A large sancai pottery figure of an earth spirit, Tang dynasty (618-907)

hk1252-c5l7b-2-t3

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Lot 3002. A large sancai pottery figure of an earth spirit, Tang dynasty (618-907); 40 by 27 by h. 106 cm. Lot sold: 107,100 HKD (Estimate: 80,000 - 120,000 HKD). © Sotheby's 2022

Provenance: Christie's New York, 27th November 1991, lot 286A.
Christie's New York, 25th March 2011, lot 1285.
Collection of the Estates of Marilyn and Milton Myers, Hollywood, Florida.
Bonhams San Francisco, 24th June 2013, lot 1173 (US$23,750).

Note: The Tang dynasty represents one of the most glorious chapters of China’s history when the country was open to and fascinated by influences beyond its boundaries. New impulses and visual stimuli were imported via the Silk Route. The cosmopolitan nature of the culture is evident in the extravagant pottery figures commissioned for royal and aristocratic tombs. Production and ownership of these rarified glazed figures were restricted to north China, largely in the areas around the capital cities of Luoyang and Chang’an. This flamboyant interpretation of these guardian figures, as portrayed in lot 3002 and lot 3007, derives from Buddhist art in India. It epitomizes the Tang elite’s admiration of exoticism during the height of its power over Silk Road trade routes. The magnificent figures of earth spirits represent both technically and aesthetically the peak of Chinese tomb figures produced during the Tang dynasty.

A pair of large sancai pottery figures of camels, Tang dynasty

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Lot 3004. A pair of large sancai pottery figures of camels, Tang dynasty (618-907); h. 78 cm. Lot sold: 630,000 HKD (Estimate: 500,000 - 700,000 HKD). © Sotheby's 2022

The dating of this lot is consistent with the result of a thermoluminescence test (Oxford test no. 666p89), as stated in the Christie's New York catalogue in 1993. Certificate lost.

Provenance: Christie's New York, 2nd December 1993, lot 239.
Christie's London, 5th November 2013, lot 396.

Note: The Tang dynasty represents one of the most glorious chapters of China’s history when the country was open to and fascinated by influences beyond its boundaries. New impulses and visual stimuli were imported via the Silk Route. Indicative of the trade route's incredible breadth, the two-hump Bactrian camels, as portrayed in the present lot, were the preferred means of transport for traders as they were capable of travelling farther distances than the single-hump Arabian camels.

A large sancai pottery figure of a leonine earth spirit, Tang dynasty

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Lot 3007. large sancai pottery figure of a leonine earth spirit, Tang dynasty (618-907); 36.5 by 26 by h. 110 cm. Lot sold: 163,800HKD (Estimate: 100,000 - 150,000 HKD). © Sotheby's 2022

Provenance: Hartman Rare Art, New York.

Note: The Tang dynasty represents one of the most glorious chapters of China’s history when the country was open to and fascinated by influences beyond its boundaries. New impulses and visual stimuli were imported via the Silk Route. The cosmopolitan nature of the culture is evident in the extravagant pottery figures commissioned for royal and aristocratic tombs. Production and ownership of these rarified glazed figures were restricted to north China, largely in the areas around the capital cities of Luoyang and Chang’an. This flamboyant interpretation of these guardian figures, as portrayed in lot 3002 and lot 3007, derives from Buddhist art in India. It epitomizes the Tang elite’s admiration of exoticism during the height of its power over Silk Road trade routes. The magnificent figures of earth spirits represent both technically and aesthetically the peak of Chinese tomb figures produced during the Tang dynasty.

 

A green and cream-glazed stem bowl, Tang dynasty (618-907)

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Lot 3013. green and cream-glazed stem bowl, Tang dynasty (618-907); w. 14.2 cm, h. 7.5 cm. Lot sold: 30,240 HKD (Estimate: 30,000 - 50,000 HKD). © Sotheby's 2022

Provenance: Mandala Fine Arts, Hong Kong.

A blue-splashed jar, Tang dynasty

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Lot 3020. blue-splashed jar, Tang dynasty (618-907); w. 20 cm, h. 15.2 cm. Lot sold: 151,200 HKD (Estimate: 30,000 - 50,000 HKD). © Sotheby's 2022

Provenance: Ikeda Gallery, Tokyo.

Sotheby's. Chinese Art Online: A Private Asian Collection, Hong Kong, 28 July 2022.