Bonhams

Bonhams is a privately owned British auction house and one of the world's oldest and largest auctioneers of fine art and antiques. The Bonhams name is recognised worldwide throughout all sectors of the fine art, antiques and collectors market, with several of its departments established world leaders within their specialist category.
The present company was formed by the merger in November 2001 of Bonhams & Brooks and Phillips Son & Neale. This brought together two of the four surviving Georgian auction houses in London, Bonhams having been founded in 1793, and Phillips in 1796 by Harry Phillips, formerly a senior clerk to James Christie. Today the amalgamated business handles fine art and antiques in more than 60 specialist collecting areas. The firm has continued to grow and change since the merger in 2001. The last ten years have been among the most dramatic and fast-growing in its history.
In August 2002 the company acquired Butterfields, the principal firm of auctioneers on the West Coast of America, which had been founded in 1865 during the California gold rush.
Today Bonhams offers more sales than any of its rivals. There are two large salerooms in London: the former Phillips sale room at 101 New Bond Street, and the old Bonhams sale room at the Montpelier Galleries in Montpelier Street, Knightsbridge. There are also three regional sale rooms in Britain: Chester, Edinburgh and Oxford. Sales are also held in San Francisco, Los Angeles, New York and Boston in the USA; in Switzerland, France, Monaco, Hong Kong and Australia. The Bonhams presence in Australia became a stand-alone operation in 2010.
Bonhams & Butterfields conducted their first East Coast sale in 2003, in the Art Deco Fuller Building erected in 1926. In 2005 they opened a new sale room in New York, on the corner of 57th Street and Madison Avenue, formerly the home of the Darhesh Museum. New offices and sale rooms have also been opened elsewhere: a Paris office in June 2005, one in Dubai in 2007, and an auction business in Hong Kong in 2009 to participate in the expanding Asian market. Bonhams is now established in 25 countries across five continents.

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Some works sold by Bonhams

Henry Clifford De Meillon - View From The Parade, Cape Town

Henry Clifford De Meillon - View From The Parade, Cape Town

Original 1830
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Lot number: 1
Other WORKS AT AUCTION
Description:
Henry Clifford de Meillon (South African, active 1823-1856) A set of eight views in Cape Town: 'View from the Parade, Cape Town' 'The Stadhouse, Cape Town' 'Cape Town from the Kloof' (dated 1830) 'The Lighthouse, Cape Town' 'The Castle, Cape Town' 'St Andrew's Church, Cape Town' 'View in Cape Town, The Barracks' 'Cape Town from the Residence of Col. Fitzroy' all signed 'H.C. de Meillon' (to margin, lower right) and inscribed with titles (to margin, lower centre) watercolour and bodycolour approx. 16 x 21.5cm (6 5/16 x 8 7/16in) each (8) unframed Footnotes H.C. de Meillon was resident at the Cape from 1823 to 1832, where he painted several versions of these topographical watercolours. Variations of these views can be found in the Library of Parliament and the William Fehr collection at the Castle of Good Hope, Cape Town, and in the collections of the Brenthurst Library and Museum Africa in Johannesburg, among others. A series of sixteen uncoloured lithographs were made in London by Day & Haghe from drawings by de Meillon and published in George Greig's Cape Almanacs 1832-35. Bibliography A.H. Smith (ed.), Cape views and costumes: water-colours by H. C. de Meillon in the Brenthurst Collection , (Johannesburg, 1978). R.F. Kennedy (ed.), Johannesburg Africana Museum: Catalogue of Pictures , (Johannesburg, 1971).
 Anonymous - A Thirty-two-deity Guhyasamaja Mandala

Anonymous - A Thirty-two-deity Guhyasamaja Mandala

Original
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Lot number: 23
Other WORKS AT AUCTION
Description:
A Thirty-Two-Deity Guhyasamaja Mandala Central Tibet, 14th century Distemper on cloth, backed onto mylar; above a scrollwork ground, the central deities in at the center of the celestial palace surrounded by meditation deities, lineage teachers, and a donor in the bottom right corner; inscribed in Tibetan on the reverse. 23 x 19 1/4 in. (58.4 x 48.7 cm)
 Anonymous - A Knickknack Peddler

