Video>> Artist Xu Beihong rules fall auction
BEIJING, Dec. 6 (Xinhua) -- An auction in Beijing sold a Xu Beihong painting for 266.8 million yuan (42 million U.S. Dollars) on Monday, smashing previous world records for the father of modern Chinese painting.
The traditional Chinese painting, which portrays three farmers cultivating their land with an ox, achieved the highest-ever bid after a fierce bidding war that started at a set price of 150 million yuan.
The previous top price for a work by Xu, who died in 1953 and is best known for his ink painting of horses, was 171 million yuan.
The record-setting painting, which measures 150 by 250 cm, was completed in 1951, his largest work after the founding of the People's Republic of China in 1949.
The magnum opus was initially sent to Guo Moruo, a Chinese literary and cultural celebrity and close friend of Xu, as a gift, and was later purchased by a collector, who commissioned the sale to the Poly Auction House.
In December 2010, another work by Xu, depicting a group of southwestern Chinese residents drawing water from a river, sold for 171 million yuan, which at the time set a world record for modern Chinese paintings and calligraphy.