The piece titled La famille de bergers (The Family of Shepherds) changed hands after more than three minutes with 15 bids.

The 61×183 centimetre painting originally produced on three panels features Nguyen Khang’s signature, and the date in the bottom right corner. It depicts five horses in a field of reeds, one man on the left carrying two baskets, and other two people sitting next to a horse.

Born in Hanoi in 1912, Khang worked alongside other great artists in the Reconnaissance period of Vietnam’s contemporary art, including the lacquer technique. After graduating from the Indochina School of Fine Arts in 1935, Khang chose to stay in Vietnam where he went on to become successful with his work on lacquer.

His works presented for sale on the international market are rare. Produced three years before the artist’s death, “La famille de bergers” attests to his technical and artistic mastery, according to Aguttes’ website.

During the November 28 auction, 34 works from both the 20th and 21st centuries were on offer. A silk painting Jeune femme arrangeant des fleurs de lotus (A woman arranging lotus) by Vietnamese painter Mai Trung Thu in 1943 was sold EUR400,000. Another silk piece titled L’ illumination de Bouddha (Woman besides lotus flower) by Vietnamese painter Le Pho in 1947 cost EUR190,000.