Asia Week | Spring 2023
16–28 March, New York

T his March, Sotheby’s is privileged to present extraordinary and diverse collections of Asian art spanning 4,000 years of history. Leading this week is the Modern and Contemporary South Asian Art auction, which will feature works from across India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh, capturing the beauty and diversity of art from the subcontinent. The star lot is Maqbool Fida Husain’s 1961 masterpiece, Bulls. This painting is one of the artist’s most recognizable works, gracing the cover of the seminal 1971 monograph on the artist, published by Harry N. Abrams.

This season’s landmark auction is Celestial Colors. The Cadle Family Collection of Chinese Monochromes. A testament to the collector’s discerning eye and exacting attention paid to quality, condition and provenance, this sale comprises an exceptional spectrum of monochromatic porcelains commissioned for the emperors of China's three greatest dynasties - the Northern Song, Ming and Qing - and includes representative examples of the most iconic Chinese glazes. Amassed mostly in the 1980s and advised closely by J.J. Lally & Co., the collection includes pieces from some of the greatest private collections of Chinese works of art, including the collections of Edward T. Chow, T.Y. Chao and Henry Knight.

Immediately following is Indian and Himalayan Art, including Masterpieces from the Nyingjei Lam Collection. The highlight of this sale is a group of eight masterpieces of Tibetan art from the Nyingjei Lam collection, which will be sold to raise funds to support medical and educational projects throughout Asia. The centerpiece of the assemblage is the sublime silver and gilt image of Milarepa, unparalleled in quality and widely exhibited and published. The Tibetan section also includes a fine selection of Tibetan fifteenth century thangkas, including a magnificent large image of Vaishravana and a mandala of Nairatmya originally in the collection of Stella Kramrisch.

This season’s Important Chinese Art auction will feature an impressive array of porcelains, early ceramics, jades, and furniture from important private and museum collections. Leading this sale is an exceptionally rare archaic jade ceremonial axe from the esteemed Guennol Collection; important huanghuali furniture from the personal collection of the late Sir Joseph Hotung; and a large Qianlong period white jade ‘prunus and lingzhi’ vase and cover, previously in the collection of Aisin Gioro Puwei, Prince Gong. The sale also features a comprehensive selection of over sixty Kangxi porcelains from the renowned London dealer Marchant, as well as an exquisite group of rare imperial porcelains collected in the 1880s, being deaccessioned by a Northeastern Institution.

Closing the week is the CHINA / 5000 YEARS online auction, which comprises a diverse selection of porcelain, textiles, early ceramics, bronzes, furniture, and other works of art. Highlights include a group of Qing porcelains from the Collection of Silas Friedlander, a 17th-century kesi ‘phoenix’ panel and a selection of hardwood furniture from a Massachusetts Private Collection, a group of Ming and Qing blue and white porcelain from a New York Private Collection, and a variety of early bronzes from a Midwest Private Collection offered at no reserve.

Concurrent with our Asia Week exhibitions is a special preview of porcelains from The Wolf Family Collection, one of the largest and most significant private collections of American art, sculpture, furniture & decorative arts, and 20th century design to ever appear at auction. The ten-part single-owner sale series will take place at Sotheby’s New York in April 2023.

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Exhibition Information

Asia Week exhibitions open on 16 March at 10:00AM with the final sale exhibitions closing on 22 March at 5:00PM.

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