Ancient Chinese jade bear could bring $10-$20 milllion at Elite auction A rare and magnificent Chinese solid nephrite jade bear (475-B.C.-220 A.D.), is expected to bring $10-$20 million at a multi-estate auction scheduled for Dec. 10 by Elite Decorative Arts in Florida.
News-Antique.com - Nov 22,2011 - (BOYNTON BEACH, Fla.) – A rare and magnificent Chinese solid nephrite jade bear, the largest known jade sculpture of its time and dating back to China’s Warring States in the Eastern Han Dynasty (475-B.C.-220 A.D.), is expected to bring $10-$20 million at a multi-estate auction scheduled for Saturday, Dec. 10, by Elite Decorative Arts, beginning promptly at 1 p.m. (EST).
The jade bear is the expected top lot of the nearly 400 quality items that will change hands in the Elite Decorative Arts showroom, located in the Quantum Town Center in Boynton Beach, Fla., at 1034 Gateway Boulevard (Suite 106). Several other Oriental objects are expected to easily surpass the $100,000 mark, exploiting the current red-hot market for Chinese antiques.
“Between the extraordinary demand for Chinese antiques and the fact that the tourist season in Florida is now underway, we’re expecting a large, enthusiastic crowd and great sale results,” said Scott Ciecckiewicz of Elite Decorative Arts. “We anticipate 100-150 people will attend the auction live, plus around 500 registered online bidders through LiveAuctioneers.com.”
In addition to Oriental antique objects, the auction will also feature original fine artwork, porcelain, art glass, estate jewelry, silver antique clocks and decorative accessories. But the Chinese items will reign supreme. The jade bear is a monumental figure (14 inches tall and 7 ½ inches wide) and shows extensive calcification due to centuries of burial. It weighs 40 ¼ lbs.
The cup-shaped opening on the top of the bear’s head suggests it was made for a stand or base for a significant object like a flagpole, table or bell stand. The bear was made for an important figure or ruler (with whom it was buried). An analytical report concludes the artifact is original, and it comes with a certificate of authenticity from a Beijing relic verification company.
The sale’s expected runner-up top lot is a rare Chinese white jade goblet (est. $400,000-$600,000), also dating to the Warring States period (400-220 B.C.). A similar example sold at Christie’s in 2006 for $856,000. This 6 ¾ inch piece boasts nice high reliefs of mythical animals, clouds and petal-shaped designs, with a heavy gold leaf overlay covering the copper alloy foil.
A spectacular Russian silver enameled box, with exquisite multicolor design throughout, depicting a prince with sword and double-headed eagles, should realize $200,000-$250,000. The box has an oval panel to cover with miniature landscape enameled painting after Ivan Ivanovich Shishkin (Russ., 1832-1898), and silverwork master marks of Fedor Ruckert (Russ., 1840-1917).
From the estate jewelry category comes a stunning white gold diamond and gemstone necklace made by a skilled jeweler to the specifications of a Cartier necklace found in the firm’s 2005 catalog, last page. The necklace carries a pre-sale estimate of $50,000-$70,000. It has diamond, amethyst, ruby star sapphire and chalcedony, with a total gem weight of 199.61 carats.
Another estate jewelry item expected to do well is an 18kt yellow gold gem jadeite and diamond ring (est. $40,000-$60,000). The translucent green oval cabochon cut stone features 26