Lot 103. A huanghuali low-back continuous yoke-back armchair, Late Ming dynasty;  93 by 56.3 by 45.3 cm, 36 5/8  by 22 1/8  by 17 3/4  inEstimate 1,800,000 — 2,800,000 HKD (211,850 - 329,544 EUR). Lot sold 4,400,000 HKD (496,723 EUR). Photo Sotheby's

the highly curved round-cornered top-rail pipe-joined to the stiles, the stiles continuing through the seat frame to become the back legs, the elongated round-cornered 'S'-shaped arms mitred, mortised and tennoned to the stiles and pipe-joined to the posts, similarly continuing through the seat to become the front legs, a pair of tapering 'S'-shaped circular supports fitted into sockets in the seat frame and the underside of the arms, the back splat with two beaded-edged stretchers mortised and tennoned to the underside of the top rail and the back rail of the seat frame, further divided into three sections with a pair of horizontal beaded-edged mitred stretchers, the top inset with a panel reticulated with a foliate design, above a central burlwood panel and a cusped leaf-shaped apron below the lower stretcher, the seat frame of standard mitre, mortise and tenon construction with the edge slightly curving and tenons exposed on the short rails, a plain apron with mitred spandrels butt-joined to the the underside and tongue-and-grooved to the legs beneath the seat, the sides and back with similar aprons, the legs joined in front by a shaped footrest above an apron, each side with a pair of oval stretchers flattened on the underside, the back with a similar single stretcher.

ProvenanceGrace Wu Bruce, Hong Kong.
Museum of Classical Chinese Furniture, Renaissance, California.
Christie’s New York, 19th September 1996, lot 36.

LiteratureWang Shixiang and Curtis Evarts, Masterpieces from the Museum of Classical Chinese Furniture, Chicago and San Francisco, 1995, pp. 68–69.

NoteThis huanghuali chair with flowing lines, a highly curved top rail and back splat is elegant as well as comfortable. The back splat of three sections with an inset panel of floral motif echoes that of the leaf-shaped apron below, while the centre is a well-figured burl panel. Although this type of section back-splat chairs is often seen in woodblock illustrations of Ming publications, there are few extant examples datable to the late Ming and early Qing dynasties.

Sotheby's. Ming Furniture – An Asian Private Collection, Hong Kong, 06 avr. 2016, 02:00 PM