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The Amaya Collection of Modern & Contemporary Indian Art totals $6.7 million at Sotheby's
Sayed Haider Raza, Rajasthan I, Sold for $809,000, (est. $600/800,000). Photo: Sotheby's.
NEW YORK, NY.- The Amaya Collection, the first international Evening Sale of Indian Art and the first single-owner sale in this category to be held at Sotheby’s in more than a decade, brought a strong total of $6,694,875, just shy of its pre-sale high estimate of $7 million today. The 43 works on offer were assembled by esteemed collector and author Amrita Jhaveri, and were highlighted by Untitled from Vasudeo S. Gaitonde, one of India’s most important modern abstract painters, which sold for $965,000, above a high estimate of $800,000. Strong prices were achieved for Sayed Haider Raza’s Rajasthan I from 1983, which brought $809,000, while multiple bidders drove Francis Newton Souza’s The Crucifixion to achieve $557,000 (est. $200/300,000). Additional highlights included Manjit Bawa’s The Black Devi, which sold for $389,000, and Bhupen Khakhar’s 1988 Satsang, which fetched $341,000 – both above their pre-sale high estimates.

Yamini Mehta, Senior Director, Sotheby’s International Head of Modern and Contemporary South Asian Art, London and New York, said: “It has been a privilege for Sotheby’s to handle this offering of works from The Amaya Collection. Tonight’s strong results, which reached the high estimate, are a testament to Amrita’s well-honed eye and decades of experience in the field of modern and contemporary Indian art. And with 60% of the lots achieving prices above their high estimates, there is no question that collectors are committed to pursuing works of the highest quality. I am delighted to have been a part of this landmark sale which was my first at Sotheby’s.”

Priyanka Mathew, Head of Sales, Modern & Contemporary South Asian Art, commented: “We have been especially pleased and encouraged to see a number of new buyers enter the market this season. Tonight, their presence contributed to strong prices for works by both the modern and contemporary artists in The Amaya Collection. The resurgence of interest in contemporary works is particularly exciting for this market, with records set tonight for artists including Banerjee and Joshi. Bidding was truly global, with equal participation coming from Asia, North America and Europe, demonstrating strength in the Indian market.”

During this sale, Sotheby’s set four artist records at auction including ones for: K.G. Subramanyan, whose Mask, Icon, Mount, Mascot sold for $185,000, well above the previous record for the artist at auction (right); Anant Joshi, whose mixed media piece, May Look Closer Than They Appear – 3, fetched $60,000; Ranbir Singh Kaleka, whose Untitled (Twisted Rope) achieved $32,500, above its estimate; and Rina Banerjee, whose The Strain of Fruit Eaten Twice Produced More and More brought $27,500.



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