Thursday, April 9, 2015

Painting Beyond the Margins

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While an exhibition from about and for Kashmir raises funds for the flood victims of the valley, another raises awareness about marginalities of gender, sexuality class, ecology, aggression and conflict
By Georgina Maddox

 A work by Malik Sajad
Sameer Hussain’s painted light bulbs showcase striking images of Pervez Musharraf and George Bush, Bhagat Singh and Ayatollah Khomeini. An untrained artist Hussain taps into popular culture and creates these topical ‘Arte Povera’ bulbs that are mini narratives captured in used blubs—a metaphor for used bodies whose “souls” have long departed; Showkat Katju’s chillingly beautiful miniature ‘coffin’, resembles the crafted and decorative papier-mâché boxes of Kashmir. Tongue-in-cheek Katju laments the early demise of the creative crafts in the war-torn valley.   
Heart-wrenching photographs of destitute Kashmiri children are contrasted with beautiful, yet poignant landscapes of the valley of Kashmir painted by Masood Hussain. On a table lie a curious collection of objects crafted out of stone, wood and clay that hint to the slowly disappearing ‘Kashmiri’ culture. Meanwhile Ritu Kamath and Mujtaba Rizvi comment on the half- widows of Kashmir; where Rizivi’s moving portrait of an elderly woman indicates that the wait has been a life-long one, and Ritu Kamath’s woman has morphed into a chair, that sits and waits for something to happen that will change her solitary existence and sense of ennui. Graphic artist Malik Sajad charming illustrative maps show a very different understanding of Pakistan occupied Kashmir while Anindita Bhattacharya’s complex and layered understanding of the same territory weaves a story of a lonely and alienated planet.
These are only some of the works one glimpsed at re-start an exhibition and fundraiser auction for the flood victims in the Kashmir Valley. It showcases contemporary art from, about and for Kashmir, at Vis-à-Vis an art and lifestyle space in Chattarpur’s DLF Farms. The show features well known names like Veer Munshi, Rajinder Tiku and Masood Hussain as well as emerging contemporary artists like Mujtaba Rizvi and Malik Sajad. Delhi artists include Puneet Kaushik, Anindita Bhattacharya, Ritu Kamath and Satadru Sovan among others.


 A work by SameerHussain
“Re-start is a testament to the creativity and resilience of artists—who despite years of conflict, and the recent sorrow from the devastation of the floods— have found courage and renewal in their creative work,” says Myna Mukherjee, Curator and Director of Engendered, an arts and human rights organisation based in New York with a Delhi chapter. Mukherjee has partnered with Gallery Art Quest and Gallerie One in Kashmir that has sourced a majority of the artwork from Kashmir. The exhibition and auction will donate 80 per cent of its sales to the flood victims of Kashmir.
They say that necessity is the mother of invention and in the instance of this exhibition it is more than true. In a heroic example of how, despite the paucity of materials or funds and in the face of violence and censorship and natural calamity, artists from Kashmir have created artwork out of various materials like stone, wood, clay and other discarded objects. An exhibition like this re-enforces the belief in the triumph of the human spirit over adversity. In fact the therapeutic and healing power of art has touched the lives of one of the Kashmiri artists to such a degree that he gave up his activities as an arms and tactical trainer at a insurgent camp.


