This Qing Dynasty Chinese carved jade double tube vase or nuptial cup measures just slightly less than 7 inches tall by about 4 inches wide by 3 inches in depth.
It is also known as a "Champion Vase".
It is carved from one piece of celadon colored nephrite jade with inclusion of lighter jade that give it the appearance of cloud formations. It also has a few rust colored inclusions that follow the natural inclusions of the stone.
It is carved in the shape of a mythological bird or phoenix standing on a Chinese lion or Chilung while holding two ornately carved tubular vases with its wings. The lids of both vases are conjoined by a dragon wrapped around both sides.
Double jade carvings of this type have been described not only as “Marriage or Nuptial Cups”, but also as “Champion Vases” by their owners over the centuries.
These are quite rare and can be found in museum collections throughout the world. There is a jade champion vase in the Victoria and Albert museum in England.
There is also one at the National Palace Museum in Taiwan.
Prices for similar but not absolutely identical jade champion vases have been increasing over the last decade or so. There are major similarities in most all of these vases but the minor details often vary from one to the next.
On November 1, 2004 , Christies Hong Kong sold a calcified green jade Champion vase for $80,256.00 against an estimate of $25,831.00- $38, 746.00 (sale 2177-Lot 834).
On November 27, 2007, Christies Hong Kong sold a white jade Champion vase for $248,842.00 (sale 2388-Lot 1547). It had an estimate of $38,730.00 - $51,640.00. It was 5 1/8 inches tall ( 13 cm).It was exceptional and from a well known collection.
On March 18, 2008, Christies Auction House sold a Champion Vase of somewhat similar appearance for $50,000.00 US (Christies: Sale 2267-Lot #440) It was 5 7/8 inches tall. On June 12, 2012, another jade Champion vase was sold for $64,000.00 (Christies –Sale 3509 /Lot #161). It was 5 1/8 inches tall.
Another jade champion vase is scheduled to go up to auction very soon ( Christies NY- September 13, 2012 ( sale 2580- Lot # ?). It is estimated to bring $50,000.00-$70,000.00. _________________________________________________________________________________
This Meiji period JAPANESE KUTANI BOWL measures 10 1/2 inches in diameter and 4 inches deep.
It is in excellent condition with slight wear to the gilding as would be expected .
It is signed on the bottom (see enlargement).
This fine bronze ewer or kettle (aftaba) dates to the 18th Century in Wughal India.
It is of typical form and good weight. It measures: height: 26cm, width: 24cm.
It has a prominent faceted spout along with its original lid with a bud-like finial, an 'S' shaped handle which has a stylized lion head at one end and a lotus bud finial at the other. It stands on four short feet.
The flattened, globular pear shaped body tapers to a long neck. The body has been cast with raised cloud or foliage borders to the top and bottom, The design work on the body is of better quality than usually seen. The body, lid and spout have been engraved overall with repeated stylized vegetable or poppy motifs. The lid has similar patterns.
Ewers of this type originated in Persia and the Middle East. Typical Islamic ewers comprised a central chamber to which a spout, foot, handle and neck were attached. They permitted water to flow - notations in the Koran described flowing water as 'clean'.
Ewers were introduced to India by Muslim invaders during the late thirteenth and early fourteenth centuries. Later Indian inspired designs became more curvaceous and many were decorated with lush plant and floral motifs.
In India, local Muslims used such vessels for hand washing. They became a practical tool of hospitality, being used to welcome visitors by pouring scented water over the hands and feet and into a basin, and took on a great variety of shapes and types whilst adhering to the basic ewer form.
This example is in excellent condition. There are no repairs, splits or dents. as mentioned, the lid is original – usually the lid is missing or replaced.
A slightly larger (39.4 cm tall) sold at Sotheby's on October 5, 2011 for 6250 British pounds( $9784.00 in US dollars) (lot 265) . It had much less surface detailing. ( http://www.sothebys.com/en/auctions/ecatalogue/2011/arts-of-the-islamic-world/lot.265.html )
Provenance: The southern California art market prior to 1980.
