Lot 63. Zeng Xiaojun (b. 1954), Yellow Mountain I, ink on paper, framed, signed, and marked with one seal of the artist, 45 1/2  by 74 1/2  in., 115 by 189 cm. Estimate 100,000 — 150,000 USD.  Lot sold 118,750 USD. Photo: Sotheby's.

NoteBorn in Beijing and a 1981 graduate of Beijing’s Central Art and Craft Academy, Zeng is a contemporary exemplar of the Ming literati artist. An authority on classical Chinese furniture and collector of scholars’ rocks, bonsai, works of art and all things wood, and a furniture maker himself, Zeng also specializes in the painting of ancient trees, a tradition distinct from landscape paintings. He is a portrait painter and his subjects are old twisted trees, contorted roots and vines. In 2014 he returned to his early explorations of landscapes with two majestic visions of the Yellow Mountain in Anhui Province, freshly inspired and exhilarated from a trek there.

His works are in the Minneapolis Museum of Art and major private collections worldwide and  has been shown in numerous exhibitions and museums, including  the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; the Wereldmuseum, Rotterdam; the National Taiwan Museum of Fine Arts; the Today Art Museum, Beijing and the Musée Guimet, Paris.

Sotheby's. Monochrome, New York, 15 sept. 2015