Best of Indian art up for sale at big-ticket online auction

Best of Indian art up for sale at big-ticket online auction

By OUR CORRESPONDENT | | 3 June, 2016
Installation by Subodh Gupta.

One of the largest modern art auction houses for Indian art, fine art, paintings, collectibles, jewelry, prime properties and antiquities, Saffronart is hosting its Summer Online Auction on  8-9 June 2016. The auction will see 109 works by leading modern and contemporary Indian artists go under the hammer. With a pre-sale estimate of Rs 21.78-29.46 crore, the auction features several works, with significant lots from some of Indian art’s earliest and most important collectors. Several works which are part of the auction have been directly acquired from the artists by early collectors.

Paintings from Important Collectors of Indian Art on Auction this June are as follows: Modern and Contemporary Indian art with excellent provenances,  Amrita Sher-Gil’s Untitled (Zebegény Landscape), 1931, leads the sale at Rs 3.9-5.2 crore. There are also works by V. S. Gaitonde, Ram Kumar, Subodh Gupta, Jitish Kallat. 

Viewings were also organised in Mumbai and London through May and June.

Among the highlights is Lot 26, a 1953 painting by Gaitonde, estimated between Rs 52-65 lakh, from the collection of Bilwa Chowdhury and Eleonore Chowdhury-Haberl. The Chowdhurys were among the earliest collectors of Indian art, and were involved in the nascent stages of the development of Modern Indian art. They have built a significant art collection over the decades, much of which is now in Mumbai and Vienna. The Gaitonde work on auction was part of the retrospective, “Painting as Process, Painting as Life”, at the Guggenheim Museum in New York. Also once part of their collection is Lot 25, an early landscape painting by Ram Kumar, estimated between Rs 65-97.5 lakh, marking his transition to abstract painting.

Lot 61, F. N. Souza’s Untitled (after Titian’s Venus of Urbino and Manet’s Olympia) is an impressive oil on board estimated between Rs 1.1-1.3 crore. Lot 6, a seminal 1959 painting by K. K. Hebbar, titled Tile Factory, is estimated between Rs 16.25-22.75 lakh. Also included in the sale are sculptures by Himmat Shah and Sankho Chaudhuri, and works by masters such as S. H. Raza and M. F. Husain.

Lot 98, a stainless steel installation by Subodh Gupta, estimated between Rs 97.5 lakhs to Rs 1.3 crore, is among the highlights of contemporary Indian art. The selection further includes works by G. Ravinder Reddy, BaijuParthan, Sudarshan Shetty, and JitishKallat.

Hugo Weihe, CEO of Saffronart says, “The sale presents a very attractive and carefully considered selection, that offers something for collectors at all stages and at different price points. Many works have excellent provenances and there are many rare and well priced opportunities for art lovers.”

The auction begins 9 a.m. IST on 8 June, on, and concludes on 9 June. It is preceded by a viewing of select lots in Mumbaiand London.

Founded in 2000, Saffron Art is a platform for fine art and collectibles with over fourteen years of experience in auctions, Saffronart is committed to serving the growing community of Indian collectors, while also creating a cultural bridge to India for both the global Indian diaspora and the international community at large. Saffronart has set several global benchmarks for online auctions and is the subject of a case study at Harvard Business School.

In its 15 year journey, Saffronart has established itself as one of the leading auction houses in the world and has held several highly successful online and live auctions and preview events in cities like Mumbai, New Delhi, New York, London, Singapore and Hong Kong.  In July 2015, Saffronart appointed Hugo Weihe, former International Director of Asian Art at Christie’s, as its new Chief Executive Officer. Weihe oversees Saffronart’s presence in Mumbai, New Delhi, New York and London in building a market for Indian art and antiquities globally.

Responding to the needs of today’s collectors, Saffronart offers a range of services including art advisory, private sales, appraisals and valuations, and specialised art storage.


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