11th-century Chinese calligraphy scroll sells for record 438m yuan

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London, June 05 (ANI): An 11th-century calligraphy scroll has been sold for 438 million yuan, setting new record for a Chinese work of art.

The scroll, 11m (36ft) long, by Huang Tingjian fetched more than double the previous high price set at auction last year.

An anonymous buyer purchased the relic in Poly International Auction in Beijing.

Before this, a 16th century Ming dynasty painting Eighteen Arhats by Wu Bin, which fetched 169 million yuan, was the highest amount a Chinese work of art had fetched.

The Huang scroll was painted in around 1095. It is a copy of a 600-word piece of prose writing by Wei Zheng, a popular chancellor of the Tang dynasty, who lived from 580 to 643.

"This shows that calligraphy is the key Asian art form. Calligraphy doesn't just represent the thoughts of the artist but their physical methods in wielding a brush," the Times quoted William Hanbury-Tenison, a British fine art agent, as saying.

He added: "In Western art everything begins with Greek sculpture, in Asian art with Chinese calligraphy. Huang Jingtian's calligraphy can be compared with the sculpture of Praxiteles." (ANI)

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