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Sotheby's to offer iconic contemporary Chinese masterpieces from the Gillion Crowet Collection
Yue Minjun, Kites, 1993, oil on canvas, 181 by 248 cm. Est: HK$5,000,000 - 7,000,000 / US$640,000 - 895,000. Courtesy Sotheby’s.

HONG KONG.- This October, Sotheby’s will present Moutarderie Nationale: The Gillion Crowet Collection, which brings together iconic works by the foremost contemporary Chinese artists of our generation including Zeng Fanzhi, Zhang Xiaogang, Liu Ye, Yue Minjun, Fang Lijun, Zhou Chunya and Wang Guangyi. Assembled by the discerning vision of Baroness Gillion Crowet, the Collection features important and exemplary works that define contemporary Chinese art of the last two-and-a-half decades. The auction will present 30 masterworks estimated over HK$73,000,000 / US$9,000,000 on 6 October 2019 during Sotheby’s Hong Kong Autumn Sale series.

The distinguished Gillion Crowet Collection, the brainchild of Baron and Baroness Gillion Crowet, dates back to the 1960s. After an official sovereign visit to China in 2004, the Baroness Gillion Crowet assembled highly representative works by the most influential contemporary Chinese artists from the 1990s to the present, documenting one of the most important chapters in Chinese art history amid a transformative socio politico-cultural scene. For more than a decade, the collection was housed and exhibited in a historical building in Brussels called La Moutarderie Nationale – a former mustard factory which formed a distinctive setting for the assemblage.

Exemplary masterpieces include Liu Ye’s Smoke, which is the counterpart of two other epochal crimson-hued canvases from 2001-2002, one of which resides in the esteemed M+ Sigg Collection and another in an eminent private collection after fetching the artist’s auction record in 2013; Zhang Xiaogang’s Big Family No.16, an uncommonly rare masterwork with a five-person composition from the artist’s era-defining Big Family series; and Yue Minjun’s Kite, an important early painting from the artist’s acclaimed oeuvre of laughing figures.

“Belgian art collectors have always been very avant-garde in their choices. Since the second half of the 20th century, the distinguished Gillion Crowet family assembled first-rate collections of Art Nouveau, major works by Magritte, as well as an exceptional overview of Chinese contemporary art. We are pleased to present this selection of works that honours the visionary eye of its collectors.” --Emmanuel Van de Putte, Managing Director, Brussels and Luxemburg, Sotheby’s

“As one of the last distinguished private European collections of Chinese contemporary art, the Gillion Crowet Collection comprises definitive works by the most iconic artists, offering a concise and comprehensive overview of the top end of the genre. Sotheby’s is honoured to be entrusted with the Collection, and thrilled to present to collectors a rare and exciting opportunity to acquire quality works from a market primed for future growth.” -- Yuki Terase, Head of Contemporary Art, Asia, Sotheby’s

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