The fascinating world of Asian Art

Ivory Figure of a Court Lady, China, Qing, c. 1800

The great middle kingdom

The field of Asian art is difficult to define geographically, it is clear however that art from these countries is especially fascinating to the western world because its cultures are so complex and draw a powerful contrast to our own.

The former kingdom of Tibet is known for its artistic proficiency. Similarly, Japan and China are known for their fine paintings, which influenced the great avant-garde artists of the 19th century, for example.

Various religions like Buddhism and Hinduism as well as diverse philosophical schools of thought have inspired artworks, ritualistic objects, bronze items and paintings. Furthermore, contemporary Asian art is not merely an afterthought– it is a very exciting chapter of current art history.

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> Chinese furniture in the shop

Chinese carpentry craft

Chinese furniture carpentry, which remains highly admired to this day, achieved its unparalleled apex during the Ming dynasty (1368 to 1644). The items of furniture from this period had attained an irrevocable status as stand-alone artworks in a spatial context. As a result, extra special care was taken in every aspect of their design, construction and the selection of raw materials. Imperial Chinese furniture became a distinguishing luxury of the nobility, upper class and wealthy merchants of that time. It served to highlight the owner’s social status and personal fortune to the outside world. The unique social framework of historical China and the enormous societal and technical developments of that time led to a cultural bloom to which we owe these outstanding specimens of fine Chinese carpentry craft.

> Snuff Bottles in the shop

Snuff Bottles

A very special sphere of collecting in the world of Asian art is surely that of snuff bottles small vessels that have been used for storing pulverized snuff tobacco since the early Qing Dynasty. These filigree bottles have long been the subject of an extensive collecting tradition in Europe, America and China, with numerous impressive collections appearing as a result. No wonder, as snuff bottles embody the union of incredible artistic craftsmanship with traditional motifs and creative design. The rare snuff bottles featuring in our auction on December 11, originate from one such private collection hailing from Spain. What makes the snuff bottle art form so fascinating is its enormous versatility, which is reflected in this collection. The elaborate compositions of diverse materials, epochs, colors and forms mirror the creativity and skill of their respective craftsmen.

> Buddhist art in the shop

Buddhist art

Buddhist art is a testament to the prosperity and diversity of this culture-historical era. The Buddha figure in particular, created from diverse materials and made throughout various ages and countries, is proof of the positive power of Buddhism and a symbol the art movement’s creative energy. Buddha depictions predominantly show him meditating in the sitting lotus position, with numerous specific details that are strictly stipulated due to their religious importance. Buddhist art offers much more besides Buddha figures. Buddhist culture has produced other spiritual art objects, including ritual objects, prayer wheels and chains, ritual headgear, valuable bowls, containers, temple drums and horns from Buddhist temples. A wide range of these objects can be purchased in our online shop.

Highlights of Asian art in our shop

Guardian in Armor, Impressive Wooden
Sculpture, China, 20th C

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Ancient Sandstone Head from Java, Indonesia,
800 - 1000 AD

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Elmwood Screen with Enticing Decorations,
China, Late 18th C.

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Maruni/Fujati, Satsuma Tea Service for 12 People, Japan, 1920s

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Asian art – Variety of shapes, colors and materials

Jade Sculpture, ‘Vase with Lingzhi and Bat’, China, Qing

Spoiled for choice – Ivory, jade or porcelain?

The world of Asian art is enormous and collecting is primarily a matter of personal taste, just as in other areas of the art world. These gorgeous large porcelain vases of the Qianlong period (1736-1795), with a hexagonal baluster design, are of very fine quality and highly sought after by collectors.

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Three beautiful Court Ladies carved from Ivory, around 1900

The Elegance of Ivory

The appeal of Ivory lies particularly in its pleasing tactile quality. It allows carvers to exhibit the quality of their artistic craftsmanship. Ivory has been a desirable material for centuries and superb artful craftsmanship with this material is especially prominent in Asia.

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Top results from previous Asian Art auctions

White Jade Figure of an Elephant, 18th C.

Amazing art from Asia

Valuable Asian art is sold at our auctions on a regular basis. At these occasions, the art objects on offer originate from every corner of the Asian continent: from valuable ritual objects from the ancient kingdom of Tibet to Japanese painted scrolls or Southeast Asian bronze sculptures – Auctionata is the go-to place for collectors.

Thanks to our patented technology we can connect with art lovers all over the world, allowing them to place their bids live and in real time. This is how we continually set new records, and this white jade figure of an elephant from the 18th century is one such example. After an initial starting bid of €12,000.00, it eventually found a new owner for €360,000.00 (incl. buyer’s premium).

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More record results from our Asian Art auctions

Four Cinnabar Lacquer Panels with fine Jade Inlays, around 1900

Starting price €3,000.00
Sold for (incl. buyer’s premium) €47,044.00

GUAN Liang, LI Keran, et al., Album with Paintings, 20th C.

Starting price €20,000.00
Sold for (incl. buyer’s premium) €239,321.00

Pair of Huanghuali Horseshoe Chairs with Dragon Design, Qing

Starting price €10,000.00
Sold for (incl. buyer’s premium) €39,616.00

Huanghuali and Burl Wood “Giant’s Arm Braces” Table, China, 15th century

Starting price €40,000.00
Sold for (incl. buyer’s premium) €60,000.00

Gilt Sino-Tibetan Figure of Bodhisattva Mañjuśrī, 17th / 18th C.

Starting price €4,000.00
Sold for (incl. buyer’s premium) €86,660.00

Indo-Persian Bronze Censer in the Shape of a Lion, 17th/18th C.

Starting price €220.00
Sold for (incl. buyer’s premium) €29,712.00