The painting, a 64cm x 96cm work completed in the late 1930s, had been expected to fetch between EUR350,000 and EUR500,000.

Other paintings by Pho titled “Femme au voile” (“Veiled woman”, 1940s), “L’heure du thé en famille” (“Family tea time”, 1960s), and “Mère et enfant avec iris” (“Mother and child with iris”, 1970s) were sold for EUR406,400, EUR279,400, and EUR203,200, respectively.

At the same auction, Vu Cao Dam’s “La Bataille de Coqs” (“Cockfight”) and “Liliums” went for EUR393,700 and EUR190,500, respectively, whilst Tran Minh Tho’s “Scène de marché dans un village” (“Market scene in a village”) ultimately sold for EUR228,600.

All Vietnamese pieces created by renowned local painters were featured at the auction titled “Magnificence and Regality” which was held by Sotheby’s Paris auction house on November 7.

The pieces hail from the personal collection of notable Vietnamese patron of the arts Prince Nguyễn Phúc Bửu Lộc, who lived from 1914 to 1990, a scholarly collector who befriended the artists he admired and lived surrounded by his art.

The auction titled “Magnificence and Regality” offered works produced between 1935 and 1970 in various forms, including delicately painted silk masterpieces, magnificent lacquer screens, and exceptional examples of Vietnamese modern art.

Le Pho, who lived from 1907 to 2001, was a prominent Vietnamese painter who developed a successful and prolific career in France with thousands of artworks to his credit. His pieces are enthusiastically hunted by art collectors from all over the world.

He also became the first Vietnamese artist to have paintings sold for high prices in an international auction. Some of his typical artworks include “The Family Life”, “Nude”, and “The beauty in a ‘sunshine’ shirt”.