New Record for Vietnamese Art

Hong Kong -- An oil by 20th century painter Le Pho sold yesterday at Christie's for HK$6.52 million ($840,000), setting an auction record for a Vietnamese artist at auction.

Art collectors of Art Kabinett social media network are excited to see market recognition for this important artist.

The seller was Patrick Lorenzi, an Oslo-based Frenchman whose great grandfather purchased the painting from the artist when he was governor of Tonkin, the French colonial province in northern Vietnam, said Jean-Francois Hubert, senior consultant for Vietnamese art at Christie’s.

“This painting went from Hanoi to Paris to Oslo to Hong Kong directly from this family,” said Hubert. The 1937 oil on canvas is titled “View From the Hilltop.”

The previous Vietnamese auction record of HK$3.03 million set in May 2013 by Nguyen Phan Chanh at Christie’s Hong Kong was broken just minutes before the Pho sale when another Chanh also belonging to Lorenzi, sold for HK$3.16 million.

In 1932, Le Pho (born Hanoi, 2 August 1907 - died Paris,12 December 2001) earned a scholarship to study at the École des Beaux-Arts in Paris. Upon returning to Vietnam he taught at the École Supérieure des Beaux Arts de l'Indochine in Hanoi.

In 1937, he came back to Paris where he resided until the time of his death - one of four EBAI graduates who made a career in Paris, including Mai Trung Thur, Vu Cao Dam and female painter, Le Thi Luru

He painted sceneries of Vietnam, still life with flowers, family settings and portraits.

Vietnamese women, most often portrayed as elongated figures evoking the influence of surrealism, are a recurrent theme in his work.

Today's homepage Featured Art Video offers an overview of some of the artworks of Le Pho.