Auctions see reviving interest in classical art

By Lin Qi ( China Daily ) Updated: 2015-11-03 08:02:36
Auctions see reviving interest in classical art

Ink painting Morning Glows by Chinese master Pan Tianshou is one of the highlights at China Guardian Auction's autumn sales.

Famed painter and scholar Dong Qichang's landscape, titled Thatched Cottage amid Sparse Forest, will go under the hammer at China Guardian Auctions' autumn sales on Nov 15.

The piece is from a private collector and was listed in the Shiqu Baoji, a collection of imperial artworks of China.

Some of the other items from the same collection have been displayed at Beijing's Palace Museum since September, reigniting people's interest in classical Chinese painting.

The Shiqu Baoji compilation, also known as the Precious Collection of the Stony Moat, includes three editions cataloging non-religious calligraphic works and paintings from the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) collection.

Many listed works were taken away from the palace during chaotic times and kept in private care. Today, they are highly sought after in the art market and often fetch high prices at auctions.

Dong's piece demonstrates a rich variation of shading and dotting of brushwork. As one lays open this hand scroll, the composition tells the technical and aesthetic accumulations Dong invested in the work. He was considered a painter and an art theorist with profound influence in the late Ming Dynasty (1368-1644).

Collectors in the past used to favor works of court painters, says Guo Tong, general manager of Guardian's Chinese paintings and calligraphy department.

Two painting albums of Jiang Tingxi, a high-ranking Qing official and court painter, sold for more than 21 million yuan ($3.33 million) in 2012.

"Now buyers are shifting their attention to works of independent and scholarly painters," Guo says.

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