Art/Style/Travel Diaries

Important Asian art (Nara, Yayoi Kusama) featured in lectures and milestone event

In exclusive videos, Salcedo Auctions' CEO Richie Lerma explains today's art market and the artists to watch

“Bathing by the River,” 1939, 14 x 18 inches, oil on canvas, Fernando Amorsolo (left); “Advice From Bathala,” 71 ¾ x 60 inches, acrylic on canvas, 2012, Rodel Tapaya

In nearly 15 years at the helm of Salcedo Auctions, its chairman and chief specialist Richie Lerma has kept his ears close to the ground, so to speak, keen on spotting shifts while maintaining a critical perspective shaped by his strong institutional background.

The lots for the March edition of the auction house’s marquee event, The Well-Appointed Life (TWAL), is a response to the changing tastes of collectors as well as the art and antiques market, by and large, which has evolved and expanded in recent years.

‘Morning Mist,’ 36 x 36 inches, 2021, soot and paint on board, Junyee (left); Untitled (Doberman), 14 x 26 ⅓ inches, 2018, oil on canvas with frame by Ronald Ventura

“TWAL is that unique world where artistry intertwines with luxury, and where every exquisite detail tells a story of connoisseurship and discernment,” Lerma says. “For its March edition, which we themed The World of Art & Luxe, we are excited to present a selection that transcends boundaries. The best of Philippine art, spanning generations, is front and center, ranging from works by Felix Martinez, Juan Luna y Novicio, a handsome portrait of the ilustrado Manuel de Yriarte by Felix Resurreccion Hidalgo featured in the Alfredo Roces book, as well as works by National Artists Victorio Edades, HR Ocampo, Vicente Manansala, Cesar Legaspi, J. Elizalde Navarro, and Arturo Luz.

‘Diplomatic Friendship,’ 40 x 30 inches, acrylic on canvas, 1978, H.R. Ocampo (left); ‘Portrait of Manuel de Yriarte, ’27 x 22 inches, oil on canvas, 1885, Felix Resurreccion Hidalgo.

“This selection is joined, for the first time in a local auction,  by a selection of important Asian art,” Lerma adds. “ The history of modern Japanese art is represented through works spanning a century, from Tsuguharu Fujita and Seiji Togo to  Yoshitomo Nara and Yayoi Kusama. The epic scroll paintings of the esteemed Chinese artist, Xia Jing Shan, who has had the rare honor of being exhibited at The Palace Museum, Beijing, is also in this sale.”

Clockwise, from top left: ‘Green Eyes,’ 12 x 8 ¾ inches, 2002, etching, Yoshitomo Nara; ‘Buddha’s Nirvana,’ 105 x 38 inches with scroll, ink on paper, 1986, Xia Jing Shan; ‘Night Flowers,’ 11 x 26 inches, screenprint, 2003, Yayoi Kusama.

Apart from that, the substantive room list includes a connoisseur collection of exquisite Philippine Spanish-colonial antique hardwood furniture including a very rare Batangas Dos in excellent condition and an 18th century “Lion’s Head” refectory table, ecclesiastical art and ethnographic art, fine jewelry and timepieces, historical artifacts, fine prints, valuable books and ephemera. For the modern gentleman, there are fine spirits and motors as well.

Clockwise, from top: A 1898-1901 First Pattern Philippine battle flag, 26 x 39 inches sewn in Hong Kong; ‘Lion Mask’ refectory table, balayong wood, second quarter, 18th century; a rare Batangas Dos altar table, balayong wood and brass escutcheons, mid-19th century.

TWAL’s March edition also has a special section titled The Art of Luxe,  a private sale of rare and collectible runway fashion and accessories by the world’s leading designer labels—a well-appointed closet by any standard.

Given his long tenure in academe, Lerma proudly announced two special talks during the lead-up to the auction. On March 1, Manila House will host a lecture by Dr. Chun-Chieh Chao, who will discuss the lifetime works of Xia Jing Shan who explored the world of Chinese Buddhism. On March 2, Mai Sooriya-Arachchi of Tokyo’s Whitestone  Gallery will talk at Salcedo Auctions  about Yayoi Kusama, Yoshitomo Nara, as well as older masters Tsuguharu Fujita and Seiji Togo, a representation of the Japanese art’s evolution from the early 20th century to current times.

Presented with Exclusive Bank Partner Metrobank, ‘The Well-Appointed Life’ live and online auction will be on Saturday, 9 March 2024, starting at 2PM. The online catalogue is available at salcedoauctions.com; in-person preview begins on Friday, 1 March and runs until Friday, 8 March at NEX Tower, 6786 Ayala Avenue, Makati City, from 9AM to 6PM daily. For inquiries, email [email protected] or phone +63 917 107 5581 | +63 917 591 2191 | +63 917 825 7449. Follow @salcedoauctions on Instagram and Facebook.


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