Zhang Daqian's Wuxia Mountain Clear Autumn watercolour painting set to auction

After a highly successful 2011 selling in the Chinese art and antiques markets, 888 Auctions is set to usher in the New Year with its first sale, Chinese Paintings and Asian Works of Art on Thursday, January 12.

Composed of over 550 lots, the auction will showcase an enticing collection of Asian art and antiques including paintings, porcelains, bronze cast Buddhist deities, fine furniture, ivory, jade and shoushan carvings.

Items have been meticulously selected for their fine artistic merits, historical value and exceptional provenance.

With the skyrocketing value of Chinese paintings, buyers will be excited to hear the inclusion of two outstanding watercolour paintings. A Li Kuchan (1899-1893) Chinese watercolour features two birds, signed and inscribed with two seals. It carries an estimate high of $20,000.

However, it is the next lot which is expected to draw the most interest. It is lot 38, a Zhang Daqian (1899-1983) Chinese watercolour painting entitled Wuxia Mountain Clear Autumn and even its $100,000-$200,000 estimate is thought by some to be a little modest.

Zhang Daqian Chinese watercolour painting Wuxia Mountain Clear Autumn
Zhang Daqian's evocative watercolour painting Wuxia Mountain Clear Autumn

The artwork boasts exceptional provenance, and of course is being sold following the sale in the summer of 2011 of the Mei Yun Tang Collection of Zhang Daqian's work at Sotheby's.

That collection trounced all expectations with Children Playing Under a Pomegranate Tree achieving HK$74.6m and Lotus and Mandarin Ducks which leapt from an identical estimate of HK$15m-20m to a staggering HK$191m (just under US$24.6m).

Both results were many times their high estimates with the latter setting a world record price for Zhang Daqian's work.Watch this space for the results of 888 Auctions' sale

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