Rare Indian and Tibetan sculpture features as part of an online Indian and Islamic auction run by leading specialist Arthur Millner.
Leading Indian and Islamic Works of Art specialist, Arthur Millner, has chosen seven highlights from his forthcoming online Islamic, Indian, South East Asian and Himalayan auction at 25 Blythe Road. Amongst the 367 lots including sculpture, metalwork, paintings and bronzes, is a rare 11th/12th century sandstone relief panel, depicting Uma-Mahesvara, Central India. This is from the collection of the late Suffolk based antique dealer Bruno Cooper who by the end of his life had built up one of the finest collections of Indian sculpture in this country. Estimates in this collection of seven sculptures range from £1,500 – £12,000.
From the bronzes section, a particular highlight is an 18th century Tibetan gilt bronze of Simhavaktra. She is one of the dakinis, a lion-headed female Buddhist deity and is a fierce protector for monks. Her estimate is £4,000- £6,000.
Although more academic, another rarity is cast brass certificate called a Haku Patra plaque, dated 1517, for travelling players and craftsmen permitting them to do performances and work in Andhra Pradesh, Southern India. These certificates are thought to have been in use for about 500 years, which makes this example amongst the earliest. This has an estimate of £5,000 – £7,000.
Included in the textiles section, is an 18th century Greek bedcover, made in Naxos. Naxos was the capital of the Cycladic islands until the Ottoman occupation and was the centre of the Roman Catholic church in the region. Influences on its textile traditions came mostly from Venetian pattern books which in turn may have been inspired by Mamluk prototypes. The red dyes on Naxiot embroideries were produced from a type of lichen found on the rocks by the sea. It carries an estimate of £3,000 – £4,000.
Arthur Millner lectures and writes widely on Indian and Islamic Art across the country, including the Victorian and Albert Museum and SOAS. His forthcoming book, Damascus Tiles, will be published in September 2015.