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This article was first published 16 years ago  » Business » Indian artworks' online auction fetches $3.6 mn

Indian artworks' online auction fetches $3.6 mn

By Dharam Shourie in New York
September 07, 2007 12:12 IST
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An online auction featuring 115 contemporary Indian works has realised over $3.6 million against a pre-sale estimate of $2.8 million, with a healthy addition of new bidders, signalling a widening of buyer base for the art from the subcontinent.

Atul Dodiya's Chickoo Drawing which fetched just over $3.19 lakh topped the lot in the auction by Saffronart which ended on Thursday.

Subodh Gupta followed closely with the next two lots setting auction records for his untitled works that sold for $2.5 lakh and $2.32 lakh each.

The two-day online auction featured 115 lots from 43 contemporary artists and a range of genres and mediums of contemporary Indian art. As many as 97 of the 115 lots were sold and 58 of them fetched higher than the estimated price.

The sales, which are expected to set the trend for the upcoming Indian art auctions during Asia Week in New York, underscore the continued stability of prices following the spectacular rise of the contemporary Indian art market over the last three years.

The seven-year-old Saffronart's total sales this year value over $16.9 million. The auction, said Saffronart, attracted an unprecedented number of around 500
registrants for bidding including collectors from India, United States, Britain, Germany, Hong Kong, the UAE and Australia.

Prices for Indian contemporary artworks have been breaking new barriers every year with the high point being the $1.6 million earned by a Tyeb Mehta work at a 2005 Christie's auction in New York.

Besides paintings, among the top 10 lots were notable works from other genres -- a fibreglass sculpture by G. Ravinder Reddy that sold for $109,250 and Anju Dodiya's work on a velvet mattress that fetched $92,000.

"Indian contemporary artists and their collecting base have become an integral part of the international art market and we are excited to witness this first hand through Saffronart's online auctions," says Minal Vazirani, Co-Founder of Saffronart.

Over the last decade, contemporary and modern Indian art have taken over the market focus once occupied by Indian miniature paintings and other antiquities.

A robust economy, a new moneyed class, and the energetic participation of a global South Asian audience across the map have been responsible for boosting the sales of contemporary Indian art to new highs, according to art analysts.
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Dharam Shourie in New York
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