Prinseps Hosts Gobardhan Ash Auction, India’s First NFT Auction

New Delhi: The Prinseps auction house will host the Gobardhan Ash Live Auction, featuring 35 rare works on paper from the family estate and 35 associated NFTs. The auction will open for live bidding on January 14, 2022 at 7:00 PM, marking the first time an Indian auction house has entered the NFT (non-fungible token) space.Also Read – Manohari Gold Tea Auctioned For Record Price Of Rs 1 Lakh Per Kg

The Gobardhan Ash Auction recreates the second exhibition of the Progressive Artists’ Group and Calcutta Group, 1950, in which Gobardhan Ash presented a series of gouache works alongside the likes of FN Souza, MF Husain and SH Raza. The bright and eclectic modern images that Ash painted for the exhibition and are now up for auction perfectly capture the environment of the time and present modernist interpretations of ordinary people or animals. Also Read – Elon Musk’s Graded College Papers Auctioned For Over Rs 5.8 Lakh

Ash’s art from the 1950s shows his individuality alongside his characteristic technique, presenting impeccable character studies such as the 1948 painting ‘Mother and Son’ (estimation Rs 30,000-1,50,000). These experiments in art are what can be characterized as today’s avatars, i.e. “primitive” works of art that display personality traits or graphical representations of a user, making them ideal for transformation into an NFT and continuing Ash’s artistic experiments into the 21st century. century. Read also – and sold! British artist Banksy’s shredded ‘Love Is In The Bin’ artwork auctioned for $25.4 million

The auction will feature each physical work of Ash on paper, immediately followed by the associated digital versions that will be offered as NFTs minted on the Ethereum blockchain.

All 35 works on paper are valued at Rs 30,000-1,50,000, and the NFTs are valued at RS 1,000-25,000, offering accessible pricing to newer collectors exploring the NFT market for the first time.

The main works are ‘Tribhanga’, which depicts a common view in traditional Indian art and popular Indian dance forms such as Odissi; ‘FA-HI-AN’, which represents an avatar of a Chinese Buddhist monk who traveled on foot from China to India to study Buddhist texts; and ‘Mosgul’, which depicts a man lost in thought and was exhibited in the joint exhibition of the Calcutta Group and the Progressive Artists’ Group, 1950.

About the upcoming auction, Prinseps curator Indrajit Chatterjee said: “Ash’s paintings seemed to me to be a resemblance to the cryptopunk movement, but from seven decades earlier. We are excited to present what we see today as an avatar, painted over 70 years ago in Ash’s unique and primitive watercolors. These works will also represent the first NFTs to be offered to the market by an Indian auction house.”

Following the Gobardhan Ash Auction, Prinseps will host a no-reserve Nationalist Book Auction in January, featuring a collection of rare and mostly first edition books ranging from the pre-independence to post-independence era in India, written and signed by revolutionary leaders such as Mahatma Gandhi, Jawaharlal Nehru and VK Krishna Menon.


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