AstaGuru’s ‘International Iconic’ auction, a significant event in the art calendar, concluded on November 23-24, 2023, with a resounding success.
The auction, characterized by a White Glove Sale, saw every listed item sold, generating an impressive total revenue of INR 53,49,67,383. This achievement not only reflects the high quality of the artworks presented but also signifies the growing sophistication and enthusiasm of collectors in the art market.
The auction brought together a remarkable collection of works from some of the most celebrated and iconic artists from around the globe, making it a focal point for art enthusiasts and collectors worldwide.
The selection of artworks at the auction was a testament to the evolution and influence of modern art throughout the 20th century. It featured creations by masters such as Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Pablo Picasso, Henri Matisse, Marc Chagall, Salvador Dali, and Fernando Botero.
Each piece represented a unique chapter in the history of art, ranging from Impressionism and Cubism to Surrealism and Pop Art. The diversity and quality of the artworks showcased not only attracted a wide array of bidders but also highlighted AstaGuru’s commitment to presenting art that resonates with a broad spectrum of tastes and preferences.
Global Masters Shine in India
Larissa Guimaraes, the International Art Consultant at AstaGuru Auction House, expressed her enthusiasm about the auction’s outcome. “This November’s International Iconic auction continues to show the growing space for global art in India and for India in the global art market,” she remarked.
Her statement underscores the increasing integration of the Indian art market into the global art scene, a trend that has been gaining momentum over recent years. The auction’s success with two top lots achieving sales above USD 1,000,000 each – Marc Chagall’s ‘Couple Au Claire De Lune’ and Salvador Dali’s ‘L’oeil Fleuri’ – is a clear indicator of this trend.
Guimaraes further highlighted the diverse range of artists, media, and price points that were well-received by the market. The sale of H Claude Pissarro’s work for over three times its higher estimate at USD 31,631 was particularly noteworthy.
This variety in offerings not only catered to seasoned collectors but also attracted new buyers, demonstrating AstaGuru’s role in expanding the art market in India. The auction’s success in featuring global masters and achieving remarkable sales figures reflects a maturing market that is increasingly responsive to a wide array of artistic expressions and price points.
Marc Chagall’s Masterpiece Leads the Way
Marc Chagall’s ‘Couple Au Clair De Lune’, a highlight of the auction, exemplifies the artist’s unique approach to depicting romantic and dream-like scenes. This lot, numbered 16, was one of the most anticipated pieces in the catalogue and did not disappoint, fetching an impressive INR 12,61,88,834.
Chagall’s work, known for its vivid use of colour and whimsical themes, resonates deeply with collectors who appreciate his distinctive style that blends elements of fantasy with reality. The sale of this piece at such a high price point underscores Chagall’s enduring legacy and the high demand for his works in the art market.
The masterpiece, executed in the early 1980s, is a testament to Chagall’s mastery in portraying ethereal and poetic imagery. The depiction of lovers within a dream-like pictorial universe is a recurring theme in Chagall’s work, one that captures the essence of romance and imagination.
The sale of ‘Couple Au Clair De Lune’ not only highlights Chagall’s significance as an artist but also reflects the growing appreciation for modern art among collectors and enthusiasts, particularly in the context of the Indian art market.
Salvador Dali’s Surrealist Vision
Salvador Dali’s ‘L’oeil Fleuri’, another highlight of the auction, is a prime example of the artist’s surrealistic genius. Lot no. 6, this grand oil and tempera creation, initially designed for the ballet ‘Tristan Fou’, was acquired for an impressive INR 11,77,04,958.
The piece, spanning almost 13 feet, is a testament to Dali’s ability to blend reality with fantastical elements, creating a visual language that is uniquely his own. The sale of this work not only underscores Dali’s status as a master of Surrealism but also highlights the growing interest in diverse artistic styles within the Indian art market.
The acquisition of ‘L’oeil Fleuri’ at such a significant price point reflects the deep appreciation for Dali’s work and the broader genre of Surrealism. The piece’s intricate details and grand scale make it a standout work, emblematic of Dali’s creative prowess and his ability to captivate audiences with his imaginative compositions.
The successful sale of this piece at AstaGuru’s auction is indicative of the expanding horizons of the art collecting community in India, showcasing a willingness to invest in globally renowned works of art.
Renoir’s Childhood Connection
Pierre-Auguste Renoir’s ‘Etude Pour Le Portrait De Coco’, lot no. 8, is a poignant representation of the artist’s connection with childhood innocence and beauty. This oil on canvas portrait, which sold for INR 2,33,23,059, showcases Renoir’s skill in capturing the essence of his subjects with warmth and empathy.
The piece is a beautiful example of Renoir’s Impressionist style, characterized by vibrant light and colour, and a delicate yet expressive brushwork. The sale of this work at the auction not only highlights Renoir’s enduring appeal but also the appreciation for Impressionist art in the modern market.
The portrait, with its intimate portrayal of a child, reflects Renoir’s fascination with the purity and unspoiled nature of childhood. The artist’s ability to convey the innocence and unguarded expressions of his young subjects is particularly evident in this work.
