Saffronart’s Online Auction of Fine Jewels and Silver Fetches Rs.8 Crores

Saffronart’s Online Auction of Fine Jewels and Silver concluded on 12 October, 2022 and achieved a total sales value of approximately Rs. 8 crores (nearly 1 million dollars), according to a press statement.

The auction featured a selection of rare and high-quality traditional pieces from periods of Indian craftsmanship, accompanied by exceptional provenances, uniquely designed contemporary jewellery, significant gemstones, and exquisite silverworks.

An exquisite gem-set ‘Jali’ Lattice cuff sold for $46,390 (Rs.38.04 lakhs). Image courtesy of Saffronart

Commenting on the auction, Minal Vazirani, President and Co-Founder, Saffronart said, “We are delighted with the results of our Online Auction of Fine Jewels and Silver. The auction garnered a global response, as collectors continue to harbour a keen interest in rare traditional Indian ornaments. Saffronart is dedicated to expanding the market for vintage and contemporary jewellery through carefully curated auctions, initiatives, and dialogues on India’s rich jewelled legacy. We look forward to helping a new generation develop a deep appreciation for the art of jewellery collecting, while preserving cultural heritage.”

The detailed Burmese silver tea canister sold $2,195 (Rs. 1.8 lakhs). Image courtesy of Saffronart

Leading the sale was the cover lot of the auction was an important ‘Borla’ or forehead 0rnament valued at Rs. 50 lakhs ($60,980) that surpassed its higher estimate and sold for Rs. 70.6 lakhs ($ 86,098). A combination of traditional and modern aesthetics, this magnificent borla features unusually large rose-cut diamonds and a customised matha patti, fringed with diamond briolettes.

An exquisite Gemset ‘Jali’ Lattice Cuff sold for nearly double its higher estimate at Rs. 38 lakhs ($46,390). The stunning cuff features openwork floral motifs set with ruby cabochons, rose-cut diamonds and emeralds mounted in 22-karat gold.

Indian artisanship was certainly at the forefront, as a diamond enamelled Kada sold for Rs. 19.20 lakhs ($23,415).

The Thewa gold necklace fetched $32,122 (Rs. 26.34 lakhs). Image courtesy of Saffronart

Known for its exceptional level of detail, thewa ornaments garnered a significant amount of attention this auction. Originating from Pratapgarh, thewa jewellery is created using a distinctive technique, which requires patience and dexterity. It’s the intricate craftsmanship that goes into every piece that elevates the value of these ornaments. A testament to exceptional skill, the ‘Thewa’ Gold Necklace surpassed its higher estimate and sold for Rs. 26.34 lakhs ($32,122). The necklace features multiple thewa units, each depicting an array of mythological characters and hunting scenes, both of which are characteristics unique to thewa artistry. A rare, silver ‘Thewa’ Box depicting an intricate procession scene sold for Rs. 8.40 lakhs ($10,244).

An important ‘Borla’ or forehead ornament realised for $86,098 (Rs. 70.6 lakhs). Image courtesy of Saffronart

The auction hosted exceptional silver jewellery, including tribal pieces, featuring phenomenal design and craftsmanship. These pieces, some of which are no longer utilitarian, take on a new avatar as collectables and sculptural objects, and are seldom found in such diversity, barring museums and curated collections. The silver lots of the auction have been extensively researched, many of which are referenced in a range of renowned publications that detail the history of silver jewellery across Asia and globally. Owing to their uniqueness, the silver lots of the auction performed exceedingly well, with a vast majority surpassing their higher estimates.

The silver ‘Kadla’ or anklet fetched $1,390 (Rs. 1.14 lakhs). Image courtesy of Saffronart
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