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12 Jul 2005, Christie's sold the most expensive Asian work of art ever when an exceptionally rare and important blue and white jar, Yuan dynasty, Fourteenth Century, realized $27,679,100. The jar was eventually acquired by Eskenazi Ltd for a private buyer. This is not only a world record price ever paid for any Chinese work of art, it is also the highest price paid for any work of art sold at Christie's this year.
Dating from the Yuan dynasty (1279-1368), the rare, and previously unrecorded blue and white jar is finely decorated with a narrative scene in vibrant underglaze cobalt blue. The jar, which depicts scenes from contemporary literature, is thought to be one of only eight to have survived to the present day.
Featuring a peony scroll band around the shoulders and a petal band around the base, the jar has vividly painted scenes from the story of the conflict between the states of Yan and Qi in the Warring States period (AD 475-221). A figure in a cart, pulled by a tiger and a leopard, follows two foot soldiers running by a stream. Over the bridge is a scholarly figure on a piebald horse looking across a rocky landscape to another horseman. The jar was acquired in China by Captain Baron Haro van Hemert, a keen collector of art, who was in the Dutch Marine Corps and was stationed in Beijing from 1913 to 1923.
Hong Kong-based connoisseur Alice Cheng holds the Qing Dynasty vase that she bought at a Sotheby's auction in Hong Kong October 7, 2010.
A 300-year-old vase fetched HK$252.6 million ($32.5 million) in Hong Kong, a world record auction price for Chinese porcelain.
The yellow-ground famille-rose double-gourd vase, made during the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911), was among a selection of rare works from four major private collections that went under the hammer at Sotheby's autumn sales.
Chinese fish vase sells for world record $85 million. On November 12, 2010, a 18th century Qianlong porcelain vase sold at a Bainbridges Auction House for a world record $85 million. Its the highest price ever paid at auction for a Chinese work of art. Standing 16 inches tall and decorated with fish, the vase is thought to date from the time of Qianlong, the fourth emperor in the Qing dynasty, around 1740. Experts said it probably once belonged to Chinese royalty but was most likely taken out of the country at the end of the Second Opium War in 1860 when the palaces were ransacked. The vase has a yellow painted trumpet neck and a double-walled construction, meaning an inner vase can be seen through the perforations of the main body.
Helen Porter, of Bainbridges, said: In the 18th century it would have resided no doubt in the Chinese Royal Palace and was most certainly fired in the Imperial kilns. It is a piece of exquisite beauty and a supreme example of the skill of the ceramicist and decorator.
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