The successful sale of ‘Etude Pour Le Portrait De Coco’ at the AstaGuru auction is a testament to the timeless quality of Renoir’s art and the continued interest in his work among collectors and art enthusiasts, particularly in the burgeoning Indian art market.
H Claude Pissarro’s Surprising Sale
The sale of H Claude Pissarro’s work, “La Mare Des Grisons Chez Lionel”, lot no. 11, was a highlight of the auction, selling for over three times its higher estimate at INR ₹ 26,88,630. This sale was a significant moment, demonstrating the market’s capacity for surprises and its receptiveness to a wide range of artistic styles.
Pissarro’s work, known for its vibrant landscapes and scenes of rural life, resonates with collectors who appreciate the Impressionist and Post-Impressionist traditions. The unexpectedly high sale price of this work at the auction underscores the dynamic nature of the art market and the growing interest in diverse artistic expressions.
Pissarro’s ability to capture the essence of the French countryside with a vivid and colourful palette makes his work particularly appealing. The sale of “La Mare Des Grisons Chez Lionel” reflects not only the artist’s skill and appeal but also the evolving tastes of collectors in the Indian art market.
The enthusiastic response to Pissarro’s work at the auction is indicative of a broader trend towards diversification in art collections, with an increasing openness to different artistic styles and periods.
Picasso’s Cubist Influence
Pablo Picasso’s ‘Tête De Faune’, lot no. 3, is an exemplary representation of the artist’s influence in the Cubist movement. This work, executed with coloured wax and crayon on paper, was acquired for INR 2,82,21,009, highlighting the enduring fascination with Picasso’s innovative approach to art.
The piece is a striking example of Picasso’s ability to deconstruct and reassemble forms, creating a new visual language that challenged traditional perspectives. The sale of ‘Tête De Faune’ at AstaGuru’s auction not only underscores Picasso’s status as a pivotal figure in modern art but also reflects the continued interest in Cubist works among collectors.
The acquisition of this work is significant in the context of the Indian art market, demonstrating a deep appreciation for Picasso’s artistic genius and the broader Cubist movement.
The piece’s bold lines and abstract forms are characteristic of Picasso’s style, offering a glimpse into the artist’s exploration of form and space. The successful sale of ‘Tête De Faune’ is indicative of the growing sophistication of the Indian art market and its capacity to value and invest in historically important works of art.
Andy Warhol’s Pop Art Icon
Andy Warhol’s ‘Parrot’, lot no. 18, is a vibrant example of the artist’s impact on the Pop Art movement. Estimated to sell for between INR 1,50,00,000 and 2,50,00,000, this work exemplifies Warhol’s fascination with popular culture and his ability to transform everyday objects into iconic pieces of art.
The piece, with its bright colours and bold imagery, is a testament to Warhol’s skill in capturing the spirit of his time and his influence on contemporary art. The inclusion of Warhol’s work in the auction highlights the growing interest in Pop Art within the Indian art market and the recognition of Warhol’s significant contribution to the art world.
The sale of ‘Parrot’ at AstaGuru’s auction is reflective of the broadening scope of art collections in India, showcasing a willingness to embrace different artistic movements and styles.
Warhol’s work, known for its playful yet provocative commentary on consumerism and mass culture, continues to resonate with modern audiences. The successful sale of this piece is indicative of the dynamic and evolving nature of the art market, with collectors increasingly seeking out works that represent a diverse range of artistic expressions.
Contemporary Artists Make Their Mark
The auction also highlighted the significant contributions of contemporary artists, with notable works such as Robert Indiana’s sculpture from his famous Love Series, lot no. 14, which sold for INR 4,24,05,636.
Indiana’s work, with its bold, simple forms and universal message, resonates with a wide audience, reflecting the artist’s ability to create art that is both accessible and profound. The sale of this piece at the auction underscores the growing interest in contemporary art and the recognition of artists who have shaped the current artistic landscape.
Takashi Murakami’s ‘Panda Cubs, Hoyoyo, Zzzzz’, lot no. 20, is another example of contemporary art making a significant impact. This work, which sold for INR 3,42,07,315, is a vibrant representation of Murakami’s unique style, blending traditional Japanese art with contemporary pop culture.
The sale of Murakami’s work at the auction is indicative of the expanding horizons of the Indian art market, with collectors showing an increasing interest in contemporary artists and their diverse approaches to art.
Conclusion: A New Era for Global Art in India
AstaGuru’s ‘International Iconic’ auction has not only celebrated the works of global masters but also signalled a new era for the appreciation and acquisition of global art in India. The diverse range of artworks and their impressive sales figures reflect a burgeoning interest and investment in the art world, both within India and on the international stage.
This event has set a new benchmark for art auctions in the region, promising an exciting future for collectors and artists alike. The auction’s success demonstrates the maturing Indian art market’s capacity to embrace a wide array of artistic styles and periods, paving the way for a more inclusive and dynamic art scene.