“Of all the arts, abstract painting is the most difficult. It demands that you know how to draw well, that you have a heightened sensitivity for composition and for colours, and that you be a true poet. This last is essential.” – Wassily Kandinsky Contemporary abstract art work is becoming popular and this is happening not only in India, but also abroad. The market for this field of abstract art has been picking up in a more concerted way over the last couple of years. Here again, the buyers of abstract have not only increased in India, but internationally too including in the US, Europe, Australia, Singapore, China, Japan and Mauritius. Though the number of abstract artists in India is still very limited, they have enjoyed exclusivity, both in India and internationally.
According to a report in the Economics Times, the abstract work of artists like Manish Pushkale, Harshvardana, Kishor Shinde and Sujata Bajaj have achieved price ranges of between Rs 3 lakh and Rs 5 lakh. With Gaitonde, Raza and Swaminathan leading from the front, next in line of abstract artists are names like Prabhakar Kolte, Laxman Shrestha, Ambadas, Rajendra Dhawan and Ganesh Haloi. The third generation includes painters such as Akhilesh, Seema Ghurayya, Sujata Bajaj, Vanita Gupta, Sheetal Gattani and Manish Pushkale.
Abstract art is completely non-objective or non-representational. Abstract art is one without a recognisable subject, one which doesn’t relate to anything external or try to “look like” something. Instead the colour and form (and often the materials and support) are the subject of the abstract painting.
The most common understanding of abstract art is as a phenomenon of 20th century. Abstract painting appeared at virtually the same time (1911) across the borders and continents of the cultures actively participating in Western culture. Therfore, it can not be pin pointed that who the first Modernist abstract painter was. It could have been Robert Delaunay in Paris; or the American Arthur Dove; the Russians Wassily Kandinsky or Kasimir Malevich; the Dutch painter Piet Mondrian; Franz Kupka, Balla in Italy or many others. Rather than an invention of an individual, abstraction in Modernist painting appeared as a cultural phenomenon.
With the prices of the master abstractionists having reached exorbitant levels, the middle and younger generation are being noticed world over and pushing forward on the price front.