Shen Zhou landscape paintings beat estimate by 768%

A collection of landscape paintings by Shen Zhou led Sotheby's Fine Classical Chinese Paintings auction in Hong Kong earlier today.

The lot soared past an estimate of $257,920 to make $2.2m, an increase of 768%.

Shen Zhou Landscape
Shen Zhou founded the Wu School in 15th century China

Zhou (1427-1509) was the founder of the Wu School, a collective of amateur artists in China who combined painting and literature.

One of the school's key principals was that art should be primarily a means of self-expression and should relate directly to the artist's own experiences - a new concept in Chinese painting.

It follows on from the recent sale of Shen Zhou's Enjoying the Mid-Autumn Moon in the Bamboo Villa, which made $2.1m in September.

A work of calligraphy attributed to Song dynasty renaissance man Su Shi (1037-1101) achieved $938,829.

Titled Speech of Scholar Returning Home, it's one of more than 3,000 surviving scrolls in Su Shi's hand.

Su wrote widely on a range of topics and in a variety of styles, from poetry and literature to essays on subjects like statecraft and ironworking.

One of the most interesting aspects of Chinese art is that collectors will often add their stamps on to the scroll to show their ownership.  

This scroll displays 29 handstamps, indicating that it has passed through that many collections over almost 1,000 years.  

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