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Why did this vase sell for what it sold for?
@clj I think a good argument can be made about the mark not being correct. The 2nd character, 'Qing', is made in the form of a box (standard) with a 'T' shape rather than a vertical line. There are genuine Qianlong marks that have this 'T' type 'Qing' character, but they are rare, and more often, they turn out to be Republic (I will discuss this again when I post about the J.J. Lally Qianlong M&P bowls).
Taking into consideration the faces being very much in a post Tongzhi manner, the glazes are somewhat watery, the wax export seal, the foot rim flat and fairly rough, then add the mark...I have to admit that as soon as I handled the vase, I thought...'this is Repbulic period, right?'
The vase is quite fantastic for a Republic piece, and given the strong list of buyers at thsi sale, it is not at all a surprise the vase achieved $35k.
However, genuine Daoguang mark and period pieces have much more in common with porcelains from the late Qianlong - opaque enamels, fully detailed faces, white paste, and highly detailed landscapes. The resulting sale would have been potentially 10x this amount if actually Daoguang.
Compare to the Doucai lotus bowl that sold at this very sale (my second favorite porcelain piece in the general sale) that has all the bells and whistles of a Qianlong piece, but is just slightly later... a true masterpiece from the Daoguang ($126,000 USD):
I believe that just the day before, Bonham's sold an identical bowl that only had underglaze blue lines (no enamel) with Tongzhi mark for around $30k or so.
@happyholiday There is no way to be sure why the vase achieved $35,000. Yes, the vase has very high artistic merit. Yes, you are at a prestigious auction house with wealthy bidders competing to acquire pieces. Yes, some bidders may simply not understand some of the differences that distinguish period pieces from later Republic copies.
I do not think that the outcome is outrageously high. There are plenty of examples from this sale where an item went unsold, or sold below estimate, because buyers did not just accept Christie's estimates as gospel and proceed to throw their money out a window.
Most of the bidders I encountered at the preview looked like they new what they were doing when inspecting pieces.
Thank you for the thoughtful responses, the context is always helpful.
Correction- somewhere in this conversation I switched from writing‘Jiaqing’ to ‘Daoguang’.
Sorry about the confusion- the vase being discussed is marked ‘Jiaqing’ - I’ve been multitasking, so it seems I transferred ‘Daoguang’ in place of Jiaqing as I wrote.
Also, the Bonham’s lotus bowl was Daoguang, compared to the Christie’s bowl marked Jiaqing.
Really sorry about the confusion over the period mark, but otherwise, the comments made are accurate.
Came across this today while searching for something else entirely, thought it would be an interesting comparison.
@jbeer2121 Very nice example showing the origin of this design coming from the Qianlong.
Two years ago I sold a Jiaqing tea tray that had flowers on it - the design and quality was 100% Qianlong … I’ve heard early Jiaqing marked pieces were actually Qianlong production that carried over into the Jiaqing reign.
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Kangxi vases, Kangxi dishes and chargers, Kangxi ritual pieces, Kangxi scholar's objects, Qianlong famille rose, Qianlong enamels, Qianlong period paintings, Qianlong Emporer's court, Fine porcelain of the Yongzheng period. Chinese imperial art, Ming porcelain including Jiajing, Wanli, Xuande, Chenghua as well as Ming jades and bronzes.
The BidAmount Asian Art Forum | Chinese Art
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