Monday, 29 November, 2010
A special artwork
Since Vietnamese paintings were always fetched at the international auctions, (about 15 years recently), a few nude paintings have been dealed. An art researcher said that a beautiful nude painting always existed forever and it didn’t depend on history. Meanwhile, auction houses often like the typical artworks of each milestone of history and the important artists of an art history.
At the Sotheby’s auction house in Singapore, in October of 2004, Nude , 90 x 180 (cm), oil on canvas, painted in 1931 by Le Pho, was sold at $98,823 ( or 168,000 Singapore dollars). This work with a western lady model was very perfect and its layout was very strange. It was painted in Ha Noi in 1931. In the art history, that this artwork was sold at a professional auction at that price was very meaningful. It had been evident to the Westerners that Vietnamese students are creative and independent in the early days. For Vietnamese art history, nude paintings have rarely been to be advertised and it had been seen narrowly through Le Pho with the popular subject about ladies and flowers, so this artwork had been his sudden contribution to the Vietnamese art.
Nude - 60 x 90 (cm), guache on paper, 1932, by Le Pho
In the early years of 1930s, Le Pho painted some important nudes with the western models including Khoa than (Nude – 60 x 90 cm , guache on paper, 1932) which was highly appreciated by some French books of art research. However, Khoa than (Nude) was still a special artwork because it has been one of the first Vietnamese nude paintings. Besides its strong and daring expression, and using colours, the purity and the holliness were highly respected. It has been a considerable contribution because of its harmony between the badness and the finess, a daring breakthrough in the layout and the traditional simple colours. But it is very sad that our Vietnamese other artworks have been dealed, analyzed and assessed by the Westerners.
(Collected and translated by Lan Phuong)