India’s first NFT auction will feature Artist Gobardhan Ash’s work

Picture Credit: Prinseps. | Left–Right: Mother and Child, 1950; Joy, 1948; and Watchman, 1950. Artwork by Gobardhan Ash.

“If we look at nature in the open, we do not see individual objects each with its own colors but rather a bright medley of tints which blend in our eyes, in our minds.” – Gobardhan Ash (The Statesman, April 24, 1994).

That NFTs have taken the art world by storm is Old News, but here’s some New News: the gallery Prinseps will be auctioning Indian artist Gobardhan Ash’s work in the first ever NFT auction in India.

This live auction will present a total of 70 lots including 35 gouaches by Gobardhan Ash from the 1950s, and 35 contemporary NFTs based on his work. The upcoming auction will offer each of Ash’s physical works on paper, immediately followed by its accompanying digital versions offered as NFTs (Non-Fungible Tokens) minted on the Ethereum blockchain.

All 35 of the works on paper carry an estimate of INR 30,000 – 1,50,000, and the NFTs are estimated at INR 1,000 – 25,000 – offering accessible prices to newer collectors exploring the NFT market for the first time.

The live bidding will open on 14th January 2022 at 7 pm, representing the first time an Indian auction house has entered the NFT space. If interested, one can register for the upcoming Gobardhan Ash live auction here.

About Gobardhan Ash

Gobardhan Ash, Image taken from Prinseps.com

Gobardhan Ash, who lived, painted and taught at the turn of the 20th century, is remembered as a highly individualistic, fearless artist who turned his nose at the rigidities and orthodoxy of the two reigning schools of art at the time: the Bengal School and the art school brand of pseudo-Victorianism.

Instead, he was more interested in exploring diverse techniques and taking on the tall task of representing the milieu of the time.

Although it was the convention then to paint divinities or exotic female figures on their way to the temple, Ash embarked on a new approach altogether to paint farmers toiling in the fields, workers engaged in intense labor to earn their hiving, thereby setting a new trend of socio-realistic art in India.

The Prinseps auction is a fine collection of his modernist interpretations of everyday people and animals.