Nineteen paintings done by King Ham Nghi during his exile are set to be auctioned in France on September 22.
A spokesperson for the Department of Foreign Affairs of Thua Thien Hue Province said Friday: "Dr Amandine Dabat, a descendant of King Ham Nghi, informed us that 19 paintings by the king would be sold ... by the Drouot auction house."
"Soleil couchant sur la campagne" (Sunset in the Countryside) painted in 1911 is among the 19 artworks by King Ham Nghi to be auctioned in France.
Dabat said the paintings were part of a private collection of a descendant of Henri Aubé, a French soldier.
According to the auction house, Aubé and the king might have become acquainted through a mutual connection, Henri de Gondrecourt. Ham Nghi then gave Aubé the paintings as a symbol of friendship.
The starting bids for the paintings range from 3,000 to 5,000 euros ($3,300-$5,400).
"King Ham Nghi’s paintings showcased his artistic ability and the historical and political background of the times," art expert Ngo Kim Khoi said.
Ham Nghi was the eighth of 13 kings of the Nguyen dynasty to rule in Hue, Annam, between 1802 and 1945. He was crowned in 1884 at the age of 13, but ruled for just one year before being deposed.
In 1888, The French exiled him to Algeria, then a French colony.
He then allowed to leave Algeria and visit other countries, including France, under the supervision of the French goverment.
During his time in France, the former king studied art at a workshop run by Maurius Reynard, a well-known artist. He also studied sculpture.
He died of cancer in 1943.
Vietnam’s ambassador to France, Dinh Toan Thang, on behalf of the Hue Monuments Conservation Center, received another painting by the king from his descendants in December last year.
Named "Ho Tren Day Nui Alps" (Lake of the Alps), the painting was estimated to be created between 1900 and 1903.
It was brought back to Hue and is on display at the Hue Museum of Royal Antiquities.