Introducing Tushar Sethi, a news article in leading financial publication The Financial Chronicle, notes: “In 2005, he founded a popular online trading platform for art, theartstrust.com, and later astaguru.com, which enables online art auctioneering, a first of its kind experiment in India.”
In fact, he has always been connected with art thanks to his father Vickram Sethi, who has been collecting and promoting art. It was only natural for Tushar Sethi to explore the domain of art. He even wanted to launch an art fund at one point, as he saw immense potential in it, but opted to launch a portal to sell works of art in the secondary market. When he entered the fray, the art market was fast picking up. He also realized that since paintings were changing hands fast, there was a scope to start an auction house. AstaGuru has conducted three auctions.
Keeping in mind the increasing viewer base coupled with a rising general awareness and interest in contemporary Indian art, Tushar Sethi took the next logical step of setting up an art gallery. He established the Institute of Contemporary Indian Art in 2007. ICIA has emerged as one of India’s biggest grass root galleries. It’s spread over three floors and showcases both modern & contemporary art in Kala Ghoda, the heart of Mumbai’s art district.
ICIA recently teamed up with the Museum of Contemporary Art (MoCA) in Shanghai, and organized an ambitious exhibition, titled ‘India Xianzai’. The exhibition in association with Seven Art Ltd comprised the works of established Indian artists. It showcased the works of top 20 artists, including Chitra Ganesh, Jitish Kallat and Anju Dodiya. Though Chinese art collectors have shown a keen interest in India, Indian art has not been shown on a large scale there. ICIA felt it was time to showcase the best of Indian art in China.
No surprise, ‘India Xianzai’ has proven to be a landmark exhibition.