A WHITE AND BROWN JADE OPENWORK 'SPRING WATER' PLAQUE
PROPERTY FROM THE COLLECTION OF THE LATE GERARD ARNHOLDThe Collection of the Late Gerard ArnholdI first met Gerard Arnhold in 1967 when I was 21 and had just started at Spink & Son, the distinguished dealers and crown medalists in London. He careered through the Spink galleries like a small tornado, looking at a variety of Asian works of art, firing off questions, and occasionally allowing a thoughtful smile to cross his face. From then on, he became a constant in my life with his indefatigable energy, curiosity and need to collect antiques.Gerard was a collector of works of art on a major scale and, in the process, he also collected people from all walks of life whom he would introduce to one another, whether or not they had anything in common.Born in Dresden in 1918, the grandson of Georg Arnhold, a banker celebrated for his philanthropy, Gerard studied in Dresden and Switzerland. As conditions in 1930s Germany worsened, the Arnhold family left and in 1937 Gerard began his studies at King’s College, Cambridge. He spoke with happiness of his time there and was proud of his British passport and that he served in the British Army from 1940. However, his commitment to Dresden was unwavering and he and his family often visited after reunification. He was a great supporter of the Dresden Philharmonic Orchestra, and also supported the Staatliche Kunstsammlungen and the Völkerkundemuseum, among other projects in the city. Settling in Brazil in 1953, Gerard ran a successful business but philanthropy was always an important part of his life – he gave to museums, zoos, nature preservation schemes and music projects, including the Wexford Opera Festival in Ireland. He was, however, always on the move and would suddenly appear in my office as if he had never left, asking what treasures we had that he could buy. If I happened to be out he would leave provocative notes on my desk, letting me know that he was off to visit other dealers and auction houses.Gerard was described as difficult by some of his family, friends and curators, but I preferred to think of him as challenging, and whatever scrapes or situations he found himself in, he seemed able to extricate himself with his innate, subtle and rather seductive charm. Often impatient, I remember on one visit to Brazil, his knocking loudly on my bedroom door at six in the morning asking if I was awake and how soon could we start checking and listing his jades!His home was a mass of paintings and works of art, many of which were purchased in the twenty years after the war, but he never stopped collecting. His huge collections of Chinese and Asian art were scattered all over the apartment, in particular his study and gallery room. It is often said of people that their like will not come again, and in Gerard’s case it is true. His need to explore and acquire works of art on such a scale is unlikely to be seen again, and his deep curiosity and his background meant that conversations with him were the best of history lessons. His personal taste survives in his collection of paintings and works of art, many of which are now to be seen in museums and private collections around the world. Roger Keverne
A WHITE AND BROWN JADE OPENWORK 'SPRING WATER' PLAQUE

YUAN-MING DYNASTY (1279-1644)

Details
A WHITE AND BROWN JADE OPENWORK 'SPRING WATER' PLAQUE
YUAN-MING DYNASTY (1279-1644)
The convex oval plaque is well carved in openwork with a goose in flight amidst the intertwining stems of lotus leaves, flowers, and saggitaria, all within a 'pearl' border.
3 ½ in. (9 cm.) wide, lucite stand
Provenance
The Gerard Arnhold (1918-2010) Collection, São Paolo.

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Olivia Hamilton
Olivia Hamilton

Lot Essay

Compare the similar plaque dated Yuan dynasty from the Michael S. L. Liu Collection illustrated in the exhibition catalogue, Virtuous Treasures: Chinese Jades for the Scholar's Table, University Museum and Art Gallery, The University of Hong Kong, 2007, p. 146, no. 76, where it is described as a 'spring water' plaque, and states that it was probably made towards the end of the Yuan dynasty.

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