names in the business, Skinner appraisers have appeared on the PBS-TV series, Antiques Roadshow, since the show’s inception. Skinner has galleries in Boston and Marlborough, Massachusetts, as well as in New York City and Miami, Florida, with bidders participating in person, by phone, and online. Join auctions live with SkinnerLive! and Bidsquare. For more information, visit www.skinnerinc.com, find us on Facebook, or follow us on Twitter and Instagram.