1565942967316827_35

1565943229630647_35-1

Lot 35. A calcified jade carving of a bird, Shang - Early Western Zhou dynasty (circa 1600-771 BCE). Height 2 in., 5.2 cmEstimate 20,000 — 30,000 USD. Courtesy Sotheby's.  

the flat stone carved on both sides as a recumbent bird in profile, with large circular eyes and long sloping beak, a long hooked feather extending from the crown of the head alongside the remnant of another plume, the tail arced downward, the body incised with a spiral forming the breast, the olive-beige stone calcified and with traces of cinnabar  

ProvenanceCollection of Lord Cunliffe, The Rt. Hon. Rolf, 2nd Baron Cunliffe of Headley (1899-1963).
Bluett & Sons Ltd., London, circa 1973.
Ralph M. Chait Galleries, New York, 18th June 1986.
Collection of Florence (1920-2018) and Herbert (1917-2016) Irving, no. 61.

ExhibitedA Catalogue of Early Chinese Bronzes, Jades and Allied Decorative Works of Art from the Cunliffe Collection, Bluett & Sons Ltd., London, 1973, ill. pl. B. no. 65.

Note: See a related example illustrated in Jessica Rawson, Chinese Jades from the Neolithic to the Qing, London, 1995, pl. 12:29, where the author notes that birds with long, downward turning tails were fairly common at Anyang and became more widespread during the Western Zhou. For a related, more elaborately incised example, see one from the collection of King Gustaf Adolf and in the Museum of Far Eastern Antiquities, Stockholm, exhibited in Chinese Jade Throughout the Ages, Oriental Ceramic Society, Victoria and Albert Museum, London, 1975, cat. no. 68. 

Compare also a more elongated 'bird' pendant illustrated in Max Loehr, Ancient Chinese Jades from the Grenville L. Winthrop Collection, Cambridge, 1975, pl. 256, and one sold in our Hong Kong rooms, 21st May 1982, lot 976. A more simplified pendant of similar form, attributed to the late Shang dynasty, sold at Christie's New York, 2nd June 1989. 

1565943016365893_121

Lot 121. A beige jade ceremonial bladeShang - Early Western Zhou dynasty (circa 1600-771 BCE). Length 4 1/8  in., 10.5 cmEstimate 4,000 — 6,000 USD. Courtesy Sotheby's. 

of flat rectangular form with softly beveled edges, the straight sides subtly flaring towards the gently curved blade edge, pierced with an aperture at one end, the smooth stone a greenish-beige with shadows of russet.

ProvenanceDonald J. Wineman, New York, 31st January 1986, no. 187.
Collection of Florence (1920-2018) and Herbert (1917-2016) Irving, no. 47
.

1565942967320796_36

Lot 36. A beige jade 'fish' pendant, Shang - Western Zhou dynasty (circa 1600-771 BCE). Length 2 1/2  in., 6.4 cmEstimate 3,000 — 5,000 USD. Courtesy Sotheby's. 

flat and arc-shaped, carved on both sides as a fish in profile, the lips flaring, the tail with a slight bifurcation, incised with large circular eyes, a curved gill, and a row of short strokes delineating the dorsal fin, the lower fins protruding laterally, the stone opaque and creamy beige, the mouth pierced with a small aperture.

Provenance: Spink & Son, London, 8th April 1986.
Collection of Florence (1920-2018) and Herbert (1917-2016) Irving, no. 48.

1565942967677040_37

 

 Lot 37. A calcified jade 'fish' pendant, Shang - Western Zhou dynasty (circa 1600-771 BCE). Length 3 1/4  in., 8.8 cm. Estimate 5,000 — 7,000 USD. Courtesy Sotheby's.  

the flat arced body flaring slightly at the mouth and the tail, the long dorsal fin rising along the spine and two smaller fins extending from the belly, the eyes, the edge of the cheek, and the ridges of the fins all finely incised, the stone an opaque beige tone, the mouth pierced with a small hole. 

ProvenanceRalph M. Chait Galleries, New York, 6th August 1982.
Collection of Florence (1920-2018) and Herbert (1917-2016) Irving, no. 26.

1565942968294726_38

Lot 38. A green jade 'rabbit' pendant, Shang - Western Zhou dynasty (circa 1600-771 BCE). Length 1 1/2  in., 3.5 cmEstimate 5,000 — 7,000 USD. Courtesy Sotheby's.

the flat stone carved on both sides as a rabbit in profile, crouching as if ready to pounce, the face, tail, and alert ears sharply incised, the fold of the ears indicated by shallow grooves, the stone a mossy green variegated with white and darker patches, pierced at the tip of the ears.

ProvenanceC. T. Loo, New York, circa 1950.
Oriental Rarities (Alan Hartman), New York, 22nd June 1981.
Collection of Florence (1920-2018) and Herbert (1917-2016) Irving, no. 10
.

ExhibitedAn Exhibition of Archaic Jades, C. T. Loo, Norton Gallery of Art, West Palm Beach, Florida, 1950, pl. XXXIII, fig. 2.

1565943011510377_111

Lot 111. A beige jade 'fish' pendant, Shang - Western Zhou dynasty (circa 1600-771 BCE). Length 2 3/4  in., 6.9 cmEstimate 4,000 — 6,000 USD. Courtesy Sotheby's.

of elongated rectangular form depicting a fish in profile, one end with a blunt straight-cut mouth and the other end terminating in a short bifurcated tail, the head with large incised circular eyes and curved gill, the fins outlined by a series of short strokes, the rest of the surface plain, the stone a warm beige with russet flecks, an aperture in one corner.

ProvenanceRalph M. Chait Galleries, New York, 6th August 1982.
Collection of Florence (1920-2018) and Herbert (1917-2016) Irving, no. 25
.

1565943012305640_113

Lot 113.  A brown and green jade carving of a fish, Shang - Western Zhou dynasty (circa 1600-771 BCE). Length 3 1/2  in., 8.9 cmEstimate 5,000 — 7,000 USD. Courtesy Sotheby's.

the long flat body sharply arched and carefully incised with large round eyes, gill covers, a long dorsal fin and two lower fins, striated lines describing the fins, the mouth and tail each pierced with a small hole, the stone a translucent mossy green shifting to speckled brown.

ProvenanceOriental Rarities (Alan Hartman), New York, 12th March 1981.
Collection of Florence (1920-2018) and Herbert (1917-2016) Irving, no. 9.

Sotheby's. Chinese Art from the Metropolitan Museum of Art: The Florence and Herbert Irving Gift, New York, 10 september 2019