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
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
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.