Indian Artist Enjoys His World Audience

Somini Sengupta in the New York Times:

TyebTyeb Mehta’s paintings fetch the highest prices of any living Indian artist: last fall, “Mahisasura,” a 1997 rendering of the buffalo-demon of Hindu mythology, brought $1.58 million at Christie’s in New York, the first time a contemporary Indian painting had crossed the million-dollar mark. (The turning point came five years ago, when a room-size triptych by Mr. Mehta, “Celebration,” sold for more than $300,000, signaling a surge of market interest in Indian art.)

Mr. Mehta’s career has mirrored the changing fortunes of contemporary Indian art over the last six decades, from the intellectual fervor of its birth at Indian independence in 1947, to a lifetime of aesthetic and financial struggle, to the improbable rise of the Indian art market in the last few years. As the Indian economy has galloped forward, art galleries have mushroomed, prices have skyrocketed and contemporary art has become the latest marker of affluence among the newly minted rich.

More here, including a slide show of TM’s work.