Christie's first auction in India doubles estimates

By Kyle Johnson,

Christie's held their first art auction on Thursday in India and managed to double pre-sale estimates.

Christie's decided to hold an art sale in India in an attempt to enter an expanding market of millionaires, The Associated Press reports. By the time everything was sold, the auction had managed to take in sales of $16.4 million.

The auction featured 83 different paintings, including six pieces from Indian artists that are considered "national treasures." Vasuedeo Gaitonde's untitled abstract oil painting sold for $3.8 million to an anonymous phone bid. The sale set a record for an Indian made piece.

Christie's director of Asian art Hugo Weihe said, "The result is beyond our wildest dreams."

According to AFP, Tyeb Mehta's painting of Durga, a Hindu goddess, fighting a buffalo demon followed close behind Gaitonde's piece with $3.17 million.

Weihe commented on the day's auctions, "The market is discerning and understanding of quality and this is proof."

The successful Indian sale follows on heels of Christie's first auction in China, which managed to have sales of $25 million back in September.


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