Lot 21. An unusual 'Yingqing' Guanyin seated on an Elephant, Southern Song-Yuan Dynasty (1127-1366). Estimate 5,000 — 7,000 USD. Lot sold 4,200 USD. Photo: Sotheby's.
the deity wearing an elaborately molded robe covered in a pale blue glaze, seated in lalitasana while riding side-saddle upon the back of an elephant, her right arm resting upon her right knee, her face finely modeled and framed by her long hair tied in a chignon, the biscuit-fired striding elephant with his head turned sharply to the left, fitted with a bridle, breast strap and crupper strap all studded with floral medallions and a floral-impressed saddle blanket; 8 1/4 in., 21 cm.
Note: This seated figure of a Guanyin is finely modelled, the facial features contemplative with an expression of serenity and compassion. Early figures of Guanyin are extremely rare although one dated to 1251, in the Shanghai Museum, is illustrated in Dated Qingbai Wares of the Song and Yuan Dynasties, Hong Kong, 1998, pl. 88. For later examples of Guanyin figures see three Yuan pieces illustrated in Qingbai Ware: Chinese Porcelain of the Song and Yuan Dynasties, London, 2002, pls. 119-121.