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Vase sets Asian art record in Irish sale

A ‘Qing period’ double gourd vase sold in Ireland for €740,000, an auction record for Asian art in that country, having been estimated at €800-1200.

The vase, consigned by a Dublin-based man who inherited the object from his father, was sold by Sheppard’s auction house in Durrow, Co Laois, at its Chinese Ceramics, Asian Works of Art & Paintings sale in Kilkenny Castle on Saturday, June 17.

Catalogued as ‘Qing period, blue and white double gourd vase with scroll handles, the body with painted floral and shou decoration, mark of Qianlong to base’, the vase is 9in (23cm) high and 7in (18cm) in diameter.

It shares the same form and decoration as a vase sold in Hong Kong late last year for close to $3m.

Bonhams appoints Australia director

Bonhams has promoted Merryn Schriever to director of Australia following the departure of chairman Mark Fraser.


Merryn Shriever of Bonhams.

Schriever, to be based in Sydney, joined Bonhams as senior art specialist in 2013. She put together the auction house’s Aus$3.5m June sale of Australian and Aboriginal Art.

Matthew Girling, global CEO of Bonhams, said: “Merryn’s proven track record – as evidenced by the superb result for our June sale – makes her the perfect fit to assume the leadership for Bonhams in Australia. Bonhams remains committed to holding sales in Sydney.”

20/21 fair back in town after a break

A line-up of 34 exhibitors has been announced for the 20/21 British Art Fair, which returns this autumn after an enforced break.

Among the dealers at the 2017 event are Richard Green, Freya Mitton, Waterhouse & Dodd and Osborne Samuel.

20/21 had to cancel last year when the Royal College of Art, its previous venue, announced it would no longer host external events.

After a one-year hiatus the fair now runs from September 13-17 (coinciding with the new LAPADA fair dates) at the Mall Galleries near Trafalgar Square in London. It focuses almost exclusively on modern and post-war British art.

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The most clicked-on stories for week June 15-21 on antiquestradegazette.com

1 ‘Qing’ vase sleeper in Ireland makes €740,000 hammer

2 Rare Charles Rennie Mackintosh watercolour achieves top price in Edinburgh

3 Fitzwilliam Museum secures rediscovered Gérôme painting from dealer Daniel Katz

4 Christie’s Rockefeller estate sale set to be most valuable collection auctioned

5 Phone bids lift James Bateman view to £30,000

Former CSK expert now joins Chiswick

Chiswick Auctions has hired Christie’s South Kensington’s long-serving specialist Mark Henry Lampe to head up its carpets and rugs department.


Mark Henry Lampe, now of Chiswick Auctions.

He will focus on running its fine oriental carpets and rugs sales and is now consigning for its September auction.

Since 1990 Lampe had been head of carpets at CSK.

Lampe, who will work with carpets and rugs specialist Chris Vin, plans to expand the department.

Online catalogue covers sculpture

Britain will be the first nation to have an online catalogue of every publicly owned sculpture. Art UK has announced a plan to digitise images of Britain’s 170,000 publicly owned sculptures by 2020.

Formerly known as the Public Catalogue Foundation, Art UK created a website that has catalogued the many thousands of paintings and works on paper owned by public institutions such as museums, universities and councils, many of which are not on public display. It began with oil paintings, then extended to other artworks.

Tiny Freud bears fruit in London

Strawberries by Lucian Freud (1922-2011), a diminutive oil on copper c.1950, was among the works bringing competition at Sotheby’s 35-lot ‘curated’ sale of small-sized works last week.


'Strawberries' by Lucian Freud – £1m at Sotheby’s.

Estimated at £550,000- 750,000, it was knocked down at £1m.

The sale preceded the main Impressionist & Modern evening auction on June 21 which was led by Wassily Kandinsky’s (1866-1944) Bild mit weissen linien (painting with white lines). This work sold for a record £29m.

Money laundering rules update launch

Money Laundering, Terrorist Financing and Transfer of Funds Regulations 2017 will come into force on June 26, translating the EU’s Fourth Money Laundering Directive into UK law.

One of the elements of the new regulations relates to vendors or ‘High Value Dealers’ who handle more than €15,000 in cash from buyers, either for one purchase, or as part of a series of linked purchases that total more than this amount.

The new regulations reduce this threshold to a level of €10,000.

In Numbers


Sotheby’s joint total from its back-to-back Impressionist & Modern art evening sale and Actual Size auction on June 21 was £148.9m (including premium) from a total of 58 lots. This was above the £103.3m from the equivalent single event last year, although the 2016 sale offered only 27 lots.