A large concave stainless steel sculpture by British-Indian sculptor Anish Kapoor sold for Rs 4.8 crores at Saffronart's Evening Sale of modern and contemporary Indian art in Mumbai. The sale was held on Thursday evening, and it was the first time that a work by Kapoor was auctioned in India.
"Anish Kapoor's sculpture provided a strong anchor for the contemporary section, generating excitement among collectors worldwide," said Saffronart's CEO Hugo Weihe, who along with founder Dinesh Vazirani helmed, the sale.
Mumbai-born Kapoor is famed for his larger than life sculptures at the Grand Palais, Paris and Millennium Park in Chicago among others.
Works by other artists like VS Gaitonde, SH Raza, KH Ara and Sankho Chaudhuri were also sold in the auction, which saw 80 lots go under the hammer. These garnered a total value of Rs 50 crore. A 1971 oil-on-canvas painting by Gaitonde led the auction with a sale price of Rs 7.77 crore, auctioneers said.
Two rare early landscapes by KH Ara sold for over four times their upper estimate and a sculpture by Sankho Chaudhuri sold for Rs 22.8 lakh against an estimate of Rs 5-7 lakh. 'Tree over Mountains', a 1970 oil on canvas by GM Sheikh sold for Rs 1.2 crore, three times its upper estimate.
The top contemporary art performers included TV Santhosh, Anju Dodiya, Atul Dodiya, and Subodh Gupta. "The market is clearly very discerning in terms of quality and rarity. We were delighted to see many exceptional and rare works perform exceedingly well, in some cases doubling and tripling their upper estimates," Weihe said.
"The Saffronart MobileApp broadened the scope for participation, with new bidders successfully placing bids through it," he added.