12 November 2010

This vase just sold for $85,000,000

A vase found in a house clearance in London has been sold for £43m, thought to be a record for any Chinese artwork... The 18th Century Qianlong porcelain piece, found in Pinner, had been estimated to fetch up to £1.2m for the brother and sister who inherited it.

Ivan Macquisten, editor of Antiques Trade Gazette, said the vase would have been made for the Qianlong emperor. The 16in high vase is yellow and sky blue in colour with a fish motif on the front and a perforated outer wall...

The ceramic vase was made during the reign of the fourth emperor in the Qing dynasty who ruled the empire from 1735 to 1796.

It is thought the vase left China in about 1860 and was acquired by an English family during the 1930s but how it made its way to the bungalow in Pinner is a mystery, the auctioneer said.
I find it interesting that it is not that old (by Chinese standards). Presumably the provenance of belonging to an emporer contributed to the buying frenzy.

Photo - Bloomberg

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