Sabavala sets price record at Saffronart art summer sale

New Delhi, June 21 (Calcutta Tube) Eighty-eight-year-old artist Jahangir Sabavala, one of the early modern masters, set a new price record for his work, ‘The Casuarina Line 1’ at Rs.1.7 crore ($374,900) at Saffronart’s summer online global auction June 16-17, a communique issued by the auction house Monday said.

Sabavala, born in Mumbai in 1922, has studied in some of the best art colleges across the world. After initial training from the J.J. School of Arts in Mumbai in 1944, he went to the Heatherly School of Art in London in 1947, to the Academic Andre Lhote in Paris and to the Academic de la Grande Chaumiere in 1957. He is known for his impressionist and cubist texture, forms and colours.

An untitled composition by M.F. Husain grossed Rs.1.06 crore ($235,750) becoming the most expensive art work sold via mobile phone bid.

Bulk of the winning bids set market benchmarks with S.H. Raza’s ‘La Provence Noir’ selling for Rs.3.3 crore ($746,111) and Subodh Gupta’s untitled canvas fetching Rs.2.2 crore ($494,500).

Husain’s ‘8 horses’ sold for Rs.2 crore ($442,750) while V.S. Gaitonde’s untitled composition raked Rs.5 crore ($327,750). Contemporary artist N.S. Harsha’s ‘We Don’t Know Why We Are Stitching Plants’ notched a price of Rs.1.27 crore ($282,716).

The auction sold 81 per cent of the 90 lots by 45 artists on offer at Rs.30 crore ($6.7 million).

Dinesh Vazirani, chief executive officer and co-founder of Saffronart said: ‘The result of the Saffronart auctions demonstrate that the Indian art market is now on a sustained growth path. We offered exceptional collection of works by leading modern and contemporary artists.’

Commenting on the high winning bids, Vazirani said: ‘The results point to a broad level of interest across the auction. At least 53 per cent of the lots sold for higher estimates and 10 per cent of the lots sold for over a crore each. Beyond the exceptional participation from existing collectors, the season also witnessed a number of new registrations and bidders engaging a wider group of existing collectors.’

Bidders using i-phones and Blackberrys, contributed to winning bids totalling Rs.4.2 crore ($934,272).

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