Coupe libatoire en corne de rhinocéros sculptée. Chine, dynastie Qing, XVIIE siècle. Photo Sotheby's

finement sculptée d'un dragon à la poursuite de la perle enflammée en vol dans des nuages stylisés et d'un tigre dans un paysage lacustre ponctué de rochers, planté d'arbustes formant l'anse et  de pins s'épanouissant à l'intérieur de la coupe, la corne d'une belle teinte miel; 11,5 cm, 4 5/8 in. ESTIMATE 100,000-150,000 EUR - Lot Sold: 240,750 EUR

Note: This cup is exceptional for the fine quality of its carving, naturalistic detail and the unusual subject matter - composition of a tiger gazing up at a large scaly dragon chasing a flaming pearl. Cups decorated with dragons are readily available, for example, see one signed by the master artist You Kan, carved with three scaly dragons emerging from clouds in pursuit of flaming pearls, sold at Christie's London, 11th July 2006, lot 37. Compare also an archaistic cup carved with numerous coiled dragons and a large one sold in our London rooms, 13th December 1966, lot 12; and a lotus form vessel bearing the dragon design, from the collection of Arthur M. Sackler, published in Thomas Fok, Connoisseurship of Rhinoceros Horn Carving in China, Hong Kong, 1999, pl. 47.

Cups decorated with the tiger motif are rare, although one, in the collection of the Chester Beatty Library, Dublin, carved with a tiger walking below a pine tree, is illustrated in Jan Chapman, The Art of Rhinoceros Horn Carving in China, London, 1999, pl. 240.

Sotheby's. Arts d'Asie. paris, 8 juin 2011