Fine Chinese Boxwood Guanyin
S O L D
A Fine Chinese Boxwood Figure of GuanYin
17th/ 18th century, Kangxi/Yongzheng.
Height 21 cm., wide 10 cm.
Provenance: From the Collection of Clärenore Stinnes.
Clärenore Stinnes (21 January 1901 – 7 September 1990) was a German car racer; she and the Swedish cinematographer Carl-Axel Söderström were the first people to circumnavigate the world by automobile.
Stinnes was the daughter of the German industrialist and politician Hugo Stinnes. At the age of 24 she participated in her first motor race; by 1927 she had won 17 races and was one of the most successful race car drivers in Europe. On 25 May 1927 Stinnes started to journey around the world, together with Carl-Axel Söderström, whom she met only two days before her departure. She drove an Adler Standard 6 automobile and were escorted by 2 mechanics and a freight vehicle with spare parts and equipment. The journey was sponsored by the German automotive industry (Adler, Bosch and Aral) with 100,000 Reichsmark.
They passed through the Balkans via Beirut, Damascus, Baghdad and Tehran to Moscow. At this moment the two mechanics gave up and left, , then they travelled to Siberia, crossed the frozen Lake Baikal and the Gobi desert and came to Peking. They travelled by ferry to Japan, later to Hawaii and South America. They transited Middle and South America, went from Cordillera until Buenos Aires, and then continued to Vancouver and New York. In Washington, D.C. Stinnes and Söderström were welcomed by President Herbert Hoover. They then returned to Le Havre, France with a ship and arrived with their car in Berlin on 24 June 1929, after a journey of 47,000 km by car.
After their happy return Carl-Axel Söderström was divorced; Söderström and Stinnes married and settled in Sweden on an estate, where they raised three of their own and several foster children. In later years they spent some time of the year in Irmenach (Germany). Söderström died in 1976, aged 83, while Stinnes survived her husband by 14 years. The pieces were acquired during their trip and has been in the family ever since.