A pair of 'huanghuali' armchairs. 17th century. photo courtesy Sotheby's

each with continuously curving armrests and crestrail, the slightly curved splat carved with a ruyi-head shaped medallion enclosing a makara dragon, the hardcane seat set within a rectangular frame, the legs of rounded section, bordering a curved apron and straight spandrels, the foot rest above plain aprons on the front and side (2) - 33 3/4 x 21 3/4 x 16 1/4 in., 85.7 x 55.2 x 41.3 cm. Est. 20,000—30,000 USD. Lot Sold 32,500 USD

PROVENANCE: Collection of James R. McGrath, Yonkers, NY, and acquired in Asia while serving as Chaplain in the U.S. Navy during World War II.
Thence by descent to the present owner.

NOTE: The present type of chair has been called 'Lowback Southern Official's Armchair' according to Curtis Evarts and Wang Shixiang in Masterpieces from the Museum of Classical Chinese Furniture, Hong Kong, 1995, pl. 30.


A Pair of Gilt-Lacquered Elmwood Horseshoeback Armchairs. photo courtesy Sotheby's

each with a crestrail forming scrolled handgrips, the S-scrolled backsplat carved with a ruyi-shaped panel, the seat with beaded flange brackets and apron carved with scrolling vines, the rounded legs joined by square sectioned stretchers, all under a black lacquer with gilt enhancing the medallions and apron (2) - 23 3/8 x 36 1/4 x 16 1/4 in., 59.4 x 92.1 x 41.3 cm. Est. 8,000—12,000 USD. Lot Sold 8,125 USD


A rare 'hongmu' ceremonial horseshoeback armchair. Qing dynasty, Guangxu period, dated 1900. photo courtesy Sotheby's

the four member crestrail terminating in lion-headed handgrips, all above the shaped apron carved with scrolling tendrils, the lion-headed cabriole legs ending in animal claw and ball feet, all resting on a box stretcher, the front posts inscribed presented to he xing tang in the genzhi year of the Guangxu reign, corresponding to the year 1900 - 30 x 18 x 13 in., 77 x 46 x 33 cm. Est. 5,000—7,000 USD. Lot Sold  5,000 USD

Sotheby's. Fine Chinese Ceramics & Works of Art. 23 Mar 2010. New York www.sothebys.com