Winning Bid: $9,450
A Large Chinese polychrome stucco fresco panel 灰泥彩绘天女图壁画 Yuan/Ming Dynasty or later 元/明或更晚:
Boldly painted with strong, energetic lines, some raised in low relief; centered by a female celestial deity with phoenix crown wearing heavy, luxurious garments, bearing a sword upright in her left hand, her right hand gracefully gesturing in the direction of a kneeling attendant, also wearing a phoenix crown, offering a rockwork “mountain” on a platter to the deity, all flanked by two elegant attendants, similarly clad and bejewelled, one bearing a lantern or canopy.
(H: 70 in., W: 44 1/2 in.)
U.S. Diplomat C. Edward Wells
Property from the collection of William and Kathleen Cavanaugh, Canton, CT, acquired from the above
For a closely related example, dated to the Ming dynasty, with similar rendition of the female face and elegant windswept draperies, wearing a phoenix crown, with a basket in her hand, see the fresco panel in the collection of the Washington County Museum of Fine Arts, Hagerstown, Maryland, gift of Cornelius Ruxton Love, Jr., 1956. For other panels with similar figures and energetic, dramatic use of calligraphic line, see a smaller example depicting an apsara dated Yuan/Ming dynasty, offered at Sotheby’s New York, September 21, 2007, lot 29; another closely related example with apsara, similarly dated, sold at Sotheby’s, New York, September 15, 2010, lot 293; a pair of frescos, dated Yuan/Ming dynasty, sold at Sotheby’s, New York, September 12, 2018, lot 200. See also an example with two figures from a private Italian collection, dated to the 14th/15th century, illustrated by Rasti Fine Art, Hong Kong, “Arcane Realms, Buddhist and Daoist Art”, 2019, no. 24.