Published: April 22, 2015
CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA. — Chinese nationals dominated the bidding action for a few key lots at Quinn & Farmer’s April 18 auction, where a pair of huanghuali stools and zitan kang table, all dating to Seventeenth–early Eighteenth Century, performed well above estimate and are heading back to mainland China.
The three pieces were all sold at Christie’s New York in September 1996 and the cabriole-leg stools were cataloged then as “almost entirely original” and one of the stools retained a Museum of Classical Chinese Furniture label on the underside.
Bidding opened at $50,000 and stayed in the room until about $180,000 when international bidders jumped in. Four Chinese nationals were on the phone and aided by UVA Chinese society students who were helping translate Mandarin for Quinn & Farmer, bidding soon escalated and at the $250,000 mark, it was down to two phone bidders. The winner prevailed at $448,400.
With provenance from the same Christie’s sale, the table, having cabriole legs on ball-and-claw feet and carved with images of mythological quilin, also went to a determined Chinese phone bidder, for $247,800.
“We were pretty happy,” said Skip Usry, vice president of Quinn & Farmer Auctions, who noted the sale was small at around 180 lots but strong.
A complete report on the sale will appear in a future edition.
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