If there is such a thing as sales kismet, it seems to have happened yesterday in Michaan’s Auctions Fine Asian Works of Art Auction. The story begins in a small antique shop in Fresno. A couple was leisurely browsing when they notice an Asian blue-glazed porcelain vessel with a price tag of $150. Although they are intrigued, the couple decide to hold off on making a purchase. They come back to the shop a second time where they then speak with the owner about it. Sensing their interest, the owner makes them an offer of $100. The couple remains unsold and it takes a third visit with a $50 price tag to make the sale.
Fast forward to Michaan’s Auctions. The curious couple brings the lidded vessel to Asian Art Specialist Harry Huang. Harry is floored when he sees their “bargain buy,” which is in fact a fine archaistic piece from the Qing Dynasty. Harry informs them that they have an exquisite work of art on their hands and duly tucks it into the Fine Asian Works of Art auction at an estimate of $7,000-9,000.
Harry knows his stuff. The blue-glazed molded archaistic ritual vessel and cover sold as lot 9253 yesterday for (drum roll please)…$26,550. A comparable yellow vessel with cover sold in Michaan’s Fine Asian Works of Art Auction in December of 2011 for $14,040 and a similar piece of this caliber was also sold in Christie’s Hong Kong Imperial Auction on May 30, 2006 for $14,000.