Auction PR Publicity Announcements News and Information
Auction PR Publicity Announcements News and Information

Burton-Ching Collection for Auction at Bonhams & Butterfields

Rare Auction Opportunity for Interior Design Community

burton-ching.jpgAn incredible collection of sought after English and Continental reproductions and period pieces from the noted San Francisco-based furniture makers Burton-Ching comes to auction at Bonhams & Butterfields on Sunday, December 14, 2008. During the San Francisco auction, collectors, interior decorators and other savvy bidders will be able to acquire superb high quality designer pieces with custom finishes, fine woods and excellent patina.

Sen Ching, CEO of the lauded firm, was apprentice to master craftsmen who taught him to build furniture by hand to the exacting standards of demanding designers across Europe and Asia. In 1976, Mr. Ching came to San Francisco and refined his focus from making furniture to restoring and repairing fine period antiques. He became skilled with the meticulous finishing processes that distinguish Burton-Ching pieces and was soon making custom reproductions for a growing clientele of professional designers. Demand for his exquisite reproductions soared, and as of 1995, Mr. Ching and his team had founded Burton-Ching Ltd., a company dedicated to providing reproductions of such beauty and quality that they are nearly indistinguishable from the originals.

“While Burton-Ching continues in business with showrooms across the country, this exciting Bonhams sale is a unique opportunity to purchase furniture and decorations directly – and with the added opportunity to buy and have the pieces immediately – just in time for the holidays,” says VP Jeff Smith, Director of Bonhams & Butterfields’ European Furniture & Decorative Arts Dept. “As well, competing in the auction environment, collectors could realize significant savings compared to retail showroom prices.”

The auction’s nearly 250-lots will be previewed beginning on Friday, Dec. 12th at Bonhams & Butterfields, the exhibits continuing daily until sale day on Dec. 14th. Highlights include exquisite examples of chairs and tables, cabinets and bookcases, and decorative arts — in the Georgian, Louis XV, Regency and other styles, all to be offered to the highest bidders.

On offer are several large dramatic pieces, including an imposing George III style mahogany breakfront bookcase cabinet, the upper case with glazed panels framing octagonal mullions, with figured mahogany below. The unit stands eight-feet high and more than seven-feet wide and could sell for as much as $8,000. Another lot, similar in size, is a George III style burl walnut breakfront cabinet with a stepped cornice above paneled doors and drawers (est. $5/8,000), while a George II style mahogany breakfront bookcase was described the auctioneers as “wonderful.” This example is topped by a lovely pierced architectural cornice above four glazed doors above paneled doors and drawers (est. $6/8,000). A superb George III style bookcase is designed in the Chinoisery style with parcel gilt scenes on the lower ebonized door panels.

The Burton-Ching Collection’s tables include center tables such as an example standing on gilt paw feet, tea tables, breakfast tables, games tables and writing tables, such as a Regency style parcel gilt and ebonized mahogany example. Console tables include a marble topped walnut piece in the Northern Italian style, the lot featuring an ivory marble top above carved swags of fruits and blossoms (est. $5/8,000). Dining tables should interest collectors, as will sofa tables and desks – including a mid-19th century Regency satinwood Carlton House writing desk (est. $6/9,000). Secretary bookcases, chests of drawers and commodes in various finishes should bring prices from $1,500 to $8,000. A fine and impressive Queen Anne style parcel gilt walnut secretary cabinet displays gilt finials, the interior fitted with document dividers and pigeonholes, candle slides and a leather inset writing surface (est. $7/9,000).

Bonhams will offer Burton-Ching chairs – lotted in pairs, as well as sets of six, eight and twelve. A superb set of eight George III style dining chairs sport carved backrests in the Chippendale “Gothik” style (est. $5/8,000), while a set of eight Regency style mahogany armchairs sit with an estimate of $3,000 to $3,500.

Decorative arts from the Burton-Ching showroom will include giltwood mirrors of various sizes — a pair of six-foot tall George II style mirrors are surmounted by a phoenix taking flight, its wing span more than 30-inches wide (est. $6/10,000). A Flemish Baroque style giltwood mirror is rectangular (est. $5/7,000) while a good George II oval example could bring $2,500 to $5,000.

A giltwood lantern has fittings for six lamps, estimated at $2/3,000, while a pair of giltwood George II style wall brackets, exuberantly carved in the Rococo style, could bring as much as $3,500.

A pair of Chinese Chippendale style giltwood wall brackets are described as “exceptional,” featuring dragons emerging from C-scroll cartouches, each more than 15-inches high (est. $2,500/3,500). A pair of Venetian Rococo style parcel gilt and ebonized blackamoors depict figures kneeling on one knee, each 43-inches high (est. $7/9,000).

“We’re pleased to bring the collection to auction and expect clients to wholeheartedly take advantage of this opportunity to own Burton-Ching pieces,” said Jeff Smith.

The illustrated online catalog for this auction is at For more information on Bonhams & Butterfields and the Furniture & Decorative Arts specialty department, please visit: