Saffronart’s Autumn Online Auction of Indian art fetches Rs. 17.6 crores (USD 3.7 million)

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Saffronart’s Autumn Online Auction of Indian art fetches Rs. 17.6 crores (USD 3.7 million) with strong resurgence in modern art

Attracts bids totaling Rs. 3.4 crore (USD 700 K) via the new Saffronart mobile bidding application

• 77% of the 95 Modern and Contemporary Indian works sold, grossing an impressive total of Rs. 17.6 crores (USD 3.7 million)
• Value of average lots sold increase by 41% compared to the June auction
• 47% of lots sold exceed their higher estimates
• A successful sale with competitive bidding from India and international buyers in the Middle East, USA, East Asia and South-East Asia
• Eight lots auctioned for more than Rs. 1 crore, including works by Akbar Padamsee, F.N. Souza, M.F. Husain, Manjit Bawa, Subodh Gupta and S.H. Raza

Mumbai, September 14, 2009: Saffronart, the leading auctioneer of modern and contemporary Indian art, closed its Autumn Online Auction 2009 on an impressive note with 77 percent of the lots featured in the auction selling for a total of Rs. 17.6 crores (USD 3.7 million). 47 percent of the lots sold exceeded their pre-sale higher estimates.

The auction also attracted a high number bids from clients using Saffronart’s new mobile bidding application, totaling Rs. 3.4 crore (USD 700 K). This figure underlines the significance of Saffronart’s technological platform in making the auction experience more accessible to collectors around the world.

The top five lots sold in the auction included Akbar Padamsee’s ‘Untitled’ at Rs. 1.87 crore (USD 391,000); F.N. Souza’s ‘Old City Landscape’ at Rs. 1.82 crore (USD 379,500); M.F. Husain’s ‘Untitled’ at Rs. 1.58 crore (USD 329,671); Manjit Bawa’s ‘Untitled’ at Rs. 1.26 crore (USD 264,500) and F.N. Souza’s ‘Man with Baked Features in a Black Coat’ at Rs. 1.04 crore (USD 218,500). Works by Subodh Gupta, Krishen Khanna, K.H. Ara and Sudarshan Shetty also attracted healthy bidding.

Dinesh Vazirani, CEO and Co-founder, Saffronart, said, “Saffronart’s Autumn Online Auction was one of the most successful sales of 2009. The results have exceeded our expectations with eight works selling for more than Rs. 1 crore. The competitive bidding at each closing clearly demonstrated that the Indian art market has regained momentum, with prices of high quality artworks appreciating significantly. The market responded well to works of art by the modernists at attractive estimates. This sale also attracted a range of new buyers from across the world, ready to compete with established collectors for Indian artworks of a high quality and with impressive provenance.”

“The auction also reemphasized Saffronart’s technological innovation in bringing auctions to collectors around the world, through the popularity of our new mobile bidding application which enabled a large number of on-the-move collectors to successfully bid at this auction”, he added.

Known for its leadership in technological innovation, Saffronart launched its mobile bidding application on 3 September 2009, making it the first fine-art auction house globally to launch mobile bidding. It includes all the features of website bidding such as placing bids and proxy bids, viewing bid history, creating a ‘My Auction’ page, viewing lots nearing close and searching the auction catalogue, amongst others.

Saffronart also unveiled an enhanced version of its “Quick View” auction catalogue, offering a convenient one-screen view of the entire catalogue. This browsing option lets clients enlarge images on the fly, add lots to their personalized ‘My Auction’ page and print it to a custom PDF catalogue, and zoom in on high resolution images of each artwork.

The Autumn Online Auction featured 95 works by 52 modern and contemporary Indian artists. The sale saw unprecedented participation from collectors across the world, and grossed Rs. 17.6 crores (USD 3.7 Million) in sales. Notable among the artists featured in the sale were F.N. Souza, M.F. Husain, Akbar Padamsee, Subodh Gupta, Manjit Bawa and S.H. Raza.

Top lots at Saffronart’s Autumn Online Auction, 2009 included

Akbar Padamsee (Lot 49)
Untitled (1995)
Winning Bid: Rs. 1,87,68,000
USD 391,000

F.N. Souza (Lot 6)
Old City Landscape (1957)
Winning Bid: Rs. 1,82,16,000
USD 379,500

M.F. Husain (Lot 40)
Untitled (c. 1970s)
Winning Bid: Rs. 1,58,24,184
USD 329,671

Manjit Bawa (Lot 19)
Untitled (1992)
Winning Bid: Rs. 1,26,96,000
USD 264,500

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