Reference: Zebrowski, M., Gold, Silver & Bronze from Mughal India, Alexandria Press, 1997.
This antique Chinese nephrite jade carving of a naturalistic motif, possibly a squash or gourd.
It measures 2 inches long by 1 1/8 inches tall by about 1/2 inch in depth.
It dates to the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911)in China and is carved from a pale green celadon jade.
This antique jade carving of a reclining ox or water buffalo measures 4 inches wide by 2.5 inches tall by about 2.5 inches in depth.
This classic jade is carved in the style of the Song Dynasty (980 AD -1279 AD), but it is more likely that it was carved during the Ming Dynasty (1368 AD - 1644 AD) or the Qing Dynasty (1644 AD-1911 AD).
It is in excellent condition with subtle details and carving.
This carving may have begun it's existence as a somewhat lighter-off white color, but time and oxidation have worked to give it a lovely pale yellow or honey color with subtle inclusions and minor color changes.
This is a museum quality nephrite jade carving which is evidenced by the subtle modeling of it's overall design. This one is a gem.
The next owner will not be disappointed!
Pair of Imperial Bronze Dragon Seals: Qianlong Marks and Period
This large pair of dragon handled bronze seals date from the period of Qianlong (1735-1795), emperor of the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) in China.
The rectangular base measures 8 ½ inches by 7 ¼ inches (21.5 cm x 19.5 cm). The dragon handle stands up about 3 inches tall (8 cm.).
The top portions of the seals are covered with chiseled and engraved patterns of dragons and swirling lines representing the ocean or the sky. Standing on top of all this is the dragon handle.
The bottom of the seals are covered in archaic old Chinese pictogram script (see closeup photos). They also include traditional Chinese characters in one corner which are easily interpreted as Qianlong Reign Marks.
Some folks thought these might be paperweights because of their rather large size, compared to most seals of either bronze or jade. A recent article in the Jakarta Post referred to a very similar bronze seal as a “casted paperweight from the Qianlong Period”. See link below:
( http://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2011/04/04/scholar-objects-undervalued-small-treasures.html )
These bronzes may have served double duty, with an original purpose yet to be determined by deciphering the archaic script and the possibility of also having been used as massive scroll weights.
The Emperor Qianlong had a serious interest in painting and was known to dabble in it himself on occasion. Some scrolls are exceptionally long and might have required a substantial scroll weight to keep them open for viewing (or possible two or more to hold the whole long thing open in the privacy of one's palace).
On April 4, 2010 , one identical bronze seal/scroll weight was sold at auction in China for the amount of RMB 651,200. (about $108,000.00 US ). The auction estimate had originally been 600,000-800,000 RMB (about $100,000-$130,000) for one single bronze seal.
The pair of bronze seals or scroll weights or “paperweights” are both in excellent condition. The buyer will not be disappointed.
They were purchased about 30 years ago in Southern California.
NOTE: Although the photos below make the the bronzes appear to be of different sizes , only the photos are of different sizes, not the bronzes themselves.
ADDITIONAL NOTE: THERE ARE A FEW VERY TINY SPOTS OF VERDIGRIS ON ONE OF THE SEALS . THIS IS NOT UNUSUAL FOR A BRONZE ITEM THAT IS OVER 200 YEARS OLD. IT IS REALLY NOT WORTH MENTIONING BUT WE ALWAYS LIKE TO HAVE FULL DISCLOSURE SO THERE ARE NO SURPRISES FOR THE BUYER.
This antique wooden mask is a representation of Mahakala.
It dates from the late 19th or earlier.
It is similar in style and iconography to masks from Nepal, Tibet or Sikkim.
It measures about 13 inches high by 9 inches wide.
It is in very good condition except for a few small cracks and losses to the wood. It has remnants of remaining overpaint in the crevices and recessed areas.
Comparables Note: a slightly larger mask with the original paint remaining is listed in Miller's Price Guide(2003) at $7,800-$9,400 (Sotheby's - NY)(see photo enlargement #4).
