Skinner to Host Asian Works of Art Auction

Sale features Qianlong period jades and several important collections

Skinner, Inc. one of the world’s leading auction houses for antiques and fine art, today announced it will host an auction of Asian Works of Art on Friday, December 3rd and Saturday, December 4th in the Boston gallery. More than 1,700 lots of material will be offered from jades, to bronzes, to paintings and scrolls, ceramics, furniture and much more. Prices are diverse as the offerings themselves, with lot estimates beginning at $200 providing an opportunity for novice bidders to build their collections. The sale also boasts works of greater value. One jewel of the sale is the cover lot, a large sea green colored jade mythical animal from the Qianlong period, China, 18th century. The jade is estimated at $15,000 to $20,000.

Also being offered are several important collections including the painting and calligraphy collection of P.Y. Wang (1893-1977). P.Y. Wang, known as the “Gold King” of Shanghai in the early 20th century, invested in and reorganized the Land Bank of China. He later ventured into real estate and insurance, while some of his investments were purely motivated by his desire to support national industry and to preserve national treasures. The collection includes more than fifty fan paintings and calligraphic works done by Wu Hufan, Zhang Gunian, Liu Haisu, Liang Qichao, Chen Dingshan, Feng Chaoran, Gu Linshi, Fan Haolin, and Ding Fuzhi, to name a few. One of the highlights is an album of twenty-five leaves, done on the occasion of Boyuan’s eightieth birthday celebration. The impressive album includes Zhang Daqian’s ten leaves of mountainous landscapes plus six leaves of calligraphy, Wang Yachen’s two leaves of bird and flower paintings, C.C. Wang and his wife Zheng Yuansu’s two leaves of pine and mountains, Tao Shoubo’s four leaves of prunus branches, among others. It is conservatively estimated at $6,000 to $8,000. Another Zhang Daqian’s blue and green mountainous landscape, done in 1953, is also featured.

Another collection of note comes from the private collection of Shen Baozhen’s fifth-generation granddaughter. Shen Baozhen was a high official during the late Qing dynasty. In 1847 he achieved the highest degree in the Imperial Examinations and was later involved in the suppression of the Taiping Rebellion together with Zeng Guofan. He also played an important role in the Modernization movement in the late 19th century in China. Shen’s family was well connected, other dignitaries include Lin Zexu, his father-in-law.

The Annelise Freiheit collection, and in a private collection since, includes Tibetan bronzes inspired by a meeting with the Dalai Lama. Her collection was mainly acquired during her travels in Nepal and Southeast Asia around the 1970s and 80s when many bronzes went to market after the Cultural Revolution in China. Independent of that collection is a magnificent gilt-bronze Bodhisattva from China, Ming Dynasty, the Yongle period (1403-1425), the figure of Manjusri, featured on the back cover of the catalog and estimated at $10,000 to $15,000.

Additional collections include a fine group of early Chinese ceramics from the collection of Robert H. Ellsworth, paintings formerly in the private collection of the family of Yeh Gongchao, and Chinese paintings from the ex-collection of the late Senator Theodore F. Green of Rhode Island. Finally, a collection of 18th and 19th century snuff bottles will also be offered for the benefit of acquisition funds for the Peabody Essex Museum.

Image: Lot 1030: Jade Mythical Animal, China, Qianlong period (1736-1795), est. $15,000-20,000

Previews, Catalog and Bidding
Previews for the auction will be held on Thursday, December 2nd from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. and on Friday, December 3rd from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. (Session II only). Illustrated catalog #2528B is available by mail for $35 ($42 for foreign requests) from the subscription department at 508-970-3240. It is also available at the gallery for $32. Prices realized will be available at during and after the sale. Skinner’s site also allows users to view all lots in the auctions, leave bids, order catalogs, and bid live in real-time through Skinner-Live.

To register for real-time bidding go to Or, for more information call 508-970-3000

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