Saffronart is holding a live sale in New Dehli with coverage on the internet today. The top lot is an SH Raza, La Terre that made a price of $1.166m which puts it as the 10th highest price at auction for Raza, according to Artnet’s database.
In 1962, Raza was invited by Professor Karl Casten to teach at the University of California in Berkeley. Although short, his time in America altered his creative approach. It was here that he found a muse in the abstract expressionist works of the New York School of painters such as Sam Francis, Willem de Kooning, Hans Hoffman and particularly, Mark Rothko. As Raza states,
“Rothko’s work opened up lots of interesting associations for me. It was so different from the insipid realism of the European School. It was like a door that opened to another interior vision. Yes, I felt that I was awakening to the music of another forest, one of subliminal energy. Rothko’s works brought back the images of japmala, where the repetition of a word continues till you achieve a state of elevated consciousness…Rothko’s works made me understand the feel for spatial perception.” (Raza: Celebrating 85 years, Aryan Art Gallery, New Delhi, 2007)
A second Raza sold for $240,000 at the sale, significantly above the high estimate.