This Chinese ceramic or porcelain charger measures 15-15.25 inches in diameter. It measures about 2.5 inches in depth.
It dates to the Qing Dynasty in China (1644-1911).
It is hand painted in the Famille Rose palette and design.
It has a black ground border with green scrolling leaves and foliage and rose to pink colored flowers.
The level of detail and the quality of the painting is exceptional.
It is in outstanding condition with no repairs or restoration. It has an amazing clear ring and there are no hidden or hairline cracks.
NOTE: It does have a small number of tiny flake losses to the painting. They are not significant and can be seen in the photographs- if you look closely. They do not detract from it's overall appearance.
This has been in our personal collection for well over thirty years.
This 19th century Japanese carved ivory okimono measures approximately 9 inches tall by 2 1/2 inches in diameter at it's widest point.
It is intricately carved with fully delineated scales and teeth on the fish. The figure riding a fish is carved from one solid walrus tusk and it sits on a separate oval section as a base. The crystalline pattern that is so indicative of walrus ivory can be seen in many places on the carving, including Kinko's robe (interior front left) and the belly of the carp or koi.
It dates from the Meiji Period in Japan (circa 1870-1900).
It is in very good condition with some stabilized antique ivory fractures as are seen on many of these okimonos that are well over 100 years old.
Japan originally imported and adapted many Taoist and Buddhist teachings from China, which were then combined with native Shinto beliefs.
One Taoist figure incorporated into Japanese artwork was Kinko, a holy hermit. He is often depicted mounted on the enormous carp that carried him to the Undersea Kingdom. There, sea creatures taught him that all life is sacred.
In Japan the carp (koi) is also a symbol of persistence, longevity, and fertility. Land-locked farmers have kept carp in their ponds to provide food for centuries and also bred them for their beautiful colors.
Price on Request
This is an antique jade carving of a seated monkey holding a Peach (Late Ming to Qing Dynasty)
It is a finely polished blue grey nephrite jade with white jade areas utilized to accent the nose and extremities.
There are remnants of oxidation or calcification in the crevices.
This antique carved jade is in outstanding condition. It is an excellent example of 17th-19th century jade carving.
Subject is a seated monkey with a finger in his mouth, holding a peach
3 1/4 x 1 1/2 X 1 1/2 inches (79mm x 40mm x 42 mm)
This extremely old hardstone / jade bracelet dates from the Liangzhu Period (3300 BC-2200 BC).
It is a varigated black color with one spot of pale yellow green on the interior.
It is in excellent condition, even though its material has been been degraded over time (The scratch test only works on the green spot due to the degradation of the darker areas). It also has a crystal structure that can be seen under high magnification.
It has an outside diameter of 3 1/4 - 3 1/2 inches (8.5- 9 cm) and an interior diameter of 2 5/8 inches (6.6 cm). It is about 3/4 inch in width (1.8 - 2.0 cm). This is an outstanding piece and is similar in style to another burnt jade bangle of white chicken bone color in published works.
This standing nephrite jade carving of a bearded and robed figure with long horns or a headdress of some sort measures about 10 1/2 inches tall by 3 inches wide by 1 1/2 inches in depth.
It is carved from a large piece of nephrite ranging from pale to deep green with a strip of oxidized white to yellow jade down the middle. In addition, there is a crackled stripe of oxidation running down through the center of the face through the figure to the bottom of the robe.
There are also engraved rectangular patterns and additional patterns on the robe.
Although the serious possibility exists that this is an old nephrite carving dating to the Shang period, we are dating this one very conservatively to about circa 1900-1920. If it turns out to be much older, we are certain the buyer will not be too upset.
It is interesting to note, however, that the oxidation and subsequent crackling of the stone that runs right down through the face probably occurred after the jade was carved. The question arises: if this is a copy made in the last 100 years or so, why didn't they turn it around before they carved the face, as the center of the back side is pristine where the face could have been positioned, no crackling or deterioration? It would have been the better choice to use as the front and would have made a more attractive and potentially more saleable copy. If however, the deterioration of the stone actually happened over an extended period of time after it was carved, that would make more sense as an explanation as to why the current positioning of the stone in relation to it's natural flaws or irregularities.
