On 17 december 2012 cambi auction house organized the most important oriental art auction ever realized in italy before. The 170 lots sold had reached around 3,200,000 euros, doubling the initial estimates of the entire catalogue.
The salesroom, full of buyers coming mainly from Oriental countries, was larger than we could perceive after a fi rst look: Cambi people were connected by telephone and Web with an even greater number of participants, taking part to the auction from other countries in Europe, Asia and America.
And it was Internet participation – an increasing trend within the overall picture of participations – that contributed to high prices adjudication for a large part of the lots sold. As already highlighted, the constant investment that Cambi made for the development of new communication instruments – especially on the Web – guarantees the full access to the works-of-art on sale also from foreign clients that seem to have some more money to spend for a piece of history, as many objects sold during our auctions can be considered.
At present, rarity and high quality of works make the difference. And the results reached by now, demonstrate that the attention and the care at selecting the objects underline the amazing skills of the Oriental Art Department director, Mr. Dario Mottola, who declared his satisfaction for the results achieved, with adjudications in line with the best propositions in London and New York. A few examples: a white-celadon jade sceptre (Qing Dynasty, Qianlong Period, 1736–1795), estimated 20,000-30,000 euros, was sold in a few minutes for almost 300,000 euros, ten times its estimate; or a pair of Zitan wood panels carved with dragons (again, Qianlong Period), estimated 20,000-30,000 euros, was sold for 89,000 euros, (almost three times as much).
Among top lots, it is also worth mentioning: a standing copper Bodhisattva fi gure partially gilt with turquoises, coral and mirror (Qing Dynasty, Qianlong Period, 1736–1795), sold for more than 270,000 euros; a rare double pumpkin-shaped yellow jade vase with cover – whose a similar model is hosted at Beijing Palace Museum – after a competition in the salesroom, reached 149,000 euros. Top lot was an extraordinary and rare white jade little bell (guanta) with dorje by imperial manufacture, offered for 100,000-150,000 euros and sold, after an exciting challenge among salesroom, telephones and Internet, for 689,000 euros: the highest price ever paid in Italy for an object coming from Ancient China.
Small collectors hoping to buy something with less than 10,000 euros were disappointed; a small Zitan wood carved and lacquered table (Qing Dynasty, Qianlong Period, 1736–1795), estimated 5,000-6,000 euros, was in fact sold for 62,000 euros, while a red carved coral group, from 19th century, representing a musician woman on a crouched camel, estimated 7,000-10,000 euros, was sold for 50,000 euros. With this sale, Cambi Auction House confi rms its great credibility and fame on the international markets, especially Asian, which are already waiting for the next Oriental Art Auctions planned.