Lot 305A pale celadon jade carving of a horse and groom, Qing dynasty, 18th century. Length 7 1/2  in., 19 cm. Estimate 200,000 — 300,000 USDLot sold 200,000 USD. Photo Sotheby's.

the group exquisitely carved in openwork to depict a bearded groomsman pulling the reigns of a horse standing foursquare, its saddle lying on a slab, the uneven ground surrounded by perforated rocky boulders, the stone of a smooth pale celadon color with some light russet colored inclusions.

Property from the Collection of Lolo Sarnoff.

NoteThe groomsman deftly carved standing beside the horse, with its garments swaying in one direction as though being blown by the wind, all on an irregular rectangular base suggesting a natural landscape, appears to have derived its inspiration from Ming prototypes.  See one in the Asian Arts Museum, San Francisco, illustrated in Chinese Jades in the Avery Brundage Collection, San Francisco, 1977, p. 102, dated to the Ming dynasty, where it is discussed that Ming carvers were the first to sculpt these slabs into natural landscape settings such as rocks, tree trunks, waves of the sear or rivers, etc., and this constituted a turning-point in the development of Chinese jade carving. 

See also a related jade figure and horse group depicted on an irregular base, dated 18th/19th century, sold at Christie's London, 5th November 2013, lot 201.

Sotheby's. Important Chinese Works of Art, New York, 17 march 2015.