AstaGuru to auction M F Husain’s painting from ‘Calcutta Series’ at Collectors Choice: Modern Indian Art
Online auction featuring 120 works spanning the spectrum of modern Indian art.
AstaGuru, India’s premium online auction house, will present Collectors Choice: Modern Indian Art on June 25 – 26, which will showcase a well curated line-up of works by modern Indian masters. Out of the 120 lots, all of which will be offered without a reserve price, more than 50 per cent of the lots will be appearing in an auction for the very first time.
The modern Indian art remains the proverbial jewel in the crown for art collectors with consistent demand for works by Masters. AstaGuru has witnessed this trend, along with an increase in first time bidders indicating a significant interest among new collectors as well.
Sunny Chandiramani, vice president-client relations, AstaGuru said: “We are excited to present another edition of AstaGuru’s Collectors Choice Online auction. The artworks curated in this auction takes one through the realms of each of the masters’ individual artistic journey. This auction enables a collector to own a rare piece of work that represents significant milestones in the artists’ distinctive careers at a no reserve price, presenting a great opportunity for anyone looking to own a masterpiece. This auction also allows seasoned collectors to enhance their collections of some of the great masters with unique gems, from their artistic oeuvre, some which have been purchased directly from the artists by the seller.”
Some of the key highlights of the auction include, M F Husain’s Untitled (Lot 88) from his ‘Calcutta Series’ a large acrylic on paper work, circa 1990 pays homage to one of his favourite cities, Kolkata, and demonstrates his love and bond with the city. Estimated at $28,169 – $42,254 the artwork is borne out of Husain’s admiration for the people of Kolkata, their inclination and ability to appreciate art. Making its auction debut, this artwork has been previously exhibited as a part of ‘Calcutta 300 - From Job Charnock’s Kolikata to Satyajit Ray’s Mahanagar’ at Tata Centre, Kolkata, 1990 and ‘Calcutta 300: M F Husain’ solo exhibition at Vadehra Art Gallery, Delhi, 1994 - 1995.
Another prominent work by MF Husain that marks its presence in an auction for the first time is a rare set of 4 untitled works, (Lot 109). This set of four watercolour on mount board lots, is accompanied by a set of four limited edition posters, circa 1985, which are based on the presented artworks. The artwork was acquired from the collection of a prominent collector from Kolkata who sourced these unique works directly from the artist.
‘Ivory Eyes’ (Lot 29) an enamel on canvas work by Prabhakar Barwe from the year 1976, which is also the cover lot of the auction catalogue. Estimated at $28,169 – $42,254, Barwe’s paintings emerged from the perfect conjunction of form, space and mystery, hereby creating a new pictorial association. A symbolist abstractionist, from the JJ School of Art, Barwe’s paintings reflect the voyage he undertook in search for pictorial purity and balance.
Another key highlight of this auction is Untitled, (Lot 102) an oil on canvas by Jagdish Swaminathan from his signature ‘Bird Tree and Mountain Series’. Created in 1983, this series translates the artist’s affinity towards etching a pictorial representation of form, in its purest and most refined state. In order to frame his images part of this series, he encountered and processed phenomena in its virginal state. Estimated between $56,338– $84,507), this particular work which is executed with a bright red background, showcases his inspiration and intention to preserve and present formal qualities of Indian miniatures.
Ram Kumar’s Untitled (Lot 113) is another important oil on canvas work from the year 1999 that is also making its auction debut. Estimated at $56,338 – 70,426, this is an important figurative work from the master who is generally associated with abstraction. However the artist started with figurative works during the early 1950s and seldom through the course of his practice, intermittently revisited figurative style works, making this work rather rare.
Another unique work in this auction, is by another well known master from the Progressive Artists’ Group (PAG), F N Souza. ‘Fan Dancer’ (Lot 110), oil on canvas, 1962, is from a very significant period in the artist’s career and has been part of prominent exhibitions in New York, India as well as in London. Estimated at $112,676 – $169,014, this work is definitely one of the most coveted pieces featuring in the auction.
Also marking its presence in an auction for the first time is S H Raza’s, ‘Nidhi’, (Lot 117) an acrylic on canvas painting, from the year 1990, estimated at $ 112,676– $169, 014). Known for his mastery of geometric designs, Raza brings together fluidly the five key symbols of fire and water, earth, wind and sky. Governed by the essence of equilibrium, he yearned to realise the characteristics of colours and shapes, hereby striking a balance between the space that they occupied in tow with their seminal properties. This lot is anticipated to be highly sought after in this auction.
The auction will also include multiple significant and rare works by the greats from the Bengal School of Art including Jamini Roy, Gaganendranath Tagore and Nandalal Bose, as well Jogen Choudhury, along with works by distinguished artists such as Ganesh Pyne, Amrita Sher- Gil, K.H Ara, Anjolie Ela Menon, K.K. Hebbar, Krishen Khanna, K. G. Subramanyan, Akbar Padamsee, and Lalu Prasad Shaw, many of them appearing in an auction for the first time.