 A work by Rajinder Tickoo
Veer Munshi, a Kashmiri Pandit living in exile believes, “It is important that artists working in conflict zones bring their art out of the valley and it is seen in different contexts. Many of them have not shown in Delhi and one gets exposed to the newer generation besides the known names.” Munshi’s own works consist of a photograph of a cluster of tin-roofed dwellings and a red ‘Danger Line’ cutting across the image. “I am not speaking in terms of the obvious danger, which is insurgents, but more about the congested living conditions, the encroachment on forested land, which has in fact led to the floods. We must constantly remind people of the vast environmental risk we face as a result of such degradation,” says Munshi. His forgotten letterbox sculpture nostalgically recalls his time in Kashmir when corresponded with friends, during the pre-email days.  
“We see sporadic representation of Kashmiri art of and on, however re-start will be one of the first consolidated exhibitions showing this large volume of contemporary art from Kashmir, making this one of the more unique and ambitious projects, I have worked on in the last 6 years” says Mujtaba Rizvi, Managing Director of Kashmir Art Quest and Galerie One.
Alongside this survey show, Mukherjee has curated another exhibition housed in the second gallery of Vis-à-Vis. Titled The Unbearable Closeness of Being, (UCB) it links together issues of gender, race, sexuality, class, ecology, aggression, conflict and geopolitical boundaries.
“UCB is an exhibition of incredibly diverse artists whose works show their deepest selves and explore themes of marginality, identity, home, otherness and belonging,” says Mukherjee. Anita Dube shares her deeply personal suite of erotic graphite on paper drawings, which are immediate and raw, while Waswo X Waswo’s sepia toned, hand-tinted photographs pun on nostalgic family portraits by placing unconventional sitters before the lens. Puneet Kaushik's exquisite miniatures are a lyrical examination of othered bodies, that knows of its difference and yet feels perfectly in sync with nature. Satadru Sovan uses architecture and urban lore to comment on male sexuality in his light boxes that combine high-art and kitsch. Chintan Upadhyay’s unveils for the first time his bold erotic drawings from his Manga series as a comment against censorship both on the personal and professional front, while Nabonita Saha’s eco-feminist canvas contemplates the disappearing forests while addressing the important and topical issue of farmer-land rights.
Anindita Bhattacharya’s uses her canvases to examine how a prevailing space of guns and grenades oozes machismo and leaves the women, veiled and cautious on the margins of outdoor spaces.
Meanwhile Kumar Ranjan Ray from Jharkhand’s tribal belt, uses humor to talk about the policing of private spaces, Israeli artist Achia Anzi’s looks at the notion of home and destinations while reflecting on the infinite journey; his installation of stones and concrete pieces of various sizes references protest, while examining concepts of nationalism and patriotism. Pratap Morey’s elegant abstract work comments on the shrinking spaces of his domicile, Mumbai, where people have continued to live between the margins of designated spaces, in the ever-growing slums.
The two exhibitions may be viewed in conjunction to each other, even though they address separate issues from different perspectives.

The shows premier on the April 11 and will continue till May 11. Opening night features Folk Rock band Folka Dots who sing about female sexuality and desire among other things and Sufi Rock duo Alif (Highway 61, featured recently on MTV Coke Studio) followed by delicious Kashmiri dinner. 

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

RESTART- Fundraiser for Kashmir Flood Victims, The Unbearable Closeness of Being

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Engendered proudly announces and invites you to two exhibitions & a music concert Re‐start, The Unbearable Closeness of Being and a music concert feat.
Re‐start
Date: April 11 to May 11, 2015
Time: 6 pm onwards
Venue: Vis a Vis, 2 North Drive,
DLF Chattarpur Farms,
Khasra No: 755/212, New Delhi 110074
An exhibition and fundraiser auction of contemporary art from, about and for Kashmir, 'Re‐start' is a survey show that will bring together some of the leading and emerging artists of Kashmir along with other artists based in New Delhi. The exhibition will provide an unique insight into the contemporary art practices of Kashmir and will showcase artworks in diverse media ranging from paintings and sculptures to found material and photo collages. Participants include famed artists like Veer Munshi, Rajinder Tiku and Masood Hussain as well as emerging contemporary artists like Mujtaba Rizvi and Malik Sajad. Delhi artists include Puneet Kaushik, Anindita Bhattacharya, Ritu Kamath, Satadru Sovan among others. It is curated by Myna Mukherjee, Director of Engendered.
“We see sporadic representation of Kashmiri art of and on, however re‐start will be one of the first consolidated exhibitions showing this volume of contemporary art from Kashmir, making this one of the more unique and ambitious projects I have worked on in the last six years,” says Mujtaba Rizvi, CEO of Gallerie One, Kashmir's only contemporary art centre, and the sourcing partner for the majority of artwork for re‐start.
Says curator Mukherjee: “Re‐start is a testament to the creativity and resilience of artists—who despite years of conflict, and the recent sorrow from the devastation of the floods— have found courage and renewal in their creative work.”
The event is being organized by Loudbeetle.in and Kashmir Art Quest inassociation with Engendered and STIR. "Over 80 per cent of profits will go towards the flood victims in Kashmir", says Ahmer Khan of Loudbeetle.
Participating artists are Veer Munshi, Rajinder Tiku, Masood Hussain, Malik Sajid, Adil Khan, Suhail Sofi, Shaiqa Mohi, Shabir Mirza, Iftikar Jaffer, Jystona Sing, MA Mehboob, Arshid Sauleh, Shafi Chaman, Showkat Katju, Saumya Gupta, Puneet Kaushik, Sameer Hussain, Blabir Krishen, Ritu Kamat, Satyakam Saha, Waseem Mushtaq, Naushaad Gayoor, Syed Mujtaba Rizvi and Anindita Bhattacharya. Special Guest Nilima Sheikh.


