Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Success story of a talented art expert

After more than a decade long stint at Christie’s auction house in New York, where Yamini Mehta played a major role in establishing the comprehensive Indian art section, she last year switched to Sotheby’s in London. As their new international South Asian art head, she now oversees focused development of a fast-growing market segment, which has witnessed its share of ups and down, ebb and flow.

She provides trusted advice and serves in a client and business development capacity with Sotheby’s highest echelon of collectors. An official note on the website notes that Ms Mehta joined Sotheby’s in 2012 after a 14-year career at Christie’s where she helped to establish the Indian art department in New York in 1998. She was appointed as Specialist and Head of South Asian Modern and Contemporary Art at Christie’s in 2005.

In her role she expanded and oversaw the international sales of South Asian Modern and Contemporary Art in New York, London, Hong Kong and Dubai. At Christie’s, she has overseen the consignments and sales of numerous record works as well as the highest sale totals ever to be achieved in the field (September 2006, $17.8 million; June 2010, £12.5 million). Notable works that Ms. Mehta has secured for auction include , amongst many others:
  • ‘Saurashtra’ by Syed Haider Raza which holds the record for any modern Indian work of art at £2.4 million, sold in 2010
  • ‘Birth’ by Francis Newton Souza which achieved the record price of £1.27 million in 2008
  • N. S. Harsha’s ‘Mass Marriage’ which achieved a record for the artist in Hong Kong of HK$ 6,480,000 in 2007
  • Subodh Gupta’s Untitled stainless steel installation, which is a current record achieved in 2008 for sculpture at £601,250.
She has also expanded the number of contemporary artists included into auctions working with the region’s best known art galleries, collectors and curators. She comes with a wealth of experience bringing access and knowledge of the market to the field.

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