This Japanese bronze handled mirror measures about 8 inches in diameter (21cm) with an extended handle which increases the full height to about 12 inches or 30 centimeters(cm).
It dates to the late Edo Period or Early Meiji period ( about the middle of the 19th century (1840-1860).
It is signed in the left portion of the front. It also has birds flying over churning waves in the ocean.
It still has most of it's silver ovrlay on the two large Kanji marks on the front. It also has remnants of it's silver on the reverse or "Face" of the mirror.
Bronze mirrors were introduced into Japan from China and Korea about 300 BC - AD 300.
At first they had a religious function and were regarded as symbols of authority.
The Japanese soon learned to make their own mirrors using lost-wax casting and decorated them with Japanese or Chinese designs.
By the Nara period (AD 710-794) mirrors were made for everyday use and used designs such as plants and animals to symbolize good fortune.
From the Kamakura period (1185-1333) a design showing Hôraizan (the Chinese 'Island of Immortality') became popular.. More new designs and the first handled mirrors appeared in the Muromachi period (1333-1568).
During the Edo period (1600-1868), mirrors decorated with lucky symbols or Chinese characters were given at weddings. Mirrors became larger as hairstyles became more ornate; some mirrors in Kabuki theatre dressing-rooms were up to fifty centimetres across and were placed on stands. The faces of mirrors were highly polished or burnished, with itinerant tinners and polishers specializing in this work. Since the mirror, together with the sword and the jewel, were symbols of Imperial power, mirror-makers were deeply revered and often given honorary titles such as Tenka-Ichi ('First under Heaven'). However, this title was often misused and was officially prohibited in 1682. Bronze mirrors were replaced by glass mirrors after the Meiji Restoration (1868).
This small jade or hard stone carving of a stylized face measures 2.25 inches x 2.75 inches x 1.5 inches in depth.
It's colors range from a medium to dark green to a pale green with areas of translucence. It also has natural inclusions in the stone with areas of dark brown or off white oxidation.
It is carved in the style of old Olmec carvings, but it may be early 20th century. It may also be Chinese, rather than Latin American in origin, but neither origin has been documented yet.
It is unusual in that it has a mounting bracket extending from the reverse side. Similar brackets have been seen on occasion to allow for mounting as architectural components or as decorations in religious settings.
If this stylized carving actually is older than our estimate, it would be worth a great deal more than our asking price.
The mounting bracket would allow for this piece to be worn as a belt slide or buckle, or as a large pendant.
This nephrite jade carving is a pale celadon to yellow jade altered to brown overall.
It appears to have been buried for an extended period of time, based on the level of alteration or oxidation.
We conservatively estimate that this antique nephrite jade dates to the late 19th - early 20th century.
It may actually be much older. Please view the detailed photos carefully.
The buyer will not be disappointed.
It measures 80 mm x 45mm x 12 mm in depth.
It is in very good condition with the exception of a slight loss to one wing tip, which appears to have happened ages ago because it shows wear and toning consistent with the rest of the carving.
The shape of the tail is unusual in that it looks like a sea monster . Without its pointed beak, it could be mistaken for a dragon or a kylin.
Price on Request
This ancient marble carving of a reclining lion measures 6 1/2 inches wide by 5 inches in depth by 4 1/2 inches high.
It dates to either the Tang Dynasty in China (618 AD 907 AD) or slightly earlier in one of the Roman provinces ( possibly 300-400 AD). It is in excellent condition and quite rare.
This ANTIQUE CHINESE EXPORT PEWTER FISH BOWL & COVER measures 8 1/2 inches by 7 inches by 4 inches.
It is in excellent condition with no evidence of restoration or repairs. It does have some tarnish and wear as would be expected on a soft pewter serving dish that is between 120-160 years old.
IT IS HALLMARKED ON BOTH THE BOTTOM OF THE BOWL AND UNDER THE LID.
IT STILL RETAINS IT'S ORIGINAL GLASS EYES.