The Unbearable Lightness of Being: Difference, belonging & intersecting marginalities
Date: April 11 to May 11
Time: 6 pm onwards
Venue: Vis a Vis, 2 North Drive,
DLF Chattarpur Farms,
Khasra No: 755/212, New Delhi 110074
011‐26809377/78/79
An exhibition of incredibly diverse artists whose works show their deepest selves and explore themes of marginality, identity, home, otherness and belonging; Anita Dube shares her deeply personal suite of erotic graphite on paper drawings, which are immediate and raw, while Waswo X Waswo’s sepia toned, hand‐tinted photographs pun on nostalgic family portraits by placing unconventional sitters before the lens. Puneet Kaushik's work is a lyrical examination of othered bodies while Satadru Sovan uses architecture and urban lore to comment on male sexuality. Chintan Upadhyay’s unveils his bold erotic drawings from his Manga series as a comment against censorship while Nabonita Saha’s eco‐feminist canvas contemplates the disappearing forest and the topical issue of farmer‐land rights. Anindita Bhattacharya’s uses her canvases to examine how a prevailing space of guns and grenades oozes machismo. Meanwhile Kumar Ranjan Ray uses humor to talk about the policing of private spaces, Israeli artist Achia Anzi’s looks at the notion of home and destinations while reflecting on the infinite journey.
Participating artists are Anita Dube, Waswo x Waswo, Chintan Upadhyay, Nabonita, Anindita Bhattacharya, Puneet Kaushik , Satatdru Sovan, Pratap Morey, Syed Mujtaba Rizvi and Achia Anzi.
As a parallel to the exhibition the opening features Folk Rock band Folka Dots who sing about female sexuality and desire among other things. Also, will feature a Sufi Rock trio Alif (Highway 61, featured recently on MTV Coke Studio) followed by delicious Kashmiri Dinner.

Saturday, March 7, 2015

Rare Himalayan Masterpieces Lead Asia Week at Bonhams

Indian, Himalayan 4 - A gilt copper alloy figure of Chakrasamvara Tibet, 15th century
 

