Until 2nd May, 2024

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LOT 1596 - AK0124

Buy now for €390.00

Lot details

Oxus Civilization. Comprising two agate beads of flattened lozenge form, carved to highlight the natural formations in the stone. The larger bead of a translucent quality and honey-brown to pale gray tones with bands of white. The smaller bead also translucent and of a pale gray tone with white bands.

Good condition with some wear, small chips here and there, signs of weathering and erosion with associated losses.
Provenance: Estate of Paolo Bertuzzi (1943-2022) was an engineer and fashion stylist from Bologna, Italy. Born Paolo Bertuzzi as the son of Enrichetta Bertuzzi, the founder of Hettabretz, one of the most important leather merchants in Italy which crafted womenswear for royals and celebrities including The Rothschild family, Audrey Hepburn, and Elizabeth Taylor. Paolo Bertuzzi later took over his mother’s business and created exclusive pieces, some of which were exhibited in the Costume Institute at Metropolitan Museum of New York. He was also an avid collector of antiques for more than 60 years. His collection includes archaic and contemporary art, focusing mainly on Asian ancient pieces. Over decades he developed close relations with galleries, museums, curators, and auction houses while shaping his collection. He edited two important books about Asian art, Goa Made - An Archaeological Discovery, about a large-scale archaeological project carried out with the Italian and Indonesian governments, and Majapahit, Masterpieces from a Forgotten Kingdom.

Weight: 27 g (the larger bead) and 10 g (the smaller bead)
Dimensions: 4.8 cm (the larger bead) and 3.7 cm (the smaller bead)

The Oxus Civilization or Bactria–Margiana Archaeological Complex (BMAC), recently dated to c. 2250-1700 BC, is the modern archaeological designation for a Bronze Age civilization of Central Asia, previously dated to c. 2400-1900 BC, by Sandro Salvatori, in its urban phase or integration era. Though it may be called the "Oxus civilization", apparently centered on the upper Amu Darya (Oxus River) in Bactria, most of the BMAC's urban sites are actually located in Margiana (modern Turkmenistan) on the Murghab river delta and the Kopet Dagh mountain range. There are a few later sites in northern Bactria (c. 1950–1450 BC), the territory of southern Uzbekistan, but they are mostly graveyards belonging to the BMAC-related Sapalli culture. A single BMAC site, known as Dashli, lies in southern Bactria, the territory of northern Afghanistan. Sites found further east, in southwestern Tajikistan, though contemporary with the main BMAC sites in Margiana, are only graveyards, with no urban developments associated with them. BMAC sites were discovered and named by the Soviet archaeologist Viktor Sarianidi when he was excavating in northern Afghanistan between 1969 and 1979. Sarianidi's excavations revealed numerous monumental structures in many sites, fortified by impressive walls and gates. Reports on the BMAC were mostly confined to Soviet journals. A journalist from The New York Times wrote in 2001 that during the years of the Soviet Union, the findings were largely unknown to the West until Sarianidi's work began to be translated in the 1990s.


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