• South Asian Modern + Contempor auction at Christies

    Sale 2299

    South Asian Modern + Contemporary Art

    23 March 2010, New York, Rockefeller Plaza

  • Lot 38

    MAQBOOL FIDA HUSAIN (B. 1915)

    Dhoban

    Price Realised  

    MAQBOOL FIDA HUSAIN (B. 1915)
    Dhoban
    signed 'Husain' and further signed in Urdu (lower right)
    oil on canvas
    36¾ x 19 in. (93.3 x 48.2 cm.)
    Painted in 1963


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    "Husain's women, far from arousing passion, are ascetic without any of the abundant sexuality found in Indian sculptures. It is almost as if he strips the sculptures of all exterior embellishments to arrive at their basic sense of movement." (Y. Dalmia, The Making of Modern Art, The Progressives, New Delhi, 2001, p. 111)

    In this work from the early sixties, Husain pays homage to the simple dhoban or laundry woman with the ever present bundle of clothes precariously balanced on her head. It is a celebration of everyday India and in keeping with works from the period, Husain's brushstrokes are bold and utilize a semi-cubist approach.

    Provenance

    Acquired directly from the artist; the work has adorned the walls of official diplomatic residences in London and Washington DC
    Thence by descent to the present owner


    Pre-Lot Text

    PROPERTY FROM THE COLLECTION OF THE LATE AGA HILALY, AMBASSADOR TO PAKISTAN AND HIGH COMMISSIONER TO INDIA, SWEDEN, UNITED KINGDOM AND UNITED STATES


    Literature

    R. Bartholomew and S. S. Kapur eds., Husain, New York, 1972, (illustrated, unpaginated)