Rare Chinese pottery stands out at Michaan’s June 8 sale  

Rare Chinese pottery

Rare Chinese ‘number two’ Jun ware narcissus bowl. Estimate: $200,000-$300,000. Michaan’s image

ALAMEDA, Calif. – June marks the midpoint of a stellar year for Michaan’s Auctions. 2019 has brought outstanding sales of private art collections, rare ephemera and collectibles, and exceptional jewelry. In May, Michaan’s introduced property from a San Francisco collection featuring many Asian art treasures. The sale of this exceptional property continues at the June 8 Gallery Auction where Chinese porcelains are among the highlights. Absentee and Internet live bidding is available through LiveAuctioneers.

Rare colors and glazes will delight collectors. Dingyao stoneware is featured. Estimates range from several hundred dollars to over $2,000 per auction lot. Carved jade and marble objects and a massive carved wood figure ($8,000-$10,000) are offered. Figures of Buddha, archaistic bronzes and an Imperial edict are just a few of the fine collectibles.

In addition to this collection, the Asian art department offers outstanding pieces in June such as the rare ‘number two’ Jun ware narcissus bowl (above; $200,000- $300,000). Numbered Jun ware, esteemed for their beautiful opalescent blue and purple glazes, was favored by emperors for centuries and today is found in the world’s finest museum collections of Chinese pottery.

Also offered, at $150,000- $250,000, is the oil gray glazed pear-shaped Guan vase, a thinly potted piece with delicate craquelure suffusing the creamy glaze. The superb Yuan/Ming dynasty blue and white dragon vase, offered at $80,000-$120,000, is a fine example of the lovely yuhuchunping (pear-shaped) form.

Rare Chinese pottery

Chinese blue and white Dragon vase. Estimate: $80,000-$120,000. Michaan’s image

Another June highlight is the figural painting ($10,000-$15,000) attributed to Qiu Ying (1494-1552).

Fine jewelry is a top performer at Michaan’s no matter the season. Michaan’s June 8 auction features some of the most coveted items: diamonds, fine jade and a Rolex wristwatch. Bid absentee or live online through LiveAuctioneers.

The two-carat round brilliant-cut diamond in a platinum setting is expected to sell for $3,000-$5,000. A yellow gold charm bracelet, glittering with gemstones and oozing nostalgia, is estimated at $2,500-$3,500.

Several beautiful auction lots comprise GIA-certified jadeite jade. These include the jade ring set with diamonds in white gold (estimated at $3,000-$5,000) and the classic jade bangle ($4,000-$6,000).

Rare Chinese pottery

Jadeite jade, diamond, 18K white gold ring. Estimate: $3,000-$5,000. Michaan’s image

Timepieces offered at auction have a following all their own, but the appeal of a Rolex is not limited to collectors and niche enthusiasts. In June Michaan’s offers the Oyster Perpetual Datejust by Rolex. The stainless steel wristwatch with gold dial and jubilee link bracelet is estimated at $1,000-$1,500.

Édouard Cortès (1882-1969) mastered the art of painting the city of Paris. His elegant street scenes of Paris and Parisians, depicted over many decades and in all kinds of weather, are treasured by collectors. In June Michaan’s offers Boulevard de la Madeleine ($20,000-$30,000), a twilight view of the beloved neoclassical landmark at the turn of the century.

Works on paper are especially noteworthy in June’s selection of fine art. Paul Klee, highly individual yet deeply influential, is one of the 20th century’s most recognized and best-loved artists. His 1921 Bauhaus color lithograph Hoffmanneske Szene is estimated at $15,000-$20,000. At first glance it’s a light and playful composition of towers and small figures; a closer look hints at the operatic struggles suggested by Klee’s title.

Rare Chinese pottery

Paul Klee (German 1879-1940), ‘Hoffmanneske Szene’ color lithograph. Estimate: $15,000-$20,000. Michaan’s image


From the great American regional painter Thomas Hart Benton, a lithograph on Rives paper titled Ten Pound Hammer is offered at $7,000-$9,000. Benton’s composition is matched in boldness by his subject. Powerful men of different races work side by side laying railroad track, an endeavor destined to close gaps between all sorts of Americans. Tension rises from a locomotive belching clouds of black smoke as it hovers over the men, lending a sense of urgency to their labor. The 1930s color woodcut Bound for Taos ($5,000-$7,000), saturated with gorgeous color, is by the German-American printmaker Gustave Baumann (1881-1971), whose images of the Southwest are revered by collectors and museums alike.

The hunt for unique and collectible fine furniture and decorations leads many buyers to Michaan’s each month. June offers great finds from modernist masterworks to precious antiques. A Georg Jensen piece designed by Jensen himself is a June highlight. The footed silver bowl with berry and leaf motifs is estimated at $2,000-$2,500.

Rare Chinese pottery

Danish silver bowl designed by Georg Jensen. Estimate: $2,000-$2,500. Michaan’s image

Another top lot is the set of famille rose porcelain plates ($1,500-$2,500) custom-made by 18th century Chinese artisans for export to a prominent early American statesman. The lovely pieces decorated with a river scene and figures of Chinese immortals belonged to New York Gov. DeWitt Clinton and his wife Maria, whose initials adorn some of the pieces.

Bearing the initials “LD” and attributed to French cabinetmaker Louis Delaitre, the ornate but graceful Louis XV marble-topped commode de tombeau is estimated at $6,000-$8,000. Dating to the second quarter of the 18th century, it is older than the French Republic itself.

A highlight from the mid-20th century is the etched bronze asymmetrical coffee table by Philip and Kelvin Laverne. From their “House of Chan” series of Chinoiserie tables, this sensational piece is estimated at $4,000-$6,000.