There’s been little in the way of sales information coming out of the annual Indian Art Fair this year. Georgina Adam gathers what she can in the Financial Times:
According to the organisers, sales were buoyant, although on the ground reports were
more nuanced. For some exhibitors, it was “their best year ever”. London’s Grosvenor Gallery scored well with 60 sales, including many by local artist Olivia Fraser, at prices between £500 (prints) and £8,000. This neatly avoided a big headache for international galleries, namely the 15 per cent duty on imported art – and the hassle the exhibitors face when reclaiming the levy on unsold works. Other galleries were as happy, although sales were not at a high price level. Leading local collector Lekha Poddar bought a work by Hajra Waheed at Experimenter of Kolkata; the other big collector Kiran Nadar, who also has founded a private museum, made a flurry of acquisitions.
Others were disappointed: Lelong of Paris, despite its solo show of Nalini Malani, also featured at the Nadar museum, said business was average. The quality of many of the offerings did not please everyone but Girish Shahane, artistic director for next year’s edition, was sanguine. “The art fair can’t run ahead of its market,” he said. “The buyers here are at a particular stage, we will gradually draw in our audience.” Certainly, with reported attendance of almost 100,000, the fair attracted an enthusiastic number of visitors.