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When Hemendranath Mazumdar's 1974 painting fetched Rs 15.63 crore at an auction
A work by the artist. (Representative Image)(Image: www.christies.com)
It is considered Mumbai's art event of the year. But the fourth edition of Christie's annual art auctions in the city last month yielded lacklustre sales.The auction house's sale of classical Indian art in India saw only 34 of the 71 lots finding buyers by the end of the evening, fetching Rs 4,12,50,000.
It wasn't surprising that Hemendranath Mazumdar's Untitled 1974 painting fetched the highest price, Rs 15.63 crore (the lowest estimate was Rs 9 crore), J U followed by another Gaitonde and Tayeb Mehta paintings.
However, Hemendranath Mazumdar's Untitled work from 1930s set a new world auction record for the artist's work. The painting, in possession of a private collector from Jharkhand, was sold for Rs 1,05,25,000, while Untitled (Gandhi) of Jamini Roy from Abhishek and Radhika Poddar's personal collection, commanded a price of Rs 11,87,500, nearly triple the lowest estimate of Rs 4 lakh.
"There is always an element of surprise about how the room will react to certain pieces. We had a moment of deja vu as well.The last lot of the sale, `Under the shadow of...IV' by Jehangir Sabavala attracted very competitive bidding, echoing our results from 2015 [sale], where we broke his world auction record," said Sonal Singh, Christie's India head.