Prominent Indian artists' works part of Christie's South Asian auction



2015-06-26 12:25:46

Prominent Indian artists' works part of Christie's South Asian auction

The key figures who helped unite the two distinct art worlds will be celebrated tomorrow

An incredible collection of South Asian modern and contemporary art is going up for sale tomorrow, June 9, at Christie's in London.

The highlight of the sale is a painting by Indian artist Francis Newton Souza, who played a crucial role in bringing Asian art to the attention of the western world.

The oil painting, simply titled 'Landscape 1958', is expected to sell for as much as $821,000, which shows how sought after art from Asia has become in recent years.

 Asian art, like Souza's 'Landscape', is gaining more recognition

The collection brings works from a large number of increasingly prominent artists into the mainstream, such as those by Tyeb Mehta.

Like Souza, he was part of the Bombay Progressive Artists' Group, who took traditional Post-Impressionist and Cubist techniques and put their own unique, Indian spin on them.

Two years after his death, Tyeb Mehta's oil painting, 'Untitled (Figure on Rickshaw)' is now estimated to sell for $1,313,600 - 1,970,400.

Those familiar with Mehta's pieces will recognise the recurring use of rickshaws throughout his work, in which it becomes more than just a mode of transport, but it becomes deeply symbolic.

 Many pieces, like Mehta's 'Untitled', put an Indian spin on western techniques

It represents the paradoxes which dominate our lives, by becoming a source of pain and labour, but something the figure in the painting needs to survive and make a living from.

By using an item so linked to Indian culture, there is a refreshing contrast to more traditional western works. It makes it a powerful and touching painting, and something which would illuminate any setting.

With the developing art scene in Asian countries, the value of such works will continue to rise as more people become interested in such important figures, and a more universal collectibles market is developed. With this growth in the market, such paintings will be a sound investment.

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Images: Christie's

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