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Investment sculptures in spotlight at sale

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Also on offer are Thai bronze Yaksha figures, 30-year-old whisky

Investment sculptures of diverse cultures, shapes and sizes are among the noteworthy lots for Ashbey’s Galleries auction on Thursday at 43 Church Street, Cape Town, when the hammer will come down on jewellery, silver, objects d’art, ceramics, clocks, bronze sculptures, handbags, antique and contemporary furniture and works of art.

Among the sculptures will be:

* A pair of 2m-high Thai bronze Yaksha figures. The sculptures wear elaborate headdresses, and their bases are adorned with medallions of the god Garuda.

These “Yaks” are said to have been benevolent “nature spirits” or guardians of temples and natural treasures. A

shbey’s pre-sale estimate for the pair is R30000 to R40000.

* Three quaint wooden sculptures by the relatively unsung Eastern Cape artist, Julius Mfete, who is known for his charming and narrative form carvings depicting people and animals doing domestic chores.

Mfete, who died a few years ago at a relatively young age, created most of his now sought-after carvings from memory while seated under a tree at his homestead near Port St John’s. Ashbey’s has three of his works on offer: Man Milking Cow with Calf, Man with Plough and Two Oxen, and Horse and Rider, with presale estimates of between R15000 and R20000 each.

* Six bronze sculptures and one in marble by Caroline van der Merwe, who studied and taught in Cape Town before moving to Italy where she died in 2012. The top work among the abstract creations of the male torso on offer is The Fallen One, with a starting bid of R50000.

Among the other items likely to draw strong attention at Thursday’s sale is an 18ct yellow-gold, platinum and diamond ladies’ dress ring (estimate up to R20000), Adriaan Boshoff’s oil painting, Still Life of Flowers (up to R70000), a Bowmore 30-year-old Islay single malt whisky (up to R30000), Louis Vuitton bags, and a 19th century Senufo bed.

Viewing is on March 8 from 10am to 1pm, March 9 and March 10 from 9am to 4pm, and Wednesday from 9am to 2pm. The auction on March 12 will be in two sessions starting at 10am and 1.30pm.

For more details, email inge@ashbeysgalleries.co.za or call 0214238060.

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