New York:  Himalayan masterpieces from the 14th to 16th century will lead Bonhams’ Indian, Himalayan & Southeast Asian Art auction on March 16, 2015.
The star lot is a magnificent lineage portrait thangka of the Ninth and Tenth Abbots from Ngor monastery from a distinguished private European collection. New to the market, it is estimated at between $800,000 and $1,200,000. The thangka, made circa 1557, is an extremely rare example of 16th century painting from Central Tibet. The distemper-on-cloth work is boldly colored using a primary palette with heavy gold outlining and presents the central figures seated next to each other. The composition is framed by the abbots of the Ngor order and is inscribed at the bottom, commemorating the ascendancy of the Eleventh abbot. Unlike other portrait thangkas, this one has a deeper, secondary purpose; the positioning of the three deities directly above the two abbots suggest that it was made to help initiate the viewer into the esoteric teachings of the central deity, Rakta Yamari. Whereas most Ngor portraits were part of sets, this suggests that the Bonhams’ double portrait was a special commission.
An outstanding gilt copper alloy figure of the prominent composite deity, Chakrasamvara, expected to fetch between $500,000 and $700,000, comes from the same private European collection. The masterpiece depicts the eponymous twelve-armed male deity and the female deity, Vajravarahi, locked in a passionate embrace. He embodies compassion and she wisdom. The union of these two qualities presents the most important transcendental ideal expressed in Buddhist art, supreme enlightenment. The sculpture is expertly detailed and both figures are beautifully gilded and embellished with jewelry.
A large thangka of Shakyamuni, from Western Tibet and dated 14th century, is another important lot (est. $300,000 – 500,000). Measuring 82.5 by 41 inches, the thangka is one of the largest surviving Tibetan paintings from any period. Tibetan Buddhists regard Shakyamuni as the single greatest authority on the Buddhist teachings. This thangka depicts Buddha on a throne in the act of teaching and flanked by his two of his closest disciples, Shariputra and Maudgalyayana.
Another standout lot, a Yongle-period gilt copper alloy deity from a Vajrabhairava shrine, comes from a private English collection and is estimated at $250,000 - 350,000. It is an early 15th-century depiction of Surya (the Sun god) that belongs to a set of eight Hindu deities, which would have occupied the front edge of a throne for a monumental sculpture of Vajrabhairava. Out of this group of eight, five others have either sold at auction or are in museum collections, making this sculpture extremely desirable. The deity is large, depicted in a powerful and unique pose. He wears an expression of fierce attention. The rich gilding, exquisite modeling and jewelry arrangement are typical of renowned Buddhist sculpture of the Yongle-period.
Edward Wilkinson, Consultant at the Indian, Himalayan & South East Asian department at Bonhams said, “At the core of this auction are a group of extremely important masterpieces of Himalayan painting and sculpture that are fresh to the market. Supported by a diverse and rare group of works from across the South Asian region, the sale taps into a particularly buoyant market. Buddhist art in particular is enjoying broad international appeal and the market for this genre has risen dramatically over the past five years.”
The auction will begin at 4pm. The online catalog will soon be available here.
Bonhams, founded in 1793, is one of the world's largest auctioneers of fine art and antiques. Today, the auction house offers more sales than any of its rivals. The main salerooms are in London, New York and Hong Kong. Sales are also held in the UK in Knightsbridge, Oxford and Edinburgh; in the US, in San Francisco and Los Angeles; in Europe, in Paris and Stuttgart and in Sydney, Australia. Bonhams also has a worldwide network of offices and regional representatives in 25 countries offering sales advice and valuation services in 60 specialist areas. For a full listing of forthcoming sales, plus details of Bonhams specialist departments, please visit www.bonhams.com.
Edward Wilkinson heads the Indian, Himalayan, and Southeast Asian Art department at Bonhams, where he holds two specialized sales annually. Previously he was worldwide Head of Indian, Himalayan and Southeast Asian Art at another international auction house from May 2000 through August 2003.
Since joining Bonhams Wilkinson has organized and presented several sales of note: The Sartin Collection in September 2011; Indian, Himalayan and Southeast Asian Art: Including selections from the Paul F. Walter Collection in March 2012; The Estate of Natasha Eielenberg in September 2012; Himalayan Art from a private American Collection, March, 2014; Masterworks by V.S. Gaitonde from the George Gund Estate in September 2014; These sales have established world records for the 19th century Rajasthani court artists Bagta ($302,000) and Tara ($172,000), The Eilenberg Buddha, Mon-Dvaravati, Thailand ($674,500), A Thirty-Two-Deity Guhyasamaja Mandala, Tibet, circa 1520-1533 (929,000), and V.S. Gaitonde, untitled, 1963 (1,685,000) and helped to establish Bonhams department in New York as a market leader in the field.
During his previous positions, he coordinated and conducted nine auctions of Indian and Southeast Asian Art. Notable sales included a single-owner sale of Contemporary Indian Painting from the Davida and Chester Herwitz Collection establishing a world record sale total for the category. Two other world record sale totals were established consecutively for traditional Indian paintings (prior to 1900) from the Gloria Katz and Willard Huyck Collection, March 2003 and the Paul F. Walter Collection in November 2003. Several record-prices were established for various schools of painting in each sale. The discovery and subsequent sale of a Gandharan Buddha for $669,000, from the Charterhouse School, England, established a world record price for Gandharan art in September 2002. Another discovery resulted in the identification and sale an extremely rare 12th century Dali Kingdom gilt copper alloy figure of Avalokitesvara.
Prior to his appointment in May 2000, Wilkinson worked as a Consultant and Department Specialist of Oceanic Art for the African and Oceanic Art Department at another international auctioneer from November 1999 through May 2000. From 1996 through 1999 Wilkinson was Executive Head of an Australian auction house’s Asian and Tribal Art department. During his tenure, Wilkinson coordinated and conducted monthly sales of Asian art, quarterly sales of Tribal art and yearly sales of Oriental rugs. He was Vice President of the Oceanic Art Society, Sydney, and committee member of the Oriental Rug Society of NSW, Sydney.
Wilkinson is an accredited member of the International Society of Appraisers since 2006, with a specific focus on Indian, Himalayan and Southeast Asian Art. Since 2009 he has served as Chair of the Southern Asian Arts Council at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA).

