Sunday, September 07, 2008

Saffronart's Autumn Online Auction breaks new ground

CJ: Rupali Ghadge

SAFFRONART CLOSED its exciting Autumn Online Auction of Contemporary Indian Art, registering a total sale value of approximately Rs 29 crores (US $7.2 million), about 72 per cent in excess of the low estimate. Hosted on Saffronart’s new technology platform which serves up an innovative and secure user interface, this sale featured several genres of Contemporary Indian Art including painting, sculpture, photography and installation.
At this sale, world auction records were set for 18 Indian artists, including TV Santhosh, Anju Dodiya, Sudhir Patwardhan, GR Iranna, Mithu Sen, Anita Dube, Sudarshan Shetty, Anil Revri, Tushar Joag, Manisha Parekh, Debanjan Roy, Phaneendra Nath Chaturvedi, Kishor Shinde, Chitra Ganesh, Ravikumar Kashi, Ram Bali Chauhan, Mayyur Kailash Gupta and Nicola Durvasula.
Within the first hours of the auction, several lots crossed their higher estimates, including TV Santhosh’s diptych, featured on the cover of the catalogue, and works by Subodh Gupta, Riyas Komu, Anandajit Ray, GR Iranna, Tushar Joag, Dhananjay Singh and George Martin, setting the pace for the exciting bidding activity that continued till the last seconds of the sale.
At this auction, over 575 registered bidders from all over the world competed against each other for the works of some of India’s most talented artists. The top five lots of this Saffronart auction were Subodh Gupta’s Idol Thief I, selling for Rs 4.28 crores (US $1.07 million); Subodh Gupta’s Saat Samundra Par (Across the Seven Seas), selling for Rs 3.4 crores (US $850,000); TV Santhosh’s When your Target Cries for Mercy, selling for Rs. 2.8 crores (US $701,500); Anju Dodiya’s The Site, selling for Rs 1.06 crores (US $267,375); and Sudhir Patwardhan’s The Clearing, selling for Rs 93,15,000 (US $232,875).
Online art auctions, pioneered by Saffronart, have transformed the landscape of Modern and Contemporary Indian Art, making it accessible to participants across geographies and opening it to a wide spectrum of international art lovers. Other Articles by Rupali Ghadge Saffronart’s September annual on-line auction Established by Dinesh and Minal Vazirani, Saffronart has set global benchmarks for online art auctions. The company’s innovative business model has prompted the Harvard Business School to write and teach a case study on Saffronart.
Saffronart has been instrumental in fundamentally changing the market for Modern and Contemporary Indian Art. With its professionalism and transparency, it has contributed to the burgeoning international and domestic interest in Indian art, and in the process established itself as the leader in Modern and Contemporary Indian Art auctions globally.
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