First Asian Art sale for Elstob & Elstob

North of England auctioneers Elstob & Elstob is to hold its first specialist sale dedicated to historic and contemporary Asian art forms.

The online-only sale will give collectors the opportunity to bid for treasures that celebrate the artistic achievements of a vast geographical region encompassing the Indian and Islamic world; China, Japan and Korea and South-East Asia, ranging from bronze figures, ceramics and jades, to textiles, books, scrolls, weaponry, jewellery and objets d’art.

One of the lots taking centre stage is a large Chinese Famille Verte basin that was possibly manufactured for the Japanese market. With a diameter of 64cm, it is attractively decorated with a jardinière of flowers in the centre, surrounded by birds in flight and a flowering vine. It carries a guide price of £2,000 to £3,000.

Elsewhere in the sale, another eye-catching lot is a Japanese Samurai tanto. These short swords were worn by the Samurai class of feudal Japan and originally date from the Heian period. They were mainly used as a weapon for piercing or stabbing but have evolved in design over the years to become more ornate. This example has a brass hilt and scabbard and is ornately decorated with copper and white metal with details of figures, foliage and a frog. It is valued at £100 to £150.

“As Asia becomes ever more important on the world’s stage, there has been an increased interest and fascination with its diverse cultures and rich history,” said David Elstob, Director of the Ripon-based auction house. “This has led to a significant rise in the buying and selling of Asian art, whether ancient or modern. At our own auctions, we have seen increased sales and rising prices with bidding not only from the UK, but across Europe and globally.”

He continued: “I am delighted with this first collection, which features so many fascinating objects from different cultures, locations and time periods. We anticipate this being the first of a series of sales dedicated to this artistic tradition which, after all, represents nearly half the world’s population.”

The two-week sale starts on February 20 and ends on March 5.