A group of British auctioneers are to stage their first ever sale in China, with the emphasis squarely on fine art and Western antiques such as antique oak partners desks .
Lancashire’s gavel wielders may soon have to add a Mandarin phrasebook to their antique bookcase, following the news that a British association set up to promote Western fine arts and antiques to far eastern buyers is to hold its first Chinese auction in April. Since one of the primary aims is to learn what attraction British and European heritage goods have for buyers in China, the 900 lots will cover a diverse range of subjects – including jewellery, silver, clocks, paintings, and furniture such as antique desks and Victorian balloon back dining chairs .
Cumbrian antique collectors may not have heard of Triple-A, the Association of Accredited Auctioneers, since it was only founded in 2012 specifically to target the Chinese market. Already 21 members strong, the association set the seeds for the auction at a Beijing trade fair last December, with a series of informative lectures promoting Western antiques to Chinese collectors and buyers. Up to now, the British presence in China has been limited to a solitary sculpture and a 1988 charity sale in the Forbidden City.
Wealthy Chinese buyers have shifted their focus from Imperial treasures to fine furniture from the West. Evidently, now is the time to invest in that antique mahogany pedestal desk, before your Lancashire antiques dealer sells it to a buyer from Beijing.
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