Top Indian artists' sales dipped by a fourth to Rs 81.28 crore in the pandemic-impacted 2020, a report said on Thursday.
London-based sculptor Anish Kapoor topped the Hurun India Art List 2021 with Rs 20.64 crore by selling 65 lots, which helped him top the tables for the third consecutive year. His turnover was down 54 per cent when compared to 2019.
The list is a compilation of 50 living artists either born or residing in India and has been compiled with data from Artprice.com, which collects data from auction houses.
Anas Rahman Junaid said the present opportunity presents a lucrative opportunity to collect the works of India's most successful artists.
"Cash-outs from the flurry of IPOs, startups exits and exponentially expanding Hurun India Rich List indicate that India is witnessing the fastest wealth creation in its history," Junaid said, hoping that the wealth creators will collect more Indian arts.
The most expensive work sold in 2020 was a 2004 piece titled 'The Seashore' by Kolkata-based figurative artist Arpita Singh for Rs 5.28 crore, while Kapoor's 2013 work 'Sans Tiltre' followed with a Rs 4.54 crore.
New Delhi-based painter Krishen Khanna, 96, shot up to the second place with sales of Rs 9 crore, followed by modernist painter Rameshwar Broota, 80, in third place with Rs 8.79 crore, the list said.
Others in the top-10 included Jogen Chowdhury, Anjolie Ela Menon, and Nalini Malani, it said, adding that 18 per cent of the 50 are women artists.
"Total sales of the Hurun India Art List came to Rs 81.28 crore, down 25 per cent compared with last year, the report said. Interestingly, the dip in the overall value came even as there was an increase in the number of lots sold to 470.
Painting was the most popular form of the art sold by artists on the list with 33 artists, followed by sculpting with 4 artists.
From a geographical distribution perspective, 37 per cent or Rs 30.47 crore of the total artwork from artists on this year's list was sold in India, followed by the USA (29 per cent) and UK (13 per cent).
As against the Rs 81.28 crore turnover in India, the same stood at Rs 3,478 crore in China, leading Junaid to lament that the northern neighbour is light years ahead of us.