Lot 11. Liu Dan (b. 1953), Dragon after Chen Rong, 2002. Estimate 150,000 — 200,000 USD. Unsold. Photo: Sotheby's.
ink on paper, framed, dated February 12th, 2002, inscribed and marked with two seals of the artist, 11 3/8 by 14 3/4 in., 28.9 by 37.5 cm.
Note: Liu Dan is one of several brilliant and internationally acclaimed Chinese ink masters active today, each formally trained in the classical tradition but with his own distinctive contemporary vocabulary, all working in China as well as the west over the past three decades.
Liu Dan was born in Nanjing and studied Confucian classics, poetry, painting and calligraphy from his grandfather at an early age. From 1978-1981, he attended the Jiangsu Chinese Painting Academy, studying traditional painting under Ya Ming. He moved to the United States in 1981, living first in Honolulu and later in New York before returning to Beijing in 2005.
For the past three and a half decades, Liu has produced an exhilarating legacy of physical grandeur, spiritual immensity and delicately rendered lyrical power, whether it be monumental landscapes, multi-faceted portraits of individual rocks, very fine studies of people or his distinctive representations of flowers and traditional Chinese dictionaries.
This very rare depiction of a dragon was inspired by the iconic paintings of the Song dynasty artist Chen Rong, notably his painting Nine Dragons, dated 1244, in the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, illustrated in T. Wu, Tales from the Land of Dragons, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, 1997, pp. 197-201.
His works are in numerous museums, corporate and private collections throughout the world. He has had solo and group exhibitions in Asia, Europe and the United States including the San Diego Museum of Art; the Suzhou Museum; the Musée Guimet, Paris; the British Museum, London; the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; the Brooklyn Museum; the Far Eastern Museum Berlin; the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, Kansas City; Harvard University Sackler Museum; the Princeton University Museum of Art; and the Yale University Museum.
Sotheby's. Monochrome, New York, 15 sept. 2015