View full screen - View 1 of Lot 14. Le Thi Luu (1911-1988), Mère et enfant | 黎氏秋 (1911-1988), 母與子.

Property of a lady

Le Thi Luu (1911-1988), Mère et enfant | 黎氏秋 (1911-1988), 母與子

Lot Closed

April 20, 08:44 AM GMT


60,000 - 80,000 EUR

Lot Details


Property of a lady

Le Thi Luu (1911-1988)

Mère et enfant

signed Le Thi Luu (lower left)

ink and colour on silk

Executed circa 1960s

35.8 x 27.5 cm, 14 by 10 7/8 in.


Collection particulière

Le Thi Luu (1911-1988)

Mother and child

signée Le Thi Luu (en bas à gauche)

encre et couleurs sur soie

Peinte vers les années 1960



黎氏秋 (1911-1988)





The Vietnamese-born painter Lê Thị Lựu was one of the first female students at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts d’Indochine and the first Vietnamese woman to pursue a professional career as an artist painter. In her time, the country still bore heavy traces of the cultural heritage of Confucianism: young girls were expected to be obedient and to grow up to be devoted wives and good mothers. Born into a traditional family, wife of a nationalist politician, and a bohemian artist in Paris, Lê Thị Lựu was a fascinating multi-faceted artist.

Born in 1911 in Tho Khoi, Northern Vietnam, and at the age of 14 – against all odds – she decided to become a painter. She began preparing the entrance exam for the École des Beaux-arts de l’Indochine, and was admitted in 1927 at the age of just 16. Once she graduated, she taught painting for seven years at the École des arts appliqués de Gia Dinh, then at the Lycée du Protectorat in Hanoi until 1939.

In the early 1940s, Lê Thị Lựu came to France with her husband, Ngô Thê Tân, as did fellow Vietnamese artists Mai Thứ, Lê Phổ and Vũ Cao Đàm.  

In the 1950s, Lê Thị Lựu immersed herself in her Vietnamese cultural origins, principally painting with ink and gouache on silk. Her favourite themes were Vietnamese women and children, whose radiant faces she portrayed in a particularly realistic way, in a striking contrast with works by her painter friends such as Lê Phổ and Mai Trung Thứ. Her ingenious colour combinations, carefully rendered light, and delicate, sensitive brushstrokes bring us into an idealised world tinged with elegance, serenity and softness.

The mother carries her child in her arms, and her face glows with warm motherly love. Both are dressed and groomed in traditional Vietnamese fashion, and the mother wears a beautiful white silk dress áo dài. The mother and child are central to the composition, bathed in light and adorned with bouquets of flowers. This touching, intimist painting on silk is emblematic of the work of Lê Thị Lựu, suffused with the devoted love between mother and child.