You don't have Bidding Access. Please upload KYC in My Account or contact Astaguru.
AstaGuru June 2020 Modern Indian Art No Reserve Auction – An overview.
By Sakshi Batavia
19 Jun 2020
AstaGuru began its journey with the category of No Reserve auction in the year 2013. Since then we have conducted a total of 11 auctions within this category. To understand what a No Reserve auction entails we need to first discuss the meaning of reserve price. It is the minimum amount that the seller is willing to accept for any given item. If the said item doesn’t meet the minimum reserve price then the seller is under no obligation to sell the artwork. In a normal auction if the bid doesn’t cross the lower estimate then the item up for sale will not be sold. The No Reserve auction is an attractive category exactly because it does away with this reserve price and the bidding for all the artworks at AstaGuru starts at Rs 20,000.
Our No Reserve category serves as an excellent entry point for new art collectors who might just be testing the waters and making the decision to start their art collection. It also serves as a great opportunity for the existing collectors to diversify their interest in different artists by starting small. Over the past decade AstaGuru has grown hand in hand with the increasing value and demand for Modern Indian Art in the market. We make sure that the catalogues presented by us are carefully curated and focus on key, career-defining works of the respective artists.
The upcoming No Reserve auction scheduled for the 27th and 28th of June will not disappoint with artists like M.F Husain, SH Raza, FN Souza to name a few as part of our catalogue. The auction is right around the corner and we have some exceptional artworks going under the hammer. To begin with we have works from six out of the nine artists that were declared as ‘National Treasures’. We have three works by Jamini Roy showcasing his diverse journey. For example, Lot 1 showcases his early still life work before he moved on to his minimalist work with the influence of the Kalighat paintings as can be seen in Lot 3. We also have two sketches by Nandalal Bose combined within Lot No 4. The two sketches that are done in pencil on card showcase a fortune teller in one sketch and a ticket inspector in another. For Lot No. 5 we have an interesting handwritten note by Rabindranath Tagore. The pretext of the handwritten note is ostensibly a witty response to requests/demands for honorarium raised by some of the teachers of “Santiniketan”. Rabindranath Tagore, the poet adopts an allegorical approach wherewith he addresses the concerns with deft wordplay. The note is dated as the 18th day of the month “Agrahayan”, in the year 1332 as per the “Bangabda” which is the Bengali Calendar. As per the Gregorian calendar, the note is dated 3rd December 1925. Next on the list is an artwork titled ‘Ladak’ by Nicholas Roerich. He was enraptured with the Himalayas and travelled extensively throughout the North of India, including Ladak. This sketch portrays his love for the mountains and his adventurous spirit. Another artist that made a significant contribution to the world of Indian Art and is a part of the ‘National Treasure’ list is Amrita Sher-Gil. We have two works by her for the upcoming auction. Lot no 8 is a study on horses and Lot No 9 is a charcoal on paper artwork showcasing the female nude. Last but not the least we have an artwork by the modernist Sailoz Mookherjea. In the 1957 work that we have in our catalogue Mookherjea portrays a man sitting by a tree looking out in the distance in his characteristic impressionistic manner.
These were the artworks by artists that were declared National Treasures by the Government of India but this is just a very small glimpse of the diverse nature of our catalogue. We also have some renowned names in our catalogue from the Progressive Artists Group (PAG). The artists belonging to this group were at the forefront of the Modernist movement in India. The catalogue includes works by SH Raza, FN Souza, MF Husain, Akbar Padamsee, Kirshen Khanna and K.H. Ara. We have also included some sculptures by some exemplary artists. Starting with the sculptor Meera Mukherjee we have two of her works going under the hammer this auction. Lot No. 21 titled ‘Rooster’ which showcases the underlying playfulness of her artistic practice and Lot No 54 which is a terracotta work titled ‘Tree’. Another important work in this section is Lot No. 35 the bust of Rabindranath Tagore by Somnath Hore. As a way to pay homage to his mentor, Hore decided to create four such sculptures of Rabindranath Tagore. This bust showcases Hore’s characteristic style of portraying contorted figures with a keen understanding of shadow and light. We also have some other sculptures by Himmat Shah, K.S Radhakrishnan, Krishen Khanna, Sakti Burman and Akbar Padamsee. This is just a brief overview of the upcoming No Reserve auction at AstaGuru.
Watch out for our next blog where we discuss in detail some of the key lots in the catalogue. The auction is scheduled for the 27th and 28th of June. Head to our website http://www.astaguru.com to view the entire catalogue and place your bids.