Sotheby's Hong Kong will conduct an evening sale of 106 contemporary Chinese works assembled by Belgian-born collectors Guy and Myriam Ullens on April 3. Estimated to bring between $13- and $17 million, the sale includes key early examples by art stars such as Zhang Xiaogang, Wang Guangyi and Xu Bing.



ZHANG XIAOGANG, FOREVER LASTING LOVE (TRIPTYCH), 1988



Among the top lots of "The Ullens Collection—The Nascence of Avant Garde China" are Zeng Fanzhi's Mask Series No. 4, 1994 (est. $1–$1.3 million), one of the earliest works in his well known Behind Mask Series, and Zhang Xiaogang's large 1988 painting, Forever Lasting Love (Triptych), est. $3.2–3.8 million, featuring a complex scene with numerous figures painted in an almost faux-naïve style that contrasts with his more refined and spare compositions of recent years.

Proceeds from the auction will be used for new acquisitions and in support of the collectors' namesake private museum, which opened in Beijing's 798 Art District in November 2007. "I have reached the stage of my collecting journey where it is time to share some of the wealth of my collection with other collectors. This will enable me to continue to work with new and emerging artists, as has been my passion since I began this collection over twenty years ago," said Ullens in a press statement.