A well-cast bronze tripod ritual food vessel, ding, Late Shang dynasty, 12th-11th century BC

Lot 1234. A well-cast bronze tripod ritual food vessel, ding, Late Shang dynasty, 12th-11th century BC; 9 in. (23 cm.) high. Estimate USD 100,000 - USD 150,000. Price realised USD 662,500. © Christie's Images Ltd 2011

The deep body raised on three columnar supports cast in intaglio with blades pendent from a scroll band, the sides crisply cast in relief with three taotie masks centered on and separated by prominent notched flanges, reserved on a band of leiwen, all with extensive traces of black inlay, with a pair of bail handles rising from the everted rim, with a clan sign cast below the rim on the interior, and with allover mottled blue-green encrustation.

Provenance: Acquired in Hong Kong prior to 1997

NoteThe robust shape and cast decoration of this ding are very similar to that of ding excavated at Anyang prefecture, Henan province, such as the three illustrated in Zhongguo Qingtongqi Quanji - 2- Shang(2), Beijing, 1997, p. 11, no. 11 (excavated in 1983 from tomb 663 in Dasikong, South); p. 16, no. 16 (excavated in 1969 from tomb 907 in Xiaominyun, South); and p. 19, no. 19 (excavated in 1986 from Tomb 1 in Guojiazhuang, West)

Christie's. Fine Chinese Ceramics and Works of Art Part I and Part II Including Property from the Arthur M. Sackler Collections, New York, 24 March 2011.