Art

Strong demand for traditional Indian art at Saffronart sales

Strong demand for traditional Indian art at Saffronart sales

Published:18 April 2018

With a total sale value of Rs 4.39 crores, Saffronart's recently held spring auctions -- 'Classical Indian Art', and 'Folk and Tribal Art' auctions have achieved new records.

New Delhi | With a total sale value of Rs 4.39 crores, Saffronart's recently held spring auctions -- 'Classical Indian Art', and 'Folk and Tribal Art' auctions have achieved new records.The Classical Indian Art auction, held on April 11, featured a variety of sculptures, miniature paintings, Company School paintings and rare books. It acheived a total of Rs 3.73 crores.A circa 10th century Vamana Vishnu from Rajasthan sold for Rs 2 crores, four times its upper estimate of Rs 50 lakhs, setting a record for a stone sculpture sold at auction in India.

The sculpture shows a portly Vamana decked in intricately carved jewellery, surrounded by attendants.An 11th-12th century 'Head of Vishnu' from Madhya Pradesh/Uttar Pradesh doubled its lower estimate of Rs 15 lakhs, selling for Rs 31.8 lakhs.The head exemplifies the superb and intricate detailing of Chandela sculpture.Among the miniature paintings depicting the avatars of Vishnu, a folio from the Gita Govinda series sold for Rs 8 lakhs.The circa 1720 painting from Mewar shows Krishna awaiting Radha amidst lush foliage.Two paintings by Patna School artist Hulas Lal were among the top ten lots.

'Holi Scene' and 'Women Carousing', published by Mildred Archer in her book Patna Paintings in 1947, sold for Rs 7.77 lakhs and Rs 6.57 lakhs respectively, surpassing their lower estimates of Rs 5 lakhs."We are excited to see a strong upward trend in collecting traditional Indian art, both Classical and Folk and Tribal."Both sales saw new records, reinforcing the potential of categories that have long been undervalued," Hugo Weihe, CEO, Saffronart, said. The "Living Traditions: Folk and Tribal Art" auction, held on April 12, achieved a total sale value of Rs 65 lakhs.Mithila art emerged strongly in the auction, demonstrating a growing interest in the art form.Sita Devi's Untitled (Baghai Devata) sold for Rs 9 lakhs, more than doubling its lower estimate of Rs 4 lakhs, setting a record for a work by a Mithila artist sold at auction.

Jagdamba Devi's Untitled (Krishna with Gopis), and Untitled (Durga) from circa 1970s, were among the top ten lots.Both paintings exceeded their estimates, selling for Rs 3.74 lakhs and Rs 3.35 lakhs respectively.Among the sculptures, 19th and 20th century bronzes from South India achieved good results.An ornate bronze ritual mirror from Karnataka/Kerala sold for Rs 5.64 lakhs, against a lower estimate of Rs 5.5 lakhs.A Pilichamundi mask from Karnataka/Kerala sold for Rs 3.2 lakhs, crossing its lower estimate of Rs 3 lakhs.


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