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Nandalal Bose_Bull Fighter

Untitled (Bull Handler Haripura Poster)
By Nandalal Bose (1882-1966)
Tempera on paper
Size: 63.5 x 59.7 centimetres (25 x 23.5 inches)
Estimated price: $30,000-50,000

In a few days’ time I will be in New York for our Asia Week auctions. In the category of South Asian modern art, this season’s highlight is a group of 81 exceptional works from the collection of Supratik Bose, Nandalal Bose’s grandson.

As a retired architect and officer of Harvard University, Mr Bose’s collection includes works by his grandfather as well as by Rabindranath Tagore – the father of modern art education in India – and Abanindranath Tagore, his nephew and fellow artist. The depth of the collection reflects Supratik Bose’s heritage and passion for early Indian modernism and documents the shared vision of three artistic geniuses, who are linked by the common goal of art and humanity, family and friendship.

Among the sale’s highlights is a handwritten version of Where the mind is without fear by Rabindranath Tagore published in Gitanjali, an anthology of poems for which Tagore became the first Asian to win the Nobel Prize in Literature, in 1913.

There is also a collection of postcards shared between Abanindranath Tagore and Nandalal Bose that speaks of their friendship, providing a rare glimpse into the private world of these seminal figures. Among the works of art, one of my favourites is a poster of a bull and man commissioned by M.K. Gandhi for the 1938 annual Indian National Congress Party meeting. Do take the time to view the works online, if you can’t see them in person.

Christie’s Sale of The Art of Nandalal Bose, Abanindranath Tagore and Rabindranath Tagore: The Collection of Supratik Bose will be held on September 17, 2013 in New York. For more information, please visit http://www.christies.com.

First published in the Adbuzzzz Section of The DAWN National Weekend Advertiser on Sunday, September 15, 2013.