New York—Bonhams kicked off its participation in the 2012 Asia Week with its March 19 Indian, Himalayan and Southeast Asian auction. This 241-lot sale realised a sales total of $3,203,225 after active bidding in a standing-room only saleroom. This was a stellar start to this anticipated and eventful auction week dedicated to Asian art from China, India, Japan, Korea, the Himalayas and Southeast Asia.
Among the top lots of the auction were impressive paintings and sculptures drawn from important private collections, such as the Paul F. Walter Collection, the Estate of Ananda Kentish Coomaraswamy, J. Russell Wherritt Trust and the Carl S. Dentzel Estate.
Fine gilt bronze and brass figures proved popular in the auction with six lots claiming spots among the sale's top 10 performers. Leading the sale was a 14th century rare large scale gilt copper alloy figure of Syamatara, from Tibet. This lot claimed $482,500, making it the top lot of the auction (pre-sale est. $150,000-$200,000). Another impressive lot was a circa 16th century brass figure of Radha Orissa, which sold for $254,500 (pre-sale est. $30,000-$50,000). Other highly sought after figures included a 12th century grey chloritic schist figure of Varahi Karnataka selling for $98,500 (pre-sale est. $60,000-$80,000); a 12th century copper alloy figure of Saint Sambandar selling for $92,500 (pre-sale est. $80,000-$120,000); and a 17th century gilt copper allow figure of Maitreya Qing dynasty selling for $74,500 (pre-sale est. $60,000-$80,000).
The Indian painting section of the auction featured a very important group of works from the courts of Rajasthan. Breaking an auction world record was a very important, previously unrecorded work by the master Indian artist Bagta (fl. 1761- 1814). This remarkable work and cover lot to the sale sold for six times the high estimate, claiming $302,500 (pre-sale estimate $30,000–$50,000). From the Paul F. Walter Collection came the luminous green painting of Maharaja Sarup Singh on a boar hunt, by Tara. This vibrant work also exponentially outdid its pre-sale estimate of $20,000-$30,000, selling for $194,500. Also among the top lots was Gaddis meet rishis in the mountains, an illustration to the Mahabharata, which sold for $74,500 (pre-sale estimate $7,000-$10,000).
Full auction results and a calendar of upcoming auctions can be found on the Bonhams website, www.bonhams.com.
Julie Saunders Guinta
NOTES FOR EDITORS
Bonhams, founded in 1793, is one of the world's largest auctioneers of fine art and antiques. The present company was formed by the merger in November 2001 of Bonhams & Brooks and Phillips Son & Neale. In August 2002, the company acquired Butterfields, the principal firm of auctioneers on the West Coast of America. Today, Bonhams offers more sales than any of its rivals, through two major salerooms in London: New Bond Street and Knightsbridge; and a further three in the UK regions and Scotland. Sales are also held in San Francisco, Los Angeles, Carmel, New York and Connecticut in the USA; and Germany, France, Monaco, Hong Kong and Australia. Bonhams has a worldwide network of offices and regional representatives in 25 countries offering sales advice and valuation services in 60 specialist areas. For a full listing of upcoming sales, plus details of Bonhams specialist departments go to www.bonhams.com