Amid the slowdown in the art world, digital auctions are saving the day


In the case of the Mumbai-based online auction house AstaGuru, which has been online since it was founded, the connection with its target group has not been lost.

“This enabled us to stay in touch with our target group / collectors and to remain relevant in the current time. Our secure and easy remote access features have given our bidders the confidence to continue participating in our auctions. We have had an enthusiastic response to all of our auctions, which means continued demand for art, “said Sneha Gautam, Vice President – Client Relations, AstaGuru to IANSlife.

Ahead of presenting the “Collectors Choice: Modern Indian Art” auction on June 25-26, which will showcase a well-curated range of works by modern Indian masters, AstaGuru claims the auction market is doing well and collectors are very inclined to come in invest important and well presented assets.

“In addition, the number of new bidders is a positive trend and strengthens the market foundation. We expect a healthy and stable development in terms of summer sales, ”it says.

In the context of the upcoming auction, AstaGuru announces that modern Indian art remains the proverbial gem for art collectors with constant demand for works by masters. It is said to have observed this trend along with an increase in first-time bidders, indicating significant interest among new collectors as well. Over half of the works that will be sold in this upcoming auction are market premieres.

Auction highlights include “Ivory Eyes,” an enamel-on-canvas work by Prabhakar Barwe from 1976, valued at Rs 20-30 lakhs. MF Husain’s Untitled from his ‘Calcutta Series’, a large acrylic-on-paper work from around 1990, pays homage to one of his favorite cities, Calcutta, and shows his love and attachment to the city. Estimated at Rs 20-30 lakhs, it is making its auction debut.

Another first time Husain is a rare set of four untitled works, accompanied by a set of four limited edition posters, circa 1985, based on the presented artworks. Also being auctioned for the first time is SH Razas ‘Nidhi’, an acrylic on canvas painting from 1990, valued at Rs 80 lakhs-1.2 crores.

The auction will also include several significant and rare works by the greats of the Bengal School of Art including Jamini Roy, Gaganendranath Tagore and Nandalal Bose, as well as Jogen Choudhury, also works by respected artists such as Ganesh Pyne, Amrita Sher-Gil, KH Ara, Anjolie Ela Menon, KK Hebbar, Krishen Khanna, KG Subramanyan, Akbar Padamsee, Lalu Prasad Shaw and many of them appear in auction for the first time.

Regarding the breakthrough NFT (non-fungible token) art trend taking the overseas art market by storm, Gautam says that Astaguru is not into NFT art. “With the increasingly digital world, there is room for all forms of creativity to coexist, and for the same reason there will be a specific audience for it,” says the spokesman.

(Siddhi Jain can be contacted at [email protected])

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