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Modern and Contemporary South Asian Art / George Keyt (Sri Lankan, 1901-1993) Maya and Radha

Lot 18
George Keyt
(Sri Lankan, 1901-1993)
Maya and Radha
24 May 2022, 13:00 BST
London, New Bond Street

Sold for £14,025 inc. premium

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George Keyt (Sri Lankan, 1901-1993)

Maya and Radha
signed and dated 'G Keyt 48' upper left
oil on canvas
68 x 66.7cm (26 3/4 x 26 1/4in).


Indigo Blue Art, Singapore;
Acquired by the vendor from the above in 2006.

For a similar work sold at Sotheby's, see Indian Art, New York, 19th March 2008, lot 2.

In his enduring legacy as the most distinguished modern artist from Sri Lanka, George Keyt's vivid representations of Maya and Radha can be identified as one of the hallmarks of his artistic practice. Born in 1901, George Keyt started painting when he was 26 and developed a seminal style that grounds bounding lines and rich warmth of colour. A style that found its roots in Cubism, Fauvism and flourished under the influence of ancient South Asian fresco techniques found at Ajanta and Sigiriya.

A trademark of Keyt's figuration, the eyes of the two maidens in the painting bear the marks of the artist's signature stylisation, with their enlarged, almond-shaped eyes and exaggerated features with a focus on bold, crisp lines drawn from a distinct Cubist perspective. The blue, fauvist background of the scene conveys the life and exuberance of Sri Lanka and Keyt's love and passion for this land.

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