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Indo-Asian News Service
January 29, 2013
Vintage Indian film memorabilia, including rare original artworks and photographic prints from movies as old as the classic silent film Shiraz (1928) and Dadasaheb Phalke's first and last talking film Gangavataran (1937), will go under the hammer here Feb 9. This will be Osian's inaugural Osianama auction, which will present a unique combination of the antiquities, modern and contemporary fine arts and vintage Indian film publicity material and memorabilia. It will be held at the Imperial Hotel here.

"To realise that the finest rare image of the first photographic stills of your cinematic history can sell for one hundredth the price of a mediocre easily available non-historically significant contemporary painting needs to be debated and understood in context," Neville Tuli, chairman, Osian's Group, said in a statement.

"It is important that step by step the Indian public and collector base begins to see various cultural disciplines on common platforms, so that the ability to contextualise our cultural and economic history increases," he added.

The inclusion of film publicity material in the auction is aimed at taking forward Osian's market-building processes for film memorabilia in India which began over ten years ago in 2002.

Among the highlights in this section are pre-Independence rare stills, including of the cast and crew from Himanshu Rai's Shiraz signed and dated 1930 portrait of the silent era actress Sulochana; photographic stills from Gangavataran and one of the first artworks for Kamal Amrohi's Razia Sultan made many years before the film was completed in 1983.

Also going under the hammer will be a rare and six-sheet poster of the 1980 Amitabh Bachchan and Shashi Kapoor-starrer Do Aur Do Panch and another rare poster of Shammi Kapoor-starrer Raat Ke Rahi, designed by the 1960s famous poster designer Pradyuman, who also designed the famous BR Films' logo.

A rare complete set of Pandit Ravi Shankar's original LP records with his compositions for five Indian films that he was associated with during his lifetime - Anuradha (1960), Godaan (1963), Pather Panchali (1964), Meera (1979) and Gandhi (1982), will also be on auction.

The opening preview exhibition of the auction will be held Tuesday at Osianama at the Kila here.