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Treasures under the hammer

Updated: 2013-11-15 01:51
By Lin Qi ( China Daily)

Treasures under the hammer

 A famille rose vase from the Qing Dynasty is on show.

Chinese painting and calligraphy form a primary part of the exhibition with 204 pieces on display. Museum quality artworks include a calligraphy hand scroll by Emperor Gaozong of Song Dynasty (960-1279), an incapable ruler but a genius calligrapher.

Zhao recreated the text of Yang Sheng Lun (Discourse on Nourishing Life), an essay by Ji Kang, an author and philosopher of the third century, in both regular and cursive scripts.

"The piece is such a national treasure that when people look at it, they really want to cherish it and feel in awe of Chinese fine arts," says Guo Tong, general manager of Guardian Auctions' Chinese painting and calligraphy department.

Highlights also include Red Cliff, an ink-and-color hand scroll by Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) painter Qiu Ying, who is known for his gongbi brush technique, and a famille rose vase featuring the motif of "Eight Immortals Crossing the Sea" from the Qianlong period.

Some record-breaking works are absent from the exhibition due to the difficulty and risks in transporting them, such as Zhang Daqian's splash ink-and-color Aachensee Lake that sold for 100.8 million yuan in 2010. But visitors can appreciate quality imitations.

Besides these items that fetched mind-boggling prices, there are works that merely fetched hundreds of thousands of yuan yet exude an enduring charm.

A famille rose porcelain folding fan from the Qing Dynasty was sold for 825,000 yuan in a spring sale in 1996, and is worthy of more than one glimpse at its delicate beauty, according to Liu Yue, general manager of Guardian Auction's porcelain department.

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