Victory for a Chinese Bell

On 18 March 2020, by Philippe Dufour

The Middle Kingdom largely dominated an eclectic session.

China, early 20th century. Bronze bo zhong bell, large vertical cartouche bearing an inscription and a fictitious Qianlong date in relief, 56 x 30 x 25 cm.
Result: €254,200

A bronze bell known as a bo zhong resounded to an unexpected bid of €254,200 (after a high estimate of €15,000), and was finally carried off by a Chinese buyer. Featuring a large vertical cartouche with an inscription and a fictitious Qianlong date in relief, the instrument (56 x 30 x 25 cm) actually dates from the early 20th century. Dating from a little earlier, a statue of Guandi (67 x 36 x 32 cm) in Famille Verte porcelain kept watch, shown sitting in armour decorated with dragons, with a menacing expression, wearing a cap. A fierce battle took it up to €43,400. Then we returned to France for a large wall clock with a console in tortoiseshell and brass marquetry (119 x 56 x 36 cm) sporting lavish chased gilt bronze ornamentation. Made in the Second Empire in the Louis XIV style, it had a circular white enamelled dial, signed "H.V. SOEST à Paris". It found a buyer at €27,900.

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