Pair of Chinese mingqi or spirit objects depicting guards, possibly Northern Qi dynasty. Unglazed earthenware with white slip, cold-painted pigments, and traces of gilt. Each with a lion-mask tall shield with a fist raised for a pole implement. Each wears detailed armor consisting of tunics, plate armor, and caps.
Provenance: From the Estate of C. Curtis "Curt" Dunnavan, Long Lake, Minnesota.
C. Curtis "Curt" Dunnavan (1926-2022) was a passionate world traveler and avid collector. It was through his travels that he was inspired to begin a lifelong relationship with the Minneapolis Institute of Art (Mia), becoming a major sponsor of the institute and facilitating the growth of their Asian art department, which is now one of the best in the country. His generous donations to Mia allowed them to establish a fund for the Deputy Director and Chief Operating Officer, one of the few endowed positions of this type in the museum field. He additionally served as a trustee of the institute, advocating for its operational growth. In its turn, the museum established a gallery named in his honor in recognition for his endowment fund and numerous contributions to their collection. The selections here showcase his talent and breadth of collecting, ranging from ancient statues to 19th-century woodblock prints. His appreciation for art persisted throughout his life and we are honored to offer items from his collection in this auction.
Each, height: 19 in x width: 5 1/2 in x depth: 4 1/2 in.
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