• Christies auction house James Christie logo

    Sale 1975

    South Asian Modern + Contemporary Art

    20 March 2008, New York, Rockefeller Plaza

  • Lot 26

    TV SANTHOSH (b. 1968)

    Traces of an Ancient Error

    Price Realised  


    TV SANTHOSH (b. 1968)
    Traces of an Ancient Error
    each signed 'TV Santhosh' (on the reverse); signed, dated and inscribed 'T.V. SANTOSH 2007 OIL ON CANVAS SIZE 5'x10' (DIPTYCH)' (on the reverse)
    oil on canvas-diptych
    60 x 120 in. (152.4 x 304.8 cm.)
    Painted in 2007

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    Santhosh's untiring search for an understanding of the state of world politics, war and media is expressed most effectively by this painting titled Traces of an Ancient Error. Reconstructed from a science fiction film, the artist uses his signature style of turning a positive photographic image into its negative. The artist deliberately eliminates the details of anything specific or local in the image and the subject takes on a much grander scale and, like most of his recent works, addresses the universal concerns of war, terrorism and violence.
    The scientific lab-scape is used as a metaphor for progress, with the juxtaposition of mice acting as a constant reminder of the side effects that come with technological development. The scientist contemplates as his experiment runs amok. His position in the work is that of a mediator between knowledge and implementation.

    The bright yet starkly contrasting palette of yellow, orange and green enhances the element of violence. Through minimal rendering and slight details the artist masterfully juxtaposes the softness and the rhythmic playfulness of the mice with the hard sterile lab instruments that dominate the right half of the painting.

    Traces of an Ancient Error is a powerful vision that the artist has created which leaves a lasting impression on its viewer and implores the audience to re-evaluate the politics of war and terrorism - a plea to identify the real enemy.

    Pre-Lot Text



    Indian Art III/III - Here and Now: Young Voices from India, Exhibition Catalogue, Vadehra Art Gallery, New Delhi, 2007, unpaginated (illustrated).


    London, Grosvenor Vadehra, Indian Art III/III - Here and Now: Young Voices from India, 2007.