The two-day Saffronart online auction ended on June 17 and Syed Hyder Raza’s painting got the highest bid, totaling to over Rs 3 crore.
Among the other highest bid-for paintings, feature names like MF Husain, Subodh Gupta, VS Gaitonde and Akbar Padamsee. Dinesh Vazirani, CEO and co-founder of Saffronart, started the online auction 10 years ago, when he realised that there was no access or price information and no profiles of artists available.
He says, “The penetration of Internet in India was very low at that time. So we started by doing exhibitions internationally, where there was a strong NRI base.”
He adds, “Gradually, the interest levels grew thanks to government ventures. And now, 80 per cent of our clients are Indians based here and NRIs.”
The collectors who own famous paintings get an online pre-registration done and people bid from anywhere in the world for two days. The bidding process is real-time and automated.