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Ramkinkar Baij Memorial Lecture by Prof. B.N. Goswamy


On the eve of S. H. Raza’s 93rd Birthday Vadehra Art Gallery presents his solo show ‘Aarambh’

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To celebrate S. H. Raza’s 93rd birthday, Vadehra Art Gallery is delighted to present ‘Aarambh’, a solo show by one of India’s most revered modernist painters.  The show is open to the public from February 22-March 18, 2015, at Vadehra Art Gallery.
The works in ‘Aarambh’ form part of a new body of work executed over the course of the past year and are to be exhibited to the public for the first time. The exhibition includes forty-four canvases and paperworks by the artist.
As Raza turns 93, there is no let up in his creative energy, passion for colour and its immense possibilities, and his relentless search for spiritual form. He has a huge reputation as a master colourist who has explored in visual terms some metaphysical concepts about the universe, nature, male-female energies, environment etc. His iconic Bindu remains at the centre of both his plastic imagination and spiritual quest. Many of the new works created in 2014-15 reveal a master making new discoveries and forging new combinations embodying in fresh ways his enduring vision of the world and art. For him art is the whole world and, by the same token, the whole world is art.
Born in Babaria, Madhya Pradesh in 1922, Raza studied at Sir JJ School of Art, Mumbai and the Ecole Nationale des Beaux-Arts, Paris. A member of the post-Independence Bombay Progressive Artists’ Group, Raza is considered to be one of India’s most renowned artists and continues to inspire contemporary south asian artists.
Raza has exhibited widely in India as well as internationally. He has been the recipient of many accolades including the prestigious Padma Shri Award by the President of India in 1981, the Padma Bhushan in 2007 and the Padma Vibhushan in 2013.  Raza lives and works in Delhi.
Arun Vadehra, Director Vadehra Art Gallery, comments:  "Over the last 25 years some of my fondest memories are of visiting Raza at his home in Paris. Many evenings were spent enjoying flowing conversation over fine wine discussing art, life and much else. It is because of these periodic visits to his apartment, often months apart, that I have been able to see Raza’s development as a painter and moreover, the evolution of Indian art itself."
S. H. Raza was born in Babaria, Madhya Pradesh, in 1922. He studied at Sir JJ School of Art, Mumbai, and Ecole Nationale des Beaux-Arts, Paris.
His important solo exhibitions include: Antardhwani, Vadehra Art Gallery, New Delhi (2013); Bindu Vistaar, Grosvenor Gallery, London (2012); Punaraagman, Vadehra Art Gallery and Lalit Kala Akademi, New Delhi (2011); Raza – A Retrospective, Saffronart, New York in association with Berkeley Square Gallery (2007); Celebrating 85 Years of Living Legend S H Raza, a Traveling Exhibition at Hong Kong, Singapore, Dubai, Mumbai, New Delhi, organized  by Aryan Art Gallery, New Delhi (2007); Retrospective 1952-91, Palais Carnoles, Musee de Menton, France (1991); Solo show, Galleria Matuzia, San Remo, Italy (1975); Solo show, Worth Ryder Art Gallery, Berkeley, University of California, California, USA (1962).
His important group exhibitions include: Ram Kumar and the Bombay Progressives: The Form and the Figure Part II, Aicon Gallery, New York (2013); Des duos et des couples, Aix en Provence, France (with Pablo Picasso and Francoise Gilot) (2003); Tryst with Destiny, Centre for International Modern Art (CIMA), National Gallery of Modern Art (NGMA), Mumbai (1997); L’Estampe Aujourd’hui, Bibliotheque Nationale: Foire Internationale d’Art Contemporain, Grand Palais, Paris (1978).
His international participations include: Transition, 20th Anniversary Show, Centre of International Modern Art(CIMA), Kolkata (2013-14); Roots in the Air, Branches Below: Modern & Contemporary Art from India, San Jose Museum of Art, San Jose (2011); From Everyday To The Imagined: Modern Indian Art, Singapore Art Museum, Singapore and at Museum of Art, Seoul National University, Seoul (2007-08); International Biennale de Dakar
His awards include: Padma Vibhushan by the Government of India in 2013; Padma Bhushan by the Government of India (2007); Lalit Kala Ratna Puraskar by Lalit Kala Akademi, New Delhi (2004); Padma Shri by the Government of India (1981); the Kalidas Sanman National Award by Government of Madhya Pradesh (1981); the Prix de la Critique (1956); the Gold Medal by Bombay Art Society (1948); the Silver Medal Bombay Art Society (1946).

