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Updated: December 11, 2010 18:02 IST

Dream to reality

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Arpita Singh's big mural
The Hindu
Arpita Singh's big mural "Wish Dream." Photo: Special Arrangement

Bharti Kher's record has been broken by artist Arpita Singh

Arpita Singh's big mural has made it quite big at Saffronart's winter auction held this past week. ‘Wish Dream' a 16-piece, 24X13 feet mural painted by Arpita Singh fetched Rs.9.6 crore (USD 2.24 million) making it the highest price achieved by an Indian woman artist at auction globally. With this Saffronart, an online auction house, also set a world record price for an artwork sold at any online auction.

Earlier this year in June, at Sotheby's contemporary art auction Delhi-based Bharti Kher had set a record with her monumental fibre-glass elephant marked with bindis, ‘The Skin Speaks a Language Not Its Own', selling for Rs.6.9 crore (USD $1.5 million) which has now been broken by Singh's ‘Wish Dream'. Speaking over the phone, Singh remembers it as a challenge because of its specific size and shape. “I was doing something like that for the first time. I had to cover a specific place and the cloth belonged to the royal family of Ladakh. I did take a look at various reproductions of the monastery.” The artist had created 16 individual canvas panels drawing from Buddhist Thangka paintings with a woman as its central figure going through various experiences of life. One of the inspirations was a Tibetan play. .

Singh, who just had a solo “Cobweb” at Vadehra Art Gallery, says though personally the auction records don't affect her but they have an impact on the market for sure. “There is a temporary excitement amongst those who don't follow your art and buy an artist's work only after he/she has created a record.”

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