Jitish Kallat - BRIC Theme Sale London Friday, April 23, 2010 | Phillips

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  • Provenance

    Arario Gallery, Beijing; Wedel Fine Art, London

  • Catalogue Essay

    Indian artist Jitish Kallat manipulates the languages of pop and agitprop in order to address, both aesthetically and intellectually, issues of human struggle and survival in modern India. In his paintings, sculptures, photographs and installations, Kallat presents imagery which deliberately undermines the percieved 'slickness' of the advertisements and graphic design pervading today's visual landscape, instead showcasing a gritty realism lifted from the crowded streets and rain-streaked facades of Mumbai. Taking as subject people whose dreams of a better life have given way to apathy and anger, he presents an unflinching look at the widening gulf between the good intentions of the powers-that-be and the bitter realities of ordinary folk. In doing so, he captures the psychological stress of life in a mega-city, combining a contemporary style of presentation with eternal questions of existence. The present lot is monumental, billboard-sized canvas from his recent Eclipse series. Against a stylized cadmium-orange sunset, reminiscent of a propaganda poster, four hugging children grin as if posing for a picture. Malnourished and dressed in rags, their smiles betray an altogether darker, more unsettling existence, a reality in which these dispossessed youths are left to fend for themselves in the sewers of Mumbai. Speaking about his inspiration for the series, the artists has said: 'The city street is my university. One finds all the themes of life and art - pain, happiness, anger, violence and compassion - played out there in full volume. Scale is merely one of the many tools one can deploy in the creation of meaning, and decisions such as big, small, lifesize, etc.,are as much acts of meaning creation as they may be retinal or aesthetic considerations.' (Jitish Kallat, quoted in The Asian Art Newspaper, February 2010)


Untitled (Eclipse)

Triptych: Acrylic on canvas.
Overall: 213.3 x 501.9 cm (84 x 197 5/8 in).

Titled ‘Untitled (Eclipse)’ upper centre of left panel. Signed, titled and dated ‘2007 JITISH KALLAT UNTITLED (ECLIPSE)’ on the overlap of each panel.

£120,000 - 150,000 

Sold for £169,250

BRIC Theme Sale

23-24 April 2010