Christie’s to woo Asia with wine and art this autumn

October 16th, 2008 - 8:14 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Oct 16 (IANS) Leading global auction house Christie’s is set to woo Asian buyers and connoisseurs with wine and art in Hong Kong this autumn.Indian contemporary art heavyweights like Jitish Kallat, Subodh Gupta, Tukhral & Tagra, Chintan Upadhyay, T.V. Santosh and Hema Upadhyay will vie for attention with the finest of vintage wines from the Bordeaux region over a two-day spread Nov 29 and 30 in back-to-back sales of rare wines and niche Asian art.

“Wine and art make a good combination, but we also auction watches and jewellery in Hong Kong every year. In fact, we have been auctioning wine for nearly 300 years now (since the 1700s).

“But the fact that we are having such a big sale of rare vintage wine should tell you how much importance we attach to the market in Hong Kong and we are trying to expand it. We are also targeting Indian buyers because India is an important on the Asian auction list,” Sonal Singh, Indian Art specialist at Christie’s, told IANS over telephone from Mumbai.

Featuring 245 lots of blue-chip wines, the wine sale will be a feature on the calendars of wine collectors not only throughout Asia but across the world, officials at Christie’s said.

Leading the sale will be selection from the reserve cellars of Château Latour that has worked for the global recognition of Bordeaux wines and to promote finest “first growths” from the region.

This sale will feature a selection covering the period of 1865 to 2005 - all removed directly from the property and shipped to Hong Kong specifically for inclusion. The 127 lots are valued in the region of HK $1.3 million.

The auction house will complement its wine show with its sale of Asian art a day later Nov 30.

While the young contemporary artists will lead the Indian section, a vintage 19th century work by Juan Luna of Philippines “Damas Romanas” (Roman Maidens), will steer the modern art section in terms of prices at an estimated $1,025,600- $1,282,000.

The work depicts iconic scenes from the Roman history by the artist, who stands out as one of the most important Filipino painters of the colonial period for his reformist stand and the role he played in highlighting the plight of the residents of his colonised nation to Spaniards.

The star of the southeast contemporary lots will be “Marathon estimated at $102,600-US $205,100 by Southeast Asia’s most successful contemporary artist, I. Nyoman Masriadi.

Christie’s logged business worth $6.3 billion in global auctions in 2007 and for the first half of 2008, art sales totalled $3.5 billion.

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