Tasveer | KALEIDOSCOPE | Ram Shergill | February 20, 2015 | Ahmedabad- NID


Exclusive Preview of 'Something Else' by Dhruva Mistry on February 21, 2015


Friday, January 30, 2015

Highlights of VIP Preview at India Art Fair 2015

 President of BMW India Philipp von Sahr with Neha Kripal of India Art Fair
The 7th edition of India Art Fair opened to the public on Friday 30th January to new acclaim. A successful preview day brought over 7000 cultural patrons who bought from a range of national and international galleries. With a few sell-out booths, strong sales were reported across the board. 
“We have made excellent sales not just to our existing clientele, but particularly to an expanding base of new collectors, with the main works snapped up in the first two hours. What has been interesting is a significant number of new collectors in the mid-range. The collectors love the IAF programme, and for us the fair provides the one opportunity in the year to interact, connect and re-connect with them all.” Prateek Raja, Co-Director, Experimenter Gallery
Jorge Brinkerhoff, Director of Florida-based gallery Brinkerhoff Fine Art said “We’ve been thinking about participating at India Art Fair for the last five years and have taken the plunge, not quite knowing what to expect. We’ve been delighted with the level of sales and interest and made an impressive number of new friends and collectors who are open not only to collecting indian art but also to look beyond to Western artists. This is encouraging for us and we will certainly come back next year for sure.”
The overwhelming feedback was that, in addition to a world-class curated artistic program and Speakers’ Forum, the calibre of the works and the curation  of the gallery booths have never been higher, and that the quality and professionalism of india Art Fair has it a new international standard. A revised fair layout has seen the relocation of Delhi Art Gallery for a major curated exhibition of India Art in the permanent structure, in order to facilitate the new IAF Courtyard. This has created space for new restaurant and design partners. In addition the introduction of a new rooftop restaurant all adds to a markedly improved fair-going experience. 
Oiane Salazar, Director of Patrons, Guggenheim Bilbao who led a delegation of over 20 Guggenheim patrons said: “The Guggenheim group are especially pleased to come to India. We have been much impressed by the wide range of artists, and particularly the number of female artists on exhibition. The layout of the fair is as good as any international fair we’ve seen, and the VIP programme has been particularly good, with superb wine and snack service and restaurant options. The group have been happy to have this opportunity to discover indian art. 
Diwan Manna, Director India Triennale commented “India Art Fair has led the way, exemplifying how art can be showcased and projected in India, in a country where there is little awareness of art. The fair is a place where people want to be seen. We’re all so proud of Neha Kirpal and genuinely appreciate the whole effort. The idea, the conception and execution of the fair is world class.”

