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Christie’s to auction donated art to aid Bengali literature library

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New York, Aug 7 (IANS) Marking its 25th year of presence in India, Christie’s will auction 20 donated artworks to support the Library of Bengali Literature, an open-ended bilingual collection of 1000 years of the texts of Bengal area.

Published by Columbia University Press, the Library of Bengali Literature is a new series of English-language translations of the masterpieces of the Bengali literary tradition. It is driven by Jnanpith recipient poet Sankha Ghosh and professors Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak and Thibaut d’Hubert.

It is currently raising an endowment of $2 million to support the project, part of which will be raised by the Christie’s auction on September 11 in New York.

“The editors have established a working list of fifty volumes, but in fact, this project is to be seen as open-ended and entries will be welcomed from all sources, on all kind of subjects and researched as well as edited to the highest standards of the Columbia University Press. The first two volumes are ready to be published as soon as funds are secured,” Christie’s said in a statement on Wednesday.

On auction will be works by artists Jamini Roy, Jogen Chowdhury, Tyeba Begum Lipi and Rina Banerjee, among others.

In addition to these 20, the larger auction titled “South Asian Modern and Contemporary Art”, will present more than 110 works by modern and contemporary artists from the Indian subcontinent.

Major artists include S.H. Raza, F.N. Souza and Bikash Bhattacharjee. A sculpture by Mrinalini Mukherjee, whose work is currently on view in a retrospective at the Metropolitan Museum in New York, will also be on sale.

For Christie’s, 2019 marks the 25th year of opening its first representative office in Mumbai. Highlights of this New York auction will be on preview in Mumbai from August 22-24. It is open to the public with continuous guided tours given by Christie’s specialists.



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