Bonhams Pushes the Boundary for Post-war Asian Art at Its November Sale in Hong Kong

Hong Kong – An expanded line-up of post-war Asian art will headline Bonhams' Hong Kong sale of Modern and Contemporary Art on 25 November, featuring avant-garde works by a pan-Asian spectrum of artists ranging from iconoclastic Japanese artists Susumu Koshimizu and Masaaki Yamada to Chinese diasporic artists Richard Lin and Liu Kuo-Sung, and further to important modernists Sayed Haider Raza, Ahmad Sadali, and Vicente Manansala from South and Southeast Asia.

Wang Zineng, Bonhams Head of Modern and Contemporary Art, Asia, commented: "With the upcoming sale, we are pleased to present a truly broadened landscape of Asian post-war and avant-garde art, pushing the boundaries of both art history and the market to include many more historically significant artists, whose market potential are yet to be fully developed. This is our response to the increasingly inclusive and progressive ambitions of our best collectors and the ever-growing market awareness."

Leading the sale is Indian post-war artist Sayed Haider Raza's La Terre (The Earth) (estimate: HK$2,500,000 – 3,500,000; imaged left below). Raza lived and worked in France since 1950. Inspired by the ancient Indian philosophy of the bindu, meaning 'the dot', Raza took a decisive change from his expressionist approach to instead embrace geometric abstraction. The black dot in the painting commands absolute focus, and is combined with the artist's exploration of Indian conceptions of time and space through the tribhuj (triangular) form. This work is one of the finest examples of the artist's trademark bindu paintings.

The sale also features Bone (estimate: HK$600,000– 800,000; image right above), a significant 1967 painting by Vicente Manansala. Manansala was a key figure of the modernist post-war movement in the Philippines, as well as one of the Thirteen Moderns of Philippine 20th century art. Well known for his pioneering style of transparent cubism, Manansala executed Bone in a similar Cubist pictorial vocabulary. Under the interlocking bone structures are shapes of muted brown and mauve palette put in contrast against a pearl white, soft nuances in subtle gradations.

A highlight of the Japanese post-war art collection is Susumu Koshimizu's impressive Water-Float-Vessel - Ishitsuri (Fishing of Stone) (estimate: HK$140,000 – 220,000; imaged on front page). A key artist of the Mono-ha movement in Japan, Koshimizu is the only sculpture-trained artist amongst his peers. This museum-quality work comes from his iconic 'Water-Float-Vessel' series starting in 1975. Twin soaring bamboo arcs are poised above a piece of wood inserted into an earthenware vessel. Stones are tied to the wire, which is then hung from the ends of the arcs, weighing into water to signify a potent cycle that begins and ends within itself.

Two exceptional works by British-Taiwanese artist Richard Lin will also appear on the market for the first time. 14 May 1959 (estimate: HK$1,800,000 – 2,500,000; imaged left below) and Cadmium Green (estimate: HK$1,700,000 – 2,200,000; imaged right below) from 1974 stand at two ends of what is arguably Richard Lin's most fertile period of development as he increasingly moved into minimalism. Characterised by a cool abstraction and subtle introduction of yellow and green lines of differing weights, Cadmium Green reduces Lin's surrounding landscapes in the rural west Wales into hypnotising linear abstractions.

Other highlights from the sale include:

Indonesian leading abstract artist Ahmad Sadali's Lelehan Emas Pada Relung (Molten Gold on a Niche) (estimate: HK$120,000 – 160,000)
• Taiwanese post-war artists Liu Kuo-Sung's In Yellow Light (estimate: HK$280,000 – 480,000), and Ho Kan's 90-6 (estimate: HK$50,000 – 80,000)
Japanese artist Masaaki Yamada's Work C.234 (estimate: HK$ 150,000 – 250,000)


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