A rare Ming-era wine cup broke the world auction record for any Chinese porcelain, selling at Sotheby’s auction in Hong Kong for £22 million ($36,8 million). Shanghai tycoon Liu Yiqian bought the porcelain cup decorated with a colour painting of a rooster and a hen tending to their chicks. Bidding started at more than $20 million, with Mr Liu putting up the winning bid over the telephone after a lengthy battle among hopeful buyers.
Deputy chairman of Sotheby’s Asia Nicolas Chow says the cup is the “holy grail” of Chinese art.
“There is no more legendary object in the history of Chinese porcelain,” he said.
“This is an object bathed in mythology.
“It has gone to an extraordinarily good home in Shanghai in the collection of Liu Yiqian.”
The previous record for Chinese porcelain was set in 2010, when a vase sold for $32.4 million.