THUKRAL & TAGRA
b. 1976; b. 1979
Oil and acrylic on canvas; diptych
Signed, dated, titled and inscribed 'THUKRAL & TAGRA / TITLE: METROPOLIS- 1 / : ACRYLIC, OIL ON CANVAS / : 6 x 12- DIPTYCH / : 2007 SEPTEMBER' on reverse of first panel. Further signed, dated, titled and inscribed 'THUKRAL & TAGRA / TITLE: METROPOLIS -1 / MEDIUM: ACRYLIC, OIL ON CANVAS / SIZE: 6x12 DIPTYCH (6x6) (6x6) / DATED: 2007 SEPTEMBER' on reverse of second panel
First: 71 ⅞ x 72 ⅛ in. (182.5 x 183.1 cm.); Second: 71 ⅞ x 71 ½ in. (182.5 x 184.1 cm.); 71 ⅞ x 143 ⅝ in. (182.5 x 364.8 cm.) overall
This work is painted on the sides and unframed.
Painted in 2007
There is very minor wear with tiny associated losses along the edges but this is visible only upon very close inspection. Pigment accretions are inherent to the work. These works are in very good overall condition.
The lot is sold in the condition it is in at the time of sale. The condition report is provided to assist you with assessing the condition of the lot and is for guidance only. Any reference to condition in the condition report for the lot does not amount to a full description of condition. The images of the lot form part of the condition report for the lot provided by Sotheby's. Certain images of the lot provided online may not accurately reflect the actual condition of the lot. In particular, the online images may represent colours and shades which are different to the lot's actual colour and shades. The condition report for the lot may make reference to particular imperfections of the lot but you should note that the lot may have other faults not expressly referred to in the condition report for the lot or shown in the online images of the lot. The condition report may not refer to all faults, restoration, alteration or adaptation because Sotheby's is not a professional conservator or restorer but rather the condition report is a statement of opinion genuinely held by Sotheby's. For that reason, Sotheby's condition report is not an alternative to taking your own professional advice regarding the condition of the lot.
Acquired from Nature Morte Gallery, New Delhi in 2007
Private collection, France
Sotheby's New York, 18 September 2008, lot 122
Paris, Cour Carree, Louvre, FIAC by Nature Morte/Bose Pacia, October 2007
Based in New Delhi, Jiten Thukral and Sumir Tagra work collaboratively in a wide variety of media including painting, sculpture, installation, video, graphic and product design, Web sites, music and fashion. Their works are inspired by fashion and advertising as much by art history, they combine cutting-edge computer graphics with retro-styled accessories, they are among the new generation of young Indian artists who defy easy classifications.'Thukral and Tagra may most resemble the Japanese wunderkind Takashi Murakami, he of the cartoon figures that cavort from paintings to designer handbags to mass produced souvenirs to precious Jewelry. What all these artists share is a celebratory attitude towards their cultural products, foregrounding that act of making over the act of editing, preferring production over theorization.' (Exhibition catalogue, Thukral & Tagra, Nature Morte and Bose Pacia gallery, 2007, p. 7)
Utilizing their fake brand "Bosedk" (a tongue-in-cheek Anglicization of an abusive term used in Punjabi), Thukral & Tagra blur the lines between fine art and popular culture, product placement and exhibition design, artistic inspiration and media hype. 'Bosedk Design permits Thukral and Tagra a platform from which to infiltrate an available media, to saturate all possible avenues with their aesthetic.' The current work brings together a number of these themes to present massive billboard styled image that comments on consumerism, the commoditization of art and the recycling of styles. Over a series of recent exhibition products labeled as "Bosedk" appear in a wide variety of forms, all attractively packaged but intentionally empty, selling nothing more than their own brand name. The language of advertising is applied to the paintings, while the gallery is presented as a supermarket. The effect is to make one conscious of the collusion between the art market, the retail industry, globalization and fashion branding. 'Thinking in images, Thukral and Tagra squire an almost infinite number of pictures into these product labels, submerging daily life into the surface of these commodities, requiring the viewer to both hunt and peck for the shredded remains of actual experience. Pop art for sure, but unlike Warhol, whose creations parasitically lived off the glamour or notoriety of his chosen subjects, Thukral and Tagra's Pop is trapped in its own narcissistic spiral, committing incest so as to devour their offspring alive.' (ibid., p. 12)