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The Dexter Collection of Ottoman, Islamic and Indian Interiors

11th November 2019.

Thirty years of dedicated collecting of Eastern art and furnishings is culminating in an extraordinary single owner sale at Tennants Auctioneers in North Yorkshire. The Dexter Collection of Ottoman, Islamic and Indian Interiors and Asian Art is to be sold on 18th January and will comprise over three hundred lots hailing from a vast swathe of Asia from Istanbul to Japan.

The collection has been put together by A.T. Dexter, a second-generation antiques dealer who fell in love with Eastern art forms and culture. Mr Dexter has travelled extensively in India, Turkey and Egypt, and has amassed a unique collection with the eye of a dedicated connoisseur. The collection reflects Mr Dexter’s wide-ranging interests, and his fascination with Orientalist art.

With something to catch the eye of every buyer, the sale offers both decorative and affordable lots of furniture and furnishings as well as works of art appealing to specialist collectors. Fine quality 19th century Syrian furniture, mainly from Damascus, mixes with Chinese furniture and Indian and Persian paintings, Chinese, Tibetan and Nepalese bronzes and religious sculpture. There is a good selection of carpets, Islamic metalwares and European items in an Orientalist style such as a group of Austrian figures of Arabs. Highlights of the collection include an Indian Pietra Dura and Black Marble Low Table or Footstool, Mughal or Deccani, 16th/17th century (estimate: £5,000-8,000), an Indian bronze figure of Ganesha, probably made in the 10th century (estimate: £1,000-1,500), a Ming Dynasty (probably 16th Century) Gilt Bronze Buddha (estimate: £600-800) and an South Indian Bronze Amaravati School Figure of Buddha from the 10th/12th century (estimate: £1,000-1,500).

Estimates for many of the good, decorative furnishing pieces start at under £100; pieces to look out for include a colourful kilim upholstered sofa that will be up for grabs with an estimate of £300-500, an Ottoman cabinet inlaid with bone on offer with an estimate of £500-700, and an impressive Cairoware brass lamp stand on offer with an estimate of £300-500. The collection has a particularly good selection of small decorative inlaid side tables, such as an Ottoman Khatan octagonal table estimated at £700-1,000.

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