Asian Pictures & Calligraphy


In China and Japan in particular there has been a long tradition of collecting scroll paintings, calligraphy, and other scholarly works. However, a relatively new area of focus for the Asian art market has been modern and contemporary Asian paintings. There has been a notable upsurge in interest across the past decade with work by 20th century Chinese masters gaining increasing traction.  There is also a renewed appreciation of the work of the Vietnamese artists who attended the Fine Arts College of Indochina and the artistic output of post-war Japan.

Sworders have gained a good foothold in this fast growing market. While we continue to achieve strong prices for traditional works, such as a silk hanging scroll painted with a horse and a groom in the style of the Yuan dynasty scholar Zhao Mengfu (sold for £12,350 in November 2021), recent sales have included a series of five-figure results for works by or attributed to 20th century names.

In May 2021 an ink and colour on silk mountainous landscape carrying the signature and seal of Zhang Daqian sold at £20,800, while in November 2021 an ink on paper calligraphy, with a dedication and signature of Wu Changshuo sold for £26,000.

To find out more about our forthcoming sales or talk further about potential consignments, please don’t hesitate to contact a member of our specialist team.


Results & Highlights

Our specialists

Our specialists hold regular valuation days. Please contact us for more information, or complete the online form to enquire about the valuation of your items. 

Yexue Li

Yexue Li
Asian Art

T: 01279 817778

Luan Grocholski

Luan Grocholski
Asian Art

T: 01279 817778

In association with

Asian Art in London

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News & Articles

Watch | In Conversation With Raquelle Azran

In our May auction of Asian Art we proudly present a rare consignment of Vietnamese contemporary fine art curated by acclaimed expert Raquelle Azran, with works from ten masters in their field including Phan Cam Thuong, Nguyen Bao Toan and Nguyen Quang Minh. 

21 April 2022

Scholarly Objects | Chinese Brush Pots

Only a few select objects were required for the table of a Chinese scholar. There was an ink stone to grind up ink, brushes of different sizes for calligraphy, a brush washer for cleaning and a brush pot for storage.

24 March 2022

Chinese Export Silver from the Paris of the East

A collection of Chinese silver assembled by a family who lived in Shanghai in the early 20th century comes for sale at Sworders in November. The group of typical ‘export’ wares owned by the vendor’s grandparents who lived in ‘the Paris of the East’ had been stored in a trunk since the end of The Second World War.

19 October 2021