Beijing: An antique calligraphy handscroll
by Song Dynasty master Huang Tingjian fetched a record price
of 436.8 million yuan (USD 64 million) at an auction.
The calligraphy handscroll by Huang, regarded as one
China`s finest and most creative calligraphers, sold out after
40 minutes of bidding at Poly International`s Spring Auction.
The masterpiece, titled Di Zhu Ming, features a
calligraphic representation of an epigraph originally composed
by Wei Zheng, a famous Tang Dynasty (AD 618-907) chancellor
The handscroll is considered to demonstrate the creativity of
Huang`s penmanship and his moral principle.
The item is also adorned with Huang`s portrait and
valuable inscriptions of several dynasties ranging from Song
to Qing, stretching the calligraphy work to 15 meters in
total, the China Daily reported today.
The piece was considered a counterfeit during the
reign of Qing Emperor Qianlong (1736-1799) because of its
differences from Huang`s other works in content and style.
A Taiwan calligraphy researcher recently appraised it
as a rare masterpiece of Huang that exemplifies a
transformation in style into his later years. It was kept at a
Japanese private museum for decades before it was bought back
by a collector from Taiwan.
The previous record price for a Chinese work of art
was set by a Yuan Dynasty (1271-1368) blue-and-white ceramic,
which was sold for about 230 million yuan at a Christie`s
London auction in 2005.
Sales of works of art were going up in China with the
rapid expansion of private sector and middle classes.
China`s GDP is expected to touch 10 per cent this year
after recovering from last year`s down turn.
Last month, a painting by Zhang Daqian, China`s best
known and most prodigious artists of the 20th century sold for
a hefty USD 14.76 million at China`s Guardian Spring Auction.
Artprice.com, a French art market information
provider, mentioned in its Market Trends in 2009 report that
China has emerged as the world`s No 3 marketplace for fine art
sales next to the US and the UK with its auction revenue
expanding by a substantial 25 per cent last year.