Sotheby’s Dazzles in New Delhi


Ahead of Major Indian Art Auctions in New York, Sotheby’s Announces an Exciting Series of Events to Coincide with the India Art Fair 29-30 January 2015
 Simon Shaw, Co-Head, Impressionist & Modern Art Worldwide, Sotheby's
January 30, 2015: Discussing Sotheby’s presence in Delhi from the 29 – 31 January 2015, Yamini Mehta, Sotheby’s International Head of Indian and South Asian Art, said:  “We have put together an exciting program of events to enrich the art experience for our clients in India, which will bring some of our key worldwide experts to make the connection between Modernist movements and Indian artistic creativity. Our Global Head of Impressionist and Modern Art will be speaking about Sotheby’s sale of a work that is iconic in 20th century art – Munch’sThe Scream. We are seeing keen interest developing among Indian collectors who have been pursuing prime works by key Indian modernists for works of the highest quality by some of the greatest international names, such as Monet, Picasso, Henry Moore, Renoir, which are available at many levels of the market. What is so fascinating now is that these works appeal to the same international base of collectors, among them many new Indian collectors.  We will also be showcasing works from our upcoming New York sale of Indian and South Asian Art.
 Amrita Sher-Gil was a pioneering figure in Indian art and we are proud that for the first time a portrait of her will be offered by us on the international market, only the third time she has appeared.  Sher-Gil is a tragic figure who showed so much promise during her brief career in the 1930s, and died unfortunately at the age of 28.  The vast majority of her works are in the National Gallery of Modern Art in Delhi, which makes Sotheby’s ability to offer this work, which is coming from a European collection, all the more exceptional. We will also be showcasing a sublime Gaitonde recently-discovered in a German collection, which depicts a lush red sunset, and works by Sabavala as well.  As part of bringing the world of Sotheby’s to our clients, international specialists from our Jewellery team, one of the most accessible categories with universal appeal, will take our clients on a virtual journey into the jewellery boxes of some of the greatest collectors of the 20th century.”
Sotheby’s and Rolls Royce Motor Cars Present an Evening of Cocktails and Canapés Featuring Highlights from Upcoming Auctions of Modern & Contemporary  South Asian Art
Robin Woodhead, Chairman, Sotheby’s Worldwide hosts a cocktail evening featuring outstanding works of Modern and Contemporary Indian Art.  Major works by V. S. Gaitonde, Jehangir Sabavala, M.F. Husain, Jagdish Swaminathan and Ram Kumar will be on show in The Imperial Hotel’s Royal Ballroom, while Rolls-Royce Phantom and Ghost Series II cars will be presented outside on the lawn.
Selling The Scream: the Modern Masterpiece in Today’s Global Market
Simon Shaw, Global Head, Impressionist and Modern Art, Sotheby’s, will give a talk in which he vividly recalls the moment he first saw Edvard Munch’s The Scream in Oslo. “When we took the picture out of the crate it was the most moving, emotional experience that I’ve ever had with a work of art,” says Shaw, who orchestrated the May 2012 sale of The Scream for an historic $119.9m.  With opportunities to participate at many levels of the market, Shaw will talk about the growing presence of Indian collectors. 
Friday 30th January, the Royal Ballroom at The Imperial , 4pm
Tales from the Vault: a Peek Inside the World’s Greatest Jewellery Boxes
Sotheby’s New York jewellery specialists, Catharine Becket and Nikita Manilal will talk about some of the world’s great jewellery collections, such as the Jewels of the Duchess of Windsor and the collection of Mrs. Paul Mellon.  The talk will start at 4.30pm, following a Champagne Afternoon tea which will be served at 4pm. 
Modern & Contemporary South Asian Art
Sotheby’s auction of Modern & Contemporary South Asian Art, to take place in New York on 18 March, will feature many fresh-to-the-market from private collections across the US and Europe, including Germany, Switzerland and Hungary. The undoubted highlight of the sale is a stunning Self-Portrait by Amrita Sher-Gil - the most important work by the India’s leading female modernist to appear at auction (illustrated on page 1, est. $1.2/1.8 million). Not only did Sher-Gil play a crucial role in the articulation of twentieth century Indian art, but she was also a seminal influence on generations of Indian artists, pioneering a new form of Indian modernism. Considered a National Treasure, whose body of work is largely with the National Gallery of Modern Art, Delhi, this is the first time a self-portrait will be offered at auction. Sher-Gil is not only one of seven legally protected artists whose work cannot be exported from India, but is rarely offered on the market internationally due to the scarcity of her work.
Vasudeo S. Gaitonde’s sublime untitled painting from 1963 that hails from a very important moment in the artist’s career; featuring his early experimentations with Abstract Expressionism.  Rendered in varying shades of red strewn with black, this work is a classic and timeless masterpiece recently unearthed from a private German collection. Untitled from 1963 has many similarities to the Gaitonde work which last year set a new benchmark for Indian Art at auction (est. $1.5/2 million) The painting dates from the renowned mature period in the artist’s career during which he turned away from geometric works and began to experiment with using a paint roller and palette knife.
Other highlights of the exhibition include an Untitled work from 1960 by Jagdish Swaminathan in the artist’s signature colourful style that incorporates a unique subject matter (est. $180/220,000) and Untitled (Kumaon Hills) by Jehangir Sabavala a large and exceptional example of the series depicting the mountain range in Northern India (est. $150/200,000). Other paintings by leading modernists including Rabindranath Tagore, Krishen Khanna, Ram Kumar, Francis Newton Souza, Maqbool Fida Husain.