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Mai Trung Thứ (1906-1980), Vietnam. Ink and gouache on silk. Signed. "La toilette".

500 000 - 600 000 SEK
44 200 - 53 100 EUR
46 600 - 56 000 USD
Hammer price
1 050 000 SEK
Purchasing info
For condition report contact specialist
Cecilia Nordström
Cecilia Nordström
Head Specialist Asian Ceramics and Works of Art, European Ceramics and Glass
+46 (0)739 40 08 02
Mai Trung Thứ (1906-1980), Vietnam. Ink and gouache on silk. Signed. "La toilette".

Measurement 26x35 cm. Measurement with frame 48x57 cm.


Swedish private collection, purchased in Sweden in the 1970's by the present owners parents.


Compare another painting on this theme sold at Christies, 26 Nov 2017, Lot no 417.

Also compare, lot no lot 17, Bonhams, Hong Kong, Southeast Asian Modern & Contemporary Art
27 Nov 2021.


Mai Trung Thứ was a Vietnamese-French painter. He was one of the graduates of the 1st (1925 - 1930) entering class of the École des Beaux-Arts de l'Indochine in Hanoi. He lived and worked mostly in France. His main subjects were women, children and daily life, incorporating some traditional Vietnamese conceptions about fine arts and folk arts. All his work, apart from a few oil paintings, is silk painting with gouache, by rubbing and colours applied as solids.

More information

In the late 1920s some students of the Fine Arts School of Hanoi developed painting on silk under the patronage of their director Victor Tardieu (1870-1937). Amongst them, Nguyen Phan Chanh (1892-1984), Tran Binh Loc (1914-1941), Tô Ngoc Van (1906-1954), Vu Cao Dam (1908-2000) and some others were primarily using this medium. At that time however, Le Pho (1907-2001) and Mai Thu (1906-1980) still favoured working with oil on canvas.

Painting on silk could lead to a misunderstanding of the exact medium. In fact, it would be more appropriate to talk about 'painting on silk applied on paperboard'. It is Le Pho himself who explained personally to me in 1991 about his technique which required a certain amount of preparation: take a paperboard, cut a piece of silk to the dimension on which you trace two lines of glue, the first one horizontal and the second one vertical, you cover with the glue every centimetre to the edge and leave the preparation to dry a whole night. Once dried, the preparation creates a fusion between the silk, the paperboard and the glue and provides an original surface to work on. Afterwards, the painter will apply delicately the gouache and the black ink.