upcoming auction of Folk & Tribal art on February 26-27 has directed attention to the work of tribal artists, including generations of womenfolk of the Mithila region (in Bihar) who have been creating ceremonial and devotional floor paintings and murals during festivals and auspicious occasions. They use simple brushes made of bamboo and raw cotton, and natural vegetable and mineral colours to depict nature and mythological scenes. In order to support these women painters, the Indian government sponsored a program where they were given paper for the first time, and asked to transfer the works they would normally paint on the walls and floors of their homes to this new surface, so they may be sold and provide an alternative source of income.
This led to a rise to prominence of artists such as Sita Devi. A museum-quality monumental Mithila painting by Sita Devi dating back to the 1970s leads Saffronarts auction of Indian Folk and Tribal Art. The 24-hour auction will be held online at www.saffronart.com. The auction features a wide array of artworks and artifacts including paintings, sculptures, masks, jewelry and functional objects from around the country.
Another highlight lot in the auction is a ceremonial Silver and Gemset Necklace from Northern India, most likely Leh or Ladakh, estimated at Rs 75,000 - 95,000 (US$ 1,445 - 1,830). It is designed as four graduated lines of tumbled turquoise beads and silver links, with similarly graduated cylindrical coral spacers. From its lower edge, it suspends a fringe of ovoid silver beads.
The auction also features exceptional paintings by several Gond artists such as the renowned Jangarh Singh Shyam and Ram Singh Urveti, celebrated Warli artist Jivya Soma Mashe, and others like Anwar Chitrakar, Laado Bai and Bhuri Bai. it also includes artifacts like a stunning Bhuta Mask from Kerala, a selection of mukha lingas and Khandoba masks from Maharashtra/Karnataka, tribal jewelry including a beautiful jasmine flower bud necklace from Kerala, a pair of silver anklets from Madhya Pradesh and more.
Speaking about the auction, Dinesh Vazirani, CEO and Co-founder of Saffronart, said, We are privileged to be offering this remarkable and extensive selection of attractively priced Indian folk and tribal art. The pieces have great aesthetic value and timeless appeal, which we hope this auction will showcase. The auction also provides collectors around the world an opportunity to acquire pieces representative of Indias rich artistic heritage and diverse cultural identity
With an exceptional collection of 120 competitively estimated lots, this auction has a total sale estimate of Rs. 86.24 lakhs to Rs. 1.08 crore (US$ 166,150 - US$ 208,325). The sale will take place online on February 26-27, 2013. Collectors may place bids at Saffronarts website www.saffronart.com, or via Saffronarts proprietary iPad application, or iPhone and Blackberry mobile applications.