Bonhams to offer the collection of Drs. Edmund and Julie Lewis

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Bonhams to offer the collection of Drs. Edmund and Julie Lewis
A Rare and Important Gilt Bronze Figure of Chijang Bosal (Ksitigarbha), Goryeo dynasty (918-1392), 13th/14th century. Estimate: $800,000-1,200,000. Photo: Bonhams.

NEW YORK, NY.- On September 11, Bonhams will present the sale of The Collection of Drs. Edmund and Julie Lewis, which is highlighted by a rare and important gilt bronze figure of Chijang Bosal (Ksitigarbha), Goryeo dynasty (918-1392), 13th/14th century (estimate: $800,000-1,200,000). The collection of 115 lots also includes fine Japanese lacquer boxes, Buddhist sculptures, inro, ceramics and contemporary Japanese art.

At auction for the first time, this important sculpture of Chijang Bosal (Ksitigarbha) was on the cover of Orientations magazine in 2003. It was also exhibited at the Asian Art Museum, San Francisco and published in their exhibition catalogue, Goryeo Dynasty, Korea’s Age of Enlightenment, 918-1392 in 2003. Sculptural representations of Ksitigarbha are commonly found in Japanese art but are extremely rare in Korea; only one other Goryeo-dynasty Korean bronze figure of the deity is known in a Japanese private collection.

Jeff Olson, Bonhams Director of Japanese and Korean Art, commented: “Drs. Edmund and Julie Lewis have studied and collected fine examples of works from all across Asia and we are honored to offer select highlights from their collection of Japanese and Korean art as Part One of the Lewis Collection to be sold at Bonhams. We are particularly delighted to bring this rare Korean Buddhist sculpture to auction for the first time.”

Drs. Edmund and Julie Lewis
Known for their keen scholarship and high aesthetic standards, for the past three decades Ed and Julie have focused on collecting lacquer art, painting and Buddhist sculpture from Japan. Both physicians and internationally recognized as renown experts in nephrology, they hold positions as tenured professors at Rush Medical College in Chicago and Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee, respectively. They met professionally and later married in 1997, and have since continued to collect Japanese art together, actively seeking the best they could find from the finest dealers in the field. As they traveled widely their desire to collect Buddhist art grew, and they have expanded their collection to include important Pan-religious sculpture from Greater Asia.

Additional highlights in the sale include:

A Seated Wood Figure of Nyoirin Kannon, Kamakura period (1185-1333), 13th/14th century (estimate: $18,000-25,000)

Ryu chi ryu (Dragon knows dragon), 1967, a large four-panel screen by Morita Shiryu (1912-1998) (estimate: $60,000-80,000)

Landscape II (2000), a ceramic sculpture by Fukami Sueharu (1947) Heisei era (1989-2019) (estimate: $50,000-70,000)

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