Nguyen Nam Son’s portrait of his mother which sold for €200,000 (£176,990) by Art Research Paris.

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On March 30 Art Research Paris (25/20/12% buyer’s premium) offered a large and well known painting by Nguyen Van Tho (1890-1973), also known as Nguyen Nam Son.

It was a full-length portrait of the artist’s mother painted in 1930 in Hanoi which measured 5ft 7in x 3ft 4in (1.7 x 1.03m).

Nam Son was a close friend of Victor Tardieu who became his mentor and together they established the Ecole des Beaux Arts de l’Indo-Chine in 1925 where Tardieu was director and Nam Son his assistant and teacher.

It was the place where numerous now famous Vietmanese artists such as Le Pho, Mai Trung Thu and Vu Cao Dam were trained in the Western tradition of painting.

Paris exhibitions

Nam Son’s portrait of his mother was shown at two exhibitions in Paris of works by Vietnamese painters: as part of the 1931 Exposition Coloniale de Paris and in the Salon des Artistes Français at the Grand Palais the following year where the work won a silver medal.

Like many of these Vietnamese works, the portrait is painted on silk and lacquer that has been applied to canvas. It is signed, dated and localised lower right and inscribed top right in Chinese characters ‘the portrait of my mother’.

The painting also bears a label to the reverse indicating that it had been exhibited at the Salon des Artistes Français and giving the Hanoi address of the artist and the Paris address of Tardieu.

It was formerly in the collection of Henri Sembuc and then that of Jean Yves Bureau, passing down by descent to the vendors.

The portrait sold on the low estimate at €200,000 (£176,990).