Anonymous - A Knickknack Peddler

Original
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Lot number: 8083
Other WORKS AT AUCTION
Description:
Anonymous (15th century) A Knickknack Peddler Hanging scroll, ink and color on silk, unsigned, with five collectors' seals reading Qixi Dian bao , Yuting Tushu , a double dragon seal, Zijing fuyin , and chen Li Guangtao jingcang . 61 x 36 1/2in (155 x 92.7cm) Provenance: Acquired by the grandparents of the current owner prior to 1936 Knickknack peddlers are a classic theme in Chinese genre painting, and as a rule, these works depict itinerant merchants surrounded by animated children ogling the toys, sweet treats, charms and oddities weighing down the merchant's cart. Originating in the Song dynasty with artists such as Su Hanchen and Li Song (active 1190-1265), these compositions were later embraced by artists working under imperial patronage in successive dynasties with the motivation of hearkening back to the glory of the Song period. This painting is likely to have been produced under the aegis of the Ming imperial painting academy. Much of Ming court art emulates artistic styles of the Song dynasty, consciously positioning Ming society and rule as a direct successor to the Song, an era of Chinese history that was looked to as a golden age of ethnic-Han self-rule. The merchant's cart and its contents are rendered with unusual detail in this example, and upon close inspection, one can see the speckled bamboo, gilt lacquer, carved wood and elaborately wrought metal fittings from which the cart is built. From the fabric canopy and bamboo poles are hung numerous embroidered ribbons and ornaments and we even find a group of three delicate silk mesh official's caps, made in miniature for children's costumes. The cart holds precious objects including corals, peacock feathers, bronzes, porcelains, musical instruments, books, silks, mirrors and hair ornaments. It is a fascinating record of contemporary luxuries. The peddler beats a drums as one the children causes an exquisitely rendered puppet to dance in time and a smaller child, scared by the puppet, is comforted by old older friend. While in the Song dynasty, knickknack peddler paintings often illustrated poor peasants in authentically lively street scenes, in this Ming dynasty example we see an elderly retainer playing the role of a merchant for the entertainment of the children of an elite family, all within the cosseted confines of a flowery terrace garden. The rich details of the merchant's cart are matched by the carefully rendered clothing, and delicately drawn faces of the figures. The children wear fine earrings, torques and headdresses, as well as garments of sumptuous fabrics and furs, perhaps revealing noble, if not imperial birth. The peddler, instead of being attired in the tatters of a peasant, clothes himself in theatrically ornate silks of many colors and we note especially the gorgeously delicate shoes on all of the figures. By re-purposing the knickknack peddler trope as a lavish scene of harmonious home-life in a wealthy household, the painter suggests Ming society as prosperous and peaceful.
Mokuan Shoto - Calligraphy (ikko)

Mokuan Shoto - Calligraphy (ikko)

Attributed
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Lot number: 3001
Other WORKS AT AUCTION
Description:
Attributed to Mokuan Shoto (Muan Xingtao, 1611-1684) Calligraphy (Ikko) Hanging scroll, ink on paper; inscribed un ryu kan sai kai (Japanese romanization)/ yun long huan ji hui (Chinese romanization; Clouds and dragons, a happy gathering), signed, with three seals reading Mokuan To in , Shoho Eisho and Rinzai seishu ; within a plexiglass frame 50 x 12in (127 x 30.5cm) Mokuan Shoto (Muan Xingtao, 1611-1684) was a Chinese monk of the Chan sect. In 1654, he emigrated to Japan with his master Ingen Ryuki (Yinyuan Longqi, 1592-1673) and together they founded the Obaku school of Zen and established the head temple Manpukuji at Uji in 1661. A skilled calligrapher, he is honored as one of the Obaku no sanpitsu ("Three Brushes of Obaku"), together with his teacher and fellow disciple Sokuhi Nyoitsu (Jifei Ruyi, 1616-71).
John Armstrong - Abstract

John Armstrong - Abstract

Original 1962
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Lot number: 2
Other WORKS AT AUCTION
Description:
John Armstrong (British, 1893-1973) Abstract signed and dated 'John Armstrong 62' (lower right), oil on canvas 76 x 50.5cm (29 15/16 x 19 7/8in). Footnotes Exhibited Colchester, The Minories, John Armstrong Paintings 1935-1970 , 1977, no.35 Literature Andrew Lambirth, John Armstrong , London, 2009, p.225, no.735
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current week's auction

Place Date Artworks Works at Auction
London
March 4, 2015
345
London
March 4, 2015
121
New York
March 4, 2015
36
London
March 10, 2015
170
San Francisco
March 10, 2015
51
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