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Name of buyer who paid $44m for painting revealed

By Lin Qi | | Updated: 2016-12-09 15:22

Name of buyer who paid $44m for painting revealed

Five Drunken Kings on Horses by Ren Renfa [Photo provided to China Daily]

Self-made Chinese real estate developer Zhang Guiping, 65, was reportedly the buyer who paid 303.6 million yuan ($44 million) for a Yuan Dynasty (1271-1368) painting at a Beijing auction on Dec 4.

Court official-painter Ren Renfa's color painting, Five Drunken Kings on Horses, ignited a 40-minute-long bidding war in Beijing Poly Auction's salesroom. The transaction made the work the most expensive Chinese artwork sold at auction so far this year.

Chinese art portal reported that the classical painting was bought by Zhang, chairman of Suning Universal, a company headquartered in Nanjing, Jiangsu province.

The painting will be added to a collection of nearly 3,000 artworks that Zhang has assembled over the past three decades, mostly classical Chinese paintings and calligraphic pieces, and they will be displayed at the Suning Museum, according to the report.

Many of these paintings were acquired at auctions, including Yuan artist Wu Zhen's Bamboo that fetched 77.6 million yuan and Song Dynasty artist Xia Gui's Villa and Snowy Mountains that sold for 27 million yuan, both at a Poly auction in early June. There is also a figure painting Duke Zhuang of Zheng Seeing Mother by modern master Fu Baoshi which went for 80 million yuan at a Beijing auction last November.

The Artron report said the museum will have two branches, one in Shanghai and the other in Nanjing. The Shanghai space will open to the public in early 2017.

Zhang and his family were ranked 91 on Forbes' China Rich List of 2016, with a net worth of $2.5 billion.

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