Kilkenny sale of extremely rare Chinese rhinoceros carving

Sean Keane

Reporter:

Sean Keane

Email:

sean.keane@kilkennypeople.ie

Kilkenny sale of extremely rare Chinese rhinoceros carving

The Chinese rhinoceros carving for sale in Mealy's of Castlecomer next Tuesday

A rare Chinese rhinoceros carving with a wonderful story attached to it will form the high point of Mealy’s of Castlecomer sale on Tuesday of next week.
Having closed their offices and delayed their quarterly sale due to the recent inclement weather, Mealy’s are looking forward to welcoming their customers back to the Castlecomer saleroom for an exciting auction of fine and decorative art.
Doors will re-open for viewing on Sunday and Monday (10am-5pm).
Hundreds of rare and exciting pieces will be on display to the public for these two days only, before going under the hammer.
One such item is lot 144, a very rare Chinese rhinoceros carving, which took the media by storm for its age and the story behind it.
This unassuming Chinese antique, bought by an Irish carpenter in Morocco for the equivalent of €60 in 2006 just last year, fascinated its new owner so much that after much deliberation about the item, he decided to have it sent to England for radiocarbon dating where it was discovered that the piece was in fact 24,800 years old and its material was not wood and lacquer like he originally thought.
It was in fact carved from the extinct species Woolly Rhinoceros (Coelodonta Antiquitatis) in the form a Chinese Immortal It carries an estimate of €20,000 -€30,000 and proof of carbon dating accompanies the lot.
Lot 224 is a real slice of Irish history, a unique marble bust by Richard Barter (c.1824-1896) depicting Catherine Hayes (1818-1896), the world famous 19th century Limerick-born singer.
Lot 519is a painting by Dominico Amici (Rome, 1808-?).
'The Arch of Titus’, depicts a man with oxen-drawn wagon on The Via Sacra, Rome, approaching the arch.
It is oil on canvas, signed and dated 1860, inscribed ‘Roma’ lower left, 32" x 46"; estimated at €3,500- 4,500.