Lot 10
  • 10

Mohan Samant

8,000 - 12,000 GBP
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  • Mohan Samant
  • Untitled (Fishermen)
  • Signed and dated in Devanagari lower right
  • Oil on canvas
  • 72.5 x 134.7 cm. (28 ½ x 53 in.)
  • Painted in 1946


Dölf Amacker went to India around 1948, shortly after independence and worked there as a young engineer. This work was acquired during his stay, between 1948 and 1961.

Catalogue Note

Mohan Samant hails from a family that encouraged interest in all forms of artistic expression, including music and drama, although Samant displayed an early proficiency and dedication to the visual arts. A member of the Progressive Artists’ Group, he derived inspiration for his practice from five thousand years of art from various civilizations, to develop his unique style. He constantly experimented with materials, techniques and imagery. The beacons of bright colour that punctuate his classic earthy palette is a fine example of this. Early examples of Samant's work represent a high modernist style as influenced by Pablo Picasso and Paul Klee.
A feature of daily life in Mumbai was fishing and many of Samant’s paintings depicted fishermen and women with their catch. As a boy, the artist would attend the local markets and was fascinated by the seafood and their cross-legged vendors sitting on their raised platforms showcasing the array of specialties.  In this work we see the boat, the hanging catch and the figures all individually, yet they remain part of a scene. Samant claimed he never knew what a painting was actually ‘about’ until it was almost finished, at which point he would add figures to a work that was more or less abstract.